21 July 2011. Timeline corrected for post-bin Laden kill times in Washington
DC. Thanks to A. Thus, the first White House photo was taken 21:25 hours
after the killing, a substantial delay. But it does not indicate how soon
the White House was informed and when the national security team assembled
at the White House, only that arrangements had been made for a photographer
to record the response in anticipation of releasing photos to the public.
18 July 2011. Cryptome filed today an online request with the White House
for all photographs by White House photographers taken on May 1, 2011 concerning
the Osama bin Laden operation, at original resolution and containing EXIF
information for the original shoot and subsequent modification.
18 July 2011. Add eight images showing date of main images upload to the
White House website.
17 July 2011. Images revised to show EXIF data on Photoshopping in the early
hours of 2 May 2011.
White House Obama bin Laden Kill Show Gaps
These photos from a featured White House Flickr series show the timeline
of Obama preparing and delivering a public announcement on May 1, 2011 of
the Osama bin Laden raid and kill. Washington DC time period: 2:24PM to 11:45PM.
The photos were uploaded to the White House website from 05:29-05:40 on May
2. Souza Photoshopped the photos between 10:00 and 11:00 on May 2, 2011,
as shown in their EXIF data. And uploaded to Flickr soon thereafter
with exceptional speed.
White House photographer Pete Souza's numbering sequence of the photos indicates
several hundred photos were taken that day, ranging from numbers 0106 to
There are several hours-long gaps in the photo sequence. Seeing the full
day's collection, rather than only the nine selections, would be in
the public interest to understand how the highly celebrated affair was prepared
for delivery, who was involved and what has not yet been disclosed to the
Was there payment of the long-standing $25M reward for reporting bin Laden's
Beyond this modest photograhic series there has been no documentary or
photographic substantiation of the bin Laden raid, sea burial and after-action
evaluation. Instead there has been elaborate and sustained publicity based
on little more than the Obama announcement, his follow-up interviews and
comments, the CIA-NGA maps and diagrams, highlighted Obama thanks to participants
in, and planners of, the raid, and cursory assurances by national security
officials that the claims are authentic -- and heroic. A campaign of carefully
crafted disclosures to the media appears underway, again without documentary
substantiation to fill in the extensive gaps in the triumphant story of the
Triumphant to erase the decade of documented failure in the bin Laden and
Al Qaeda pursuit initiatives, such as the bumbling Alec Station, aka, the
Bin Laden Units in the CIA-FBI-DoD, Special Forces and Predators, and
Task Forces in Justice, Treasury, State, Customs, Immigration, Energy, Commerce,
indeed all agencies in multiple countries, Pakistan and Afghanistan in
particular, as documented in the Senate-House
Inquiry on 9/11, the DoJ-FBI
on 9/11, the CIA
investigation on 9/11, the 9/11
Commission inquiry and many more pointers toward gaps beyond NARA
FOIA documentary redactions and withholdings. The bin Laden kill is the
least documented success and most vaunted of all counterterrorism actions
and begs for more diligent investigation and public disclosure.
A Gapped Timeline [Timeline corrected, thanks to A.]
The bin Laden raid is reported to have occurred overnight April 30-May 1,
2011, with the killing early on May 1 (for this timeline the kill-time is
assumed to be Abbottabad at 2AM, May 1 and Washington DC at 5PM April 30.
Presumbably the White House was informed by DoD and the CIA soon after the
raid. CIA Director Panetta was reported to have been at CIA headquarters
during the raid observing it in real time.
Based on the time of these photos taken from their EXIF data, the White House
was discussing the raid by 2:24PM May 1, (kill + 21:24 hours) viewed a recording
of the raid at 4:05PM (kill +23:05 hours) and had follow-up discussions
four hours later at 8:03PM and 8:44PM (kill + 27:03-27:44 hours).
Then Obama, bathed and dressed, made alert calls at 10:11PM (kill + 29:11
hours) and worked on his announcement at 10:43PM (kill + 29:43 hours).
The national security team, apparently not bathed and still wearing the day's
dress, awaited the announcement at 29:41PM (kill + 30:41 hours).
Obama made his accouncement at 11:42PM (kill +30:42 hours) and was congratulated
by his team at 11:45PM (kill + 30:45 hours).