Why Was Bin Laden Finally Found?

by David Solomonoff

The self-congratulation surrounding the killing of Osama bin Laden ignores the mystery of why he was finally found.

The Asia Times has a piece today by Spengler that may explain things. He believes that the Saudi royal family, threatened by the upheavals in the Middle East, especially Egypt and Yemen, caused his whereabouts to be revealed in anticipation of a closer military alliance with Pakistan. Previously Bin Laden had been “a loose cannon and an annoyance, but no threat.”

The conflict in Yemen is a proxy war between Riyadh and Tehran – with al-Qaeda acting as an Iranian ally. Although Bin Laden himself is Sunni, al-Qaeda’s closest state relationship is with Iran.

While al-Qaeda had drawn funding from both Saudi and Iranian sources, in present circumstances its activity tended to serve Iranian rather than Saudi interests.

The Saudis want to end the terrorist associations of the Pakistani military as the Saudi cold war with Iran grows increasingly hot, because they may need Pakistan for assistance.

The Saudis feel they can no longer trust the United States – or the Turks, “who have become the region’s spoiler.”

In the end Bin Laden demise was caused “by a great strategic upheaval that America does not yet understand, and is not prepared to respond to.”

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