U.S. troops kill Osama bin Laden in Pakistan
Osama Bin Laden, seen in an undated photo, attending a meeting with a Kalashnikov on his lap in an undisclosed place.
May 2nd, 2011
11:11 PM ET

U.S. troops kill Osama bin Laden in Pakistan

Editor's note: We'll be providing you with the latest information, the most interesting and compelling details and angles on Osama bin Laden's death as we get them here on this live blog. For the big picture that tells the story in full, click here. But stay with us for news as it continues to break.

[Updated 10:01 p.m. ET] CNN's Chris Lawrence explains, step by step, the raid that killed Osama bin Laden early Monday at a compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan:

[Updated 9:30 p.m. ET] Addressing a group of congressional leaders at the White House this evening, President Barack Obama said that when Americans learned of Osama bin Laden's death, "I think we experienced the same sense of unity that prevailed on 9/11."

"We were reminded again that there is a pride in what this nation stands for and what we can achieve that runs far deeper than party, far deeper than politics," Obama said. "I want to again recognize the heroes who carried out this incredibly dangerous mission as well as all the military and counterterrorism professionals who made the mission possible.”

THE OPERATION: Attack details | Timeline | In plain sight | The compound Video
U.S. | World | Middle East  | Healing wounds | Your thoughts
Bin Laden, over the years | Face of terror | Ideology lives on| His life Video
: What's next for al Qaeda | A deathblow to al Qaeda?
A victory for Obama, U.S. | Re-election impact?
: Obama: Justice done | Watch Video | Transcript

THE PAKISTANIS: What did Pakistan know?Pakistan's role? Video 

[Updated 9:10 p.m. ET] A senior U.S. official says that the woman who has killed during the raid on the compound where Osama bin Laden was found was not a wife of bin Laden, and that she may not have been used as a human shield as previously reported. A wife was there, according to an official, but not killed.

Earlier Monday, John Brennan, assistant to the president for homeland security and counterterrorism, told reporters that it was his understanding that the woman who was killed was one of bin Laden's wives. Other officials had said that the woman who died was used as a human shield in an attempt to protect bin Laden.

[Updated 8:48 p.m. ET] Time magazine contributor Omar Waraich says he spoke to Sohaib Athar, an Abbottabad resident and software engineer who unknowingly reported, on Twitter, details of Monday morning's raid that killed Osama bin Laden. Athar had written on Twitter that, among other things, he was hearing a helicopter hovering above Abbottabad.

"When he found out (the commotion was because of) Osama bin Laden, he said to me it was quite ironic," Waraich told CNN's John King. "He said he had left his native city of Lahore, the second largest city in Pakistan, for the quiet of Abbottabad so he could escape suicide bombings and the sounds of explosions rattling his home and frightening himself and his wife. And he said the ultimate irony was that (in) this quiet place he'd moved to, he had found Osama bin Laden as a neighbor.”

[Updated 8:27 p.m. ET] A Time magazine contributor says people with whom he spoke in Abbottabad - the Pakistani city where Osama bin Laden was found and killed early Monday - seemed surprised at the news that the al Qaeda leader had been there.

"When they found out that it was Osama bin Laden in (the compound), expressions just ranged from varying degrees of incredulity," Time contributor Omar Waraich told CNN's John King.

Waraich said people he spoke to in Abbottabad seemed neither ecstatic nor saddened that United States forces had killed bin Laden.

"In fact, Osama bin Laden seemed a bit of a mystery to them throughout the time that they’ve heard of him. They had heard, they said, that he was in Pakistan, but they didn't imagine where, and certainly if they thought he would be in Pakistan, he would be in the tribal areas, some distance away from them," Waraich said.

[Updated 7:28 p.m. ET] More details about Monday morning's raid that killed Osama bin Laden at a compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, according to a U.S. official: Four helicopters were involved in the operation, but not all were on the ground.

About two dozen commandos were involved in the operation on the ground, the U.S. official said.

Officials don't know how long bin Laden was at the compound, which was completed in 2005, but they believe it was built especially for him, the U.S. official said. The U.S. intelligence community never saw bin Laden in or around the compound before the raid, according to the official.

[Updated 7:15 p.m. ET] U.S. forces shot Osama bin Laden first in the chest, and then in the head during Monday morning's raid on a compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, a senior U.S. administration official said, according to CNN's Ed Henry. Previously, CNN had reported that bin Laden was shot only in the head.

[Updated 7:12 p.m. ET] President Barack Obama will travel to New York City on Thursday to visit the site of the former World Trade Center and meet with families of those who died in the September 11 attacks, a senior White House official said.

[Updated 6:02 p.m. ET] A U.S. official said multiple options were considered before settling on the assault that killed Osama bin Laden early Monday at a compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan.

"A bombing would not have risked American lives but it might have left questions" as to whether bin Laden was killed, the official said. National security officials widely agreed "the best option is the one that gives proof," the official said.

A U.S. official says the United States' codename for bin Laden was "Geronimo." [Edit, 8:55 p.m. ET]: A senior administration official said later that "Geronimo" was code for the act of capturing or killing bin Laden, not the man himself.

[Updated 5:54 p.m. ET] The United Nations Security Council "welcomes the news on May 1, 2011, that Osama bin Laden will never again be able to perpetrate ... acts of terrorism, and reaffirms that terrorism cannot and should not be associated with any religion, nationality, civilization or group," the Security Council's current president, French ambassador Gerard Araud, said during a council session in New York on Monday.

"The Security Council recognizes this critical development and other accomplishments made in the fight against terrorism and urges all states to remain vigilant and intensify their efforts in the fight against terrorism," Araud said.

[Updated 5:35 p.m. ET] More from this afternoon's media briefing by John Brennan, President Barack Obama's adviser on homeland security and counterterrorism: When asked whether the U.S. forces who participated in the raid that killed Osama bin Laden picked up any documentation in the compound, Brennan said the Americans took time to "acquire whatever material we thought was appropriate and what was needed."

