05/02/2011 at 10:00 AM EDT
Many Americans were already asleep on Sunday night when President Barack Obama addressed
the nation to say that U.S. military operatives killed Osama bin Laden
in a mansion in Pakistan's Abbottabad Cantonment earlier in the day.
"Tonight, I can report to the American people and to the world that the United States has conducted an operation that killed Osama bin Laden, the leader of al Qaeda, and a terrorist who's responsible for the murder of thousands of innocent men," the president said in the East Room at close to midnight Eastern time.
The Chief Executive – who briefed former Presidents
George W. Bush and Bill Clinton before he spoke to the public – termed bin Laden's death "the most significant achievement to date in our nation's effort to defeat al Qaeda."
Watch the President's entire address above.
– Stephen M. Silverman