Published on May 16th, 2011 | by Scott Hennen


Former CIA Director: Osama Manhunt Began With Information At So-Called “Black Sites”

Former CIA Director Michael Hayden on the Scott Hennen Show (5/3/11)

Scott Hennen: “General Michael Hayden with us on the Common Sense Club…a lot of focus on the raid on Sunday – and obviously a lot of hard work culminated on that day – where did that trail begin, General?”

General Hayden: “Well, we’ve had an Osama Bin Laden team in our counter-terrorism center since 9/11. And frankly, Scott, the trail went real cold on us after Tora Bora at the end of ‘01 / early ‘02. We would get the occasional report, but frankly, they sounded a lot more like Elvis sightings than they did like solid intelligence. But in about ’07 a team came up to me and said, ‘Look, he has to be communicating. We know he’s not doing it electronically, he has to be doing it via couriers. This is going to be hard, it’s going to be slow moving, but we think the courier net might be our best way to track back to Bin Laden. And we’ve got a little bit of information on the couriers from some of the people that the CIA had detained and questioned at our so-called ‘black sites,’ so let’s start with that information and begin to build out from there.’ That started about four years ago, Scott, and, frankly, there is a straight line between the work that began there and the raid that took place Sunday afternoon our time.”

Scott Hennen: “In the half minute we have left here, no question, how we we’re lead to Osama Bin Laden was through advanced interrogation techniques?”

General Hayden:  “What we got – the original lead information – (and frankly, it was incomplete identity information on the couriers), began with information from CIA detainees at the black sites. And let me just leave it at that.”


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