The Finish: The Killing of Osama Bin Laden

The Finish The Killing of Osama Bin Laden From Mark Bowden the preeminent chronicler of our military and special forces comes The Finish a gripping account of the hunt for Osama bin Laden With access to key sources Bowden takes us inside

  • Title: The Finish: The Killing of Osama Bin Laden
  • Author: Mark Bowden
  • ISBN: 9780802120342
  • Page: 369
  • Format: Hardcover
  • From Mark Bowden, the preeminent chronicler of our military and special forces, comes The Finish, a gripping account of the hunt for Osama bin Laden With access to key sources, Bowden takes us inside the rooms where decisions were made and on the ground where the action unfolded.After masterminding the attacks of September 11, 2001, Osama bin Laden managed to vanish OverFrom Mark Bowden, the preeminent chronicler of our military and special forces, comes The Finish, a gripping account of the hunt for Osama bin Laden With access to key sources, Bowden takes us inside the rooms where decisions were made and on the ground where the action unfolded.After masterminding the attacks of September 11, 2001, Osama bin Laden managed to vanish Over the next ten years, as Bowden shows, America found that its war with al Qaeda a scattered group of individuals who were almost impossible to track demanded an innovative approach Step by step, Bowden describes the development of a new tactical strategy to fight this war the fusion of intel from various agencies and on the ground special ops After thousands of special forces missions in Iraq and Afghanistan, the right weapon to go after bin Laden had finally evolved By Spring 2011, intelligence pointed to a compound in Abbottabad it was estimated that there was a 50 50 chance that Osama was there Bowden shows how three strategies were mooted a drone strike, a precision bombing, or an assault by Navy SEALs In the end, the President had to make the final decision It was time for the finish.

    One thought on “The Finish: The Killing of Osama Bin Laden”

    1. On September 10, 2001, I was on an American Airlines flight to Puerto Rico for work. Flying home several days later was a vastly different experience from the plane ride there. I had a bunch of paperbacks I’d bought for the trip, and I finished one and got another one out of my bag. It was Mark Bowden’s Black Hawk Down. I didn’t much feel like reading about the deaths of American soldiers at that moment so I picked another one and only read that book months later. So there was a certain gr [...]

    2. The title is a bit of a misnomer. This book is basically an executive summary of the hunt for OBL through three presidencies. Obama is painted as wise and capable. Bush is treated fairly. Clinton looks terrible. I was slightly disappointed with this book as it's a departure from Bowden's previously thorough accounts of Somalia and Colombia. There are no maps or pictures or footnotes. Bowden left the raid itself to the SEALs to write about. He did not talk to any of the SEAL participants. But sti [...]

    3. Unless you've been living in a cave you probably know who Osama bin Laden is. Ironically, bin Laden was thought to have been actually living in a cave at some point, but instead he was living in a suburban neighborhood in Pakistan. If you count yourselves among those who have not been living in a cave, you also probably know that there were two major books regarding the hunt for bin Laden published in 2012. One was No Easy Day written by former Navy SEAL Mark Owen (pseudonym; his real name has b [...]

    4. In all, this was a great book. Unlike Mark Owen's/Matt Bissonette's earlier "No Easy Day," Bowden's book focuses on the actual hunt for the terrorist chief, detailing how the American military and defense communities retooled themselves to deal with a terrorist enemy that was everywhere and nowhere at once. President Obama receives some kudos for keeping OBL's capture/killing a top priority and for his unusually forceful decision to enter Pakistan to carry that out. But he also receives some cen [...]

    5. This book was awful, I was looking for a book on the actual raid and the people who actually carried out the mission. The author by his own admission admits that he did not speak with any members of the Seal teams. What you got instead was 230 pages of political crap that really didn't add a thing to the story of the mission, and 30 very brief pages about the raid and those 30 pages still spend a lot of time covering politics and administrations. I would not recommend this book to anyone.

