CIA Releases More Than 470,000 New Files From Bin Laden Raid

Among the recent files released from the 2011 raid is bin Laden’s private journal (untranslated), as well as numerous home videos.

Mike Pompeo, the Director of the CIA, said the new files, and the release, will provide “the opportunity for the American people to gain further insights into the pans and workings of this terrorist organization.”

The release of the files is due to an intelligence activity appropriations bill passed in 2014. The bill requires the Director of Natitonal Intelligence to review all documents obtained from the raid, then make all declassified files available to the public.


The release came in accordance with a 2014 appropriations bill for intelligence activity that required the Director of National Intelligence to review documents obtained from the raid, and make the files it declassified from the review available to the public. The most recent unveiling has been dubbed the “bin Laden bookshelf”, and is part of three prior releases that came in May 2015.

According to the journal, bin Laden’s contempt for the West began when he was 13 and traveled to the UK for medical treatment. The disdain deepened when he returned a few years later for school. The journal also contains entries from bin Laden’s son, Khalid, who was killed as well during the Navy SEAL raid.

(Shown left: bin Laden’s compound; Pakistan razed the building in 2012.)

Additionally, more than 321 gigabytes of digital data found on computers within the compound has been made available to the public. Due to copyright issues, not all of what was found has been released. Among those files found were many movies (nearly all created in the United States), television shows (from both the UK and the USA). One show of note saved by bin Laden: In the Footsteps of bin Laden, produced by CNN.

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