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. Jay

    Did this article really need to be written? This guy is a deluded religious wacko, not unlike OBL in that regard, whose 15 minutes were up long ago. Enough.

    May 5, 2011 at 1:30 am | Report abuse |
  2. Lucky Pierre

    He would have caught Bin Laden if he hadn't been abducted by aliens first.

    May 5, 2011 at 1:30 am | Report abuse |
    • Hasnbinfuked

      You forgot to mention anally probed...

      May 5, 2011 at 1:40 am | Report abuse |
  3. GaryGuitar

    Yes, he definitely deserves part of the reward. I'd say about 1 cent would be his fair share.

    May 5, 2011 at 1:32 am | Report abuse |
  4. Laura

    I was interested to see what people thought of this question. I found too much off-topic for this to be useful.
    Webmaster: are you able to do anything about that?

    May 5, 2011 at 1:35 am | Report abuse |
  5. Ray in Vegas

    I give up.

    May 5, 2011 at 1:35 am | Report abuse |
  6. Lucky Pierre

    I think the more important question CNN should have asked after this insipid little story is, "Does Gary Faulkner look like Dustin Hoffman?" Show of hands, please.

    May 5, 2011 at 1:37 am | Report abuse |
  7. cadreamer

    I agree. This story is SHAMEFUL. Did a supervisor, or anyone but the writer, even read this story? How did this make it to the website? Why would cnn write a story about an obviously mentally ill man, completely ridiculing him and think that it's news?! CNN, you should be ashamed. This story made me cringe it was so mean-spirited and awful. Boo!!

    May 5, 2011 at 1:39 am | Report abuse |
  8. emperorbarry

    Check out Osama Bin Laden pronounced dead for the 9th time. What is sad is a lot of Americans will buy this propaganda rather than remember how he has already been pronounced dead in the Huffington post, not to mention Steve R Pieczenik on April 24,2002 said Osama was on 2 dialysis machines and the man taking responsibility for 911 was a fat lookalike. Steve worked with Osama in the CIA. In 2002 President Musharraf of Pakistan said He was dead. Robert Baer former CIA officer, current intelligence expert and foreign policy expert said " of course He is dead".In 2008. Fox News Dec 26,2001 reported the Afgahn Taliban pronounced him dead.Jan 18, 2002 President Musharraf said again " He is dead". July 17, 2002 Head of Counter terrorism at the FBI, Dale Watson said He thought Osama was not with us anymore. Oct 2002 Afghan President Hamid Karzai told CNN , Osama is probably dead. 2003 Madeline Albright said Bush had Him on ice, waiting for a politically advantages time to bring Him out. You know Secretary of State Albright. Nov 2005 Harry Reid said He was told Osama probably died in the Pakistani earthquake in Oct 2005. Feb 2005 Professor Bruce Lawrence said the tapes and videos were fake and Osama was probably dead.Nov 2, 2007 Prime Minister Benazir Rhutto said Omar Sheik had killed Bin Laden. May 2009, Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari confirmed that his American counter parts in intelligence said They had not heard from him in 7 years, He was probably dead. Good time for Obama to try to raise that popularity rating which is at an all time low.

    May 5, 2011 at 1:47 am | Report abuse |
    • Cupio

      You said fox news. You lost the argument right there.

      May 5, 2011 at 2:05 am | Report abuse |
    • impfac

      the announcement of a professor something was fake is different from a president with dna proof, go away conspiracy nut

      May 5, 2011 at 2:05 am | Report abuse |
    • KingLarry

      EmperorBarry: Just another conspiracy nut-job. Where's the long-form death certificate? 9-11 was the U.S. government. Yeah, right....

      May 5, 2011 at 2:09 am | Report abuse |
    • Anne.

      "Fake OBL Image" – ST6 training video.

      youtube. com/watch?v=bRv4hkwHqaQ

      May 5, 2011 at 2:11 am | Report abuse |
    • SDN

      Some people go to a lot of trouble to make themselves look foolish. It's virtually inconceivable that an intelligent guy like our President would think he could pull off a scam like the one you are suggesting. Too many people involved, too many witnesses. If it were a deception, it would come unglued within hours.

      May 5, 2011 at 2:11 am | Report abuse |
    • americans are gullible

      well said mate!

      May 5, 2011 at 2:27 am | Report abuse |
    • JD

      Good God! It's Tommy Chong of Cheech and Chong fame! . . . He was probably up in Pakistan so stoned even the authorites misidentified him . . . ;-)> . . .

      May 5, 2011 at 2:31 am | Report abuse |
    • affableman

      Guess you were a birther and now you're a deather. Just goes to prove that American's are getting dumber than a box of rocks by the day.

      Don't you get it that the only people who pay attention to what you're saying are fellow whack jobs? The rest of thinking America just dismisses you.

      May 5, 2011 at 2:43 am | Report abuse |
    • Anne.

      ST6 training video. UP CLOSE

      youtube. com/watch?v=ZpA8Ye6zWJc

      May 5, 2011 at 2:57 am | Report abuse |
    • Mark

      Get psychiatric help now.

      May 5, 2011 at 3:11 am | Report abuse |
    • Tman

      It's time for your alien body guard duty shift in hanger 51.

      May 5, 2011 at 3:27 am | Report abuse |
    • Triple

      So what conspiracy do you believe? Former or latter? Or do I need to break it down in laymans terms?

      May 5, 2011 at 3:27 am | Report abuse |
  9. Lori

    Faulkner is nuts... he did not flush bin Laden out. Don't you think if he'd gotten close he would have been KILLED? He is delusional.

    May 5, 2011 at 1:55 am | Report abuse |
    • FesterNscab

      I saw Bin Laden the other day. He overcharged me a $1.00 for a Slurpee at my local 7-11. What a jerk!

      May 5, 2011 at 2:06 am | Report abuse |
    • SDN

      I agree. This guy probably hasn't flushed out anything the rest of us haven't flushed out.

      May 5, 2011 at 2:13 am | Report abuse |
    • Natasha

      I agree, this guy is clearly delusional and I don't know why CNN or any news agency is giving this nut the time of day.

      May 5, 2011 at 2:14 am | Report abuse |
    • Cheech

      he's full of stuff that his toilet couldn't process

      May 5, 2011 at 2:28 am | Report abuse |
  10. tet1953

    Clever of him to try and claim that..but,

    May 5, 2011 at 1:55 am | Report abuse |
  11. shhhh

    This guy was looking for Osama in a park in Botswana lol

    May 5, 2011 at 2:04 am | Report abuse |
  12. Natasha

    Lol, he thinks Fox News is a credible resource.

    May 5, 2011 at 2:16 am | Report abuse |
  13. ulises

    This guy is pulling a donald.

    May 5, 2011 at 2:16 am | Report abuse |
  14. Corella

    Maybe we should pay this guy to flush out every bad guy in the world! I mean he has a sword!
    Seriously this guy seems like a nut case.

    May 5, 2011 at 2:20 am | Report abuse |
    • slinky

      and night vision goggles. he must be awesome.

      May 5, 2011 at 2:30 am | Report abuse |
  15. Cheech

    It's Dave, man. Let me in!

    May 5, 2011 at 2:23 am | Report abuse |
    • Chong

      Who? Dave?

      May 5, 2011 at 2:58 am | Report abuse |
    • Chong

      Dave's not here.

      May 5, 2011 at 3:04 am | Report abuse |
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