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The CIA Almost Made An Osama Bin Laden Action Figure Villain

The CIA toyed with the idea of a bin Laden doll, but ultimately killed the project.

Posted on June 19, 2014, at 11:30 p.m. ET

The Washington Post / Getty
The Washington Post / Getty

Back in 2005, the Central Intelligence Agency cooked up a plan to make a doll that looked like Osama bin Laden, according to the Washington Post. The goal was to scare Pakistani kids and their parents so they wouldn't support the terrorist.

The doll was painted with a special heat-dissolving material that would peel off to reveal a demon-like face. The face also bore a remarkable resemblance to Darth Maul of Star Wars Episode I, which came out six years earlier.

The Washington Post / Getty

The CIA hired the guy who designed G.I. Joe to do the bin Laden doll.

His name was Donald Levine and he was a good fit for the project because he had decades of experience making toys in China — meaning he could do his work discretely. Levine eventually decided to make a 12-inch doll. He died last month, but his family said he was "honored" to work on the project.

The Washington Post / Getty

The CIA said only three dolls were ever made, but someone in China told the Washington Post that hundreds were produced and shipped to Karachi.

It's also probably worth noting that the Qur'ān describes creatures known as "jinn" that are made of scorching fire.

Wikimedia/public domain / Via

This post originally mischaracterized jinn as "demons."