This story is interesting to me because the Australian Foreign Minister, who is the ex-Prime Minister Kevin Rudd (known as KRUDD) gave out information at the end of March that could have blown the operation that has just been carried out. I doubt that KRUDD knew of the significance of Abbottabad when he announced on March 30 that the Indonesian Patek had been captured.
The ISI in Pakistan is accusing KRUDD of leaking information that could have alerted OBL that the intelligence services were on to him. KRUDD had announced the arrest and called it a major step forward but the Pakistani counterpart had refused to confirm the arrest.
This is interesting because it would seem that the ISI and the Pakistan military have been scrambling to cover their butts because OBL had been living in Abbottabad for the past 6 years, without raising suspicions. I think that there is probably some truth to the story, even though a senior Departmental official has denied the story. Some of us know KRUDD and know how he leaks things.
Here is some more information on what is now an international “crisis” in as much as the relationship between Australia and Pakistan has probably been damaged:
The arrest of the Indonesian Bali bomber, Patek occurred on January 25 2011 in Abbottabad. He was arrested after another operative Tahir Shezhad had been arrested in a house not 10km away from the OBL compound. It is assumed that he was trying to make contact with OBL. Patek was one of the last of the JI operatives involved in the Bali bombing to remain on the run. The arrest was kept under wraps and the information had been shared with Australia via the Indonesians and through KRUDD. The Australian media got wind of the arrest on March 30, being tipped off by Philippines and Indonesian intelligence sources. This arrest was important to Australia because we lost 88 people in the Bali bombings that had claimed more than 200 lives (many of them were local Balinese). Hours after the media had been tipped off, KRUDD made the announcement after an Indonesian-Australian process meeting. The announcement regarding Patek’s arrest was repeated on April 13.
It should be pointed out that the tip off itself came from an ISI official which means that this is quite suspicious. Perhaps the official was attempting to out this arrest as a warning to OBL, but fortunately it failed to arouse suspicion that the intelligence community was on to him.