Pictures of Osama bin Laden’s body will not be released to public

WH press secretary Jay Carney speaks about President Obama’s decision to not release the graphic photos of Osama bin Laden’s corpse, saying it was against national security

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney tells reporters that President Barack Obama will not release photos of Osama bin Laden’s body, Wednesday, May 4, 2011, during the daily briefing at the White House in Washington

Jay Carney

The Associated Press reported today: 

 President Barack Obama ordered grisly photographs of Osama bin Laden in death sealed from public view on Wednesday, declaring, “We don’t need to spike the football” in triumph after this week’s daring middle-of-the-night raid. The terrorist leader was killed by American commandos who burst into his room and feared he was reaching for a nearby weapon, U.S. officials said.

Several weapons were found in the room where the terror chief died, including AK-47 assault rifles and side arms, the officials said. They spoke on condition of anonymity as they offered the most recent in a series of increasingly detailed and sometimes-shifting accounts of bin Laden’s final minutes after a decade on the run.

Obama said releasing the photographs taken by the Navy SEAL raiders was “not who we are” as a country. Though some may deny his death, “the fact of the matter is you will not see bin Laden walking this earth again,” the president said in an interview taped for CBS’ “60 Minutes.”

He said any release of the photos could become a propaganda tool for bin Laden’s adherents eager to incite violence.

White House press secretary Jay Carney said the president’s decision applied to photographs of bin Laden, said to show a portion of his skull blown away from a gunshot wound to the area of his left eye, as well as to a video recording of his burial several hours later in the North Arabian Sea.

The president made no public remarks during the day about the raid, apart from the taped interview. But he arranged a visit for Thursday to ground zero in Manhattan, where the World Trade Center twin towers once stood.


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