Friday, March 9, 2012

Real Housewives of Abbottabad

They were not a happy group, according to a retired Pakistani Army General who has investigated bin Laden's final domestic arrangements. There were three wives with bin Laden in his Abbottabad household, and that seems to have been one too many. The oldest one, age 62, clashed with the newest and youngest one, age 32, and might even have been responsible, wittingly or unwittingly, for bringing on the U.S. military raid that killed bin Laden.   

McClatchy newspapers reports bin Laden widows charged as new probe describes discord in his home:

Pakistani authorities said Thursday that they'd filed charges against Osama bin Laden's three widows as an investigation revealed fresh details of the dead al Qaida leader's family life in Pakistan — including suspicions by two of the women that the oldest wife would betray him.

--snip --

Qadir [a retired brigadier who maintains ties to top levels of the Pakistani army] believes that bin Laden likely had undergone a kidney transplant, was living in effective retirement in Abbottabad and may have gone senile. The tranquility of his large household was shattered when it was joined early last year by the oldest of his remaining three wives, Qadir said in an interview.

There were 27 people packed into the house in Abbottabad when U.S. Navy SEALs arrived on the night of May 2, 2011. But until a few months before that, when bin Laden's oldest surviving wife, Khairiah Sabar, joined them, they had all got on well, Qadir found.

"When Khairiah came, everybody else was very suspicious of her. They didn't trust her at all," Qadir said.

"Everything begins to happen with her arrival. Until then, the Americans seem to know nothing."

-- snip --

Khairiah, a Saudi whom bin Laden married in 1985 as his third wife (he married six times), was freed from Iranian custody in 2010 as part of a murky exchange for an Iranian diplomat who had been kidnapped by extremists in Pakistan. About 62 years old, she made her way without her children to Abbottabad on bin Laden's instructions.

The other two wives — Siham, a Saudi aged around 54, who had three adult children with her, and Amal, a Yemeni aged around 31, who had five young children — had lived with bin Laden since he moved into the Abbottabad home in mid-2005. They also had been with him for periods at other hiding places in Pakistan after 2001, according to Qadir.

That situation does not sound good at all.

Bin Laden could have avoided so much trouble for himself if he'd only put his wives in separate houses. Why cheap out with just the one house? Wasn't he a multi-millionaire, or a Trustafarian, or at least someone with serious wealth? 

New Man Law: two or more wives may not inhabit the same domicile at the same time. 


Anonymous said...

TSB: Could this have something to do with the way she ended up in Iran in the first place? Even though Osama might not have trusted her he might also have felt guilty/responsible for her. His being senile put her in a commanding if treacherous position. gwb

Anonymous said...

TSB: I find this more disturbing. Real Teen's of Baghdad

I hope the Republicans don't start that here when they take over. A lot will depend on the Rush Fish. gwb

TSB said...

I think the reason Bin Laden's first wife was in Iran was because he sent some of his family and staff there from Afghanistan, to safehaven them when we invaded. He might not have felt any personal guilt, and Islamists are generally very fatalistic anyway - "it was written."

I'll bet you're right about the senior wife being in a commanding position, at least in her own mind. With her bossing the other wives around, and all of them confined to a small space for years, there was bound to be bloodshed sooner or later even without the SEALs.

If bin Laden was *not* senile all of that time, then that last bullet must have come as a relief.

TSB said...

GWB: I was really surprised to see that news account of the Iraqi emo stonings. Surprised that the emo fad has caught on there (they must have a lot of smart phones and social media networking) and also that the central government doesn't have more control of the extreme Shia elements.

I am mystified by the whole emo thing anyway. I just now learned that the term is short for "emotional."

Iraqi emos are a sign of the massive cultural influence the West has on people everywhere (so long as they have iPhones and such), and the stonings are a sign of how little our governments can control the cultural forces let loose.

Anonymous said...

TSB: With all the defense cuts coming we are going to need to save our pennies to build that new moon colony. Check out this new/old carrier task force idea from "Dr Grumpy". gwb

Anonymous said...

TSB: I found the story you were talking about. It makes a lot more sense. gwb

TSB said...

GWB: Carriers made of ice? That might be a very good idea, going by what I understand about Chinese ballistic missiles versus our present carriers. The missiles might go straight through without sinking the ship.

Anonymous said...

TSB: Yep! Talk about cheap but cool! And with the new disposable, self-contained nuclear power units these could be the new "slow boat FROM CHINA" transports of the future! We could remake the world just with the ideas the Scots forgot about! gwb

Anonymous said...

TSB: R Fisk (3/10/12) In 2001, after I was beaten by Afghan refugees on the Pakistani border, by men whose families had just been killed in a B-52 raid on Kandahar. It's interesting that Fisk got that "hearts and minds" thing immediately and hasn't been attacked by muslims since.. just by "journalists". gwb

Anonymous said...

TSB: It looks like the emphasis is still on deployment vs treatment for TBI. So the housewives of Kandahar have more terror to deal with. gwb

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Army staff sergeant accused of the massacre of 16 villagers in Afghanistan on Sunday was treated for traumatic brain injury after being in a vehicle that rolled over in Iraq in 2010, a U.S. official said on Monday.

The official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said it was premature to state whether there was any link between the 2010 injury and the Afghanistan incident.

(Reporting by Missy Ryan; Editing by Will Dunham)

TSB said...

That was so tragic. I couldn't believe that a TBI victim was sent out for a *fourth* deployment.

Parallels are being drawn with My Lai, and that might be going overboard, but the same kind of burn-out and hopeless frustration that was behind My Lai might have motivated this poor guy.

Anonymous said...

On the lighter side, Rush Limbaugh and all his network minions have lost their advertising... It just went "Whoooosh!". Now you can listen to these stations virtually commercial free. I ran some errands this morning just to listen again. Rush was golfing and the controversy about sponsors was verbotin! gwb

Anonymous said...

It's quite a lineup! He even had the Girl Scouts! I don't think this is making Federale happy. gwb

TSB said...

I don't think Rush will be off the air any time soon. That list Think Progress is running is *not* of ex-Limbaugh sponsors, it's of advertisers in local markets who have asked radio stations not to run their ads during any kind of 'controversial' show. It looked to me like it was standard programming policy, not something in reaction to the Slut-Gate hoopla or specific to Limbaugh.

Anonymous said...

Going from #1 of all time to off the air is a tall order but watching hypocrites squirm is great fun. And if he changes to a less divisive pitch will his "us against them" listeners even understand what he's saying? I think he's headed for a Glenn Beck like dive. Of course I thought Ron Paul would do great too. gwb

Anonymous said...

TSB: It's getting very difficult to keep a secret in Afghanistan! gwb

TSB said...

According to the New York Times, "the Afghan driver emerged from the vehicle in flames." In any other country, that would be unusual.

Anonymous said...

TSB: Hmmm? I wonder what is the safest way for Nato troops to get around Kabul these days? Maybe out of uniform and taking a taxi? gwb