Former U.S. President Barack Obama recalled the successful Abbottabad raid to kill Al Qaeda chief and 9/11 mastermind Osama bin Laden in May 2011 and shared what his apprehensions were back then. In his latest book, “A Promised Land”, Obama wrote on his journey from the 2008 election campaign to the end of his first term with the daring Abbottabad raid. “A Promised Land” is the first of two planned volumes. The first part hit bookstores globally on Tuesday.
The 44th U.S. President, in his new book, wrote that he had expected his “most difficult call” to be with Pakistan’s beleaguered president Asif Ali Zardari post the operation. But it didn’t turn out to be what he thought. “I expected my most difficult call to be with Asif Ali Zardari, who would surely face a backlash at home over our violation of Pakistani soverignty. When I reached him, however, he expressed congratulations and support, the Indian Express quoted Obama as saying in his new book. “Whatever the fallout,” he said,”it’s very good news”. He showed genuine emotion, recalling how his wife, Benazir Bhutto, had been killed by extremists with reported ties to al-Qaeda, Obama wrote.
Osama bin Laden, the world’s most wanted terrorist and the then al-Qaeda chief, was killed in the covert raid by a US Navy SEAL team at his Abbottabad compound in Pakistan on May 2, 2011.
Obama said it was “open secret” that ISI had links with the Taliban and Al Qaeda. “Although Pakistan’s government cooperated with us on a host of counterterrorism operations and provided a vital supply path for our forces in Afghanistan, it was an open secret that certain elements inside the country’s military, and especially its intelligence services, maintained links to the Taliban and perhaps even al-Qaeda, sometimes using them as strategic assets to ensure that the Afghan government remained weak and unable to align itself with Pakistan’s number one rival, India. The fact that the Abbottabad compound was just a few miles from the Pakistan military’s equivalent of West Point only heightened the possibility that anything we told the Pakistanis could end up tipping off our target,” he wrote in the first volume of his book.