Suspect - bin Laden

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We've often heard the suggestion that bin Laden was named as a 9/11 subject "too quickly", that there's no reason for the news media and others to have been talking about him almost immediately. But if you look at the context of what was happening in 2001 then it was really no surprise at all.

July 12, 2001

Americans have been hearing the name "bin Laden" for months, in connection with the embassy bombings. Today the story is about the sentencing of one of the guilty men:

August 7, 2001

The third anniversary of the US embassy bombings sees the US vowing to track down others involved, including bin Laden:

August 21, 2001

The media has carried regular stories about the FBI's investigation into the Cole bombing, and how bin Laden is believed to have been responsible:

August 25, 2001

Bin Laden and others are charged with planning to bomb the US embassy in New Delhi:

August 29, 2001

An Algerian, said to be allied to bin Laden, is indicted for planning to bomb Los Angeles International Airport:

August 30, 2001

Bin Laden's name is linked to threats that temporarily closed the US embassies in Romania and Bulgaria:

September 4, 2001

Concerns are raised that bin Laden is expanding his operations into Indonesia.

September 7, 2001

The State Department warns of potential attacks by bin Laden against US interests in Japan or South Korea:

September 9, 2001

The New York Times refers to a June tape where bin Laden promises more attacks.

September 10, 2001

The New York Times story of September 9th is referenced elsewhere:


On September 10 2001 the US knew that bin Laden was behind the 1998 embassy bombings, was most likely responsible for the bombing of the USS Cole, had connections with other plots involving attempted attacks on US interests around the world, and was threatening new attacks in the future. Given that he was also believed to be involved in the 1993 bombing of the WTC, bin Laden was an entirely obvious suspect for the second, more devastating attack: we see nothing suspicious whatsoever about the media immediately putting his name at the top of the list.