Osama bin Laden
managed to dodge American security forces by moving undetected between safe houses around Pakistan in a large box hidden in a brightly colored truck filled with chickens, the Sunday Times reported, citing Taliban sources.
According to the British newspaper's report, the box was designed by Abu Ahmed al-Kuwaiti, bin Laden’s trusted aide, who also set up the house in Abbottabad where the al-Qaeda
leader lived for five years until he was killed last May by US Navy Seals.
Kuwaiti moved bin Laden by fitting the box to the floor of one of the elaborately decorated trucks that are a common sight on Pakistan’s roads, the report said. The box would be hidden under cargoes of cement, flour or rice — or even beneath livestock such as goats, sheep or chickens.
According to Newsweek magazine, the scam was disclosed at a meeting held near Miranshah, the Taliban heart of Pakistan’s North Waziristan region, in the autumn. During the meeting, al-Qaeda and Taliban terrorists discussed ways to protect Ayman al-Zawahiri, bin Laden’s successor.
Despite Kuwaiti’s ingenious method of transport, they blamed his carelessness for bin Laden’s death, the Sunday Times said. According to the report, an Al-Qaeda investigation concluded that Kuwaiti made basic security mistakes which led the CIA to Bin Laden: he drove the same car every time he visited the Abbottabad compound and used a mobile phone that could be monitored.
To protect Zawahiri from a similar fate, the terrorists suggested, his handlers had advised him to “move to a new place” and stop using any electronic devices.
“We are hoping he can avoid being captured by the US for at least 10 more years,” a Taliban source was quoted by Newsweek as saying. One of the terrorists at the meeting asked a member of the Afghan Taliban if they would consider harboring Zawahiri. The answer was noncommittal.
The Sunday Times further reported that Pakistani officials strongly denied claims this month by US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
that Zawahiri had found refuge on their soil.