Tuesday, September 12, 2006

The First Published Profile of John O'Neill

My friend told me over the phone today today, after seeing The Path to 9/11, that he assigned the first story ever published about former FBI agent John O'Neill while working as an editor at New York Magazine. He pointed out the irony that Osama killed both Massoud in Afghanistan, and O'Neill, who was working in the World Trade Center on 9/11. Meanwhile, Osama is still at large. Robert Kolker's article, titled "O'Neill v. Osama," is available online, here:
Most of the victims of the September 11 attack seemed tragically random -- they were just going to work. Not John O'Neill. Until last August, he'd been the FBI's top expert on Al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden, a lead investigator of the USS Cole and African embassy bombings. Leaving the Bureau in frustration, he'd taken a job he thought of as retirement: World Trade Center security chief. But when he died it became clear: His own life contained as many mysteries as his enemy's.