"We are in the process right now of looking at whatever might have been picked up," Brennan said. "But I'm not going to go into details about what might have been acquired. We feel as though this is a very important time to continue to prosecute this effort against al Qaeda, take advantage of the success of yesterday, and to continue to work to break the back of al Qaeda."

[Updated 4:38 p.m. ET] U.S. House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, told reporters Monday afternoon that news of Osama bin Laden's death "unified our country in much the same way" that the September 11 attacks did.

"Our fight for freedom and liberty around the globe continues. We face a complex and dangerous threat even today. It’s important that we remain vigiliant in our efforts to defeat terrorist enemies and to protect the American people. This makes our engagements in Pakistan and Afghanistan more important, not less," Boehner said.

"I want to congratulate and thank the hard-working men and women of the United States armed services," Boehner added. "I want to thank all of those involved in the intelligence community for their tireless efforts and perseverance that led to this successful evening. I also want to commend President Obama and President Bush for all their efforts to bring Osama bin Laden to justice."

[Updated 4:10 p.m. ET] The United States expects that a recording from Osama bin Laden - made before he was killed, with the intention that his supporters would distribute it upon his death - will be released, a U.S. official has told CNN.

[Updated 3:34 p.m. ET] John Brennan, President Barack Obama's adviser on homeland security and counterterrorism, says it's his understanding that a woman who was used as a human shield in an attempt to protect Osama bin Laden was one of bin Laden's wives.

Officials have said that a woman who was used as a shield by a male combatant was one of four people besides bin Laden who were killed during U.S. forces' assault on a compound early Monday in Abbottabad, Pakistan.

Brennan said it is his understanding that the woman was one of bin Laden's wives, and that she "reportedly was used as a shield to shield bin Laden from the incoming fire."

[Updated 3:16 p.m. ET] Will anyone get the up to $25 million bounty that the United States had put on Osama bin Laden? CNNMoney's Ben Rooney looks into it.

[Updated 2:38 p.m. ET] President Barack Obama's top counterterrorism adviser said Monday that the elimination of Osama bin Laden is "a strategic blow" to al Qaeda.

"It is a necessary but not necessarily sufficient blow to lead to its demise," said John Brennan, Obama's adviser on homeland security and counterterrorism.

[Updated 2:33 p.m. ET] President Obama and his top intelligence and military officials were able to monitor in a "real-time basis" the progress of the operation on Osama bin Laden's compound, the president's top counterterrorism adviser said.

"It was probably one of the most anxiety filled periods of time I think in the lives of the people who were assembled here yesterday. The minutes passed like days and the president was very concerned about the security of our personnel," John Brennan said. "That is what was on his mind throughout and we wanted to make sure that we would get through this and accomplish the mission. But it was clearly very tense. A lot of people holding their breath."

Brennan said "there was a tremendous sigh of relief" when they believed bin Laden was in fact at the compound.

[Updated 2:30 p.m. ET] A woman shielded Osama bin Laden from gunfire during the assault by U.S. forces, President Barack Obama's top counterterrorism adviser said Monday.

"There was a female who was in fact in the line of fire that reportedly was used as a shield to shield bin Laden from the incoming fire," said John Brennan, Obama's adviser on homeland security and counterterrorism.

Brennan said it was his understanding that bin Laden picked up a weapon and was killed in the firefight with the U.S. forces carrying out the assault.

"He was engaged in a firefight," Brennan said of bin Laden. "Whether or not he got off any rounds, I don't know."

[Updated 2:21 p.m. ET] The decision by President Barack Obama to launch the assault that killed Osama bin Laden was one of the "gutsiest" calls by any president in recent memory, Obama's top counterterrorism adviser said Monday.

John Brennan, assistant to the president for homeland security and counterterrorism, said that despite intelligence indicating that bin Laden was in the compound in Pakistan, there was no certainty the al Qaeda leader was actually there.

Obama "made what I believe was one of the ... gutsiest calls of any president in recent memory," Brennan said.

[Updated 2:08 p.m. ET] President Barack Obama's top counterterrorism adviser said Monday that it was "inconceivable" that Osama bin Laden did not have some kind of support system in Pakistan that allowed him to live in hiding there.

John Brennan, the president's assistant on homeland security and counterterrorism, refused to speculate on what kind of support bin Laden might have received, or whether the Pakistani government or official Pakistani institutions had any role.

[Updated 1:39 p.m. ET] Officials compared DNA of the person killed at the Abbottabad compound with bin Laden "family DNA" to determine that the 9/11 mastermind had in fact been killed, a senior administration official said.

Four others in the compound also were killed. One of them was bin Laden's adult son, and another was a woman being used as a shield by a male combatant, officials said.

[Updated 12:39 p.m. ET] The compound where Osama bin Laden was killed by U.S. forces is located a bit more than 1,000 yards from a Pakistan Military Academy, raising some questions about how much information the Pakistan military may have had about his whereabouts.

U.S. Sen. Carl Levin, Senate Armed Services Committee chairman, said during a press conference that the Pakistani army has "a lot of explaining to do."

[Updated 12:27 p.m. ET] Senior defense officials said that for a majority of the 40 minute operation at the Abbottobad compound, special forces were involved in a firefight - clearing their way through two other floors before they reached Osama bin Laden.

Bin Laden was not killed until the last five to ten minutes of the firefight, officials said.

Bin Laden and his family lived on the 2nd and 3rd floors of the 3-story building, and those floors were cleared last, the official said. The official says one of bin Laden’s own wives identified his body to U.S. forces, after the team made visual identification themselves.

U.S. forces also recovered what a senior Intelligence official is calling “quite a bit of material.”

