If you’ve been following the controversy surrounding the Oscar-nominated movie Zero Dark Thirty, you know that it’s been excoriated for various inaccuracies regarding the effort to catch Osama bin Laden. In particular, critics say the movie misleadingly suggests that the torture of al-Qaeda suspects produced the vital intelligence that led the U.S. to bin Laden’s compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan.
That’s not the only thing the filmmakers got wrong. The film also depicts a fake polio vaccination drive organized by the CIA in an effort to collect DNA from bin Laden’s family. U.S. intelligence officials have admitted they set up a fake vaccination campaign—but for hepatitis B, not polio. As it turns out, the campaign didn’t give any protection against the disease to young children in the town while it also failed to collect genetic material from the bin Laden family.
Source: Bloomberg Businessweek. Read full article. (link)