The Finish: The Killing of Osama Bin Laden

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Atlantic Monthly Press, 2012 - History - 266 pages
105 Reviews
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. 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.

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... great writer, easy to read, insightful Negatives. - Goodreads
It feels he didn't do a thorough research. - Goodreads
Not a lot of new insights than were known at the time. - Goodreads
Lots of details and insights.. - Goodreads

Review: The Finish: The Killing of Osama Bin Laden

User Review  - C-line - Goodreads

Incredible look into how the CIA works. Riveting story and phenomenal reporting by Mark Bowden, per usual. Read full review

Review: The Finish: The Killing of Osama Bin Laden

User Review  - Charles Blumberg - Goodreads

Some interesting information in the book but I found I was wanting more. I assume because this is still recent, much of what happened is still secret, and not many have talked that there is not much information available to write about. I was disappointed and perhaps had to high expectations. Read full review


A Definition of Evil
The Path of Jihad
Taking Up Arms
The Targeting Engine
Please Make Sure to Keep the Children and All of the Families Away from the Areas That Are Being Photographed and Bombed
Disguised Uncertainty
Adhering to These Precautions
The Finish
Acknowledgments and Notes

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About the author (2012)

Mark Bowden is the author of nine books, including the #1 New York Times best seller Black Hawk Down. He reported at The Philadelphia Inquirer for twenty years and now writes for Vanity Fair, The Atlantic, and other magazines. His most recent book is Worm: The First Digital World War.

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