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The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11 [Audiobook, MP3 Audio, Ungekürzte Ausgabe] [Englisch] [MP3 CD]

Lawrence Wright , Alan Sklar
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Kurzbeschreibung

30. November 2006
Brilliantly written, compelling and highly original, "The Looming Tower" is the first book to tell the full story of Al Qaeda from its roots up to 9/11. Drawing on astonishing interviews and first-hand sources, it investigates the extraordinary group of ideologues behind this organization - and those who tried to stop them. There is the tormented, resentful Egyptian Sayyid Qutb, who was horrified by the godlessness and decadence he perceived in America in 1948, and whose subsequent writings turned him into a martyr for Islamic extremists. There is Ayman al-Zawahiri: a devout student who, by the age of fifteen, had already helped to form an underground jihadist cell. There is the deeply contradictory Osama bin Laden: Saudi multimillionaire turned muhajideen commander, whose interests merged with al-Zawahiri's to form a global terror coalition. And there is the FBI's counterterrorism chief, the flamboyant, cigar-smoking John O'Neill, who found his warnings that 'something big' was coming continually ignored, and would finally meet his fate in the shadow of the Twin Towers. Interweaving this extraordinary story with events including the Israeli-Palestine conflict, the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan and the first attack on the World Trade Center, Lawrence Wright takes us into training camps, mountain hideouts and top secret meetings to explore how it all fed into the planning and execution of 9/11 - and reveals the real, complex origins of Al Qaeda's hatred of the West.
-- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine andere Ausgabe: Gebundene Ausgabe .

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Produktinformation

  • MP3 CD
  • Verlag: Tantor Media Inc; Auflage: MP3 (30. November 2006)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 1400153050
  • ISBN-13: 978-1400153053
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 19,2 x 13,7 x 1,5 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 4.5 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (4 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 563.763 in Englische Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Englische Bücher)

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Produktbeschreibungen

Pressestimmen

“Powerful and important . . . a history of a man and a movement, replete with the accidents of history and historic inevitability.” —Kevin Horrigan, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

“Don’t read The Looming Tower in bed. This book requires a straight spine and full attention . . . The reporting is so good that it will matter in 100 years. Wright’s determined, disciplined work has made his book indispensable. “ —Karen Long, The Plain Dealer

“A page-turner . . . encompassing religion, politics, economics and more. If you’ve been meaning to sharpen your understanding of what all led up to September 11, 2001, then Wright may have written just what you’ve been waiting for.” —Tom Gallagher, San Francisco Chronicle

“Brilliant . . . describes the contorted intellectual journey that has taken place among some Muslims which allows a holy book that appears to condemn suicide and the killing on innocents to be used to justify catastrophic terrorism.” —Stephen Fidler, Financial Times


“A magisterial, beautifully crafted narrative . . . This focus on character, along with Wright’s five years of fierce on-the-ground reporting (he lists 560 interviewees), pays off.”
—Daniel Kurtz-Phelan, Los Angeles Times

“Deeply researched . . . immaculately crafted.”
—Peter Bergen, The Wall Street Journal

“What a riveting tale Lawrence Wright fashions in this marvelous book.  ‘The Looming Tower’ is not just a detailed, heart-stopping account of the events leading up to 9/11, written with style and verve.  [It’s] a thoughtful examination of the world that produced the men who brought us 9/11, and of their progeny who bedevil us today.   The portrait of John O’Neill, the driven, demon-ridden F.B. I. agent who worked so frantically to stop Osama bin Laden, only to perish in the attack on the World Trade Center, is worth the price of the book alone.   ‘The Looming Tower’ is a thriller.  And it’s a tragedy, too.”
–Dexter Filkins, The New York Times Book Review cover

“Dozens of intricately reported books about 9/11 are already available; I had read perhaps half of them [before] starting The Looming Tower. But Lawrence Wright’s book is my new touchstone. None of the previous books led me to say ‘Aha, now I think I understand’ as frequently.”
—Steve Weinberg, The Boston Globe

