Tuesday, October 09, 2007

WaPo Incorrect About Bin Laden Videotape Leak

The Washington Post writes that US intelligence has been "burned" due to premature release of the latest bin Laden videotape:
A small private intelligence company that monitors Islamic terrorist groups obtained a new Osama bin Laden video ahead of its official release last month, and around 10 a.m. on Sept. 7, it notified the Bush administration of its secret acquisition. It gave two senior officials access on the condition that the officials not reveal they had it until the al-Qaeda release.
But, contrary to the implication in the story, the bin Laden videotape was available from other sources simultaneously with SITE's release.

In fact, we Jawas (in case you haven't seen the icon, I co-blog at The Jawa Report) were already discussing the videotape in our private forum, and planning on September 7 to post it, having obtained a copy from Laura Mansfield.

That aside, as Dr. Rusty Shackleford, founder of The Jawa Report, points out:
So, SITE claims they are the source of the video given to the White House. Rita claims she personally gave the video to authorities on September 7th. But let's take a quick look at the very bottom of the translation of the video leaked by ABC's Blotter:


That means that the White House had a translation of the video a full 24 hours before SITE intercepted it. Apparently, our intel guys are better than we thought.
Not to downplay the excellent counter-terror investigation work that SITE does, but they are not, as the WaPo would have you believe, the only ones doing it.