Pakistan's former Lieutenant General Hamid Gul, who knew bin Laden, supports this conclusion with regard to the alleged confession video.
Professor Bruce Lawrence of Duke University, a student of the bin Laden tapes, also declared it a fake, especially because bin Laden always loved the spotlight. He asks why bin Laden has been seen so infrequently on video and why his contemporary, Ayman al-Zawahiri is seen so often.55
The BBC narrator says that only six of bin Laden's 40 messages were videotapes, and only two have appeared since Tora Bora in 2001.
Dr Griffin says the first video appeared conveniently just before the 2004 US election, which helped Bush to win; and the second appeared in 2007, showing a very black beard, which had formerly been almost white.56
CIA agent Robert Baer confirmed that the alleged bin Laden audio and video tapes could have been faked through digital manipulation.
The BBC program also presented evidence that is believed by some to show that the US may not have been intent on capturing or killing bin Laden:
Dalton Fury, commander of the secret Delta Force, says it was "odd" that Washington denied him nearby troops and artillery when he had bin Laden trapped at Tora Bora in December 2001.
Mike Scheuer, formerly of the CIA bin Laden Unit, said the US had ten chances to easily kill bin Laden between May 1998 and May 1999. Each time the CIA briefed the White House of the opportunity, the decision was made not to shoot.
In the final third of the program, the BBC provided rather weak evidence against "the theory that Osama bin Laden died 8 years ago and the US government is keeping him alive, faking videos, and sending troops to battle and allowing them to die in pursuit of an imaginary foe." However, a reviewer for the TV and Radio section of the The Independent, one of London's leading newspapers, complained that this rebuttal was too little, too late, saying: