Hunt for bin Laden's Body Is Futile

Bill Warren will almost certainly return empty-handed
By Sarah Whitmire,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 18, 2011 3:12 PM CDT

(Newser) – Treasure-hunter Bill Warren has caused a stir with his plan to find Osama bin Laden’s remains in the Arabian Sea. But as Brian Palmer explains in Slate, Warren has almost no shot of succeeding. For one thing, he is trying to find treasure without a map. Unless he’s got an inside scoop as to where bin Laden’s remains were deposited, they’ll be near impossible to find in the vastness of the Arabian Sea. "Legitimate treasure hunters start an active search only after months, and often years, of exhaustive research."

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Warren also plans to use sonar, would be great for finding a hard object like a treasure chest, but not so much for a soft body on the sea floor. Another obvious obstacle is time. After a month’s dip in the salty ocean, would we even recognize the body? If bin Laden landed in just the right spot with low temperatures and few scavengers, it's possible little decay has begun. On the other hand, "it's equally possible that bin Laden has already been reduced to bones." (Read more Osama bin Laden stories.)

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