tv News Nation MSNBC May 3, 2011 2:00pm-3:00pm EDT
two helicopters. the team that methodically cleared the compound in an operation lasting yearly 40 minutes. they were engaged in a firefight throughout the operation, and osama bin laden was killed by the assaulting force. in addition to the bin laden family, two other families resided in the comund. one family on the first floor of the bin laden building and one family in a second building. one team began the operation on the first floor of the bin laden house and worked their way to the third floor. a second team cleared the separate building. on the first floor of bin laden's building, two al qaeda couriers were killed along with a woman who was killed in cross fire. bin laden and his family was found on the second and third floor of the building. there was concern bin laden would oppose the capture operation and indeed, he did resist. in the room with bin laden a woman, bin laden's wife, rushed the u.s. assaulter and was shot
in the leg but not killed. bin laden was then shot and killed. he was not armed. following the firefight, the noncombatants were moved to a safe location as the damaged helicopter was detonated. the team departed the scene via helicopter to the "uss carl vinson" in the north arabian sea. the burial of bin laden was done in conformance with islamic precepts and practices. the deceased's body was washed and then placed in a white sheet. the body was placed in a weighted bag. a military officer read prepared religious remarks which were translated into arabic. after the words were complete the body was placed on a prepared flat board, tipped up, and the deceased body eased into the sea. that's the narrative that i can provide to you today. >> in what -- >> and i want to make clear this is again information that is
fresh and we will continue to gather and provide to you details as we get them and we're able to release them. the resistance was throughout. as i said, when the assaulter entered the room where osama bin laden was, he was rushed by one individual in the room and the resistance was consistent from the moment they landed until the end of the operation. yes? >> jay, how did osama bin laden resist? if he didn't have his hand on a gun, how was he resisting? >> the information i have -- first of all, i think resistance does not require a firearm, but the information i gave you is what i can tell you about it. i'm sure more details will be provided as they come available and we are able to release them. >> did he have any weapon? >> he was not armed is what i understand to be true. >> on the same theme but to
afghanistan, do you see the capture of bin laden affecting the pace and timing of the planned withdrawal of u.s. troops from afghanistan? >> no. i think that the president's plan is on track. you can see the operation that took place on sunday within the context of this plan that the president put in place for afghanistan and pakistan and within the context of his broader commitment as a candidate and as president to refocus our attention on the af-pak region which is the home to what they call al qaeda central and was recently the home to the leader of al qaeda. this president was very determined as you remember when he ran for office and since he came in here to refocus our attention on that region, on al qaeda, and as you recall in the very carefully deliberated upon plan that the president put forward for afghanistan, that
the number one objective was to dismantle and veeventually defe al qaeda. getting bin laden was very much a part of that plan. but it is not the only part. as john brennan and others have said, the president has said, we are continuing the fight against al qaeda every day, and the focus of that operation, of the u.s. personnel in afghanistan, is on al qaeda. the operation continues. the july 2011 transition date for the beginning of a drawdown remains very much in place. the pace of that drawdown will be determined by conditions on the ground. >> final question, any updates from the plans to release video or images? >> i don't have any updates on that except to echo what john brennan said this morning, which is that we are obviously reviewing information. we've made a great deal available to the public in remarkable time.
