Clinton on the death of Bin Laden

Clinton on the death of Bin Laden

Hillary Clinton has described how she “held her breath” in the “tense” moment that al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden was killed by US navy SEALs in May 2011.

The former US Secretary of State’s memoir Hard Choices saw a global released today (10th June) and is being widely seen as the run up to Clinton’s presidential campaign for 2016.

Publisher Simon & Schuster has thrown heavyweight advertising and marketing might behind the release in the UK and an extract of the book has appeared in The Times today.

In it, Clinton discussed the night herself and a group of special advisors gathered around Barack Obama and watched US Navy SEALs enter a private residential compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, and kill Osama bin Laden.

Clinton described debating the difficult diplomatic decision of whether to inform the Pakistan government that the raid was about to take place.

“At one point another senior administration official asked if we needed to worry about irreparably wounding Pakistani national honour. Maybe it was the pent-up frustration of deadline with too much double-talk and deception from certain quarters in Pakistan or the still-searing memories of the smoking pile in Lower Manhattan, but there was no way I was going to let the United States miss our best chance at bin Laden since we lost him at Tora Bora, Afghanistan, in 2001," Clinton wrote. "‘What about our national honour? I said, in exasperation. What about our losses? What about going after a man who killed 3,000 innocent people?”she wrote.

Clinton also shares her thoughts about current about previous UK politicians in her book.  She described the former Labour foreign secretary David Miliband as “young, energetic, smart, creative and attractive with a ready smile”, while she said that the relationship between her and current foreign secretary William Hague started cautiously but “much to my delight, I found him a thoughtful statesman with good sense and good humour.”

During a US tour to promote her book, Clinton described how she and husband, former president Bill Clinton were “dead broke” when he left the White House. “We came out of the White House not only dead broke, but in debt," Clinton told ABC News at the start of a tour to promote her memoir. "We had no money when we got there and we struggled to piece together the resources for mortgages, for houses, for Chelsea's education. You know, it was not easy.”

Clinton will visit the UK for promotion in July.