A pair of Burlington peace activists angered many Vermonters, including some Blurt readers, when they called a news conference in May to denounce the killing of Osama bin Laden as a “murder” carried out by the United States. American commanders acted unlawfully by apparently making no attempt to take the unarmed bin Laden alive, charged local attorney Sandy Baird and filmmaker Robin Lloyd.
Three months later, an inside account of the raid confirms that bin Laden was given no chance to surrender before being shot in the chest and the head at close range.
"The Al Qaeda chief, who was wearing a tan shalwar kameez and a prayer cap on his head, froze; he was unarmed," writes American journalist Nicholas Schmidle in the current edition of the New Yorker. "'There was never any question of detaining or capturing him — it wasn’t a split-second decision. No one wanted detainees,' the special-operations officer told me."