posted on May, 2 2011 @ 11:15 AM
(CNN) -- The operation that led to the killing of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden took shape after detainees identified a trusted bin Laden courier as
someone who may have been living with and protecting the militant leader, senior administration officials told reporters.
That courier became a key lead in locating bin Laden, the officials said.
The officials provided details on the origins of the operation and the raid that led to bin Laden's killing:
* Four years ago: Officials uncovered the courier's identity.
* Two years ago: Investigators identified areas of Pakistan where the courier and his brother lived.
* August 2010: The residence of the courier and his brother was found in Abbottabad, 30 to 35 miles north of Islamabad, Pakistan's capital.
* September 2010: The CIA worked with President Barack Obama "on a set of assessments that led it to believe that in fact it was possible" bin Laden
may be at the compound in Abbottabad.
* February 2011: U.S. officials concluded there was a "sound intelligence basis" for pursuing bin Laden at that location.
* March and April 2011. President Barack Obama held a series of National Security Council meetings "to develop courses of action to bring justice to
Osama bin Laden." There were at least five NSC meetings -- March 14, March 29, April 12, April 19, and April 28.
* April 29, 2011. President Obama gave the final order to pursue the operation.
* May 2, 2011. After months of decision-making and planning, a U.S. military team conducted a small helicopter raid on the compound. The officials did
not provide a breakdown of team members, but a senior U.S. defense official said U.S. Navy SEALs were involved in the operation.
The senior administration officials provided these details of the raid:
* The team was in the compound for 40 minutes. It did not encounter any local authorities during the raid.
* Bin Laden resisted the assault force and died in a firefight. Along with bin Laden, three adult males were killed.
* Two were believed to be the couriers and one was a son of bin Laden.
* A woman used as a human shield by a male combatant died and two women were injured.
* A helicopter was lost because of mechanical failure.
* Intelligence on bin Laden was not shared with Pakistan and other countries.
* After the raid, U.S. officials briefed Pakistani and other world leaders.
* Bin Laden has been buried at sea and his body was handled in the Islamic tradition. The officials but did not elaborate.
I thought this was a good starting point to hopefully "clear up" some of the misconceptions about time and execution that Obama "messed up" on...