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“Weisman is perhaps wired more tightly into the reclusive special operations community than any other writer, and his knowledge of weaponry and field techniques is staggering.”
“A pro who knows his stuff.”
John Weisman, whose expertise in the field of covert military operations is unsurpassed, delivers a stunning fictional account of the most extraordinary mission of the century: the hunting down and assassination of Osama Bin Laden, the most reviled killer of the twenty-first century, by US Navy SEALs. With KBL: Kill Bin Laden the critically acclaimed author of SOAR and Jack in the Box goes behind the headlines, carrying readers along on a breakneck, breathtakingly realistic chase—from planning to training to execution—as the evil mastermind behind the horror of 9/11 is finally brought to justice.
A Look Inside Kill Bin Laden
Click on the images below to open larger versions.
|2011 DOD diagram of the Bin Laden hideout compound. Although surveillance on its exterior was thorough, the SEAL assault force did not know what the inside layout looked like.|
Amazon Exclusive: A Q&A with Author John Weisman
Q: You've said that the truth about Operation Neptune Spear can best be told in fiction. Why is that?
Weisman: Because the people who put Neptune Spear together and carried it out aren’t talking, and won’t be, for some time. And all the factual accounts so far have been colored by who sourced them. There’s a lot of political spin about Neptune Spear: the White House has its own version. So do the operators, and so does the CIA. There were so many contradictory accounts that after talking to sources both in the military, the intelligence community, and political operatives, I decided that the best way to go was fiction. The gist of what they all told me was that I’d get closer to the truth by doing fiction—and equally important, get a lot more help that way.
Q: In writing KBL as a novel, you were able to create characters that really touch the reader, for example, your retired Ranger Master Sergeant, Charlie Becker. Did giving a voice to soldiers like Charlie play a part in your wanting to write KBL as fiction?
Weisman: Of course. To me, Charlie Becker represents the best we have in our armed services. He is a patriotic, mission-driven individual who has seen it all, has been horribly wounded, and yet still wants to contribute, to give something back to the nation. What I really respect is the fact that his most deadly weapon isn’t a gun—it’s his mind. Like so many Tier One operators, he will outthink you, and then he will kill you. I know dozens of soldiers like Charlie Becker, maybe even scores. Some are wounded warriors who have returned to action. Some work the covert side for CIA’s Ground Branch, or make the jump to case officer. Others work at the Asymmetric Warfare Group, or the CAG, or are SEALs or Rangers. I am in awe of what they do, and the sacrifices that they are willing to make so that we can sleep safe in our beds at night. And I hope I do them justice in KBL.
Q: There are other accounts of this mission, why should readers choose to buy KBL?
Weisman: Well, if I were being frank, I’d say first of all it’s a better read than any of the others. It’s also the first holistic book about Neptune Spear, by which I mean it deals not just with the SEAL portion, but also the political tussles, the yearlong CIA operation, and all the internal debates that took place before the president finally gave the go-ahead. And I also believe—and I’ve been told by friends in Tier One units who saw the manuscript—that I got things pretty much spot on.
Q: Why do you feel it was important to write the book? Why do you think people should know “the truth” about what happened?
Weisman: It was important because this was the culmination of a ten-year hunt that has cosmic significance for us as a nation. And since it is going to take some years for people to know “the truth” about what actually happened, I felt I could get a pretty good picture out sooner than that.
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