(CBS News) Hours after receiving the go-ahead from President Barack Obama to perform a "surgical strike" on an expansive compound thought to house Osama bin Laden, helicopters descended out of the darkness into an affluent Pakistani neighborhood. Mr. Obama and his top advisers watched the action unfold in the Situation Room.
As the information from the operation flowed into the Situation Room on Sunday afternoon, the president exclaimed, "We got him."
One official heard a commander on scene say, "Geronimo E-KIA." Geronimo was the code name for Bin Laden; E-KIA is "enemy killed in action."
The hunt for bin Laden that ended Monday morning in Pakistan began years ago, when captured al Qaeda operatives first revealed the existence of bin Laden's most trusted courier. Some of the leads to the courier came out of the CIA's secret prisons, where high-level al Qaeda captives were waterboarded.
CBS News correspondent David Martin reports that the courier was described as a protege of 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheik Mohammed, and the man who delivered bin Laden's orders to al Qaeda operatives in the field. In fact, current and former U.S. officials said that Mohammed gave intelligence officials the courier's name. The CIA got similar information from Mohammed's successor, Abu Faraj al-Libi. Both were subjected to harsh interrogation tactics inside CIA prisons in Poland and Romania.
However, it was not until four years ago that U.S. intelligence determined the courier's real name: Maulawi Abd al-Khaliq Jan. Take a look at it. It cost bin Laden his life.