we're talking about the most highly classified operation that this government has undertaken in many, many years, and the amount of information we've tried to provide to you in this short period of time is quite substantial. we will continue to review that and make decisions about the appropriateness of releasing more information as that review continues on. >> the pakistani government put out a statement in which they said that the isi had been providing nftinformation about compound since 2009 whereas all we know about in terms of the media is that we've known about the compound since 2010. could you explain the discrepancy and also has the isi been providing information about this compound? >> well, what i will do is point you to the comments that john brennan made and others have made, which is that the pakistanis have in general been very helpful in many ways in the
fight against al qaeda, and that help has -- was of assistance in general in the gathering of intelligence and information that led to the successful operation on sunday. i am not aware, i believe we have said that we have been quite clear about our knowledge about the existence of this compound and about the communications we did not have with pakistani intelligence about this operation. >> they also say in a statement that many houses in that region occupied by effectees have high boundary walls as part of a culture of privacy, so high walls in that region -- obviously you got the right house, i'm not questioning that, but is this your cultural understanding of the region? >> i think this was a unique property within the region, but he clearly successfully hid from
sight, at least our sight, for a very long time. and he is not the only high value target who did that by hiding in highly populated areas. obviously, there was some speculation for many years that he and other high value al qaeda targets were hiding in caves or in the mountainous region, small villages, or living a nomadic existence. what we seem to have discovered over the course of these years of investigating and finding these high value targets is that there's a preference or has been in these cases a preference for highly populated areas, which understandably can sometimes be an easier place to hide. >> and lastly, the previous administration did release photographs of high value targe targets, hussein, an example. what would hold you back from
doing it? it seemed to have gone off relatively without a hitch as far as i know. why would you not release a photograph of bin laden? >> i'll be candid, there are sensitivities here in terms of the appropriateness of releasing photographs of osama bin laden and in the aftermath of this firefight and we're making an evaluation about the need to do that because of the sensitivities involved. and we do -- we review this information and make this decision with the same calculation that we do so many things, which is what we're trying to accomplish and does it serve or in any way harm our interests, and that is not just domestic but globally. >> could you explain sensitivities? because it's a gruesome photograph? >> it's fair to say it's a gruesome photograph. >> that could be inflammatory? >> it is certainly possible that -- this is an issue that we are taking into consideration is
that it could be inflammatory. >> have you seen it? >> i'm not going to get into who has seen the photographs or where they are. yeah. >> thanks, jay. since, as you said, bin laden was not armed, why was the decision made to kill him as opposed to capture? >> as mr. brennan and others have made clear, there was -- we were prepared to capture him if that was possible. we expected a great deal of resistance and were met with a great deal of resistance. >> he wasn't armed. >> but there were many other people who were armed in the compound. there was a firefight. >> but not in that room. >> dan, it was a highly volatile firefight. i'll point you to the department of defense for more details about it, but it was -- he resi resisted. the u.s. personnel on the ground handled themselves with the utmost professionalism, and he was killed in an operation
because of the resistance that they met. >> since everyone here was given realtime information, was the decision to shoot and kill one that was done there by that unit or was there consultation -- was there information flowing back and forth and it was directed that, yes, go for the kill at that point? >> operation was run from the ground or certainly not from the white house, and at the point i think mr. brennan described this yesterday at the briefing or perhaps on television or maybe in both places, that at that point the folks in the situation room were observers and listeners to an operation that obviously had been carefully thought out, meticulously prepared for. the decision to go was the president's and obviously was a very weighty decision. once it began, however, obviously it was up to those who were taking the action to
execute the plan. >> yesterday the white house put out a list of the president's calls to various world leaders? any additional calls? and also have any of these world leaders expressed concern about the u.s. going into another country unannounced? >> we did provide a read out. i don't have any new calls to read out for you at this time. my understanding is that the calls were all -- included congratulations to the united states for their successful operation in capturing and killing osama bin laden. i'm not aware of any concern expressed about the issue that you raise and, in fact, the president of pakistan has an op-ed in "the washington post" and they also congratulated us on this success. yes. >> thanks, jay.
at one point i think you sawed the assau -- said the assaulter was rushed when describing the situation. was there just one assaulter in the room with bin laden and were both shots fired by one person? >> i don't have a detail on the shots and who fired them. my understanding is they entered a room one at a time, this particular room, but beyond that i don't know. there was obviously a team in the compound, but i don't want to venture a guess. i always find it better to not do that. so i would point you to the department of defense for that. >> but it's still believed that a wife of osama bin laden was shot but not killed. >> shot in the leg. >> shot in the leg. >> not in that room. >> on the first floor. >> on the first floor. you said that it was, you know, a real gun battle, but my understanding is of the 22 or so people in the room, 17 or so of
them were noncombatants -- >> a great number of people, as you know, were unharmed and safely made secure when -- after the operation was complete and the helicopter had to be detonated. but there was a firefight. >> do you know how many people were firing from -- >> i don't. you'll have -- again, we're providing you this information as it's made available for public release. the pentagon is working on this and will, i'm sure, continue to update the information as it becomes available. >> and there was a report sourced to the isi that the noncombatants had been -- had had their hands tied in preparation for taking them away on the helicopter at which they could not do because one of the helicopters had been damaged. do you know anything about that? >> i don't, and i certainly haven't heard anything like that in this building. >> finally, is there video of the burial at sea? >> again, i'm not going to get
