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Showdown in Kismayo
am 8. Januar 2014
Well-paced quest to identify a Muslim preacher who calls for revenge on the internet in perfect English. And with success, for both in the UK and the US lone terrorists strike again and again. The few surviving perpetrators declare they carried out the preacher's message. They have no idea who he is. But cannot websites be shut down? And what about tracing the IP-address back to the machine(s) used to spread the messages? In this book that is no option. Everything is so cleverly encrypted that the identity of the preacher (and his accomplices, because this cannot be a one-man operation) nor the site where they are recorded and uploaded, remain unknown.
The book's hero is `Tracker', codename for Lt.-Col. Carson of the US Marine Corps. The computer of an ultra-secret Homeland Security detail selected him as the best candidate to trace and eliminate the preacher. What follows is a pretty credible thriller full of guile and intrigue, total secrecy and discrete cooperation with trusted intelligence services, plus lots of planning and improvisation. Gradually, there is strong evidence of complicity of persons unknown in Pakistan, the UK and a country in which few if any NATO-member states are likely to have many intelligence assets, Somalia...
Forsyth rarely invokes emotions and thinks in terms of good and bad. His sympathies are with the intelligence and armed services of the UK and US and of a country in the eastern Mediterranean. As a prominent Eurosceptic, FF does not even mention the EU or its member states' possible capabilities. Younger readers should know that FF became famous in the 1970s with titles such as `The Day of the Jackal', `The Odessa Fire' and `The Dogs of War', which were all bestsellers and were made into films. This is the latest of an oeuvre of 15 thrillers which stand out because of the superior quality of their nameless sources and up-to-date technical background, giving FF's thrillers more gravitas and credibility than most of his colleagues'.