    6. "The fake raid was about getting Obama reelected, not taking down a ghost and bringing justice to the 9/11 victims."in:disquietreservations.nytimes/2015/10/18/magb/v37/n10/seymour-

    7. Don’t bother reading this book. Just read Peter Bergen’s Manhunt instead. Mark Bowden’s Black Hawk Down is a classic in special operations reporting, but The Finish is a disappointment because it is nothing but a rewrite of Peter Bergen’s book. I had personally heard from an inside source a few years ago that Mark Bowden had been cut off from U.S. special forces due to him having publshibed some classified informaiton, so I thought it was unsual when I heard that this book was coming out [...]

    8. Bowden's record as a writer speaks for itself, but I thought this book was a bit perfunctory, essentially a summary of the search for bin Laden, with some color, but fundamentally hampered by the classified nature of the information that would've made the book actually interesting to read. As a result, it's not really any informative than many of the news articles written about the event since it happened. And the book's brevity sort of speaks to that. He tries to give it some depth by putting t [...]

    9. Skip this book unless you would have read it if the title had been “The White House’s Role in Killing Bin Laden – As Told by White House Staff”. If you scan the table of contents, you will see this is not really about how the Bin Laden was found or the mission to kill him. More than 60% the book is the run-up and the preparation for the raid as witnesses and lived by Obama and his staff. The book extensively quotes Obama and his people and this was his main source for original material i [...]

    10. Quite interesting. The author also wrote Black Hawk DownBowden indicates out that the primary credit to the Obama administration goes to a policy that focussed more on destroying the morale and leadership of Al Qaeda rather than large scale military involvement and establishing very early on a policy that the United States would engage in a policy of hot pursuit, regardless of issues of Pakistani sovereignty. Although he gets some credit for making sure that fallback plans were in place (so that [...]

    11. This book was a disappointment to say the least. I was and I guess still am a fan of “Blackhawk Down”, that style of writing from Bowden. With Blackhawk Down I felt that Bowden did a fantastic job of showing both sides of the story, and really just telling the story, not putting a spin on the information. The majority of this book feels like Bowden’s whole purpose of writing it was for a tribute to Obama. He obviously loves Obama and thinks Obama is the greatest president ever. Throughout [...]

    12. I'm a big Mark Bowden fan, having really enjoyed Black Hawk Down and Killing Pablo. This book is great, and showcases Bowden's reporting and writing skills. He knows when to summarize long boring stretches (and he makes it clear it took a lot of long, boring stretches of mundane, routine intelligence work to run down bin Laden) and when to drill down into the details.So why only three stars? He, by his own admission, did not speak with/interview any of the seals/pilots/military personnel actuall [...]

    13. A gripping summary of the politics, espionage, and military planning that went into not only hunting down Bin Laden, but also goes into the U.S.' anti-terrorism strategy generally. Bowden makes a compelling argument that national strategy had to shift dramatically to combat al Qaeda. And I find the book helpful in understanding the context of curent events. The parts about the use of drones, for example, are especially relevant, and they raise interesting ethical questions for us as a nation and [...]

    14. I like Mark Bowden's writing. His Atlantic articles seem well researched and coherent. I highly recommend BlackHawk Down. If you;ve only seen the movie; read the book. Someone described The Finish as more of an extended magazine article. I coul dsee how the arrive at that opinion. There were times I thought it felt like a publishers assignment; "We need an entry in this bin Laden thing by a reputable author".Still, Mark Bowden bings his investigative and interviewing skills to bear on the task a [...]

    15. I've read other reviews that indicated that this book was poorly researched and seemed rushed to market. To the contrary, I found it a fascinating study on the little known events that led to finding UBL. For instance the role of McCrystal in shoring up our ability to gather and integrate all the sources of data available and mine it to get actionable intelligence to the operators in the field in a timely way. I also thought that it was a well balanced account of the political and moral decision [...]

    16. It's been a while since I've read a book in one day. Black Hawk Down might have been the last. The Finish is a fascinating and balanced account of the operation to take out Osama Bin Laden. It corrects some of the embellishments to the story that appeared in the press at the time, but it generally shows the Obama administration, CIA, and US military at their very best. I admit to being a fan of President Obama for entirely other reasons, but I came away from this book with a new respect for the [...]

