Discovery to air 'Death of Bin Laden'

New Delhi: The world watched as U.S. President Obama made the announcement: Osama bin Laden is dead. As the mastermind behind the 2001 attack on the World Trade Center and bombings of U.S. embassies, he was listed as one of the FBI’s most wanted terrorists.

While he managed to elude capture for years, on May 1 he finally met his demise. On 1st anniversary of his death, Discovery Channel’s special programme Death of Bin Laden provides a detailed second-by-second account of the Bin Laden operation – from the time the crucial intelligence was gathered in 2010, through the burial of bin Laden at sea.

On May 1st, 2011, it was one of the most high-stakes missions in U.S. military history – the operation to capture or kill Osama bin Laden. Under cover of darkness, two specially modified Sikorsky H-60 Black Hawk helicopters and two twin rotor Chinooks head into Pakistani airspace. Utilising a global team of local reporters, fixers and cameras on the ground in Abbottabad, Pakistan, DEATH OF BIN LADEN delves into the details of how the operation was planned and executed, seeking to answer key questions that are to date unresolved, including: How many special ops forces were involved? From where did they deploy? How was facial recognition used to identify bin Laden? Why was one of the helicopters abandoned and destroyed?

Death of Bin Laden investigates how intelligence gathered the information that led to Bin Laden’s hideout, including the tracking of a senior Al Qaeda courier. In August 2010, investigators tagged the heavily fortified compound, where the courier lived with his brother, as a possible terrorist hideout. Once intelligence experts were convinced that the compound contained a senior “high value” terrorist target with a strong likelihood that it could be Osama Bin Laden himself, they launched the plan that would end with U.S. Special Forces making a pre-dawn raid on the compound by helicopter.

The military operation took taken months in planning but the lead-up to the mission had been in play for years. A number of government agencies were involved in compiling a massive mosaic of evidence to zero in on Bin laden. To execute the operation, CIA utilised specialised techniques and weapons like two specially modified Sikorsky H-60 Black Hawk Helicopters and two twin engine Chinooks, cameras with telephoto lenses, night vision goggles and to eavesdrop on conversation, highly sophisticated laser beams were used too.

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