Crowds started to form outside former President Bush's home in Preston Hollow after the news that Osama bin Laden, the glowering mastermind behind the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks that killed thousands of Americans, was killed in an operation led by the United States.
A small team of Americans carried out the attack and took custody of bin Laden's remains, President Barack Obama announced in a dramatic late-night statement at the White House.
A jubilant crowd gathered outside the White House as word spread of bin Laden's death after a global manhunt that lasted nearly a decade. Similar crowds were seen near Ground Zero in New York and in front of former President Bush's home.
Bush, who now resides in Dallas, released the following statement on the death of Osama Bin Laden.
"Earlier this evening, President Obama called to inform me that American forces killed Osama bin Laden, the leader of the al Qaeda network that attacked America on September 11, 2001. I congratulated him and the men and women of our military and intelligence communities who devoted their lives to this mission. They have our everlasting gratitude. This momentous achievement marks a victory for America, for people who seek peace around the world, and for all those who lost loved ones on September 11, 2001. The fight against terror goes on, but tonight America has sent an unmistakable message: No matter how long it takes, justice will be done."
U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison released the following statement on the death of Osama bin Laden:
“Our mission has always been to take down Osama bin Laden, leader of al-Qaeda, the terrorist network that killed thousands of innocent Americans on September 11, 2001. That mission has now been accomplished through the patience and steadfast determination of our military, our intelligence officials, and the united leadership of Presidents Bush and Obama. Now we must continue to dismantle this and other terrorist networks that attempt to destroy freedom and human rights throughout the world.”
The development comes just months before the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Centers and Pentagon, orchestrated by bin Laden's al-Qaida organization, that killed more than 3,000 people.
The attacks set off a chain of events that led the United States into wars in Afghanistan, and then Iraq, and America's entire intelligence apparatus was overhauled to counter the threat of more terror attacks at home.
Al-Qaida was also blamed for the 1998 bombings of two U.S. embassies in Africa that killed 231 people and the 2000 attack on the USS Cole that killed 17 American sailors in Yemen, as well as countless other plots, some successful and some foiled.