In the wake of Osama Bin Laden’s death it has emerged that an IT consultant in Abbottabad, Pakistan unwittingly broke the news of the US attacks on the former al-Qaeda head via social networking site Twitter.
Twitter user ReallyVirtual, also known as Sohaib Athar, tweeted remarks about a helicopter which he suggested might not be a Pakistani aircraft hovering overhead at 1am local time shortly before the fire fight that ending in the death of Bin Laden broke out.
Via his Twitter feed Athar announced: "Helicopter hovering above Abbottabad at 1AM (is a rare event)." He followed this up shortly after with the tweet: "A huge window shaking bang here in Abbottabad Cantt. I hope its not the start of something nasty :-S"
Mr Arthar was not aware of the severity of the situation and exactly what events he had been commenting on until US President Barack Obama officially confirmed the death of Bin Laden later that day. His actions were dubbed by one American news outlet as Twitter’s “CNN moment.”
The killing of the terrorist blamed for the September 11th attacks on the Twin Towers in New York almost 10 years ago is the latest in a series of global news events to be broken via the social media outlet. Recently the crashing of a passenger plane in the Hudson River and the announcement of the Royal wedding were broken via the Facebook challenger.