Looks like the gang that can't lie straight even mucked up getting rid of the body
Obama defends Osama bin Laden sea burial as 'respectful' (Reuters)
U.S. officials have insisted that bin Laden's body was washed and that Islamic prayers were recited in accordance with religious laws. They said there was concern that a grave could have served as a shrine and rallying point for his followers.
"It was a joint decision," Obama said when asked whether he personally made the decision for burial at sea. "We thought it was important to think through ahead of time how we would dispose of the body if he were killed in the compound."
"And I think that what we tried to do was -- consulting with experts in Islamic law and ritual-- to find something that was appropriate, that was, respectful of the body," Obama added........
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Was bin Laden's killing and burial legal? From Al Jazeera
Separate from the debate over the legality of Osama bin Laden's killing and US right to carry out an operation on foreign territory is the debate over the US military's burial procedure for the deceased al-Qaeda leader's body abided by Islamic laws and traditions.
The burial was held "in conformance with Islamic precepts and practices" and at sea, as there was "no land alternative", the White House and the US defence department said.
Officials declined to comment on the existence of a video of the burial and whether they will release it or not, provoking further condemnation from religious leaders over the authenticity of the Islamic traditions the military officials followed.
Many muslim clerics have called the "burial at sea" a violation of Islamic tradition, which may incite further military calls for retaliation against American targets.
"Islamic law traditionally allows disposing of a corpse at sea only if the person dies on board ship and there is no possibility of getting the body to dry land before it decomposes," Marion Katz, professor of Islamic law, gender and ritual at New York University, told Al Jazeera.
"[This], however, [is] obviously not applicable here, both because he was taken to sea after death and because modern technology allows a corpse to be refrigerated for however long it takes," Katz said. Disposing the body into the sea also is "considered by some to be a disrespectful mode of disposal conflicting with the principle of the sanctity of the human body, which is regarded by traditional Islamic law as extending beyond death," she said.
Ideally the body should have been returned to the deceased's family in Saudi Arabia, where bin Laden was born, for them to carry out even the most open interpretation of Islamic law – which would have called for a burial in land as opposed to an easing into the sea, Katz said.
Regarding senior officials' comments on the lack of a land alternative, Katz says it is unclear to what extent the tradition of swift interment would have raised problems for a longer search for an in-land place of burial.
Yahya Hendi, Muslim chaplain of Georgetown University, called the sea burial an "absolute violation" of Islamic traditions, and an unwise decision that mars America's image and raises potential suspicions about what happened or what did not.
"I have no idea who advised [the White House] on this issue, but I can guess that it was someone who is not familiar with Saudi culture and absolutely someone who is not familiar with the full tradition of burial in Islam," Imam Hendi told Al Jazeera.
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