into the -- >> not whether you will release it but does it exist. >> no, i understand, but the visual material that is being reviewed, decisions about it will be made about what, if any of it, can be or should be released. i don't want to get into specifics about what there is and what there isn't. i would just urge you to be patient, given how much information has been released, and understanding about why we need to review this and make the appropriate decision. i would also say there is not, as has been reported, there is not some roiling debate here about this. there is simply a discussion about what the appropriate action should be. >> is the president involved in that discussion? >> the president is intimately involved in all aspects of this operation. >> do you have a time line? >> no. >> could it be today? >> i don't have a time line. >> what's the status of u.s./pakistani relations today as the white house sees them? >> it's a complicated but
important relationship. pakistan is a partner, a key partner in the fight against al qaeda and terrorism. they have been extremely helpful and we look forward to cooperating into the future. we have been in contact at many levels with pakistani government, and as you know, the president called the president the night of the operation before he spoke to the american peop people, and so while we recognize that there are complicated differences between our two countries and how we approach and view things at times, there has also been a great deal of important cooperation, and that should not be lost. the american people should know that as they view this and try to view the complete picture of that relationship within the context of the successful mission on sunday. >> we have heard some lawmakers
suggest perhaps freedizing aid pakistan until they can demonstrate they didn't know anything about bin laden's whereabouts. does the white house have a view on that? >> i would just say it's an important partnership, and pakistan has been on the front lines in many ways of the fight against al qaeda and against terrorists. pakistanis have suffered in large numbers at the hands of terrorists, and they have been -- the government has provided useful and important assistance and cooperation to us in the years of this struggle against terrorism. so i would leave it at that. while accepting the fact that we do need to find out, and as john brennan said this morning, we look forward to finding out more information about the support network that did allow bin laden to hide in this compound in a suburb of islamabad, and we
understand that the pakistanis are investigating that as well. >> mr. zardari said today in his op-ed, pakistan did its part. did it? >> again, i would say that, as i said earlier, pakistan did provide and has provided useful intelligence and cooperation over the years and broadly speaking provided assistance that helped us build the mountain of information that we needed to build in order to find bin laden and execute this mission. >> jay, just to follow up on pakistan. senator lindsey graham today said you cannot trust them and you cannot abandon them. you go agree with that? >> i don't think it's a question of trust. i think it's a question of the interests we share and the cooperations we have forged. it's a complicated relationship, there's no question, and we do have our differences and i think it's important to note there are many people in pakistan and there are many people in the
pakistan government. so it is -- i think you have to be careful about tarring everyone either in the country or the government because they have provided extremely useful assistance over the years, and we look forward to cooperating with pakistan going into the future, and it's vital because as we have said, lopping the head off the snake is important, but the body, while battered and bruised because of the alaskas that have been taken, is still there and we need to bury that body. we have to keep the fight up against al qaeda. >> in previous dealing with pakistan it seems you guys have had to deal with them in sort of three separate camps. if president zadari -- was he ca called by the president.
have others -- >> calls beyond that made to the president i am not going to read out, but we have maintained contact with senior members of the pakistani government regularly. >> on the issue of the photographs, you say that you're -- that there is some concern about them inflaming some passions. are you consulting anybody outside the united states on this issue? >> i would just leave it that we're reviewing the situation. i don't have details on the consultations. i think we're going about this in a methodical way and trying to make the best call. >> anything new to add -- yesterday john brennan wouldn't characterize what was gotten intelligencewise from the compound. after that there has been descriptions of the amount of data. do you have anything to add? >> i don't have a qualitative assessment -- rather a quantitative assessment but i think what i can say is that there are sort of three areas
that we hope the information that was collected, the material that was collected, will provide insight into. first of all and most importantly, is any evidence of planned attacks. second would be information that could lead to other high value targets or other networks that exist that maybe we don't know about or that we only know a little bit about. and then, you know, third and more broadly, on the al qaeda network itself and then the sustaining network for bin laden in pakistan. what allowed him to live in that compound for as long as he did. >> it's my understanding that the president got an updated assessment of threat level post-bin laden. can you shed some light on whether -- >> well, the president receives regular threat level briefings. so i wouldn't necessarily tie that to the bin laden operation, although having said that i will also say that it is without
question that our homeland security officials and everyone involved in counterterrorism has been assessing and was assessing prior to the operation's success what the impact might be on -- >> so far? >> so far we don't have any specific or credible threats which is why some have asked about the -- why we haven't raised the threat level, but we are very vigilant and we take measure that is are both seen and unseen to maintain that vigilance because obviously we have anticipated the potential for a backlash, the potential for at least a desire, if not the ability, to exact some kind of revenge against the united states, the american people, or our allies. so we're very vigilant. carol. >> is the white house concerned at all that a rift with pakistan over what they knew and when they knew it could harm the
relationship which you said is critical to the united states? >> we are working very hard on that relationship, and it is an important and complicated relationship that has been tested in many ways over the years and even this year h but we are in communication directly with the president and other senior members of the government and we are committed to continuing the cooperation that we've had because it is so important both to our fight against al qaeda, but also pakistan's. and i think we remain confident that that cooperation -- i know we remain confident that that cooperation will continue. >> but as you look at what knowledge they had about bin laden's compound and that plays out in the media and all of that, is there any concern that that might harm -- >> first of all, we don't know
yet -- we don't know who, if anybody, in the government was aware that bin laden or a high value target was living in this compound. what john brennan has said and others have said is that it's logical to assume that he had some sort of supporting network, but what constituted that network is -- remains to be seen. and, again, there are -- it's a big country and a big government, and to -- we have to be very focused and careful about how we do this because it is an important relationship. i would also say that the idea that these kind of complications exist is not new. it's obviously this is a very sensational case because of who we're talking about here because it was osama bin laden, but this is not an issue that is -- that arrived on our doorstep on sunday. >> and then quickly on the debt ceiling. the u.s. will hit the debt ceiling next week.