“A magisterial, beautifully crafted narrative . . . This focus on character, along with Wright’s five years of fierce on-the-ground reporting (he lists 560 interviewees), pays off.” —Daniel Kurtz-Phelan, Los Angeles Times

“Deeply researched . . . immaculately crafted.” —Peter Bergen, The Wall Street Journal

“A searing view of the tragic events of September 11, 2001, a view that is at once wrenchingly intimate and boldly sweeping in its historical perspective . . . a narrative history that possesses all the immediacy and emotional power of a novel, an account that indelibly illustrates how the political and the personal, the public and the private were often inextricably intertwined.”
–Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times

“Important, gripping . . . One of the best books yet on the history of terrorism.”
—Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Lawrence Wright provides a graceful and remarkably intimate set of portraits of the people who brought us 9/11. It is a tale of extravagant zealotry and incessant bumbling that would be merely absurd if the consequences were not so grisly.”
—Gary Sick

"Lawrence Wright's integrity and diligence as a reporter shine through every page of this riveting narrative."
—Robert A. Caro

“A towering achievement. One of the best and more important books of recent years. Lawrence Wright has dug deep into and written well a story every American should know. A masterful combination of reporting and writing.”
—Dan Rather

“Comprehensive and compelling…Wright has written what must be considered a definitive work on the antecedents to 9/11…Essential for an understanding of that dreadful day.”
--starred Kirkus review -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine andere Ausgabe: Gebundene Ausgabe .

Synopsis

Explores both the American and Arab sides of the September 11th terrorist attacks in an account of the people, ideas, events, and intelligence failures that led to the attacks.

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13 von 13 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Jetzt schon ein Klassiker! 27. Januar 2007
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Mit der Bewertung eines Buches als "Klassiker" muß man vorsichtig sein, ganz besonders, wenn das Buch gerade einmal ein Jahr auf dem Markt ist. Aber das Urteil eines amerikanischen Rezensenten, der die Hälfte der zum Thema "11. September" produzierten Literatur gelesen haben will, er habe bei diesem Buch einen Aha-Effekt nach dem anderen erlebt, bewahrheitet sich bereits durch die eigene Erfahrung, wenn man nur das erste Kapitel gelesen hat.

Mit großer erzählerischer Eleganz, profundem historischen Wissen und einem nüchternen Urteil entfaltet Lawrence Wright den großen unbekannten Kosmos "Islamismus". Angefangen bei dem Ägypter Sayyid Qutb, dem geistigen Vater des Islamismus, macht er die Wurzeln der Gewalt aus erlittener Schmach (Israels Sieg über Ägypten) und vermeintlicher Demütigung (Beistand der USA für Israel, säkulare Tendenzen in Ägypten unter Nasser und Sadat, Bekämpfung der Moslembruderschaft) bereits in den dreißiger und vierziger Jahren des letzten Jahrhunderts aus. Über Ayman al-Zawahiri und Osama bin Laden (dessen Vater er ein nicht unkritisches, aber dennoch anrührendes Kapitel widmet) verfolgt Wright die weitere Entwicklung des radikalen Islamismus bis nach Afghanistan, dem Wendepunkt in der Geschichte des Selbstverständnisses der radikalen Muslime, um von dort aus auf die Ereignisse, sprich: Attentate, in Kenia und Tansania und auf den Angriff auf die USS Cole zu schauen.
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Von Donald Mitchell TOP 500 REZENSENT
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Let me also take this moment to ask all those who read this review to say a prayer for the victims of 9/11.

The roots of 9/11 trace back far into history, arguably to the 7th century when Islam was born. The Looming Tower takes up the story in November 1948 when Sayyid Qutb, an important Egyptian figure in the development of Islamic extremism, sailed for the United States where he was appalled by what he saw and experienced. Mr. Wright then nicely makes the connection to the Muslim Brothers movement which aimed at Egyptian nationalism. These twin roots developed a strain of Islam that was anti-modern and which dictated that all others must be violently conquered.

