How close did bin Laden hunter get?
Gary Faulkner went to Pakistan to hunt for Osama bin Laden last year. Now he reportedly wants some of the $25 million reward.
May 4th, 2011
03:27 PM ET

How close did bin Laden hunter get?

Last June an American construction worker was picked up in Pakistan on a one-man mission to capture Osama bin Laden.

Gary Faulkner was armed with a dagger, some biblical literature, a pistol, night-vision goggles and a sword, news reports said.

What's more, the man was even on dialysis, CNN reported at the time. And yet somehow he managed to end up in Chitral, a mountainous district in the northern tip of the country.

Chitral  was as logical a place as any to hunt for the most wanted terrorist in the world. News reports in the years since the 9/11 attacks had put bin Laden in fortress-like environs along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. Chitral fit the bill. It was connected to the rest of the country by a strip of land so treacherous that it is often closed because of weather conditions.

On Sunday night, Americans received news that bin Laden was killed in his compound in Abbottabad, about 50 kilometers (31 miles) north of the Pakistani capital of Islamabad.

How far off was Faulkner, whose across-the-world trek still remains shrouded in mystery?

Chitral to Abbottabad is roughly about 300 miles, according to Google Maps technology, indicating about a "7-hour" drive.  Yeah right. To put the distance in perspective, according to Google, the two places are about the same distance as Atlanta, Georgia, to the Florida Panhandle.

Of course, much of the Pakistan route is undriveable because of foothills and mountains. The area is also said to be inhabited by fiercely independent tribes.

While Faulkner has talked to CNN in depth much of the details about his trip remain secret. What we do know is that he wants some of the $25 million reward money that was offered for bin Laden's kill or capture.

"I scared the squirrel out of his hole, he popped his head up and he got capped," Faulkner told ABC News this week, referring to bin Laden's death. "[U.S. officials] were handed this opportunity on a platter from myself," he was quoted as saying.

Faulkner also told ABC that assertions that bin Laden had been holed up in his compound in Abbottabad for more than half a decade were not true.

"He hadn't been living there for no damn six years," he told ABC. "I absolutely flushed him out."

Should Faulkner get a portion of the reward?

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Filed under: Al Qaeda • Osama bin Laden • September 11 • Terrorism
soundoff (1,046 Responses)
  1. evos

    None of this matters since we're all going to die soon because the world is going to end and we should just all get together and be depressed.

    May 5, 2011 at 9:57 am | Report abuse |
  2. Jessica

    He didn't catch or find him so he gets nothing at all.

    May 5, 2011 at 9:57 am | Report abuse |
  3. bern

    I think the reward money should to the american people in a form of a stimioulos check, after all it was the american people tax dollars that created the reward.
    yes the special forces did a great job but they are already aslo being conpensated and so isn't everyone else
    in goverment position that were involced in this operation.

    May 5, 2011 at 9:59 am | Report abuse |
    • Jeremy

      You want to split the $25M among all 250M Americans? Enjoy your dime.

      May 5, 2011 at 10:06 am | Report abuse |
    • Dennis

      Theres roughly 360,000,000 people and divided up that would get us all about $14.00. Put it towards something constructive like ummmm..sharkes with frickin laser beams attached to their heads.

      May 5, 2011 at 10:34 am | Report abuse |
  4. Lewis

    Please let Jimmy Fallon do a spoof on this guy!!! Give Fallon a wig, facial hair and glasses and I see comedy gold.

    May 5, 2011 at 10:01 am | Report abuse |
  5. Mark

    This guy has been drinking the same delusion kool-aid as Sarah Palin. I served
    1/2 a term as governor and QUIT. I am a protege of Rush "Oxy" Limbaugh and
    can parrot anything his drug addled mind can come up with. That makes me
    qualified to be Pres. We don't manufacture anything anymore in this country except grade A
    number one KOOKS! Clown time on ice.

    May 5, 2011 at 10:01 am | Report abuse |
  6. Dani

    Split money between seals who risked their lives......and pitons toward US deficit.

    May 5, 2011 at 10:01 am | Report abuse |
  7. Milton West

    I think we should give the Money to CNN>com so thay can invest in better news stories. Why are you reporting on this?

    May 5, 2011 at 10:01 am | Report abuse |
  8. JIM

    This gentleman deserves nothing. The task was completed by military personnel doing the job that the American public pay them to do. Well done guys. Those detractors who banter the moral and legal aspect of killing a mad dog, are the ones that never had a mad dog in their back yard. (SFC, US Army Retired)

    May 5, 2011 at 10:02 am | Report abuse |
  9. Tiger

    I always knew that if OBL was alive; I always supported the search for him; I wanted him dead or alive; I even searched for him in my hometown, here in the US, I mean.. one never knows how far that guy could've gone... thus, I deserve part of the reward too. $$$$ if I don't get any money, I'm suing.

    May 5, 2011 at 10:02 am | Report abuse |
    • That Guy

      LMAO.. Hell I want some too.

      May 5, 2011 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
  10. Shane

    Does this guy honestly believe that Bin Laden and his guards were afraid of him; causing him to leave the mountains? Pistol or no pistol, I wouldn't.

    May 5, 2011 at 10:02 am | Report abuse |
  11. Chris

    Bueller? Anyone...anyone?

    May 5, 2011 at 10:02 am | Report abuse |
  12. caper999

    Ummmm... crazy gets rewarded in the United States all the time... Of course this guy doesn't deserve to get any of the reward. However, simply by running this story he is getting what's left of his "15 minutes." That 15 minutes will eventually lead to money for this unstable individual. How much will depend on how long the public keeps talking about pathetic excuse for "News." As for the religious aspects of these posts, fairy-tales are just that - fairy-tales... It doesn't take "faith" to believe in scientific theories, they are based on the evidence present. It takes evidence to the contrary to dis-believe them. And there is a lot of evidence to the contrary with respect to religion.... Sorry believers!!

    May 5, 2011 at 10:04 am | Report abuse |
    • Vesstair

      No, he should be rewarded. I say everyone who sees this take something from the next "take a penny, leave a penny" tray they see, pool it together, then we all send him 10 bucks.

      May 5, 2011 at 11:54 am | Report abuse |
  13. MP in VA

    The likelihood that you flushed Bin Laden out is exactly the same probability that you flushed your stash of hallucinogenics.

    May 5, 2011 at 10:08 am | Report abuse |
  14. Andulamb

    "I scared the squirrel out of his hole." Prove it, nutjob. You did nothing. You were 300 miles off. The reward was for killing Bin Laden or capturing him. You did neither. The reward was not for getting within 300 miles of him - if that were true, there are a lot of Pakistanis who are more deserving of the reward. You did nothing. You have no idea where he was or wasn't for the past six years. You were guessing. Even if Bin Laden had been close by to where you were stumbling around blind and getting yourself arrested, your presence would have been no concern to him. (And if he had been concerned about you, he simply would have had you kidnapped and killed.) You were nothing, are nothing, did nothing. You were a menace to yourself and others. You are not a trained assassin. You are a bumbling, delusional nut.

    May 5, 2011 at 10:10 am | Report abuse |
  15. Ben

    Yeah I remember reading about this guy. I suspect that when all the dust settles we'll learn he flushed out bin Laden and drew him out of hiding.

    May 5, 2011 at 10:10 am | Report abuse |
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