is the white house making any progress with talks with republicans on how to deal with this? >> well, it's a complicated process, the debt ceiling, and as you know the secretary of the treasury issued a letter yesterday because of the extraordinary measures the treasury department is able to take and other administrations, treasury departments before this have taken, and because that revenues have come in slightly above expected that the deadline has been pushed back by three weeks, i think, but that is an estimate and it's important to remember that it is just an estimate, and the urgency of raising the debt ceiling remains. having said that, we look very much forward to the discussions that will begin on thursday with the vice president in the lead on our fiscal issues that we hope to reach bipartisan compromise on and we recognize that while we believe it's very important that these are parallel tracks, that this will also be a topic of conversation. and we are heartenheartened, ase
been in the past, by comments about the necessity of raising the debt ceiling because we do not want another recession, we do not want to default on the full faith and credit of the united states government, so we hope that and believe that the conversations -- the negotiations that begin on thursday will bear fruit in both directions. >> can you talk about what the president is going to do on thursday? >> at the meeting? >> no, in new york. >> we'll give you a full schedule. it's obviously out there that we will be -- the president will be visiting new york and ground zero, but beyond that i don't have details at this time. mark? >> jay, can you tell us who wrote the narrative that you read to us? >> that was provided by the defense department. >> by dod? >> yes. >> are you able to describe how bin laden resisted? >> beyond what i was able to give you from here, i would refer you to the pentagon and simply say that we have been -- we have worked very hard to
declassify information in record speed to provide as much insight into this operation as we can as quickly as we can mindful obviously of the equities that are at stake here in terms of never revealing sources and methods, never compromising our intelligence procedures, but we are working very hard to provide as much information as we can. >> can you say if there's been any change in president obama's opposition to so-called enhanced interrogation techniques? >> no change whatsoever. >> were any results of such techniques used in helping to track down bin laden? >> mark, the fact is no single piece of information led to the
successful mission that occurred on sunday, and multiple detainees provided insights into the networks of people who might have been close to bin laden, but reporting from detainees was just a slice of the information that's been gathered by incredibly diligent professionals over the years in the intelligence community. and it's simply straining credulity to suggest a piece of information that may or may not have been gathered eight years ago somehow directly led to a successful mission on sunday. that's just not the case. >> i wasn't suggesting it. >> others have. yes. >> did anything come out of last night's dinner that would show there is movement towards the specific agreement on the debt ceiling and deficit reduction? >> not that i'm aware of. this was obviously a big dinner.