The book next picks up the thread of Ayman Al-Zawahiri, the key al-Qaeda leader, and how he became an Islamic radical through being tortured in Egyptian prison.

The story then turns to Saudi Arabia where the legendary Mohammed bin Awahd bin Laden, Osama bin Laden's father, is described. From his long shadow (even after death), Osama emerged slowly through his attraction to the Muslim Brothers movement. Sheikh Abdullah Azzam provided the radical model that further involved Osama into opposition.

You'll be amazed, I'm sure, by seeing how ineffective Osama bin Laden and his colleagues were during the Afghan war. The story has a Keystone Kops quality at this point.

Because of his family connections, Osama is kept under the eye of Saudi intelligence . . . but is treated like someone who doesn't present much of a threat.

By 1992, Osama sets up operations in the Sudan. By then, he sees Christianity as the arch-enemy of Islam and the U.S. as the stronghold of Christianity that must be brought down.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Hintergrundrecherche 4. Oktober 2010
Format:Taschenbuch|Von Amazon bestätigter Kauf
Eine ausgezeichnete Hintergrundrecherche bzgl. der Entstehungsgeschichte von El Quaida. Nicht nur wird die konkrete Entwicklung der Gruppe um Bin Laden nachgezeichnet, es werden auch die z. T. in der jüngeren ägyptischen Geschichte liegenden ideologischen Wurzeln dieser Bewegung analysiert. Das Buch öffnet den Blick für die Sichtweise vieler Menschen in den arabischen Ländern insgesamt, ohne Sympatien für die Terrorgruppen zu wecken. Die gleichzeitigen Einblicke in die Arbeitsweisen der amerikanischen Geheimdienste sind ebenfalls aufschlussreich. Hierhin verlagert sich der Schwerpunkt der Betrachtungsweise im zweiten Teil des Buches meiner Ansicht nach ein wenig zu sehr. Insgesamt dennoch ein absolut empfehlenswertes, teilweise sogar spannend zu lesendes Buch!
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3.0 von 5 Sternen Analytisch schwach 21. Februar 2008
Von Lucius
Format:Taschenbuch
Pulitzerpreis, exzellente Rezensionen, hymnische Leserberwertungen, wenn man sich für Terrorismus interessiert, kann man mit diesem Buch nichts falsch machen, denke ich mir. Falsch gedacht.
Das Buch behandelt die Vorgeschichte von 9/11 als eine Geschichte diverser Personen. Das mag geeignet sein, menschliche Dramen in den Vordergrund zu rücken und eine spannende Geschichte zu erzählen, zur Erhellung des Themas Terrorismus ist es kaum geeignet. Dabei kann man über den etwas kurzatmigen Reportagestil vielleicht noch hinwegsehen. Völlig alleingelassen wird der Leser allerdings bei den grundlegenden Fragen. Natürlich fallen gelegentlich einige Häppchen, in denen dann die islamistische Ideologie oder der erbärmliche Zustand der US-Sicherheitscommunity behandelt wird, in die Tiefe dringt davon aber nichts. Denn schon – hoppladihopp - geht es weiter, die nächsten Entwicklungen aus dem Leben von Zawahiri oder O'Neill in epischer Breite nachzuerzählen. Und selbst hier bleibt Wright an der Oberfläche kleben, wirklich nahegekommen sind mir diese Personen nicht. Aber dafür müsste man auch mal in die Interpretation und Analyse einsteigen.
Wer eine interessante Geschichte mit zeitgeschichtlichem Kolorit möchte, sollte zu diesem Buch greifen, wer etwas über den islamistischen Terrorismus lernen will, verschwendet damit seine Zeit.
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Amazon.com: 4.7 von 5 Sternen  458 Rezensionen
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Captivating account of events leading to 9-11 3. September 2006
Von B. McEwan - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Von Amazon bestätigter Kauf
Lawrence Wright has written an utterly absorbing book that will both captivate and appall you, and not just because of his recounting of the breathtaking horrors that took place on September 11, 2001. Equally appalling is Wright's depiction of the entrenched bureaucrats at the CIA, FBI and the National Security Agency, who failed to share crucial information with one another because of petty personal differences and agency cultures that value conformity above true investigative ability. Had the CIA, in particular, released information regarding the whereabouts of several individuals who ultimately participated in the 9-11 attacks, those tragedies might well have been prevented.

