With the debate raging over whether the Obama administration should release Osama bin Laden's long-form death certificate, it seems like a good moment to point out that from an intelligence standpoint, we already know way too much about the operation that led to bin Laden's death. The administration, which so successfully managed to maintain operational secrecy leading up to the mission, seems to have given no thought to the value of secrecy in its aftermath.
The most obvious example is the revelation that, in addition to killing bin Laden, U.S. forces also made off with loads of valuable hard drives and other data-storage devices. In most of the reporting I've seen, this has been casually mentioned as a reason why many al-Qaida operatives and financiers will now go to ground. Of course, that is all the more likely now that the news of the intelligence windfall has been widely broadcast.
Certainly bin Laden's interlocutors would have assumed the worst and gone to ground in any event once they learned that he had been killed. But that raises an even broader question: How would they have learned the news had we not immediately announced it? The answer to that question represents a valuable intelligence opportunity as well, one that we squandered.