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. Dave

    The man deserves a psyh center, not a reward.

    May 5, 2011 at 10:10 am | Report abuse |
  2. ICantstoplmao

    I think he should get 25 million crazy pills.

    May 5, 2011 at 10:11 am | Report abuse |
  3. Corporatehack

    With God, all things are possible. I say, give God the $25 million.

    May 5, 2011 at 10:11 am | Report abuse |
  4. Neil

    I cannot help laughing! What next? Psychics will line up for reward? Hey wait a minute, I did dream of him there in that mansion! I deserve that 25 million!

    Seriously, that 25 million must be split between the seals or given to their department to train new seals

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

    One man army, gone all in vain!

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

    He should write a book about his quest. Sell the movie rights to Hollywood, and let the American people pay him what they think his work was worth through buying the book and seeing the movie.

    May 5, 2011 at 10:16 am | Report abuse |
  7. Peter

    Why is the press even talking to this guy? He is clearly a nutjob. This is a stupid non-story.

    May 5, 2011 at 10:17 am | Report abuse |
  8. John

    "TNagy
    How about we take that 25 million, and feed some of our own starving Americans?"

    Can't agree more ...

    and also can't agree more about the fact that not all soldiers go around killing innocent people ... things people say these days just so they can attract some attention ... the ignorance is blinding me

    May 5, 2011 at 10:17 am | Report abuse |
    • Randy Dyck

      There was a reward for the sniper a number of years ago A trucker called it in I dont think he recieved any money.
      America is broke do you think there giving away 25 mil I think not

      May 5, 2011 at 10:26 am | Report abuse |
    • bjorn burke

      agree

      May 5, 2011 at 10:34 am | Report abuse |
    • ThisIsNotNews

      Dear CNN,

      You undermine your credibility by reporting this story as if he in any way has a remotely legitimate claim on anything. By his logic any American who has been to Pakistan in the last year should get $25 million. What happened to journalism?

      May 5, 2011 at 10:34 am | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      ...or how about the one trillion plus dollars spent trying to kill Osama the last 10 years.

      May 5, 2011 at 10:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Matt

      I was in Islamabad in 2005. I want some of the money as well.

      May 5, 2011 at 10:45 am | Report abuse |
    • R2litefan

      I don't know about anyone else, but this man has an uncanny resemblance to Osama bin Laden, check out his teeth, and his nose and the creases around his nose, his eyebrows and also where his beard has grayed the most...could this be the aged bin Laden with glasses???? Or does he just resemble him that much?????? Makes you wonder?????

      May 5, 2011 at 10:45 am | Report abuse |
    • Mark

      Dear ThisIsNotNews,

      They are just reporting on a story. And to be fair, this is in their "blogs" section, which should tell you that this isn't one of those hard-pressing stories. I understand that you may think that the blog you write is the cat's meow, but most blogs are just regular Joe's writing out their thoughts. This is really no different. I'm so sick of hearing people complain about "oh, this isn't journalism," and "this isn't news." Screw that, everything IS news. The important thing is to use your critical thinking skills to sort out the details yourself. I know that may seem difficult for you, but maybe for just once in your life, you should use your brain and THINK FOR YOURSELF.

      May 5, 2011 at 10:48 am | Report abuse |
    • Mark

      @R2litefan,

      No it doesn't make me wonder. I don't think he looks anything like Bin Laden. Sounds like you're grasping at straws.

      May 5, 2011 at 10:52 am | Report abuse |
  9. stormin4

    NO WAY!! Are you kidding?

    May 5, 2011 at 10:20 am | Report abuse |
  10. Walt ZIMMERMAN

    Go look look for the lost Duchman mine.

    May 5, 2011 at 10:20 am | Report abuse |
    • kathybird

      mabey a few people needed to die it helped

      May 5, 2011 at 10:41 am | Report abuse |
  11. oneblackplanet

    15 minutes of stupid fame = $25 million in this country

    May 5, 2011 at 10:21 am | Report abuse |
  12. UTLonghorn

    I do not really know who is dumber, this guy or the CNN ppl that dedided to run this story?

    May 5, 2011 at 10:21 am | Report abuse |
    • Johnny K

      Amen brother!

      May 5, 2011 at 10:34 am | Report abuse |
    • Jared

      Or the guy that can't spell decided?

      May 5, 2011 at 10:41 am | Report abuse |
    • AWOW

      u r absolutely right. We got bigger problems in this country...we do need waste time and money advertising ignorance.

      May 5, 2011 at 10:52 am | Report abuse |
  13. Squally

    LOL dumb nut.

    May 5, 2011 at 10:23 am | Report abuse |
  14. John

    Well...a squirrel will come out when a nut is in the area.

    May 5, 2011 at 10:24 am | Report abuse |
  15. bourneblogger@yahoo.com

    he doesn't need $25M... when he gets out of prison he'll get a reality TV show worth ten times that amount and successfully run for office with the tea party, marry sarah palin, and start it all over again hunting for the barefoot bandit, who he doesn't know was already captured while he was trekking up and down the foothills of pakistan....

    May 5, 2011 at 10:28 am | Report abuse |
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