“There’s a robust collection of materials we need to sift through, and we hope to find valuable intelligence that will lead us to other players in al Qaeda,"  a senior intelligence official said.

The official added a Task Force has been set up “because of the sheer volume of material collected. That material is currently being exploited and analyzed.”

[Updated 12:25 p.m. ET] A soldier in a special forces unit based in Georgia told CNN on Monday that while the news of Osama bin Laden’s death is cause for celebration, elite military units have sprang into high alert.

“A lot of guys got their security clearances elevated due to what happened last night,” said Lamont, who didn’t give his last name because of what he said were security reasons. “I lot of people got called back” overseas, he said, adding that his unit already was scheduled for deployment as early as two weeks ago.

[Updated 12:22 p.m. ET] Osama bin Laden's body was buried at sea according to Islamic law because no country was willing or able to take his body for burial on land, senior Defense officials said.

"When there is no land alternative, Islamic law dictates that the body be buried within 24 hours, and that was the basis," one official said. "

A second senior Defense official said there was no country willing or able to accept the body for burial, and U.S. forces "took pains to observe Muslim law."

"Today's religious rites were conducted on the deck of the USS Carl Vinson in the Arabian sea. The ceremony started at 1:10am and finished at 2:10am ET," the second official said. "Procedures for Islamic body were followed. The body was washed and placed in a white sheet. A military official read prepared remarks, which were then translated into Arabic by a native speaker. The body of Osama bin Laden was placed on a flat board, which was then tipped up, and allowed to slide into the sea."

[Updated 12:16 p.m. ET] President Barack Obama said Monday that he thinks "we can all agree this is a good day for America."

"Our country kept its commitment to see that justice is done," he said. The world, he said, is a better place because of the death of Osama bin Laden.

The successful operation to kill bin Laden reminds Americans that there is "nothing we can't do" when we work together, he said. That spirit, he said, is seen in the patriotic crowds that have gathered across the country.

"We're reminded that we're fortunate to have Americans who have dedicated their lives to protecting ours," he said. "As commander-in-chief, I could not be prouder."

[Updated 11:16 am. ET] A DNA match confirms Osama bin Laden was killed in a U.S. operation, a senior administration official told CNN Monday.

[Updated 11:09 am. ET] As the assault on bin Laden's compound commenced, the United States had a number of U.S. aircraft flying protective missions, according to a senior U.S. military official. None of the aircraft entered Pakistani airspace but they were prepared to do so if needed, the official told CNN.

These included fixed wing fighter jets that would have provided firepower if the team came under opposition fire it could not handle. There were also armed and unarmed Predator drones providing additional firepower as well as surveillance. The Air Force also had a full team of combat search and rescue helicopters including MH-53 Pave Low and HH-60 Pave Hawk helicopters flying.

[Updated at 11:07 a.m.] Pakistanis passed along raw phone-tap data to the United States that eventually led to Osama bin Laden's killing, but they failed to analyze or interpret the information themselves, a Pakistani intelligence official told CNN.

The details of what Pakistanis did or didn't know or do about the daring American operation to kill bin Laden - from intelligence gathering to the execution of the raid - remained unclear Monday.

But the intelligence official said that information about bin Laden and the people in the compound where he stayed "slipped from" Pakistan's "radar" over the months.

The intelligence official said Pakistan regularly passed along intelligence of interest to Americans.

The official did not say over what period the data was collected, but noted that from September the United States "was concentrating on this."

He added that much of the focus was on a courier coming and going to the compound. He did not give the courier's nationality or name.

Osama bin Laden was not in contact with other militant networks while he was there and maintained "an invisible footprint," the official said.

Of the raid, he said, "I think they came in undetected and went out the same day."

He added Pakistan officials do not think there were any U.S. intelligence personnel on the ground ahead of the special operations forces.

[Updated 10:55 a.m. ET] A U.S. official disputed reports that bin Laden had altered his appearance to avoid recognition.

The official said Bin Laden was recognizable on scene. He was "not transformed somehow."

A visual ID was made, there were photo comparisons and other facial recognition used to identify him, the official said. A second official said that in addition to DNA there was full biometric analysis of facial and body features.

[Updated 10:50 a.m. ET] There was no indication bin Laden was going to surrender when the U.S. launched its operation, a U.S. official said.

"There was no evidence they tried to surrender," the official told CNN. “The order going in was to get UBL (Osama bin Laden)”

“All of the contingency planning was that we would encounter heavy resistance," the U.S. official said. "That is what we expected and what happened. Obviously if everybody had put there hands up and surrendered we would have taken them but that did not happen and we did not expect it.”

That assumption bore itself out, the official said.

“We encountered resistance upon entering the compound," CNN was told.

A second U.S. official says the president's order was always to capture or kill bin Laden. The second official said the assumption all along was there would be no surrender by the al Qaeda leader.

The official said that the mission was originally supposed to happen on Saturday, but would not discuss why it was delayed until Sunday.

[Updated 9:56 a.m. ET] Posters to some of the radical websites that bin Laden's terrorist network used to speak to the world celebrated him as a martyr and vowed the group will continue despite its leader's death.

"Congratulations for dying as a martyr and a fighter in the sake of Allah," one poster wrote.

"We won't cry today, but we will revenge. Men and women in America will cry." another post read, echoing warnings from Western leaders that the terrorist network will almost certainly move to avenge bin Laden's death.

The sites, frequented by radical Islamists who subscribed to bin Laden's philosophies, have played a significant role in attracting and radicalizing potential terror recruits and the broader radical Islamist community and have been frequently used by al Qaeda and its affiliates to broadcast statements.

Many of the posters reacting to bin Laden's death referred to him as a "shaheed," or martyr. One was headlined "The Lion of Jihad was killed in a fierce battle."