what i think does help the cause of bipartisan cooperation is sitting down with one another and having conversations and realizing that through those conversations that there are shared values and shared goals, and that just having an event like that is useful in and of itself. i don't want to overstate it because there have been dinners here in the past with bipartisan leaders of congress, but it is part of an overall effort to bring democrats and republicans together so that an atmosphere is created that allows for the kind of really tough work that needs to be done to reach consensus and compromise on very hard issues, the kind of issues that haven't been resolved in the past precisely because they're hard and because there is disagreement, honest disagreement about how we get from here to there, how we get
the result in the case of deficit reduction. the result that both parties and the president agree on, which is in this case $4 trillion of deficit reduction over 10 to 12 years. so that in and of itself is a unifying point, and the president looks forward to the negotiations that will begin on thursday at the blair house led by the vice president. obviously, that will be the first of many meetings, we hope. we hope it's productive and that it will lead to a process that will in the end achieve an agreement on some serious deficit reduction. maybe not all the issues will be resolved, but there certainly should be areas of compromise that we can find if everyone enters the building across the street with the spirit of compromise in their hearts, an that requires an acceptance that we're not going to g everything we want and nobody is if we're going to reach an agreement. >> what areas of compromise is
the vice president going to be bringing -- >> well, i will say that the vice president will bring to the table some serious ideas. >> we are listening into the daily briefing from white house spokesperson jay carney. some interesting new details we are hearing from jay carney as he recounted information now provided by the department of defense on what happened in the compound where osama bin laden was shot and killed. we now know there were two other families in that compound. osama bin laden was not armed, but he did resist the navy s.e.a.l.s who entered the compound and eventually killed the leader of al qaeda. but, again, jay carney saying that there was resistance also by another woman who was shot in the leg. she survived. this woman was osama bin laden's youngest wife and was in the room with him. when the commandos entered the xound we know now they were met obviously with resistance. it was a 30 to 40-minute gun battle and this was something jay carney pushed really hard on.
they remain invisible. they were the e knit deployed to take out the al qaeda leader. very few people know who those members are. in fact that does not seemlike to change. dick hoffman recently retired from the navy after 20 years of service as a s.e.a.l. thank you for joining us. >> thank you, tamron. >> absolutely. let me start off with some of this new information here. we are being told that osama bin laden was not armed.
how might that have affected the scenario? we know he was in the room. the s.e.a.l.s go there and he resists but is not armed. how does your training prepare you for something like that? >> well, you know, we know now that he was not armed, but, you know, when the operators entered the room, you know, they didn't know, and we don't know when they knew. so they may have discovered that he was unarmed after he was already shot. so, you know, with robes and a dark room, you know, nothing is particularly clear and things are rushed, and if there's a woman rushing the operators as they're going into the room, you know, it's hard for us to say when they knew what they knew. and their training would not have led them to shoot somebody who is unarmed. >> we know that the mission itself was supposed to take 30 minutes. it was 38 minutes as a result of the issue with the helicopter, but still spot on on time when you look at the training that's
been reported that they went under in the month of april. let's go back to the scenario here and maybe your training can give us some more insight. you go into a situation, instantly it sounds like the commandos were confronted by the couriers who were on the one floor and at least another woman there. when they get out of the helicopter, i imagine you're ready for anything, which is an obvious thing. >> yeah. this was a very complex problem, to have two buildings and one of them a three-story building and upwards of 20-plus people rushing or running or hiding or moving around the target area. there's going to be a lot of confusion. and with armed security, we don't know what other security measures there were on the site. i'm sure there was a very complicated, complex problem. >> going back to the naval special warfare development
group, from what i've read it's about 80% of the people who want to become a navy s.e.a.l., that dream just does not come true because we're talking about the best of the best here. give us similar insight into the training you experienced and what many others experience when they want to become a s.e.a.l. >> i can't go into too many details on the training for obvious reasons but roughly you come into the navy and after two years of training you are qualified as a s.e.a.l. and then you'll work in your platoons at a conventional s.e.a.l. team for a couple of tours, and during these tours six to seven months, now upwards of eight to nine months in afghanistan and iraq, they're going to be doing capture/kill missions during those deployments as well. so by the time they move on to the more advanced units, they'll have quite a lot of experience
before they go through that training and that training also entails another number of years before they're on the assault teams. >> well, it's an incredible process that the men go through to become a s.e.a.l. and as i mentioned virginia politicians are looking for a way to honor the team that went into that compound on sunday. thank you very much -- go ahead. >> i was just going to say to put this in historical context, too, the founding fathers of modern special operations would be colonel bull simons from vietnam and you can trace back the technology, the tactics and the organization of the units that conducted this operation all the way back to the raid in 1970 in vietnam. then eagle claw in 1980, commonly known as desert one. so this -- when you look at the
