Six weeks before the killing of Osama Bin Laden, on 16 March 2011, CIA’s private contractor Raymond Davis, who had previously worked for Erik Prince’s infamous Blackwater security firm, was released from a prison in Lahore and was secretly flown to the US. On 27 January 2011, Raymond Davis had killed two armed men on a busy street in Lahore in broad daylight. Minutes after the shooting, four CIA agents rushed to Davis’s aid in an SUV and crushed another bystander to death.Recently, Raymond Davis has published his memoir titled: The Contractor: How I landed in a Pakistani Prison and Ignited a Diplomatic Crisis, in which he has narrated all the gory details of the shooting, his time in prison and the subsequent release under a settlement with victims’ families. However, he has painstakingly avoided any mention of his role as the CIA’s acting station chief in Islamabad or of his job of tracking Osama Bin Laden’s couriers. In his last year’s May 5 report, Greg Miller of the Washington Post alleged that Mark Kelton, the CIA station chief in Islamabad at the time of Bin Laden’s killing in Abbottabad, was poisoned by Pakistan’s intelligence due to his role in the assassination of Bin Laden.It should be remembered here that Mark Kelton succeeded Jonathan Bank in January 2011 after the latter’s name was made public by Pakistan’s intelligence due to Bank’s “suspicious activities,” and Raymond Davis worked as CIA’s acting station chief during the interim period. In his April 2013 article for the New York Times, Mark Mazzetti writes, “By the time Raymond Davis moved into a safe house with a handful of other C.I.A. officers and contractors in late 2010, the bulk of the agency’s officers in Lahore were focused on investigating the growth of Lashkar-e-Taiba.”“To get more of its spies into Pakistan, the C.I.A. had exploited the arcane rules in place for approving visas for Americans. The State Department, the C.I.A. and the Pentagon all had separate channels to request visas for their personnel, and all of them led to the desk of Husain Haqqani, Pakistan’s pro-American ambassador in Washington.”“Haqqani had orders from Islamabad to be lenient in approving the visas, because many of the Americans coming to Pakistan were — at least officially — going to be administering millions of dollars in foreign-aid money. By the time of the Lahore killings, in early 2011, so many Americans were operating inside Pakistan under both legitimate and false identities that even the U.S. Embassy didn’t have accurate records of their identities and whereabouts.”Although Mark Mazzetti has scrupulously avoided mentioning the role played by Raymond Davis and his team in locating the couriers of Bin Laden in his article, he even tried to distract attention to Lashkar-e-Taiba, but the timing of the surge of CIA operatives in Pakistan — late 2010 and early 2011 — is telling here because those were exactly the months when the CIA was tracking Bin Laden’s whereabouts.More to the point, in his March 10 article for The Washington Post, Husain Haqqani, Pakistan’s ambassador to the US at the time of Osama Bin Laden’s execution, confessed to the role played by the Zardari administration in facilitating the killing of Bin Laden.Haqqani identified then-president Asif Ali Zardari as his “civilian leader” and revealed in the article, “In November 2011, I was forced to resign as the ambassador after Pakistan’s military-intelligence apparatus gained an upper hand in the country’s perennial power struggle. Among the security establishment’s grievances against me was the charge that I had facilitated the presence of large numbers of CIA operatives, who helped track down bin Laden without the knowledge of Pakistan’s army, even though I had acted under the authorization of Pakistan’s elected civilian leaders.”This confessional statement by Ambassador Haqqani lends further credence to Seymour Hersh’s account of the execution of Bin Laden in his book and article titled: The Killing of Osama Bin Laden, which was published in the London Review of Books in May 2015.According to Hersh, the initial tentative plan of the Obama Administration, regarding the disclosure of the execution of Bin Laden to the press, was that he had been killed in a drone strike in the Hindu Kush Mountains on the Afghan side of the border. But the operation didn’t go as planned because a Black Hawk helicopter crashed in Bin Laden’s Abbottabad compound and the whole town knew that an operation is underway and several social media users based in Abbottabad live-tweeted the whole incident on Twitter.Although Mark Mazzetti, in his article, has scrupulously avoided mentioning the role played by Raymond Davis and his team in locating the couriers of Bin Laden, he has even tried to distract attention to Lashkar-e-Taiba, but the timing of the surge of CIA operatives in Pakistan — late 2010 and early 2011 — is telling because those were exactly the months when the CIA was tracking Bin Laden’s whereaboutsTherefore, the initial plan was abandoned and the Obama administration had to go public within hours of the operation with a quickly cooked up story. This fact explains so many contradictions and discrepancies in the official account of the story, the biggest being that the United States Navy Seals conducted a raid deep inside Pakistan’s territory in a garrison town without the permission of Pakistani authorities.Moreover, according to a May 2015 AFP report, Pakistan’s military sources had confirmed that there was a Pakistani defector who had met several times with Jonathan Bank, CIA’s station-chief at that time, in Islamabad as a consequence of which Pakistan’s intelligence disclosed Bank’s name to local newspapers and he had to leave Pakistan in a hurry in December 2010 since his cover was blown.Furthermore, once the Pakistani walk-in colonel, as stated in the aforementioned AFP report, had told Bank, that a high-value Al-Qaeda leader had been hiding in a compound in Abbottabad — and when the CIA obtained further proof in the form of Bin Laden’s DNA through the fake vaccination program carried out by Dr. Shakil Afridi — it was no longer possible for Pakistani authorities to deny the whereabouts of Bin Laden.In his book, Seymour Hersh has already postulated various theories as to why it was not possible for Pakistan’s military authorities to simply hand Bin Laden over to the US.The way the Musharraf administration had extradited scores of al-Qaeda operatives caught in Pakistan in the early years of the war on terror to the Guantanamo Bay.Here, let me add that in May 2011, Pakistan had a US-friendly Zardari administration in power. As Ambassador Haqqani pointed out in his Washington Post article that the army chief at that time, Ashfaq Pervez Kayani, and the former head of ISI, Shuja Pasha, might still have had strong objections to the US Navy Seals conducting a raid deep inside Pakistan’s territory on a garrison town.But Pakistan’s civilian administration, under former President Asif Ali Zardari, had persuaded the military authorities to order the Pakistan Air Force and air defense systems to stand down during the operation. Ambassador Haqqani’s role in this saga ruffled the feathers of Pakistan’s top brass to an extent that Husain Haqqani was later implicated in a criminal case regarding his memo to Admiral Mike Mullen and eventually Ambassador Haqqani had to resign in November 2011 — just after the Operation Neptune Spear.Finally, although Seymour Hersh claimed — in his account of the story — that Pakistan’s military authorities were also on-board months before the operation, let me clarify, however, that according to the inside sources of Pakistan’s military, only Pakistan’s civilian administration under the US-friendly Zardari administration was on-board, and the military authorities were intimated only at the eleventh hour. The writer is an Islamabad-based attorney, columnist and geopolitical analyst focused on the politics of Af-Pak and Middle East regions, neocolonialism and petro-imperialism Published in Daily Times, September 14th 2017.