[Updated 9:56 a.m. ET]  U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Monday that the death of Osama bin Laden sends a message to the Taliban in Afghanistan that "you cannot wait us out. You cannot defeat us. But you can make the choice to abandon al Qaeda" and participate in a peaceful political process.

Bin Laden's death comes at a time of "great movements toward freedom and democracy" in the Middle East and elsewhere, she said.

"There is no better rebuke to al Qaeda and its heinous ideology," she said. "The fight continues and we will never waiver."

Some doubted bin Laden would ever be caught, she said, but "this is America. ... We persevere, and we get the job done."

[Updated 9:45 a.m. ET] U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Monday that "Osama bin Laden is dead and justice has been done."

"I want to offer my thoughts and prayers" to families of those killed due to bin Laden's campaign of terror, she said.

His attacks showed "no value for human life or regard for human dignity," she said. But now "justice has been served."

Clinton offered thanks to military, diplomatic, and security officials who launched "broad, deep, very impressive effort" to hunt down bin Laden as part of the anti-terror campaign.

"We must take this opportunity to renew our resolve and redouble our effort" in Afghanistan and elsewhere, she said.

[Updated 9:19 a.m. ET] Terrorists "almost certainly will attempt to avenge" the death of Osama bin Laden, CIA Director Leon Panetta said in a message sent to agency employees.

[Updated 8:52 a.m. ET] The operation targeting Osama bin Laden was designed and executed as an operation to kill him, rather than to take him alive, a U.S. government official tells CNN.

[Updated 8:40 a.m. ET] Pakistan's ambassador to the United States said both countries "cooperated in making sure" that the operation leading to Osama bin Laden's death was "successful." Husain Haqqani told CNN's "American Morning" that President Barack Obama called Pakistan's president to thank him for Pakistan's cooperation.

[Updated, 8:12 a.m. ET] The operation that led to Osama bin Laden's death was American action, a Pakistani official told CNN. "We assisted only in terms of authorization of the helicopter flights in our airspace," said the official, who asked not to be named because he was not authorized to speak about the issue. "In any event, we did not want anything to do with such an operation in case something went wrong," the official said.

[Updated, 7:30 a.m. ET] A U.S. government official tells CNN that DNA matching is underway on the samples from the body of Osama bin Laden. The matching has not been completed, but there are photographs of the body with a gunshot wound to the side of the head that shows an individual that is not unrecognizable as bin Laden.

No decision has yet been made on whether to release the photographs and if so, when and how.

[Updated, 5:38 a.m. ET] For much of the world, Osama bin Laden was the face of al Qaeda. He was, after all, the man who oversaw the September 11, 2001, attacks.

With bin Laden gone, the question now becomes "What happens to al Qaeda?"

Within hours of bin Laden's death, questions began to emerge about who would take the helm of the organization and whether it would create an opportunity for other Islamic organizations to step up.

"Al Qaeda is weakened. But it doesn't mean that the United States has no challenges," Steven L. Spiegel, director for Middle East development at the University of California Los Angeles, said early Monday.

[Updated, 5:22 a.m. ET] Diana Massaroli, whose husband Michael was killed on September 11, 2001 when a jet plane slammed into the World Trade Center, said the death of bin Laden helped give her closure.

"I'm missing him, but I feel that justice has been done," she said at ground zero, the site where the World Trade Center once stood, holding a picture of Michael.

"I feel some overall calm that I haven't felt in 10 years. I never thought it would happen... never thought it would give me a feeling of closure," she said.

But, she added, "I feel better... like I can start a new chapter in my life."

[Updated, 3:36 a.m. ET] Afghan President Hamid Karzai said Monday he hopes the world believes that his country is "not the place of terrorism," hours after the United States announced that al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden was killed in neighboring Pakistan.

"If the international troops are the true allies of Afghans, now they should come up to say that killing of the Afghans, women, children and elders was not a good idea in the last many years as it was happening on a daily basis," Karzai said on RTA TV.

[Updated, 3:12 a.m. ET] A U.S. official said that Osama bin Laden has been buried at sea.  The official said his body was handled in the Islamic tradition, but did not elaborate.

[Updated, 2:31 a.m. ET] U.S. officials said they used facial imaging and other methods to identify the body of Osama bin Laden.

One official said it was clear to the assault force that the body matched bin Laden's description, but they used "facial recognition work, amongst other things, to confirm the identity."

A senior national security official said that they had multiple confirmations that the body was bin Laden, saying they had the "ability to run images of the body and the face."

The national security official would not confirm if DNA testing was performed.

[Updated, 2:15 a.m. ET] The leader of an Afghanistan opposition party on Monday said the killing of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden proves that Pakistan is a "haven" for terror groups.

U.S. forces killed bin Laden in a mansion outside the Pakistani capital of Islamabad.

"Killing of Osama bin Laden is pleasant news for Afghans, and now it's proven that al Qaeda and other terrorist organizations are not based in Afghanistan and Pakistan is a haven for them," said Abdullah  Abdullah, the leader of the Hope and Change political party in Afghanistan.

[Updated, 1:56 a.m. ET] The United States' Department of Homeland Security did not immediately raise the terror-threat level in the aftermath of Osama bin Laden's death, a department official told CNN early Monday.

"We remain at a heightened state of vigilance.  Secretary (Janet) Napolitano has been clear since announcing the NTAS (National Terrorism Advisory System) in January that we will only issue alerts when we have specific or credible information to convey to the American public," the official said.

[Updated, 1:42 a.m. ET] Former President George W. Bush said of the death of Osama bin Laden:  "This momentous achievement marks a victory for America, for people who seek peace around the world, and for all those who lost loved ones on September 11, 2001.  The fight against terror goes on, but tonight America has sent an unmistakable message:  No matter how long it takes, justice will be done."