spectacular operations that -- special operations as conducted in the last 40 years, this is, you know, a phenomenal success. a clear, unfettered boo-yah for the guys. >> thank you very much. we appreciate you joining us. developing now, we've got a live look at capitol hill right now where just moments ago a house committee convened a hearing on what it calls the threat to u.s. interests coming out of pakistan. president obama says pakistan has been a key part in the war against al qaeda. we heard jay carney reiterate those words but his terror adviser john brennan says the white house is now investigating whether there was support from some within pakistan's government or even military intelligence who may have helped osama bin laden and concealed his whereabouts. and there's new evidence that the secret mission to go after bin laden could perhaps strain the relationship between the u.s. and pakistan. earlier today pakistan released this statement, quote, the government of pakistan expresses
its deep concerns and reservations on the manner in which the government of the united states carried out this operation. it may constitute threat to international peace and security. joining me now to talk more about it is mark quarterman, a defense and security expert from the center for strategic and international studies. thank you for joining me, mark. >> happy to be with you. >> what do you make of the relationship right now? obviously, it's not just lawmakers. you can talk to just about anybody and they are wondering out loud what kind of help osama bin laden got within pakistan's borders. >> well, the relationship between the u.s. and pakistan is clearly strained. the example of osama bin laden is really the latest issue of strain between the two. the fact that he could have lived for years in that house in abbottabad near the military academy, in a town with a number of retired senior military officials is extraordinary, especially given that pakistan is in many ways a society in
which the military and intelligence play a central role and monitor what's going on in the society. >> senator lindsey graham and i'm going to paraphrase, but basically said you can't trust them but we need them. how does a relationship work if there is no trust? and i'm not being naive and using it in a casual sense but we had men rushing into that compound and they could not reloo i rely on or tell the isi in pakistan? >> there are fundamental interests that link the two countries, a lot of it has to do with the fight against terror. pakistan has contributed with the u.s. in significant ways. it's sent its troops into the tribal areas to fight and they have taken significant casualties. they have at least allowed up to this point drone strikes, u.s. drone strikes, to be carried out, and they're a major supply line for nato troops in afghanistan. at the same time though, there
are fundamental differences between the u.s. and pakistan as well. the u.s. is frustrated pakistan has not gone after certain terrorist groups that the u.s. has focused on, and pakistan is frustrated that the u.s. is asking it to do things it might perceive to be against its interests, particularly lessening its support for groups in afghanistan that have traditionally been allied to pakistan like the taliban. when pakistan is concerned that the afghan government is under the influence of india and that india's influence is rising. pakistan doesn't expect the u.s. to stay forever in afghanistan and in many ways it's been hedging its bets to the frustration of americans. >> mark quarterman, thank you very much. defense and security expert. thank you, mark. let's bring in yvette clark who represents parts of new york city's borough of brooklyn. thank you for joining me.
>> thank you. >> let me read a portion of what pakistan's president zadar i said. he said such baseless speculation may make exciting cable news but it does not reflect fact. pakistan had as much reason to despise al qaeda as any nation. do you have concerns that osama bin laden was found in this affluent suburb and he was very close to what's considered the west point of pakistan and no one knew it? >> well, that does raise a lot of concern and i'm sure there's a lot of introspection going on right now in pakistan, and i hope that we can take the leadership at its word and that they will do the proper reviews as we go through ours to find out how osama bin laden could have been living in this compound, as people say, hiding in plain sight for years now and
not detected. >> i know that you, like so many other people who are native new yorkers, knew someone who worked in the building and may have even lost someone that you love. what's your feeling now all this is settling and not just as a lawmaker but as a new yorker? >> as you stated, my father actually worked for the port authority. he was not killed, thank god, but many of his co-workers were. he was actually at the world trade center in '93 when it was first hit. so it does hit home for me. it hits home for all new yorkers. there is a sense of relief and justice having been served in the capturing and killing of osama bin laden. however, we remain vigilant. we know that there are a lot that has been spawned from this al qaeda group and those who would seek to hurt us, and so we remain vigilant as new yorkers. however, we are very pleased that this chapter at least has been closed. >> congresswoman clark, thank
you so much for joining us. we greatly appreciate it. >> thank you for having me, tamron. coming up, how will osama bin laden's death affect america's mission in afghanistan? will it speed up the withdrawal of u.s. troops? and be sure to log on to bin laden.msnbc.com. we'll be right back. restore a historic landmark in harlem. fund a local business in chicago. expand green energy initiatives in seattle. because when you're giving, lending, and investing in more communities across the country, more opportunities happen.
