Guest Post: White House: Obama did not personally kill Osama

By our correspondent, Colin Murphy.

The White House has backed away from early suggestions the President Barack Obama personally adminstered the “tap tap” of fatal shots to Osama Bin Laden in his billion-dollar booby-trapped mansion in Pakistan.   Early reports, based on conversations with senior officials, suggested that Obama had been instantly transported to the scene of the Navy Seal raid from the White House situation room, via an invisible mini-transporter which the President wears around his head.   Obama at first sat watching via live video link as the Navy Seals deployed the latest in sophisticated weaponry to breach the near-impenetrable, high-walled compound. However, when a Seal cut his thumb on some barbed wire while attempting to scale an eight foot wall, the President decided to personally intervene, reports said.   Obama fought off attack from Bin Laden’s hareem, who were armed with long nails and, in some cases, scratchy jewellery, it was claimed. Identifing Bin Laden by his long beard and low-resolution face, Obama pursued him through the compound, avoiding fire from Bin Laden’s shoulder-held rocket-propelled grenade launcher. Catching up with Bin Laden as he was about to activate a large booby trap which would have seen the Navy Seals all fall through trapdoors into the basement, Obama let off two clean shots. At the last moment, one of Bin Laden’s underage wives through herself in front of him, being killed in the process.   Further reports suggested that the President had then hoisted his fellow Muslim’s body onto his shoulders and carried it to a helicopter. Later, on board a US Navy vessel, he personally prepared the body according to Islamic rites and recited the appropriate prayers, before overseeing its burial at sea.  

However, as contradictions emerged in recent days between accounts of the episode, apparently sourced from high-level security briefings, and from others with at least a passing knowledge of where Pakistan is, the White House has moved to clarify the narrative of the event.   It confirmed today that President Obama was not transported to the site, and was not even watching a live video link, which kept stalling because of poor bandwidth. Instead, he received updates via Facebook Chat from the operation’s director, Leon Panetta. Panetta finally confirmed Bin Laden’s death with a coded ‘Poke’ on Facebook, a spokesman said. There were no women at the site, no weaponry, and the walls were not actually very high, he confirmed. Bin Laden had given a Navy Seal “the finger”, and the Seal had responded with a burst of automatic fire which had decimated him, the spokesman said.   “No pictures can be released because there wasn’t much left to photo,” he said.    Bin Laden was given the full burial rites appropriate to “a murdering terrorist bastard”, be said.

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