President Obama tonight confirmed that Osama bin Laden is dead and gave new details about how that came to be: The president tasked Leon Panetta with capturing or killing bin Laden shortly after taking office, and "last August, after years of painstaking work, I was briefed on a possible lead. It was far from certain and it took many months to run this thread to ground."
The al-Qaeda leader was believed to be hiding within a compound deep within Pakistan. "Finally, last week, I determined we had enough intelligence. Today, at my direction, the United States launched a targeted operation against that compound ... a small team carried it out with extraordinary courage. After a firefight, they killed bin Laden and took custody of his body." He confirmed that no Americans were harmed, and said, in a line sure to be repeated thousands of times, "justice has been done." Click for more details on the death of Osama bin Laden. (Read more President Obama stories.)