At 78 years old, Seymour Hersh remains one of the most important, controversial, and even cutting-edge voices in journalism. His newest report, which criticizes the official narrative of the capture and killing of Osama bin Laden, is just one revelation in a long history of undermining government propaganda through investigative reporting.
In the bin Laden report, published this month in the London Review of Books, Hersh accuses the United States of collaborating with Pakistan to orchestrate bin Laden’s capture and then covering up the real story with a tale of all-American heroism. Hersh’s account makes it clear that bin Laden was a pawn the Pakistani government traded to the U.S. in return for military aid, and the terrorist leader’s capture an almost theatrical event carefully managed by both governments for maximum positive publicity.
The White House previously maintained that the mission was carried out using only U.S. intelligence and troops, as mythologized in the Oscar-winning film “Zero Dark Thirty.” The Obama administration strongly denies the claims of collaboration, but already the mainstream media is confirming part of Hersh’s story.