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IS BIN LADEN REALLY DEAD? NOT EVERYONE IS CONVINCED

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WASHINGTON,U.S.A - Knowing there would be disbelievers, the U.S. says it used convincing means to confirm Osama bin Laden's identity during and after the firefight that killed him. But the mystique that surrounded the terrorist chieftain in life is persisting in death. Was it really him? How do we know? Where are the body?
Already, those questions are spreading in Pakistan and surely beyond. In the absence of photos and with his body given up to the sea, many people don't believe bin Laden, the Great Emir to some, the fabled escape artist of the Tora Bora mountains to foe and friend alike — is really dead.
  • U.S. officials are balancing that skepticism with the sensitivities that might be inflamed by showing images they say they have of the dead al-Qaida leader and video of his burial at sea. Still, it appeared likely that photographic evidence would be produced.
  • "We are going to do everything we can to make sure that nobody has any basis to try to deny that we got Osama bin Laden," John Brennan, President Barack Obama's counterterrorism adviser, said Monday.
  • He said the U.S. will "share what we can because we want to make sure that not only the American people but the world understand exactly what happened."
  • In July 2003, the U.S. took heat but also quieted most conspiracy theorists by releasing graphic photos of the corpses of Saddam Hussein's two powerful sons to prove American forces had killed them.
  • So far, the U.S. has cited evidence that satisfied the Navy SEAL force, and at least most of the world, that they had the right man in Abbottabad, Pakistan.
  • The helicopter-borne raiding squad that swarmed the luxury compound identified bin Laden by appearance. A woman in the compound who was identified as his wife was said to have called out bin Laden's name in the melee.
  • Officials produced a quick DNA match from his remains that they said established bin Laden's identity, even absent the other techniques, with 99.9 percent certainty. U.S. officials also said bin Laden was identified through photo comparisons and other methods.
  • Tellingly, an al-Qaida spokesman, in vowing vengeance against America, called him a martyr, offering no challenge to the U.S. account of his death.
  • Even so, it's almost inevitable that the bin Laden mythology will not end with the bullet in his head. If it suits extremist ends to spin a fantastical tale of survival or trickery to gullible ears, expect to hear it.
In the immediate aftermath, people in Abbottabad expressed widespread disbelief that bin Laden had died or ever lived among them.
"I'm not ready to buy bin Laden was here," said Haris Rasheed, 22, who works in a fast food restaurant. "How come no one knew he was here and why did they bury him so quickly? This is all fake — a drama, and a crude one."
Kamal Khan, 25, who is unemployed, said the official story "looks fishy to me."
  • The burial from an aircraft carrier in the North Arabian Sea was videotaped aboard the ship, according to a senior defense official who spoke on condition of anonymity because a decision on whether to release the video was not final. The official said it was highly likely that the video, along with photographs of bin Laden's body, would be made public in coming days.
The swiftness of the burial may have raised suspicions but was in accord with Islamic traditions. Islamic scholars, however, challenged U.S. assertions that a burial at sea was an appropriate fate for a Muslim who had died on land.
The act denied al-Qaida any sort of burial shrine for their slain leader. Once again, bin Laden had vanished, but this time at the hands of the United States and in a way that ensures he is gone forever.
Source: The china Post and agency
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