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Relentless Pursuit: The DSS and the Manhunt for the Al-Qaeda Terrorists Paperback – September 13, 2003

ISBN-13: 978-0765309105 ISBN-10: 0765309106 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Forge Books; 1st edition (September 13, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0765309106
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765309105
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 0.8 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,586,949 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The clandestine world of the Department of State's Diplomatic Security Service is the focus of this latest entry into the post-Sept. 11 publishing sweepstakes by Katz, an expert on international terrorism and security issues. The DSS was created in 1985 by Secretary of State George Shultz in response to rising terrorist threats. Katz re-creates a variety of scenes, highlighting the role of DSS agents whether protecting Secretary of State Madeleine Albright from al-Qaeda-linked Muslim terrorists in Uzbekistan, or tracking down a possible Iraqi connection behind a failed attempt to bomb the American embassy in Manila, or playing a central role in the worldwide search for Ramzi Yousef, the mastermind behind the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. (The FBI falsely took full credit for his capture, reports Katz.). Much of the book revisits that bombing and its aftermath, but Katz is strongest when he focuses, through interviews with agents, on the personal for instance, how agents anxiously await the annual "bid list," which details their postings for the coming year and the difficulty of long postings overseas. Katz does shed light on a secret world of America's foreign operations, but in portraying events primarily through the agents' own eyes, he fails to address some basic issues could the DSS, which claims to have the most expertise in worldwide terrorism, have done more to prevent Sept. 11? How should their role now be expanded or changed? This one-sided look at the world of these secret agents leaves too many questions unanswered.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

DSS stands for Diplomatic Security Service, the little-known law enforcement arm of the U.S. Department of State that was created in November 1985 as attacks against American interests and citizens were mounting. Its primary duty is protecting U.S. diplomats and overseas installations. The editor of Special Ops, a journal about government special operations, Katz has written numerous books on international terrorism. Here he discusses how and why Islamic militants led by Osama bin Laden have been directing their hate-fueled energies against the United States and how the DSS has been investigating and countering these terrorist activities. Aside from thwarting assassinations, the organization's biggest success was the capture of Ramzi Yousef, who led the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center and had hoped to knock one tower into the other. What comes through clearly in the text is that terrorists operate globally with relative ease and that the United States must do more to fight them. Containing endnotes but no bibliography, photos, or index, this informative and cautionary book updates Bernhard B. Collins Jr.'s The Diplomatic Security Service: Partner in National Security, an earlier work on this agency published in 1992. Suitable for the criminal justice/terrorism collections of public and academic libraries. Daniel K. Blewett, Coll. of DuPage Lib., Glen Ellyn, IL
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

SAMUEL M. KATZ is an internationally recognized expert on Middle East security issues, international terrorism, and military special operations and counterterrorism. His latest book is NY Times Best Seller Under Fire: The Untold Story of the Attack in Benghazi (St. Martin's Press, 2013). An excerpt was featured in the August 2013 edition of Vanity Fair.

Samuel M. Katz has written dozens of articles and created several award-winning documentaries for television on Israel's special operations and counterterrorist units. He also created several publications, including Special Operations Report, a quarterly magazine dedicated to military and law enforcement special operations and counterterrorism; Katz served as the magazine's editor-in-chief. Read by more than 25,000 decision makers in defense ministries, military and police commands, and by special operations and intelligence service unit commanders around the world, Special Operations Report became one of the subject's most respected publications. In his duties as editor-in-chief, Katz ventured into the Gaza night with Israeli undercover commandos and has interviewed kings, government ministers and police commissioners.

Katz has written more than one hundred articles for mass market, defense, and other publications ranging from Jane's Intelligence Review to editions Playboy. His articles have been translated into more than twenty languages. He has also created documentary series for television, including several involving Israel's top-secret special operations units.

