It sounds as if it was intentional for the Homeland Security honcho (female) to refer to Osama bin Laden as "virtually impotent." It's intended, I suspect, as an insult -- especially coming from a woman. But was it wise? Is it intended to get Osama to step up a plan or do something that might make him more liable to be capturable or killable? If so, it doesn't seem likely that it would work. In action (as distinguished from words) Osama has been quite methodical and not especially emotional. Maybe it's intended to stir up others already under surveillance to start a plan to restore the honor of their leader, whether he really is or not.
It might have been a mistake, but although I might have a chance to taslk with proplrewho know more than I do just now, I don't have enough information to make an assessment.