The controversial writer Seymour Hersh is sticking to his guns. He will not take back any part of his recent allegations that the Obama Administration lied in its account of how Osama Bin Laden was killed, in spite of an overwhelming outcry against him.
The Pulitzer Prize winning journalist is no stranger to controversy and certainly likes to rock the boat. It is, therefore, no surprise that Hersh is not backing down.
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On Monday we reported on how Hersh claimed in an article published in the London Review of Books that the Pakistani government did know all about the raid on the Abbottabad compound in its country and that Bin Laden was actually being held prisoner there for some time. Hersh further asserted that there was no fire fight the night in 2011 when Bin Laden was killed as his guards had deserted him ahead of time and that his death was nothing short of an execution.
Since then the White House, the Defense Department, The NSA and people who have no love lost for President Obama, have all come out and refuted Hersh’s account. It is also pointed out that his story depends entirely on two anonymous sources.
Edward Price, a White House National Security Council spokesman, said that, “This was a US operation through and through. The notion that the operation [to kill Bin Laden] was anything but a unilateral US mission is patently false.
Today Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Qazi Khalilullah told reporters, “The allegation that Pakistan’s government had prior knowledge of the U.S. operation of May 2, 2011, against Osama Bin Laden is baseless.”
But Hersh adamantly defends his piece telling Salon, “I am not backing off anything I said.”
About the White House’s response to his claims, he said, “The White House has been very clever about this. They have gone after me personally. They don’t like me boo hoo hoo. But they have been very careful to hedge everything, they quote Peter Bergen. Bergen or Berger, is that his name?”
It was a good thing for Hersh that this interview was in print only and not filmed. His hostility and self-importance are exhibited in just about every word which he chose to use and at one point the interviewer asked Hersh not to yell at him.
Hersh also laced his comments with a multitude of profanities.