Reading these things was deeply painful for me, who watched the Trade Towers collapse as I sped across Queens trying to get home to my family in Brooklyn Heights. I can only imagine how distressing this experience might be to those who lost friends and loved ones in the attacks that day. Yet Wright has handled this difficult material in a way that makes it bearable to read, and his pacing of the story is masterful. The Looming Tower reads like a suspense novel at times and the writing is lyrical.

The book is also chock full of pertinent facts and background material that help make sense, insofar as that is even possible, of the motivations of the terrorists. I have never seen logic in the tactics of al Qaeda and similar groups, but this book has helped me understand that logic is not the driving force. Rather it seems to be history, the pursuit of a tribal conception of "honor" and a desire to recreate past glory that is far more important than logic. Wright connects those dots to paint a picture of the "terrorist" that is far more three-dimensional than the one that Bush Administration officials and the media have given us.

There are also a number of oddball facts and anecdotes that enliven The Looming Tower and add to its interest. For example, Wright relates a tidbit that highlights the so-called "clash of cultures" better than anything I've read to date: "[Jamal al-Fadl] would become al-Qaeda's first traitor. He offered to sell his story to various intelligence agencies in the Middle East, including the Israelis. He eventually found a buyer when he walked into the American Embassy in Eritrea in June 1996. In return for nearly $1 million, he became a government witness. While in protective custody, he won the New Jersey Lottery."

There are lots of other gems in this book, including some nearly unbelievable tales about John O'Neill, who would be the hero (or perhaps anti-hero) of Wright's book, if it had a hero, which it doesn't. You should really buy The Looming Tower right away and read it for yourself.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Waking Up to the Nightmare of Al-Qaeda 10. August 2006
Von M. JEFFREY MCMAHON - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Von Amazon bestätigter Kauf
In Lawrence Wright's masterpiece The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11, he effortlessly connects disparate puzzle pieces of our current clash with Islamofascism with a coherent, page-turning narrative that at time reads like a Robert Ludlum suspense novel. He begins with FBI operative Dan Coleman who finds terrifying evidence in 1996 that there is an organization, Al-Qaeda, that is hell-bent on destroying America and spreading Islamofascism throughout the world. His superiors find Coleman's claims "too bizarre, too primitive and exotic" and fail to take action. In other words, the Western imagination cannot comprehend the Islamofascist mentality. It is Wright's objective to get inside, to the very core, of Al-Qaeda's chief figures and show us how they feel humiliated by the successes of the West, including Israel, and how this humiliation, plus a great deal of sexual repression, animates their obsession with becoming "martyrs for Allah." Lawrence Wright achieves his objective masterfully and leaves a terrifying, indelible imprint on the reader. Having read dozens of "9/11" books, I can say this is my favorite. The book succeeds for several reasons. First, it shows the failure of American imagination in dealing with terrorism. Second, Wright's narratives leading to 9/11 are effortlessly woven with concrete (never academic) psychological profiles of the seeds of Al-Qaeda: We see the fastidious, sexually repressed Egyptian anti-Semite religious scholar Sayyid Qutb as he navigates post World War II America. He is disgusted by our freedom and equality for women and his disgust radicalizes him so that he returns to Egypt to support a radical theocracy movement that thrives to this day. We see Bin Laden's number two man, Al-Zawahiri, one of Qutb's acolytes, a complex intellectual who consolidates all his brilliance and energies to become a cold-blooded killer. We see of course Bin Laden himself and the historical roots of his hatred for the West.

