Defense and intelligence sources in Washington and London confirmed that US President George W. Bush has ordered a renewed hunt for Osama Bin Laden, the Sunday Times reported.
The British newspaper said Bush has enlisted British special forces in a final attempt to capture the al-Qaeda leader before he leaves the White House.
"If he (Bush) can say he has killed Saddam Hussein and captured Bin Laden, he can claim to have left the world a safer place,” a US intelligence source was quoted by The Times as saying.
According to the report, The Special Boat Service (SBS) and the Special Reconnaissance Regiment have been taking part in the US-led operations to capture Bin Laden in the wild frontier region of northern Pakistan.
A UK special forces source told The Times that the operations involve the use of Predator and Reaper unmanned aerial vehicles fitted with Hellfire missiles that can be used to take out specific terrorist targets.
The report said some analysts believe Bin Laden, who has evaded capture for nearly seven years, is in the Bajaur tribal zone in northwest Pakistan. “Bush is swinging for the fences in the hope of scoring a home run,” The Times quoted an intelligence source as saying.
The British newspaper also quoted a Pentagon source as saying that US forces were rolling up Al-Qaeda’s network in Pakistan in the hope of pushing Bin Laden towards the Afghan border, where the US military and bombers with guided missiles were lying in wait. “They are prepping for a major battle,” he told The Times.