Fareed Zakaria Asks Michael Hayden Why Did The Bin Laden Trail Go Cold

There's a huge logic drop off in the Bush administration's public relations push to elbow into credit for Bin Laden's capture and killing. If what the Bush administration did--waterboarding, rendition, etc.--was effective in gathering information that led to locating Bin Laden, why would they have closed down the Bin Laden unit in 2005? Why would Bush go on record several times saying that he's just wasn't all that concerned about Bin Laden in 2006? For people eager to grab and hold credit for this killing, they didn't seem to have a whole lot of work in that arena for the final years of the Bush administration.

So when former CIA Director (and current Principal of the Chertoff Group) comes on Fareed Zakaria GPS and says that the trail had been "cold" for some time, is that true...or is it more correct to say that the Bush administration--more interested in doubling down in the quagmire in Iraq than anything going on in Pakistan--just ignored the trail altogether? Hayden tries to rationalize that a US$25M bounty doesn't mean that much to the tribal mentality in Pakistan. That may be true, but does that also take into account the fear of the Pakistanis of rendition for speaking up? Or the anger of predator drones in Pakistan killing innocent civilians making people less inclined to help the US?

Here's what it comes down to, although the Bushies simply don't want you to realize it: The Bush administration actively ignored any alleged intelligence that they got for minimally five years in the hunt for Bin Laden, going as far as closing down the Bin Laden unit. And they will never--ever--be honest that their actions may have hurt any attempt to find him.


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