A complex, nuanced intelligent book, The Looming Tower does not demonize Islam. To the contrary, it shows that mainstream Islam has struggled against extremists spawned by the post World War II writings of militant Islam jihadist founder Sayyid Qutb.

What is most amazing about this book is that Wright's ability to get inside the head of a terrorist with the narrative speed of thriller novel allows us to comprehend the terrorist's motivations and to wake up from a deep sleep that has imperiled us.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Lecture about the book 29. September 2006
Von John - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
I saw the author last night at a book signing/lecture, and wrote down some of his main points. I hope it is o.k. with him that I share them here, and what he said, because I found if very fascinating. Mr. Wright is a very intelligent, "gentle" man who obviously cares about things and people, and I found him very likeable, becuase he has a good sense of humor and he did so much research for this book, and travelled extensively. He said he interviewed over 1,000 people in the Arab world for this book.

Some of the main points of what he said:

- The Arabic world is incredibly insular. He said, if you take away oil, the entire Arab world, from Morocco to Pakistan, produces less economically than the Finnish company Nokia (Nokia has less than 8,000 employees). He said, there have been 10,000 books ever translated into Arabic. If you think about that in terms of how many rows of book stacks that would be at a bookstore, it is shocking (I calculate that to be a few stacks of books !). One single Borders in the U.S. thus contains far more books than have ever been translated by Arabic translators (Spain alone translates about 10,000 books a year). Thus, most Arabs are, for our standards, incredibly lacking in resources, to understand our world. Not only that, but their countries censor books and all media. Freedom to assemble basically does not exist in the Arab world, and thus, basic freedoms are lacking.

- There is "gender apartheid" in [most of] the Arab world (particularly Saudi Arabia). Women are mostly not seen in public in Saudi Arabia. Men know very little about women as a result (how to meet them ?). It is pathetic, how little young men know about women. (he said, in Saudi Arabia, the women secretaries at his reporting agency worked in a room below a stairwell, and were basically never seen. he said, you would see Saudi women so covered by a burka, that you could not tell which direction their face was pointing !).

- The author said, in discussion with Arab men, the opinions he expressed, they had never considered, and never heard of. He said, it was like if a martian came down and said things that no one had ever said before and that were new and shocking. And those are normal conversations in the West.

- The Islamists (Al Quida, Muslim Brotherhood, etc.) have no plan. They simply want to destroy things and "take over". But when asked what their economic plan is, they have none. The only real goal of the Muslim Brotherhood, for example, is the hijab for women (headcovering). Other than that, the muslim brotherhood has no plan or goal for society. "It is like an empty vessle". Bin Ladin has no plan other than wanting the U.S. out of Saudi Arabia, and blind destruction of things western. How do you deal with unemployment (no answer). Hamas is now in power in "Palestine", and has found that ruling is very hard. It shows them that they now must have a program, but they don't have one.

- Pakistan was "the most mysterious country" the author visited. Far from being unstable, it is "very, very stable", "too stable" ("eerily stable"). He said, the military "owns" Pakistan, and it is run by military families. If you are not in the military, you are basically locked out of Pakistani society. He said, they play a game with the U.S. called "find Bin Ladin". They constantly get paid by the U.S., and they pretend to look for Bin Ladin. It is all a game to get money from the U.S. He said, there is now a "permanent Al Quida zone" along the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan, and it is very worrying.

- Our U.S. intelligence is basically incapable of dealing with Al Quida. The FBI is staffed by Irish and Italian men, who know those cultures. The Arab applicants are shut out as a "security risk". Result: no one who really speaks Arabic. The FBI recently graduated 50 new recruits. Only one of them speaks any foreign language. Since the 1970s, U.S. intelligence has been hamstrung and hollowed out. There is no "human intelligence" anymore. There is basically zero hope that the CIA and FBI can deal with Al Quida. Everyone in government realizes that the Dept. of Homeland Security is a joke.