we'll handcraft an arrangement that is sure to delight. ohh! take our "tote-ally" original, "tote-ally" mom bouquet, a stylish gift that fits her perfectly. let us arrange a smile for you, starting at $29.99. i grew up in the bronx. i just loved it here. i'm sam chernin. owner of sammy's fish box. my uncle owned a restaurant up on city island. and we started going to the restaurant in the summers. 8, 9, 10 years old. i knew immediately that this is what i like, never dreaming that i would own seven restaurants. i want people that work for me to feel that they're sharing in my success. so we purchase as much as we can on the american express open gold card. and we accumulate as many membership reward points as possible. and use those points to reward our employees. they get a trip with their family, and some wonderful memories. the average employee is with me over 20 years. i have busboys that are with me 30 years. when i tell them that i'm giving them a trip,
they just can't believe it. giving back to my employees makes me feel great. and when my employees are happy, my customers are happy. how can the gold card help serve your business? booming is taking care of your business by taking care of your employees. i'm martin bashir. coming up, proof in pictures. the white house debates releasing images of a slain osama bin laden. and inside s.e.a.l. team six. america's silent, secret, and deadly warriors. and what does osama bin laden's death mean for the war in afghanistan? just moments ago white house press secretary jay carney said the current plan is still on track. >> as john brennan and others have said, the president has said, we are continuing the fight against al qaeda every day, and the focus of that
operation, of the u.s. personnel in afghanistan is on al qaeda. the operation continues. the july 2011 transition date for the gbeginning of a drawdow remains very much in place. the pace of that drawdown will be determined by conditions on the ground. >> joining me now, former marine captain wade zerkel co-founder of vets for freedom. thank you for joining me. >> hi, tamron. >> what impact do you believe the death of osama bin laden will have, especially maybe even on the morale hf troops in afghanistan? >> i think it's a tremendous morale boost. for 9 1/2 years the u.s. military, every member of it, has been trying to make this happen. it was executed on sunday by an elite group of s.e.a.l.s, but i think the whole military was able to celebrate what had been
in the works for 9 1/2 years. operationally, i don't think a lot is going to change. it doesn't change the strategic calculus and operational considerations of what we're doing in afghanistan, which is fighting the taliban and denying a safe haven for al qaeda in afghanistan. >> but, you know, you say fighting the taliban, it's even debated just what their numbers are at this point. there was a statement in reaction from the taliban questioning whether osama bin laden was even in fact dead, but you and i both know that when this mission started, it was all about al qaeda and maybe even the fact that osama bin laden was hiding somewhere in that country. that turned out not to be the case, but you have people who wonder out loud what is the mission, what is our true mission? nation building or defeating al qaeda, which certainly does not exist with one man, but we know al qaeda now is in several other countries, including yemen. >> sure. and the fact that you're asking that and i really don't know the answer tells me the president needs to be out front telling the american people what the
mission is. i can tell you broadly that the mission is to fight the taliban so we don't leave behind in afghanistan what looked like it did in the 1990s where al qaeda had safe haven and struck the u.s., but the mission needs to be clear and it needs to be communicated continuously by the president, and the president deserves a lot of credit for what happened on sunday, for unilaterally going in there and gig the nod to do that, but at the same time he's been in office for two years, and he really hasn't talked a whole lot about either war. he's given very few speeches. he needs to communicate that mission, why we're there, and what our objectives are so we can withdraw with honor and with success. >> captain wade zerkel. thank you for joining us. the "news nation" gut check. the white house is still considering whether to release a photo of osama bin laden after he was killed to provide proof
to those who may still doubt at this point. even though u.s. official say face mapping software and dna confirmed his identity, just today the taliban in afghanistan say they won't believe bin laden is dead until they see proof or receive confirmation from sources close to him. among the issues being considered, the delicate nature or sensitivity as you heard jay carney perhaps mention at the top of the hour, regarding this photo. we know bin laden was shot at least twice and jay carney described the picture today as gruesome. he was also shot in his chest. here is what else jay carney had to say in the briefing during this hour. >> it's fair to say it's a gruesome photograph. >> that could be inflammatory? >> it is certainly possible that -- this is an issue that we are taking into consideration is that it could be inflammatory. >> the bush administration did release gruesome photos of saddam hussein's two sons after
they were killed in a raid in their hideout. there was little criticism then. just like now the bush white house wanted to prove the two brothers were dead. the stakes are obviously very ditch when you're talking about osama bin laden. so what does your gut tell you? should the white house release photos of bin laden after he was killed? there's also video of his burial at sea out there. go to newsnation.msnbc.com to vote. we'll be right back. don't know what to give her this mother's day? how about a smile? at 1-800-flowers.com, we can design an arrangement that is sure to delight. [ doorbell ] 1-800-flowers. ohh! take our "tote-ally" original, "tote-ally" mom bouquet, a stylish gift that fits her perfectly.
