Al-Zawahiri was killed in the home of a Taliban lackey, who was once given a platform by the New York Times

Ayman al-Zawahiri, the leader of Al Qaeda, was killed at the home of a Taliban member the FBI was looking for. This person was once given a platform by the New York Times.

The jihadist, who was one of the people who planned the Sept. 11 attacks, was killed by a CIA drone strike Sunday morning at the home of senior Taliban official Sirajuddin Haqqani in Kabul, Gray Lady said in her first report.

The newspaper made headlines when it published an opinion piece by Haqqani, the leader of the insurgent Haqqani Network in Afghanistan, which has been linked to brutal and deadly attacks. In the piece, Haqqani asked US and Afghan leaders to reach a peace deal by 2020.

Critics and even some of the paper's own reporters criticized it for giving the global terrorist a platform to reach thousands of readers and spread what many saw as propaganda. The Times explained why it chose to print the article at the time.

The home that Ayman al-Zawahiri was killed at belonged to senior Taliban official Sirajuddin Haqqani.
The home that Ayman al-Zawahiri was killed at belonged to senior Taliban official Sirajuddin Haqqani.
Bilal Sarwary/Twitter

Now, the Times is being accused of "stealth-editing" their story about al-death Zawahri's to take out details that named Haqqani in the first report.

"According to one American analyst, the house that was hit belonged to a top aide to Sirajuddin Haqqani, a senior official in the Taliban government who, according to American officials, is close to senior al-Qaeda figures," the Times wrote in its initial report.

But that paper got rid of that paragraph without an editor's note and later replaced it with language that didn't mention Haqqani by name, as Pluribus editor Jeryl Bier first pointed out.

Al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri was killed at the home of an FBI-wanted Taliban lackey who was once given a platform by the New York Times.
The New York Times published an op-ed written by Sirajuddin Haqqani regarding a peace agreement between Afghan and the US.
Universal Images Group via Getty

“After the strike, members of the Haqqani network, a terrorist group that is part of the Taliban government, tried to conceal that Mr. Zawahri had been at the house and restrict access to the site, according to a senior administration official. But the official said the United States had multiple intelligence threads confirming that Mr. Zawahri was killed in the strike,” the Times wrote in the updated story.

Critics of the newspaper said that Haqqani's role in protecting al-Zawahri was taken out of the first paragraph because of the backlash the paper got for publishing the Taliban leader's opinion piece.

Critics of the New York Times suggested the newspaper remove Haqqani's initial paragraph linking his role in protecting al-Zawahri.
Critics of the New York Times suggested the newspaper remove Haqqani’s initial paragraph linking his role in protecting al-Zawahri.
FBI

However, a Times spokesperson denied such a narrative in a statement to Fox News.

“We regularly edit web stories—especially breaking news stories—to refine the story, add new information, additional context or analysis,” the spokesperson told Fox.

In this case, we updated a complex piece of breaking international news with additional detail from open press briefings. There is absolutely no connection between the editing of this news item and any previous publication by Times Opinion.”

Ayman al-Zawahiri was one of the planners of the Sept. 11 attacks.
Ayman al-Zawahiri was one of the planners of the Sept. 11 attacks.
FBI

Haqqani is the second-in-command of the Taliban. He is on the FBI's most-wanted list because he is thought to have been involved in an attack on a Kabul hotel in January 2008 that killed six people, including an American. The agency also thinks that he planned and took part in attacks against the US and coalition forces in Afghanistan that took place across borders.

The FBI is offering a huge sum of money—up to $10 million—for information that directly leads to his arrest.

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