[Updated, 1:36 a.m. ET] As news of bin Laden's death reached people via cell phones late Sunday, thousands of fans at a Philadelphia Phillies baseball game chanted "USA! USA!" in the ninth inning of a Phillies-Mets game.

[Updated, 1:26 a.m. ET] A congressional source familiar with the operation that killed Osama bin Laden confirmed that the terror mastermind was shot in the head during the U.S. raid, according to a briefing the source received, CNN's Dana Bash reports.

The source would not go into details of others who were killed, except to say the operation was conducted carefully to avoid harming women and children.

Asked if there is any intelligence that shows whether bin Laden's death could trigger pre-planned attacks, the source said no, but added there is obvious concern about retaliation.


[Updated, 1:14 a.m. ET] Video from Pakistan's Geo TV is showing a fire at what apparently is the Abbottabad, Pakistan, compound where U.S. President Barack Obama said a "small team of Americans" launched a firefight Sunday that resulted in Osama bin Laden's death.

Here is the video:

[Updated, 1:08 a.m. ET] Crowds continue to celebrate Osama bin Laden's death at the site of the former World Trade Center in New York and outside the White House in Washington.

One of the celebrants in New York, retired New York City police officer Bob Gibson, said he knew people who died in the September 11 attacks.

"I never thought this night would come, where we would actually capture or kill bin Laden, and thank the lord, he's been eliminated, to put it politely," Gibson told CNN's Jason Carroll. "A lot of us .. gave up. But it did come, and a lot of us are overjoyed that it happened."

[Updated, 12:54 a.m. ET] CNN's Chris Lawrence, citing U.S. officials, reports that the compound where bin Laden was found - in Abbotabad, Pakistan, about 100 kilometers outside Pakistan's capital of Islamabad - was three stories tall, and about eight times larger than any of the buildings around it.

An official said a "small U.S. team" was involved in the operation at the compound - the official would not confirm any U.S. military involvement. An official said bin Laden resisted the assault - and was killed in the firefight.

Three other men were killed in the firefight, and a woman being used as a human shield was also killed, the officials said. There were no U.S. casualties, the officials said. The U.S. team was at the compound for about 40 minutes, officials said.

A U.S. helicopter crashed during the raid because of mechanical reasons, an official said. It was destroyed, the officials said.

[Updated, 12:54 a.m. ET] A senior administration official told reporters that U.S. President Barack Obama's administration did not share intelligence gathered before the attack on bin Laden in Pakistan with any other country - including Pakistan - for security reasons.

The official said that only a small group of people inside the U.S. government knew about this operation targeting Osama bin Laden in advance.

[Updated, 12:44 a.m. ET] Many hundreds of people have gathered at the former World Trade Center site in New York City, cheering news of Osama bin Laden's death.

Chants of "USA! USA!" are coming from the crowd.

"It's just the most out-of body experience to feel so involved in history, this such a historic moment for our country right now," a woman told CNN's Jason Carroll.

[Updated, 12:35 a.m. ET] The U.S. State Department warned Americans living abroad of "enhanced potential for anti-American violence" following the death of terrorist leader Osama bin Laden.  The announcement was made in a worldwide travel alert issued early Monday.

[Updated, 12:24 a.m. ET] A team of U.S. Navy SEALs carried out the operation in Pakistan that ended in the death of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, CNN's Chris Lawrence reported.  The operation lasted about 40 minutes, and the team had practiced the raid a few times.

Earlier, CNN's Nick Paton Walsh, citing  a senior Pakistani intelligence official, reported that members of Pakistan's intelligence service - the ISI - were on site in Abbotabad, Pakistan, during the operation that killed  bin Laden. The official said he did not know who fired the shot that actually killed Bin Laden.

[Updated, 12:11 a.m. ET] Members of Pakistan's intelligence service - the ISI - were on site in Abbotabad, Pakistan, during the operation that killed Osama bin Laden, CNN's Nick Paton Walsh reports, citing a senior Pakistani intelligence official. The official said he did not know who fired the shot that actually killed Bin Laden.

[Updated, 12:06 a.m. ET] The crowd celebrating bin Laden's death outside the White House has grown significantly. Lots of cheering and waving of the U.S. flag.

Here is video of the crowd:

[Updated, 11:59 p.m. ET] More detail on where Osama bin Laden was killed: Forces killed him at a compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, after a firefight, U.S. President Barack Obama said.

Cooperation with Pakistan helped lead U.S. forces to Osama bin Laden and the compound where he was hiding, President Barack Obama said.

Obama said he ordered the attack after he decided last week that the United States had actionable intelligence that bin Laden was in the compound.

[Updated, 11:56 p.m. ET] U.S. diplomatic facilities around the world were placed on high alert following the announcement of Osama bin Laden's death, a senior U.S. official said. The U.S. State Department should be sending out a new "worldwide caution" for Americans shortly.

[Updated, 11:44 p.m. ET] Bin Laden was killed in a military operation in Pakistan that U.S. President Barack Obama ordered today, Obama said.

Obama said he was told last August that the United States had developed a possible lead on bin Laden - intelligence on bin Laden hiding in a compound in Pakistan. Obama said he determined last week that the United States had actionable intelligence.

"Today at my direction, the United States directed a targeted operation against that compound," Obama said.

Bin Laden was killed after a firefight, and forces took custody of his body, the president said. No Americans were harmed, Obama said.

[Updated, 11:36 p.m. ET] U.S. President Barack Obama announced Sunday night that al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden is dead.

"Tonight I can report to the American people and to the world that the United States has conducted an operation that has killed Osama bin Laden, the leader of al Qaeda," Obama said.

[Updated, 11:33 p.m. ET]  Osama bin Laden was killed by a "U.S. military asset," according to a senior U.S. official.

Earlier, a senior U.S. official says bin Laden was killed by U.S. forces in a mansion outside the Pakistani capital of Islamabad along with other family members.

