A pathetically small sample of documents, the 17 mentioned above, was given to West Point’s Combating Terrorism Center (CTC), which analyzed them and concluded that bin Laden “enjoyed little control over either groups affiliated with al Qaeda in name,” such as AQAP or Al Qaeda in Iraq (AQI), “or so-called fellow travelers,” such as the Pakistani Taliban…

What has been reported about the documents excluded from the administration-approved subset does not support the CTC’s conclusions either. Consider what the Guardian’s Jason Burke reported on April 29, 2012—just days before the CTC report was published. Burke reported that the documents recovered in bin Laden’s compound “show a close working relationship between top al Qaeda leaders and Mullah Omar, the overall commander of the Taliban, including frequent discussions of joint operations against NATO forces in Afghanistan, the Afghan government, and targets in Pakistan.” Both Osama bin Laden and his replacement, Ayman al Zawahiri, were involved in coordinating attacks with the Taliban.

Mysteriously, the documents Burke reported on were not among those the administration allowed the CTC to publish just four days later. Why? As Burke noted beforehand, the documents “undermine hopes of a negotiated peace in Afghanistan, where the key debate among analysts and policymakers is whether the Taliban—seen by many as following an Afghan nationalist agenda—might once again offer a safe haven to al Qaeda or like-minded militants, or whether they can be persuaded to renounce terrorism.”