Obama played card games ahead of Osama raid: Ex-aide

WASHINGTON (AFP) - A former aide to Mr Barack Obama has said the US president resorted to playing cards on the day Osama bin Laden was killed, such was the tension over the raid.

Mr Reggie Love, a personal assistant to Obama during the president's first term, said in a video that his boss opted not to watch the full live feed of the clandestine US commando mission in Pakistan that killed the Al-Qaeda chief in 2011.

"Most people were like down in the Situation Room but he was like, 'I'm not gonna be down there, I can't watch this entire thing,' so he, myself, Pete Souza the White House photographer, we must have played 15 games of spades."

Love made the comments in an interview at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), on July 18, according to New York Magazine that published the exchange on its website on Wednesday.

An official picture released after the successful raid shows Obama alongside then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Vice President Joe Biden and other top officials watching a video feed of the operation.