U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to address the nation shortly.

[Updated, 11:20 p.m. ET] A crowd that has gathered outside the White House is singing the national anthem, within an hour after reports that al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden has been killed.

The group also chanted, "USA! USA!" and "Hey, hey, goodbye!" in reference to  bin Laden.

A senior U.S. official says bin Laden was killed by U.S. forces in a mansion outside the Pakistani capital of Islamabad along with other family members.

U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to address the nation shortly.

[Updated, 11:15 p.m. ET] Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden was killed by U.S. forces in a mansion outside the Pakistani capital of Islamabad along with other family members, a senior U.S. official tells CNN.

Congressional and administration sources say U.S. officials have the body of bin Laden. Further details around his death were not immediately available.

Bin Laden was the leader of al Qaeda, the terrorist network behind the September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States.

U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to address the nation shortly.

[Updated, 10:55 p.m. ET] A woman whose mother was killed on American Airlines Flight 11 on September 11 expressed "relief" over reports that Osama bin Laden is dead.

In an e-mail to CNN, Carrie Lemack said: "Cannot express how this feels to my family, but relief is one word.  We hope we can now focus on all that that madman took, namely nearly 3,000 + innocent victims, and not on him."

[Updated, 10:55 p.m. ET] Osama bin Laden is dead, sources told CNN Sunday night.

Congressional and administration sources say U.S. officials have the body of bin Laden, who was reportedly killed in Afghanistan. The details about his death were not immediately available.

U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to address the nation shortly.

[Updated, 10:45 p.m. ET]  Osama bin Laden is dead, CNN's John King reported Sunday night, citing sources.

[Initial post, 10:09 p.m. ET] U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to make a statement Sunday night, tentatively at 10:30 p.m., the White House said. The subject of his address was not known.

Obama is expected to address national security in his speech, a source said.

soundoff (4,801 Responses)
  1. Rachael

    I do believe Obama had everything to do with the success in this operation. I just think we need to see what he does now that he has reminded the world of America's strength. Will he sit back and let it be his only victory or will he put us back on top? That said, what do gas prices have to do with Obama? 10 years ago I payed $1.20 a gallon. The price increase started before Obama was even a thought in our heads. The economy was screwed up before him, too. I'm sorry to those suffering, but we are a one income family and are still doing very well. In hard times I suggest everyone buckle down, pay your bills on time, and leave out some of the luxuries America's are spoiled with. If you can't afforded that new car, drop an engine in an older one. That's how we get by.

    May 2, 2011 at 2:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • your gas man

      Well.. you have voted the Repugs in.. now the oil companies need to recoup the money they spent on the Repugs.. Simple economics.. Can't you see the gas prices started to go up as soon as the GOP took over the house?? makes sense??

      May 2, 2011 at 2:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Terrorist_Alert

      STFU... Everyone knows the real terrorists are elected lawyers who steal in our courts, then buy elected office. We're suppose to live less and tolerate these terrorists? STFU

      May 2, 2011 at 2:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • James

      Good God! A commenter NOT bashing Dems or Repubs?!?! There must be a glitch in the Matrix!!! In all seriousness, thank you for your post Rachael. It shows there are level-headed people with internet connections after all.

      May 2, 2011 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • khadijah

      In the early 60's gas was $0.19 a gallon, and my tiny honda got about 200 mpg. It's weird now days. I'm getting much more committed to my bicycle.

      May 2, 2011 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ari

      Well said Rachel! Honestly with all the negativity being put here, it's nice to see someone with a level head post.

      May 2, 2011 at 2:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jeff K

      What are you talking about, Obama worked meticoullously to get Bin Laden? His part in the operation and intelligence gathering was basically to approve it. Bush would have done exactly the same thing if he had been in office, and I am no fan of Bush.

      May 2, 2011 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tanya

      Really?? Obama has nothing to do with our rising gas prices??? Then why were all the Democrats blaming Bush for the rise in gas prices when he was in office???

      May 2, 2011 at 3:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • tkb

      If you were paying $1.20 for gas 10 years ago you don't live in the same America that I live in. If you are doing very well as a one income family then the bread winner is making good money. Try living on SSD and then tell me how well you are doing as a one family income.

      May 2, 2011 at 3:36 pm | Report abuse |
  2. David



    May 2, 2011 at 2:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • outhere


      May 2, 2011 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Terrorist_Alert

      Where's the proof? LOL

      May 2, 2011 at 2:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • jill

      NOOOOOOOOOOO! Don't open that can of worms!!! 🙂

      May 2, 2011 at 2:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • birtherdudetx

      Well.. he should start asking for the dead body.. I'd love to see Trump go scuba diving searching for Osama's dead body..

      May 2, 2011 at 2:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mony

      ahaha that was funny, trump is so retarted XD

      May 2, 2011 at 2:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • GeekEnVogue

      That's pretty darn funny

      May 2, 2011 at 3:04 pm | Report abuse |
  3. jill

    I love that Obama called Bush last night. This is not partisan–this an American news story. And as far as the pictures–they're supposedly VERY nasty–brains showing and all, so the White House is debating when and how to release them. The fact that al Qaeda has said he has been killed and they will retaliate is enough for me though....

    May 2, 2011 at 2:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • grt24ksu

      how is this picture of one dead guy more disturbing than all the videos that we saw on 9/11 of people jumping out of the towers and the thousands of deaths?

      May 2, 2011 at 2:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Terrorist_Alert

      Why would terrorist Obomber hand Americans evidence of this murder? Why? This is why you'll never see the photos... or proof... this is the way the Chicago mob works.

