Steve Coll: “You’d like your government to tell you the truth, and the government dissembled repeatedly after the raid about what the rules of engagement were. They dissembled because the truth was uncomfortable and because the rules are secret, and they have this deep culture of secrecy in this administration, as in the last couple, about rules of engagement. What it also highlights is that the United States does not have a detention regime that works anymore. Anytime it brings terrorists suspects into custody it generated political controversy. And so what you can see is a bias is built up in the system, in which the Obama Administration judges it’s just easier to kill people.”

Listen to the full podcast of Sue Halpern’s interview with Steve Coll, whose piece “Bin Laden: Dead or Alive” appears in the October 25, 2012 issue of The New York Review.

Photo: US army special forces walk in a field as Blackhawk helicopters transporting NATO officers land in Marjah’s Balakino Bazar neighborhood on February 24, 2010. (Patrick Baz/AFP/Getty Images)

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