The Hunt For Osama Bin Laden Essay

The Hunt For Osama Bin Laden Essay

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The hunt for Osama Bin Laden is indeed arguably one of the most compelling manhunt episodes of our time. In the wake of his killing, journalism was left with the task of shaping the story. It needed to be effectively communicated with the many people who had long anticipated this victory. Each account owns its delivery through unique perspective. In the same way, consumers take in the story from various vantage points, creating an unspoken competition for storytellers. If I were forced to pick only one account (from the 5 provided) upon which I would rely for coverage, The Hunt from the Washington Post(WP) would be the winner of said competition, and Behind The Hunt For Bin Laden by The New York Times(NYT) would come in a close second. It reached me most as a consumer in the context of this story, because of its ability to establish ethos, give a contextual account, and reveal information- all with certain sensitivity to the time of release of the account.
A big part of the Bin Laden hunt and killing ordeal is that it did not quite exist entirely as one episode. It was in fact many events in connection to one another, leading to his final elimination. A striking concluding line from the WP article states “ The couple of dozen U.S. commandos who dropped onto Bin Laden’s compound in Abbotabbad last weekend had to complete their mission in minutes, but it had taken them years to get there.” This perspective is important at a time when all the uproar was focused on the killing itself, not the process it took. The WP article coins the story from the perspective of a strategy change adopted after series of challenges to the quest, while highlighting the depth of the process. Indeed it all culminated in Bin Laden’s killing, but it was ...


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...lf. It then delves into the aforementioned complexity of the hunt: The bombings of the embassies in Africa before 9/11; Yunis Khalis’s help to Bin Laden; the use of money to develop relationship with potential clue links; the hiding at Milawa and the negotiations; the airstrikes that lasted over 60 hours, Fury’s aborted mission and the lost trail of Bin Laden at Tora Bora. These were essentials to the story that revealed more about the hunt than did the step- by- step detailing of the raid on Bin Laden’s residence. Additionally, it provides some perspective on the administration’s frustrations with the quest. All- in- all, the WP article was not the most amusing piece I have read, but it opened up doors of context, revelation, credibility, and complexity in the light of what strikes me more as a victorious manhunt than a victorious man-killing in the Bin Laden Saga.

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