Question: Why did Obama order Osama killed and not attempt to capture him?

The administration keeps touting the intelligence that we have gained from documents where Osama was located. It makes it seem as if there was really little that we could have gotten from questioning him. But if that is true, why has the administration pushed so hard to interview Osama's wives who are being held in Pakistan? If Osama didn't have useful information, why would anyone think that his wives will have anything useful?

The Obama administration Sunday pressed Pakistan to grant access to Osama bin Laden's three widows as part of a U.S. investigation into the al-Qaida leader's life leading up to his killing by Navy SEALs inside a compound in the garrison city of Abbottabad last week.

President Obama's national-security adviser, Tom Donilon, said the United States seeks to speak with the women and review materials taken from the compound after the U.S. raid. U.S. officials say bin Laden lived in the compound, about 60 miles from Islamabad, the capital, for at least five years.

A Pakistani intelligence official said Sunday that his government needed permission from the wives' home countries before Pakistan could allow U.S. officials to question them. One wife is from Yemen; the official said he did not know the others' nationalities. . . .

UPDATE: Chris Wallace asks the right question.

Wallace: We'll stipulate -- I think we'll all stipulate -- that bin Laden was a monster, but why is shooting an unarmed man in the face legal and proper while enhanced interrogation, including waterboarding of a detainee under very strict controls and limits -- why is that over the line?

Donilon: Well, let me talk first about the first half of the statement that you made. Again, the president met with the operators yesterday at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, and here are the facts. We are at war with al-Qaeda. Osama bin Laden is the emir or commander, indeed the only leader of al-Qaeda in its 22 year history. This was his residence and operational compound. Our forces entered that compound and were fired upon in the pitch black. It's an organization that uses IEDs and suicide vests and booby traps and all manner of other kinds of destructive capabilities.

Wallace: Mr. Donilon, let me just make my point. I’m not asking you why it was OK to shoot Osama bin Laden. I fully understand the threat. And I’m not second-guessing the SEALs. What I am second guessing is, if that’s OK, why can’t you do waterboarding? Why can’t you do enhanced interrogation of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who was just as bad an operator as Osama bin Laden?

Donilon: Because, well, our judgment is that it’s not consistent with our values, not consistent and not necessary in terms of getting the kind of intelligence that we need.

Wallace: But shooting bin Laden in the head is consistent with our values?

Donilon: We are at war with Osama bin Laden.

Wallace: We’re at war with Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.

Donilon: It was a military operation, right? It was absolutely appropriate for the SEALs to take the action -- for the forces to take the action that they took in this military operation against a military target.

Wallace: But why is it inappropriate to get information from Khalid Sheikh Mohammed?

Donilon: I didn’t say it was inappropriate to get information from Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.

Wallace: You said it was against our values.

Donilon: I think that the techniques are something that there’s been a policy debate about, and our administration has made our views known on that.

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