- Clinton really tried to kill Bin Ladin, and should have fired his CIA director after he gave the CIA the order to kill Bin Ladin, and two years later, he was still alive.

- One thing that motivated Wolfowitz and Cheney is that they really believed that Iraq had a hand in the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center.

- Iraq is a mess. Either way, Al Quida wins. If the U.S. withdrew, it would get much worse.

- Al Quida has very long-term plans, involving "drawing the U.S. in" to the Arab world. They would love it if we attacked Iran, because that would draw Iran in, and their "resources", into a world-wide fight.

- The author asked Islamic experts in the Arab world, "how will this conflict end". They mostly said that it is likely that the following will occur: a major western city were to be attacked by nuclear or biological weapon. Wright said, because we live in democracies, the public outcry would be so exterme and harsh, that a counterstrike, "attacking and destroying Mecca, Medina, and various targets in Iran" would be very, very likely, if not a foretold conclusion (!). (the CIA has even gone to Hollywood script writers to ask them for "scenarios", because they think that those scriptwriters "have more imagination" than bureaucrats at the CIA.

- The way to deal with Bin Ladin, if he were caught: try him before "Sharia courts". Take him to Kenya and Tanzania and make him confront the 150 Muslims who he blinded by the 1998 bomb blasts. Take him around and try him by sharia law. Take him to Saudi Arabia and ask for his execution. Make him look like he violated his own standards. Don't kill him, because then you make him a martyr.
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3.0 von 5 Sternen Really 3 1/2 Stars 1. Juli 2007
Von Aging Hipstorian - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
"The Looming Tower" is about the building and concept of Al-Qaeda as a terror organization and the United States' efforts to stop it. The lives of Bin-Laden, Zawahiri, Prince Turki Faisal and FBI agent John O'Neill intersect in the book, which concludes with the September 11 attacks on the USA.

As the book flows, the reader travels through the life of Osama Bin-Laden (the central figure of the book) from Saudi Arabia to Afghanistan during the war against the Soviets, the building of his criminal organization, and through an increasingly deadly series of terror acts. Meanwhile, US officials such as Richard Clarke and O'Neill are largely ignored by the Clinton and Bush administrations. Communication between CIA and FBI is hampered by bureaucracy. The attacks are carried out and the world is plunged into an age of terror.

"The Looming Tower" is well written and fast paced. The portrait of Bin-Laden is of a barbaric criminal who justifies his own depravity in hypocritical religious terms. The narrative about the bombing of the USS Cole places the matter in stark and understandable terms. This was a serious matter that was not addressed in the last three months of President Clinton's term nor in the first nine of Bush's. The flaw that I found with the book was the citing of flimsy sources late in the book that weren't backed up by more evidence, particularly the actions of Bin-Laden on 9-11 and in the days afterwards. There is a tabloid feel to the last few pages, which unfortunately, erodes the book's credibility. It's a good read. Take it with a grain of salt.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen The Plot Against The World Trade Center 8. August 2006
Von C. Hutton - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
There has been a numerous books published on the events concerning 9-11. Three of the best were published in 2002 : 1). "The Age of Sacred Terror" by Daniel Benjamin & Steve Simon; 2). "Out of the Blue" by Richard Bernstein; and 3). "The Cell" by John Miller. The first explored Islamic fundamentalism while the latter two examined the actual 9-11 plot and America's institutional failings. All three had the drawbacks of being "instant history." Mr. Wright has the advantages of five years perspective with more information available to him.

"The Looming Tower" follows the well-known facts of the 9-11 plot -- where it differs is in the amount of detail provided by his interviews and research in fleshing out the 9-11 plot. At nearly 500 pages, it is longer than most other 9-11 books but written in a readable, can't-put-it-down style. Mr. Wright presents the best portrait of the doomed FBI agent John O'Neill since "The Cell." This book is one to have on your bookshelf.
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