Obama has consistently repeated that Bin Laden was captured then killed
The US military has not been looking for Osama bin Laden. The Bush and Obama administrations are well aware Bin Laden had nothing to do with 9/11. (The FBI says it has no hard evidence linking "Usama" to 9/11).
For a decade, OBL has been used as a fall guy, a pretext for US foreign wars of aggression -- "We're protecting ourselves from possible trouble by making other countries fear and hate us" -- domestic spying, and the loss of civil rights.
He is a bogeyman just as any "Emmanuel Goldstein" is used by totalitarian-style regimes. The "Patriotic Act" confirmed that our government is interested in that level of domestic social control and spying. Thanks to Bin Laden, Bush (a.k.a., Dick Cheney and Colin Powell) had a pretext to invade a country they had plans to invade long before 9/11.
The administration's inner circle goes way back, even before Bush, Sr. was president; when he was Ronald Reagan's vice president, Donald Rumsfeld was their envoy. That Reagan/Bush administration felt betrayed their former friend and ally Saddam Hussein. As a result, they began to draw up plans to depose Saddam, invade, and extract Iraq's petroleum resources.
Obama -- with many key figures and almost all of its policies held over from Bush, Jr's administration -- decided to approve the killing of someone. After assassinating that someone in Abbotabad, Pakistan in the hopes that it was multi-millionaire Bin Laden, the administration realized its mistake. There was no way it was going to admit that. Why would it? Osama bin Laden has been dead for a long time.
The CIA and others have been using his mysterious "recordings" and threats to promote an agenda of increased domestic spying and tyranny. Worse than that, the entire Al Qaeda/Brotherhood (1984) myth has been promoted to justify all of it illegal wars and activities.
Realizing the man they killed was no more Bin Laden than it was Stewie Griffin, Obama had a choice -- admit it and be taunted as a failure or claim credit, pretend to dump the body in the Arabian sea, and leak the lie in decades to come.
It's not difficult to falsify forensic evidence, for instance using blood from his sons, CIA-created "facial recognition" software, and a dolled up photo it doesn't feel like releasing since their forensics document-Photoshop Team couldn't even do a convincing job on the long form birth certificate.
Colin Powell, people will remember, went in and altered CIA analysts' reports to make the 9/11 connection with gruesome consequences:
- making everyone afraid of Osama Bin Laden as the ultimate enemy (just like "Emmanuel Goldstein")
- raiding Afghanistan as punishment for the Taliban allegedly being hospitable to Bin Laden
- justifying pre-emptive war in Iraq, taking our rights
- setting up dictators in Arab countries while pretending to want nothing but democracy for them
- funding new US spying agencies like the Homeland Security Administration in addition to our many other secret agencies (NSA, NSC, CIA, Secret Service, Pentagon cells, FBI, ad nauseum), secret CIA prisons abroad, torture chambers...