    17. This is an excellent book. The author of several other fantastic books (Blackhawk down, Guest of the Ayatollah, and Worm - just to name a few) tackles the tracking down and killing of Bin Laden. Extremely well written and researched, it is a fascinating account of the events - and the final raid - on Bin Laden's compound in Pakistan. The book is engaging, discusses events on multiple levels (from the operators to the decision makers), and is full of fascinating details. (Did you know that they a [...]

    18. Great Read. Mark Bowden's version of this historical event offers more background on Osama Bin Laden. I think it's interesting that our government backed and financed Bin Laden's efforts during the Russian occupation of Afghanistan only to have him turn around and use that experience against us later. Details of the events are different than other accounts. hmmm who's version is more accurate?

    19. Great book! I've read No Easy Day: The Firsthand Account of the Mission That Killed Osama Bin Laden as well, so I knew the seal part of it all. But the politics, tactical part, I didn't. This book gives a great insight in all of that and I found it very interesting. Loved reading it, it was very well written

    20. A fast-paced and quick read on the bin Laden hunt.Most amazing is the rapid turnaround from the killing to publishing. This is particularly true with author Bowden's apparently solid fact-checking and insider interviews.

    21. Fascinating account that shows the ingenuity and courage of spec ops forces. Closes a long and terrible chapter in our history.

    22. Fascinating. A bit repetitive at times, perhaps not Bowden's best written book but could be his most interesting. Strongly recommend for the substance.

    23. In retrospect, it sounds nostalgically naïve: the notion that finding Osama bin Laden, the man behind the 9/11 attacks, would signal the beginning of the end of terrorism. In an era when bin Laden’s al Qaeda organization has been superseded by organizations more vicious and fratricidal than anything bin Laden himself ever imagined, I wondered if there were still any lessons the rest of us can learn from the long, brutal search for the elusive Saudi jihadist. In The Finish: The Killing of Osam [...]

    24. In retrospect, it sounds nostalgically naïve: the notion that finding Osama bin Laden, the man behind the 9/11 attacks, would signal the beginning of the end of terrorism. In an era when bin Laden’s al Qaeda organization has been superseded by organizations more vicious and fratricidal than anything bin Laden himself ever imagined, I wondered if there were still any lessons the rest of us can learn from the long, brutal search for the elusive Saudi jihadist. In The Finish: The Killing of Osam [...]

    25. I really enjoyed this book. There was no bullshitting and stayed strictly professional by maintaining a mostly neutral perspective on events ( as neutral as it can get at least becomes some of the people are just straight up evil). Wasn't an overly long book, dragging out dates and names forever but still managed to still you in with enough details to paint the picture and have a clear understanding of both sides of the issue. And although this book had pretty much the same idea or intention as [...]

    26. I've had several books written about the Osama bin Laden killing on my wish list since they first started to appear on the market, mere weeks after the May 2, 2011 U.S. Seal Team action in Abbotabad, Pakistan. I read Mark Bowden's "Black Hawk Down" earlier in the year, and figured few authors would be able to tackle this story better than he.Bowden delivers a readable narrative of this significant political and military milestone. At only about 300 pages, Bowden blends the context, history, mili [...]

    27. With a title like this I was expecting a much more thrilling account of the hunt for the world's most wanted man. What you get instead is a more political look into the lead up to the event. While indeed still interesting to read how the intelligence and military network worked to track down the 9/11 mastermind it was slightly disappointing that the whole SEAL mission is reduced to only a few pages.

    28. The Finish recounts the hunt for, and fate of Osama Bin LadenIn one of the first nonfiction accounts of the lengthy & successful hunt for Osama Bin Laden Mark Bowden recounts the search without leaving any important details out. But in way too many details make it a difficult, at times, read for me. It was okay but Hue 1968 is Bowden's best work. Still, the last chapter on how the raid went is up to Zero Dark Thirty.

    29. End of Osama bin LadenIt was more of a correct story about the death of the main terrorist that ruined America I have read other stories of what happened to Osama bin Laden this seems to be a more accurate picture of what happened as a good book to read thank you.

    30. I read this book in two spurts. Mark Bowden is an excellent writer but having read other books on this subject I felt the book did not reveal anything new. It is a worthy effort though & for those new to the subject it is likely that they will get much more from it than I did.

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