Katz has been a guest expert and commentator on Fox News, MSNBC, ABC, al-Jazeera, and the BBC World News, and on television networks around the world. Katz has lectured law enforcement agencies and military commands around the world on tactical and counter-terrorism subjects, as well as the history of Palestinian and Islamic fundamentalist terrorism.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 28, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Samuel Katz is already well-known by those of us who admire his depth and detail, but this book tops anything else out there about the war against terror and the people who really wage it. "Relentless Pursuit" is not only timely, but courageous, taking readers into the world of the Diplomatic Secuirity Service, a law enforcement arm of the federal government that deserves much more recognition than it gets. Long before the average American had ever heard of Al-Qaeda, DSS agents were waging a determined campaign in the far reachess of Pakistan, searching for the perpetrators of the first attack on the World Trade Center. Katz takes us right down into this gritty and dangerous world, making his book a true-life thriller about unsung and anonymous heroes. You can forget about all those "terrorism experts" popping up on your TV. Katz - and this book - are the real thing.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 1, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I picked this book after seeing the back cover and a photo of a DSS agent in tactical gear firing an M4--not knowing who or what DSS was, I thought that this was interesting and starting thumbing through the pages of the book. The text was fascinating. The author, in a fast-paced provocative narrative, provides a blueprint for how terrorists have been plotting against the US for over a decade, and how much of the grueling work to bring them to justice has fallen upon the shoulders of DSS--the Diplomatic Security Service (although other agencies, most notably the FBI, has often taken the credit). This book is a long overdue testament to the Diplomatic Security Service and the fine work they do. A great read.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 5, 2003
Format: Paperback
This is the first book to truly talk of the efforts of DSS, the State Department's little known yet all-important law enforcement entity. While other books about America's war against terrorism have focused on the shortcomings of the CIA and FBI in stopping al-Qaeda in its tracks, this book focuses on America's first true victory in this bloody struggle--the capture of World Trade Center bombing mastermind Ramzi Yousef--and how the handwriting for attacks such as 9/11 had been on the wall for years.
Other accounts might pick and steal from this book's true stories of the federal agents who serve this nation in some of the most distant global outposts in the world, but Katz's amazing book remains an original and an American classic.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 24, 2002
Format: Hardcover
What makes this book so unique is the fact that it was a work in progress long before 9-11. It appears as if the author had been writing the story of the one federal law enforcement agency to take al-Qaeda seriously for years before the horrific attacks of September 11. The book is not a finger-pointing I told you so look at 9-11, but rather a beautifully-constructed profile of the Diplomatic Security Service and its global war against terrorists. The DSS are heroes--and it is about time people learned about what they did. I hope that the author is working on a sequel. I'll bet, after reading this book, that DSS, will be in the forefront of bringing bin Laden and his lieutenants to justice.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Eduardo M. Arizaga on April 19, 2003
Format: Hardcover
The Diplomatic Security Service is most probably one of the newest federal law enforcement agencies in the United States.
So almost nobody know nothing about it.
But Mr. Katz do know these guys. Almost an insider look.
In a way the book is a companion to the documentary Badges without borders. Explain in great detail their work fighting terrorism and have a brief explanation about their role protecting U.S: diplomats all around the world and foreign ambassadors and representatives in U.S. soil. These are the guys behind Secretary of State Colin Powell.
The book is well written and in no way is boring. Pay the money without doubt.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 15, 2002
Format: Hardcover
This book blew me away. I had never heard of DSS, never knew the State Department had a force of special agents keeping diplomats safe, embassies secure, and investigating passport and visa fraud. Never knew that these men and women have tracked down some of the world's most dangerous terrorists at outposts all over the planet.
This book is written like a spy novel in setting mood, tension, danger and thrills. The narrative is crisp and enlightening, from the story of al-Qaeda's first batch of visitors to the US to the hunt for fugitives in Southeast Asia, Pakistan, Yemen and beyond. The chapters on the arrest of Ramzi Yousef are page-turners that will keep you at the edge of your seat. The chapters on the embassy bombings are sad and frightening.
I couldn't put this book down. I look forward to Katz's next book. Buy this book immediately!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 19, 2002
Format: Hardcover
The Diplomatic Security Service is an amazing law enforcement body that, by design and determination, thinks outside the box.
This book is one [great] ride with a group of American heroes that didn't let Beltway Bureaucracy keep them from snaring some of the first al-Qaeda terrorists to strike at this country.
The author has painted a dramatic portrait of what counterterrorism overseas is like for US federal agents.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 21, 2002
Format: Hardcover
The men and women of DSS are the real operators in America's War on Terrorism. They are the experts in the field, who have experienced it all, yet remain, until now, a well kept secret in America's anti-terrorist arsenal. While the FBI gets the glory, it is obvious that DSS gets their man with little flourish and fanfare. Action is louder than words! Sam Katz rightfully has put these folks on the map, and their efforts are worthy of the accolades that Katz provides the reader. 9/11 brought new meaning to DSS, and the men and women of DSS have become this country's 911 in time of crisis.
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