      May 2, 2011 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • mikeyd74

      what the hell are you talking about? heres 50$ go buy a coherent sentence you nut job

      May 2, 2011 at 2:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • newsreel

      Agree with Spence. Bush was an idiot. He called off the hunt op when they were close to corner bin laden. He wanted to concentrate on his new effort: Iraq. This success is whole due to Obama, who re-direct the resources and PRIORITIES to the hunt. The fact that he called Bush is just another proof of how gentlemanly he conduct himself, worthy of an intelligent, dignified president, not saying dumb things like mission accomplished,. or anyone not with us is against us. Those are behavior of uneducated, redneck cowboy.

      May 2, 2011 at 2:59 pm | Report abuse |
  4. outhere

    So, Islamic law says that the body must be buried within 24 hours but no Islamic country wanted to allow the garbage buried in their land? Yet the rule is still observed?

    May 2, 2011 at 2:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • Woot

      Just respecting the religion I suppose. No need to give them more to be angry about

      May 2, 2011 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kevin

      We need a picture or video, evidence please!! Give some closure to the world and more importantly to the thousands who were killed and the loved ones who were lost on 9/11. The US government owes there people that much!
      You let victims of a murderer watch them die by lethal injection, but you dont give the people the closure they need from one of the biggest mass murderers or all time.

      May 2, 2011 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Cyrus

      That's what makes us different. That's our American value. We are not going to lower our standards.

      Yes, I am an American Muslim, and I am proud of it.

      May 2, 2011 at 3:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jeff K

      It was done to try to keep from futher enraging certain groups in the muslim world. It would have been nice to hang him up by his feet and let everyone walk by and spit of his corps allah Mussolini. (see what I did there)

      May 2, 2011 at 3:03 pm | Report abuse |
  5. philurup

    Alotta good Allah will do you now bin. They should have tied a piece of the world trade center to his leg to make sure he stays at the bottom of the sea.

    May 2, 2011 at 2:31 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Marsha Sherman

    I have to agree with Seth. I could not be more proud of a sitting US president than I am now. What GWB could not do in 8 years but kept promising, Obama kept his mouth shut about and began working on since he got into office (obviously). He was as meticulous in the way he went about it as he is in everything else he does. There was no collateral damage, and the outcome could not have been better. I'm so glad our lives are in his hands. I've trusted him from the first time he spoke, and I trust him even more now. He's intelligent (unlike Trump) and he's honest (unlike George W. Bush).

    And to my bigotted and/or republican Americans I would say that this is a time to stop spewing garbage and at least TRY working with this man. He has earned your support. Do you have the courage to give it?

    May 2, 2011 at 2:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bill

      I agree. Republicans seem upset that Bin Laden is dead. I wonder who's side they are really on?

      May 2, 2011 at 2:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • NYCMovieFan

      Marsha, Marsha, Marsha – THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!

      PS please ask the Republicans if they have the courage, the intelligence and the PATRIOTISM to work with a war-time president, working on the wars that Bush started falsely, OR was too small to fight well.

      May 2, 2011 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • liza

      Umm hate to break it to you Marsh but it's the same military with a lot of the same military leaders. It's our sons and daughters, and not any politician, who have kept this country safe for all of us to spout off.

      May 2, 2011 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brad

      Observe and behold the bigotry of the left. Taking shots at the former president but calling for unilateral support for the current. If you had any sense of the organizational logistics behind what just transpired you'd know Bush had as much to do what what happened as Obama. For example, "detainee" info. If Obama were a man of his word this person probably would have been freed and any info gained would have been lost. Luckily Obama, when elected president, received a dose of reality. I hope you and yours receive the same.

      May 2, 2011 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ricnaust

      Umm Liza, who's the Commander in Chief? Did you listen to The President's speech? He said the Americans killed Osama Bin Laden. He acknowledged GWB for his getting the the ball rolling. AND GWB did make a positive statement to Mr. Obama. Mr. Obama did not take all the credit.

      You don't have to like President Obama, but you can give him credit for making this his no. 1 priority that did pan out.

      May 2, 2011 at 2:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Olsona82

      Are you kidding me? If it wasnt for the waterboarding and torture we put the detainees through in gitmo we would have never gotten the intel necessary to perform this operation. You have Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld to thank for that. Its all you liberal conspiracy theorists that want to make people believe that Bush and Cheney were just running the country for their own personal economic gain. That ideology is absolutely absurd. The capture of this coward was not going to be easy. Im just glad Obama made the right call and said to take him out unlike the last liberal donkey and let him go back in the 90's!

      May 2, 2011 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Studog

      Thank you Marsha !! As a hard-core Republican and retired military member(2003), I could not agree with you more. Bush lost focus in Afghanistan when we invaded Iraq. If he had focused and directed more resources into Afghanistan than Iraq, he probably would have accomplished the same. I did not vote for Obama but I will say thank you to him...he redirected our efforts where they should have been. Despite all the distractions(economy, birth cert nonsense), he along with others i.e CIA and the military got it done. !!! Still more work to do....

      May 2, 2011 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse |
  7. BlueRhino

    OK pakistan, time to tell where other terrorists are or we will come there to send them to sea.

    May 2, 2011 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Patriotic

      actually i m happy that OBL is dead and gone....but has anyone stopped to think that he could have died of natural cause....think about it ..he was on dialysis and also sickly....

      May 2, 2011 at 3:12 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Tristan

    The anti-Obama groups will refuse to give him credit where credit is due. Yes the CIA/Secret ops carried out the mission but within hours of being in power Obama made it clear that he wanted them to find Bin Laden and told them to make that their number 1 priority which clearly wasn't a major priority for Bush. Remember, it's rumored that Bush and Cheney have a large stakehold in some national security companies. As long as the threat of Bin Laden was around, Bush and the gang were making unimmaginable amounts of money. Obama was advised to drop bombs on the compound, but being civil he said that it would risk civillian casualties so he called on the ground op which succeeded. Who knows, bomb dropping may have failed and from what i've read, it probably really would have. For once, ignore the color of the president and give credit that he did what Bush couldn't do. Yes many are still out of jobs and the economy hasn't improved but he didn't do it. He's trying to fix it. Makes me wonder... if McCain won and to this date didn't fix the economy, would he be facing as much backlash? <– backlash – no pun intended but the word fits...

