The Hindustan Times is reporting that they have photos of Osama bin Laden’s corpse (courtesy of Pak TV). There is already a movement claiming that Osama’s death is a hoax carried out by the US government. I’m more skeptical of the conspiracy theorists than of the official version. When you start asking yourself about the various ways to handle the corpse of the most wanted man of the decade, who is sure to become a martyr, you start to realize you would have very few options. Images of parading his dead body around the streets of New York, for example, would be a better recruiting tool for Al Qaeda than any of bin Laden’s past video appearances. Burying him on land would lead to pilgrammages honoring the dead terrorist leader. The US government has obviously been discussing this dilemma since 2001.
I will continue to follow up on the questions surrounding the death of bin Laden. It’s way too premature to side with the inevitable Osama Truth Movement. I think these events will make more sense as time passes.
Here is an article in Slate that deals with some of these questions. I will have more as developments continue.
Update:It turns out the photo was a fake.
Update [May 2]: Reports say the White House will probably release photos of bin Laden’s body very soon.
From the Guardian:
Carney said there was a debate within the White House over whether to release pictures of Bin Laden’s body. He said there were sensitivities attached to such an action, such as inflaming opinion in the Islamic world. He described the pictures of Bin Laden’s face, with a bullet hole, as “gruesome”.