Osama bin Laden, born in March 10, 1957, was the founder and the leader of Al-Qaeda terrorist organization. He was held accountable for the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks and considered one of the most dangerous terrorists in the world until he was captured and killed in May 2, 2011 at Abbottabad, Pakistan. Yet, there are voices stating that Osama was killed in 2003 and others, on the contrary, claim that Osama is not dead.
The educated and destitute son
Osama bin Mohammed bin Awad bin Laden was born in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in a wealthy family. Bin Laden’s family is one of the wealthiest families from Saudi Arabia with strong connections in the royal family of Saudi. The wealth of the bin Laden family comes from “Saudi Binladin group”, a construction company. Because of Osama’s violent actions, he was disowned by his family and lost his citizenship.
Raised under the influence of the Wahhabi religious movement, Osama studied economics and business management at King Abdulaziz University. He had a uncontrollable wish to start a jihad against the injustices made by the United States on Muslims and to destroy Israel. However, his main wish was to force the United States to withdraw their troops from the Middle East.
The birth of a terrorist group
Immediately after Osama completed his studies in 1979 he joined the Abdullah Azzam, a group of scientists and theologians who fought against the invasion of the Soviets in Afghanistan. In fact, their movement was supported by the US government at that time because they were like a “weapon” against the Soviets. In 1984, Osama created a group called Maktab al-Khidamat designed to raise funds and Muslims in order to fight in the Afghan war.
Al-Qaeda formed four years later because the Arab fighters wanted to be introduced alongside with Afghan fighting groups without forming a separate group. Although it had been formed as a simple organization, it soon became one of the most feared terrorist organizations in the world. The relations between Osama bin Laden and the American began to shatter at the time of the Kuwait-Iraq conflict.
Osama and the US government
Unites States was taken by surprise by an attack on the two twin towers in New York on September 11, 2011. The attack, planned since 1999, was organized by several members of the organization led by Osama. Al-Qaeda explained that the attacks were a response against the presence of the US army in Saudi Arabia, the American help to Israel and the international sanctions in Iraq.
Although the exclusive guilt seems to be Osama’s bin Laden, there have been speculations that the CIA had connections with him. The US government would have helped Afghan groups with millions of dollars in the war waged by Soviet Union. Also several press articles were published that Osama worked with Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, one of the CIA’s commanders. Despite the fact that speculations are made even today, US government denies any involvement with the Afghans. Even the speculations have no clear evidences the 9/11 attacks will remain a mystery until the truth comes out.
Osama’s body was thrown in the sea
Immediately after the 9/11 attacks, US government offered a reward of $25 million for any information that could led to Osama’s capture. Six years later the reward was doubled and several pilot associations offered an additional $2 million reward. His location was traced in August 2010 by CIA agents. They watched his house in Abbottabad, Pakistan while drones photographed it from the sky. Finally, on May 2, 2011 a team of US Navy Seals burst into his house and killed Osama instantly with two shots: one in the head and one in the chest.
On the same day, Barack Obama publicly announced that Osama bin Laden is dead. The identity of bin Laden was confirmed by comparing DNA samples between bin Laden and his sister. His body was in custody of the US army and was thrown into the sea according to the Islamic tradition because it would have been difficult to find a country to accept the remains of the world’s greatest terrorist.
However, some interesting opinions and theories regarded to his death, occurred after the “official version.” For instance, Edward Snowden (former CIA employee) stated that he poses evidences which can prove Osama is still alive and well. Even more, he claims that Osama is living in the Bahamas on the payroll of the CIA.