    May 2, 2011 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
  9. David

    It seems the way we take information these days is. 1st its on the news, 2nd it his Twitter, FB, and Myspace.. 3rd all the jokes come out, and then last The stupid crack pot theroies... Hes not really dead, he was found dead the same day as hitler May 1st, Hes being kept at Area 51 with the other aliens.. ETC... Why cant we just accept what is told to us. THIS WAS NOT JUST ONE PRESIDENTS DOING! It took years of planning and the combined work of 3 great men to bring this jerk down. Its a win for all sides! This is not the time to say The Democrats win or the Republicans win, Its The AMERICANS WIN! Stop giving praise to just one president, If some of our earlier presidents were still around they would share this moment and thank each other for their help and imput on how to get the issue at hand completed!

    May 2, 2011 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Denysus

    Well lets look at it this way what has Obama done other then order the hand that took osama out if they knew were he was what took them so long to get to him . What has Obama done to help america out as far as the country itself goest So I say congrats to our men and woman of the U.S. armed forces and to George W Bush and Bush Sr. for starting the campaine to take Osama down. George W. and Bush SR. are the ones that got the rifle out and set it up Obama only pulled the trigger. And just so you know I am a midwestern white boy that isn't prejudice against color or relegion, my brother in law is hispanic and I have good friends that are black.. So my feelings and issues are not motivated by color, infact if the truth were told I think that many people of that do not like Obama are not prejudice because of his color or relegion, he just hasn't proved himself to me. There was a time when this coutnry was very prefudice against color but I happen to beleive that my genteration has started a new presiedence against that. My generation sees less and less skin color all the time and sees more of who the person is on the inside and that is how we judge our like or dislike for that person. Honestly prejuidice has sihifted alot in the last foury years lets take a look at who has more rights now in this day an age before we through the skin color into the mix!!! This is not our grandparents and great grandparents world anymore!!! So I beleive that there are prejudice against Obama because of his skin color by some but that is not what is feeding his low ratings!!!!!

    May 2, 2011 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • cmilsy

      i think people who give congrats to our government need to remember who trained him in the first place. we enable all these things, we don't need to be isolationist, but we do need to be more careful with our foreign policy. it's like we thought we weren't going to need to have foreign policy after the cold war.

      May 2, 2011 at 2:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • Boston

      Learn how to spell...That was painful to read

      May 2, 2011 at 2:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • McKeeg

      Ok, well I see there is the normal barrage of left and right battling over who deserves credit... The US Military deserves credit. Granted, I believe they should have let an Army SF unit conduct the op. After all, they have done 90% of the work over the last ten yrs... but it's cool. SEALS are amazing warriors and obviously conducted this mission with great precision. As for people trying to give Bush credit. He did not start the search for bin laden, that was Clinton... do your research. and the fact that Obama stuck with this and gave the go ahead, oh yeah, and he;s our PRESIDENT means that regardless of who actually did the work, he gets credit for authorizing it. So, all in all... bin laden is dead!! we still have work to do, but now I hope that the family of those lost since 9/11 both at home and abroad can rest a little easier knowing that justice has been served on this man.

      May 2, 2011 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • TJ

      It's interesting that you would say GW and Bush Sr. supplied the riffles because Bush Sr. did supply riffles to our adversaries. I surely don't see giving credit to Bush Sr. for any of this and I'm sure if he were to read this blog he would be wondering "how did my name get in this"? At the beginning of Baby Bush's term our great country was hit hard and he was unprepared, but I never saw any growth in him and I was not impressed, not even a little bit. I certainly can't give all the credit to President Obama for making the call; it was our brave soldiers who risked their lives. All I want to know is, are our soldiers coming home? I'm just saying...The only reason we went over there was to get Osama, right!?

      May 2, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
  11. BUMBLB2

    Now, that bin Laden is "DEAD", what about the ties between Sen. McCain/Sen. Graham and Gadhafi over C-130 shipments? Let's not forget, when we close 1 door, another ALWAYS opens. This time, will it be for the "GOOD" or "BAD"?

    May 2, 2011 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
  12. bruja66

    I want to see pictures. Don't tell me they forgot the Kodak Film....

    May 2, 2011 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • numbnut

      Child, please...

      May 2, 2011 at 2:55 pm | Report abuse |
  13. dave

    By all means make sure you dispose of the body in pc manner becuse we don't wnat to offend anyone.
    Hope all his virgins look like Whoopi Goldberg.

    May 2, 2011 at 2:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • sharkster

      Due to the economic problems he helped to create the virgins have now been replaced with goats.

      May 2, 2011 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • sharkster

      Due to the economic problems he helped to create the virgins have now been replaced with lactating goats.

      May 2, 2011 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • numbnut

      Hope all is virgins are men.

      May 2, 2011 at 2:57 pm | Report abuse |
  14. dan

    I wonder if the nation will ever get to meet the brave men who conducted this daring raid. I know I want to see these heroes. IMHO these men are now comparable to Paul Revere, US Grant or Audie Murphy and deserve recognition. I say this knowing that these men are professional operators and do not desire public recognition...but still, they have played a key role in American history.

    May 2, 2011 at 2:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • buddy...

      It would be wrong to know them because they then become a terrorist target themselves, The seals take the job knowing they wont get recognition. Just like when they took out the somolian pirates in the hostage situation

      May 2, 2011 at 2:48 pm | Report abuse |
  15. sharkster

    Well now we know why Hillary gave Pakistan $50 million no strings attached last August

    May 2, 2011 at 2:33 pm | Report abuse |
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