this mother's day, don't settle for the ordinary. send a creation that's truly her. call, click or come in, and let us arrange a smile for you this mother's day, starting at $29.99. there's another way to minimize litter box odor: purina tidy cats. our premium litters now work harder to help neutralize odors in multiple cat homes. purina tidy cats. keep your home smelling like home.
with faculty who brought real-world perspective on where the business world was headed and the practical experience to help him make an impact. my name is sean blankenship, i'm making the electric car more accessible, and i am a phoenix. [ male announcer ] learn more about the school of business at phoenix.edu. welcome back to "news nation." in today's education nation report, president obama marked teacher appreciation day by honoring the best educator of the year. he welcomed maryland chemistry teacher marilyn sharra to the white house. she's focused on making science accessible to women with learning difficulties. >> at a time when our success as a nation depends on our ability
to out educate other countries, we desperately need more mis michelles out there. >> joining me is the teacher of the year, michelle sharra. we're so happy for you. how do you feel? >> thank you. it's an amazing day. it was such an amazing experience to stand with the teachers of the year and be recognized with the president. >> i understand your mother taught elementary school, your father was a chemist. parents in most cases are an inspiration but how do you find inspiration every day to excel and it ultimate lly results in u becoming teacher of the year. >> all the inspiration comes from the students. as i said in my speech this morning, i have bulletin boards covered with pictures of students i have taught over the past 14 years and every day i go into the classroom and i look at those faces and see those students and i remember their stories, and it's the students that inspire me to come to the classroom and do what i love to do every day. >> that's so wonderful to hear. there's so much that the we're
discussing with education, the future, how to get test scores up, keep students engaged. i'm interested in your view on keeping students engaged. you disabilities and skin laign lan. >> i did teach at the maryland school of the deaf for part of my career. the key to keeping students involved is really to make it relevant to their lives. students want to know that what they're learning has applications to their everyday lives and if you can approach your everyday classroom teaching with passion and excitement, it's infectious and students pick up on that and then it creates a very positive learning environment and that's always been my goal, to have a high-energy, high-morale classroom environment. >> through the television, i can feel your energy and positive spirit. congratulations and we certainly hope that many other teachers follow in your footsteps in being positive and keeping the
energy going. thank you so much. >> thank you. >> that does it for this edition of "news nation." martin bashir is up next. [ female announcer ] the healing power of touch just got more powerful. introducing precise pain relieving cream. it blocks pain signals fast for relief precisely where you need it most. precise. only from the makers of tylenol. nope. see, hotels.com has over 20,000 last minute deals every week. so i get a great deal, no matter how long i wait. yeah, i'm not very good at waiting... then we must train you to wait. it is time to book, grasshopper. now, it's ok to wait. get great deals. even at the last minute. hotels.com. be smart. book smart.
that's how it is with alzheimer's disease. she needs help from me. and her medication. the exelon patch -- it releases medication continuously for twenty-four hours. she uses one exelon patch daily for the treatment of mild to moderate alzheimer's symptoms. [ female announcer ] it cannot change the course of the disease. hospitalization and rarely death have been reported in patients who wore more than one patch at a time.
the most common side effects of exelon patch are nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. the likelihood and severity of these side effects may increase as the dose increases. patients may experience loss of appetite or weight. patients who weigh less than 110 pounds may experience more side effects. people at risk for stomach ulcers who take certain other medicines should talk to their doctor because serious stomach problems such as bleeding may worsen. people with certain heart conditions may experience slow heart rate. [ woman ] whenever i needed her, she was there for me. now i'm here for her. [ female announcer ] ask the doctor about your loved one trying the exelon patch. visit exelonpatch.com to learn more.
good afternoon. it's tuesday, may the 3rd, and here is what's happening. a neighbor taking a look at osama bin laden's windows. how was he allowed to hide in plain sight for almost six years? plus, inside s.e.a.l. team six, the silent warriors called in for the kill. what does it take to become a member of the u.s. military's elite speticial forces? and president obama. the commander in chief, the gutsy call that may finally silence his critic and could it seal a second term? >> thank you everybody. but we begin on capitol hill where today we're learning extraordinary new details about the remarkable mission to hunt down and kill