At one point people in al Qaeda were actually drawing monthly paychecks when they were based in Sudan.
I've interviewed multiple people who know bin Laden... who tend to have a universal picture of what he's like, which is: modest, retiring, unassuming, kind of thoughtful - lots of things that don't fit with a mass murderer, which he is as well.
Often it is important to listen to what people aren't saying.
In February I secured permission to enter Osama bin Laden's compound in the northern Pakistani city of Abbottabad, where he was killed and where he had lived for the last half-decade of his life; the first, and only, journalist to do so.
So Pakistan is a country that I'm very fond of and have spent a lot of time, but it is a country where conspiracy theories have a life of their own.
And in the end, bin Laden died in a squalid suburban compound surrounded by his wives and children and far from the front lines of his holy war.
Bin Laden comes out of a business background - he studied public administration and economics at university, and he worked for his family company, which was obviously a rather successful enterprise.
Bin Laden's death is just a punctuation point on a set of problems they've had for a long time. I think the prognosis for al-Qaida and groups like it is really bad, and that's a good thing.
The image we have of bin Laden in his final years in Abbottabad is of an aging man with a graying beard watching old footage of himself; just another suburban dad flipping though the channels with his remote.
I am very suspicious of the notion that somehow bin Laden was a media creation... Bin Laden's actions made him into a big deal. Not the media.
Bin Laden was 200 miles away from the area where all of these drone strikes were taking out his key leaders, he was able to indulge in his hobbies... and he was making occasional video tapes and audio tapes to the wider world.