Countdown bin Laden: The Untold Story of the 247–Day Hunt to Bring the Mastermind of 9/11 to Justice

Chris Wallace, with Mitch Weiss. Avid Reader, $30 (368p) ISBN 978-1-9821-7652-5
Fox News Sunday host Wallace and Associated Press reporter Weiss follow Countdown 1945 with an engrossing if familiar account of the killing of al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden in May 2011. Toggling between key players including CIA director Leon Panetta; Adm. William McRaven, who planned the mission; and Navy SEAL Robert O’Neill, who fired the shots that killed bin Laden, the authors start in August 2010, when Panetta first learned that CIA agents had tracked a suspected al-Qaeda courier to a heavily fortified compound on a dead-end street in Abbottabad, Pakistan. Aerial surveillance led operatives to believe that a compound resident they nicknamed “the Pacer” might be bin Laden, though an attempt to collect DNA evidence confirming his identity through a CIA-funded vaccination program proved fruitless. Anxious to take action before the Pakistani government caught wind of the operation, President Obama made the “50-50 call” to authorize the raid, which got off to a rocky start when the lead helicopter went down. Synthesizing material from published memoirs, journalistic accounts, and interviews, the authors build a cohesive narrative, but break little new ground. Still, this is a cinematic overview of one of the CIA’s most heralded missions. Photos. Agent: Claudia Cross, Folio Literary Management. (Sept.)
Reviewed on : 08/10/2021
Release date: 09/07/2021
Genre: Nonfiction
Downloadable Audio - 978-1-7971-2831-3
Library Binding - 978-1-4328-9193-0
Compact Disc - 978-1-7971-2830-6
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