US would have captured Osama alive if possible: White House

May 3rd, 2011 - 1:48 pm ICT by ANI  

Washington, May 3 (ANI): White House counterterrorism adviser John Brennan has said that the US Navy Seal team that killed Osama bin Laden Sunday in Pakistan would have captured al Qaeda’s leader alive if it was possible.

“If we had the opportunity to take bin Laden alive, if he didn’t present any threat, the individuals involved were able and prepared to do that,” Brennan told reporters.

Brennan said the White House thought bin Laden would likely resist capture but that taking him alive was considered a “remote” possibility.

“We were not going to put our people at risk. The president put a premium on making sure that our personnel were protected, and we were not going to give bin Laden or any of his cohorts the opportunity to carry out lethal fire on our forces,” he said.

Capturing bin Laden alive would have presented numerous uncomfortable challenges, but CBS News reports that most counterterrorism experts did not view bin Laden as an exploitable source for intelligence.

There was little chance he could substantively add to what the government knows about his organization. Beyond that, bin Laden, alive in captivity, would have added to his mythological standing among radical jihadis and would have presented an ongoing tool for radical recruitment, it adds.

Bin Laden was shot in the head and died in the firefight with the elite squad of American forces on Sunday. (ANI)

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