By Tom Dare
A NEW book by a former-CIA contractor imprisoned after shooting dead two men in Pakistan has shed light on one of the most infamous diplomatic crisis’ in the past century.
Written by former CIA operative Raymond Davis, ‘The Contractor: How I Landed in a Pakistani Prison and Triggered a Diplomatic Crisis’ tells the tale of how Davis shot and killed two reportedly armed Pakistani men at a busy intersection in downtown Lahore.
The case, which saw Davis held in a Pakistani prison for two months as fierce negotiations took place between the United States and Pakistani governments, has been shrouded in mystery right from the get-go, with several contradictory reports emerging from both sides.
Davis wrote the book, he claims in the prologue, as “a lot has been written about the time I spent in a Pakistani jail in 2011—much of it, unfortunately, false. I’m hoping to set the record straight.”
Little is known about the operation surrounding Davis’ arrest and subsequent release by Pakistani officials, with the only information available stating that he was hired as a private contractor by the CIA. What he was hired for, though, is still top secret, though Davis insists he was never a fully-fledged CIA agent.
“That I was a CIA agent was just one of many lies the media spread about me,” he says.
“The Pakistani media were particularly egregious offenders. They printed all kinds of crazy stories about what I was doing in Pakistan.
“They said that I had my own Afghan army, that I worked with the Taliban to undermine the Pakistani government, that I was the CIA station chief in Islamabad, that I was personally hunting down Osama bin Laden. And on and on.”
In the book, Davis describes how he shot and killed the two men after they stopped in front of him at an intersection and pointed the gun at him.
“I’d left the house that morning with seventeen rounds in the magazine and one in the chamber, and while defending myself at Mozang Chowk, I squeezed off ten as I aimed for the two men on the motorcycle,” he said.
“And in a matter of two or three seconds, the entire engagement, from the moment I saw the threat to the moment it had been eliminated, was over.”
The book covers the entire incident from Davis’ side, from the moment he landed in Pakistan to the moment he was released following the payment by the US government of $2.4 million compensation to the families of the two men killed.
Davis speaks of his time behind bars, which he says “no amount of military training can prepare you for,” as well as his interrogation and release at length.
He claims that anything omitted from the book has been done so, “to ensure that I don’t divulge any information that could compromise our national security or put any American service personnel or contractors in harm’s way.”
‘The Contractor: How I Landed in a Pakistani Prison and Triggered a Diplomatic Crisis’, published by Storms Reback, is available on Amazon now from £9.87. You can purchase a copy here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Contractor-Landed-Pakistani-Ignited-Diplomatic/dp/1941631843