Inside bin Laden's mind

Bill Ritter's daily take on the news.

May 3, 2012 12:59:57 PM PDT
It's quite an image: Osama bin Laden, hunkered in his bunker (can you really call that a "compound" as if it were some Derek Jeter pad in Florida? I don't think so), and fairly pounding his head with his fists, frustrated that the offshoots of his Al Qaeda organization have essentially gone rogue.

No one listens to me, we can imagine him saying to one of his many wives.

The man who brought so much violence and sorrow to so many around the world - sulking and wallowing in his disheveled hovel in Pakistan, and frustrated that the small cells that have sprung from his organization are killing fellow Muslims and disregarding his strategies for action and attacks.

All this comes from the 17 documents released today - 175 pages worth that were seized when Navy Seals raided bin Laden's home a year and two days ago, and shot him dead. No "freeze, federal agents, put your hands in the air." They found him, and killed him.

The documents offer a fascinating look into bin Laden's world. We'll have the documents, and reaction, tonight at 11.

We're also taking a look at one of al Qaeda's proposed new methods of attack: Starting brush fires. Which puts the news from Long Island authorities into a disturbing new perspective: That the brush fires last month in Suffolk County were deliberately set.

Not at all meaning to suggest that they were started by al Qaeda. I'm just sayin'.

We're also in White Plains, with reaction from the family of a 68-year-old man, killed by police in his apartment. Today, a grand jury decided to not indict the officers.

Cops went there after his medical alert went off. The man, Kenneth Chamberlain, told them he was ok and wouldn't open the door. They insisted for some reason on going in, removing the door. Cops say Chamberlain came at them with a hatchet and a knife.

They shot twice, and Chamberlain died.

The cops are white, Chamberlain was black, and the case became flammable.

Tonight at 11, we have reaction.

Also at 11, our Nina Pineda has the story of a great program that helped homeless people find shelter - but a program that has been yanked.

It worked by having New York State pay landlords to house homeless families. Now those landlords are owed money - thousands of dollars. Many are calling for Nina and 7 On Your Side.

And a couple of items about the Presidential race. Another Republican who trashed Mitt Romney during the primaries is now hoping on the Romney bandwagon. Michelle Bachmann, the uber conservative religious fundamentalist who skewered the former Massachusetts Governor during the debates, is now showering him with praise.

Ain't politics grand.

And speaking of that notion - the Wesleyan Media Project says this year's campaign has been far more negative than the primary campaigns of four years ago.

Some of the finding's highlights:

  • 7 out of 10 of the ads aired in this year's Presidential contests have been negative - that is, they mentioned an opponent. This compares to fewer than 1 in 10 ads aired during the 2008 presidential race up to this point that were negative.

    One reason is that outside groups have dominated the airwaves, and those ads have been the most negative. These outside groups - the so-called Super PACs - exist because of that controversial Supreme Court ruling throwing out many campaign financing reforms.

    The study found that 85 percent of the outside group ads are negative this year, compared to a quarter back in 2008.

    We'll also have any breaking news of the night, plus Meteorologist Lee Goldberg's AccuWeather forecast, and Rob Powers with the night's sports. I hope you can join Sade Baderinwa and me, tonight at 11.


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