Obama to Visit Ground Zero on Thursday; Bin Laden Raid Produces Intel Bonanza

Posted: May 03, 2011 12:03 PM
Take your victory lap, Mr. President.  You've earned it:

President Obama will travel to New York City on Thursday to mark the death of Osama bin Ladenby visiting the site of the World Trade Center and meeting withfamilies of victims from the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

The president is scheduled to deliver a speech, tour the site andmeet privately with family members, an administration official said.The site in lower Manhattan filled with crowds when Mr. Obama announcedlate Sunday evening that Bin Laden had been killed. The crowdscontinued throughout the day on Monday.

The president has paid visits to Ground Zero before, but never in amoment that is steeped with such symbolism. In the days after theattack nearly a decade ago, President George W. Bush grabbed a bullhorn and stood amid a pile of rubble in one of the most iconic moments of his presidency.

Based on this report, we may soon have a trove of actionable intelligence to tighten the noose on additional Al Qaeda bigwigs -- further decimating the leadership of an organization we've aggressively targeted since 9/11:

The assault force of Navy SEALs snatched a trove of computer drives and disks during their weekend raid on Osama bin Laden’s compound, yielding what a U.S.official called “the mother lode of intelligence.”

The special operations forces grabbed personal computers, thumb drives and electronic equipment during the lightning raid that killed bin Laden, officials told POLITICO.

“They cleaned it out,” one official said. “Can you imagine what’s on Osama bin Laden’s hard drive?

U.S. officials are about to find out. The material is being examined at a secret location in Afghanistan.

“Hundreds of people are going through it now,” an official said,adding that intelligence operatives back in Washington are very excitedto find out what they have.

“It’s going to be great even if only 10 percent of it is actionable,” the official said.

Sleep well, Ayman Al-Zawahiri.