This month’s winner of the coveted Captain Louis Renault Award is a simple choice. Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence Agency is sheltering al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and his second in command, Ayman al Zawahiri. Oh, and they’re operating somewhere in Pakistan’s northwest, in the vast region between Kurram and Chitral (note: they are not in North Waziristan, where the Predators are hunting). From CNN:
Osama bin Laden and his deputy Ayman al-Zawahiri are believed to be hiding close to each other in houses in northwest Pakistan, but are not together, a senior NATO official said.
“Nobody in al Qaeda is living in a cave,” said the official, who declined to be named because of the sensitivity of the intelligence matters involved.
Rather, al Qaeda’s top leadership is believed to be living in relative comfort, protected by locals and some members of the Pakistani intelligence services, the official said.
Pakistan has repeatedly denied protecting members of the al Qaeda leadership.
The official said the general region where bin Laden is likely to have moved around in recent years ranges from the mountainous Chitral area in the far northwest near the Chinese border, to the Kurram Valley, which adjoins Afghanistan’s Tora Bora, one of the Taliban strongholds during the U.S. invasion in 2001.
The information in the CNN report is as shocking as the information in the reports of the previous winners of the Captain Louis Renault Award, such as: ISI shelters top Afghan Taliban leaders. Shocking!; and ISI involved in 2008 Mumbai attack. We would never have guessed….
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