When a large group of people are all doing the same thing it’s hard not to take notice. As I waited at the airport in San Jose, California the evening of Sunday, May 1, I couldn’t help but notice that everyone was staring intently at the same television screen. I was surprised to see in bold across the screen, “Osama Bin Laden: Dead”.
A strange flood of emotions came over me. While waiting to board a plane, finding out that the man responsible for the world’s most deadly terrorist attack is dead is good news if you ask me. That is of course assuming that the super duper “I want to feel you up” security staff at the airport have made sure none of Bin Laden’s bitter friends are aboard my flight.
How did it take ten years in this day and age to find a man that was being feverously hunted? Reports have surfaced that staying “off the grid” is eventually what brought Bin Laden to justice. Technology is a crazy thing. Lack of technology is even crazier it seems.
Sources claim that Bin Laden was roughing it in a million-dollar mansion in Abbottabad, Pakistan right under the nose of the police and military. There were several interesting factors that lead to finding Bin Laden. US officials had obtained insider information about a compound with secret rooms that was harboring a high powered terrorist. Reports also surfaced that Bin Laden’s BFF and most trusted courier was seen at the compound in Abbottabad. The tid bit of information I found most interesting was that officials thought it was peculiar that despite this mansion’s massive size, there was no phone or internet connection on property (I’m sure Bin Laden was logging onto his neighbors Wi-Fi to update his Facebook status). This information, plus strange activities like burning garbage instead of taking trash out in bins like the rest of the neighbors, barbwire fences, and crazy amounts of security guards lead to officials keeping a close watch on the Abbottabad mansion. What or who were they hiding? Ironically Bin Laden’s attempt to stay “off the grid” shot up a major red flag.
The way terrorist cells communicate is something our military can only hope to master. The lack of technology used in such an intricate network is impressive even if they are using it to do something so sucky. The whole, “can you hear me now” does not apply. Capturing Bin Laden would have been so much easier if he used Foursquare. I’m just grateful that the world can at the very least breathe easier for a bit.