Regular price: $23.07

Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free.
  • 1 credit/month after trial – good for any book, any price.
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love.
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel.
  • After your trial, Audible is just $14.95/month.
Select or Add a new payment method

Buy Now with 1 Credit

By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Buy Now for $23.07

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Add to Library for $0.00

By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

On October 12, 2000, at 11:18 a.m., an 8,400-ton destroyer, the USS Cole, was rocked by an enormous explosion. The ship’s commander, Kirk Lippold, watched as tiles tumbled from the ceiling, mugs of coffee tumbled to the floor, and everything not bolted down seemed to float in midair. Lippold knew in a matter of moments that the Cole had been attacked. What he didn’t know was how much the world was changing around him.
Eleven months later, he was debriefed by the CIA and told about Osama bin Laden. By some unbelievable coincidence, that meeting occurred on the morning of September 11, 2001. In a scene that seems almost tailor-made for movie treatment, at the end of this early morning meeting about the looming threat of al-Qaeda, Kirk remarked, “I don’t think America understands. I believe it is going to take a seminal event, probably in this country, where hundreds, if not thousands, are going to have to die before Americans realize that we’re at war with this guy.” Mere moments later, the first plane struck the World Trade Center. The CIA agent who had debriefed him said, “Kirk, I can’t believe you said what you did this morning.”
The truth is that it wasn’t so unbelievable: Lippold had known for 11 months longer than the rest of the nation that al-Qaeda was at war with America. His story has remained untold—until now.
In this thrilling first-person narrative, Lippold reveals the details of his harrowing experience leading a crew of valiant sailors through the deadliest attack on an American vessel since 1987. He also explains how this event was overshadowed by 9/11, swept under the rug by bureaucrats and political operatives, who eventually attempted to lay blame for the attack on Lippold himself, denying him promotion and halting his career.
An essential volume that belongs side by side with The Looming Tower, Ghost Wars, and The 9/11 Commission Report, this book restores a crucial story that has until now been lost in the fog of the war on terror.
Commander Kirk S. Lippold, USN (Ret.), was the commanding officer of the USS Cole when it was attacked by al Qaeda in the port of Aden, Yemen, in October 2000. He and his crew distinguished themselves in the aftermath of that attack by saving the ship, which remains in service today. He received numerous military awards and retired from the Navy in 2007.
©2012 Kirk S. Lippold (P)2012 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
Show More Show Less

Critic Reviews

“This book and the story of the men and women that it recounts is an inspiration.” (William J. Perry, former US Secretary of Defense)
“Lippold delivers a personal, opinionated account of the last outrage before 9/11, which should have galvanized our leaders but didn’t.” ( Kirkus Reviews)
Show More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Skip Galt on 04-15-12

Thank you CDR Lippold!

What made the experience of listening to Front Burner the most enjoyable?

The fact that CDR Lippold spoke the book. That was a bonus that allowed me to hear in his voice exactly what the words were saying.

Who was your favorite character and why?

The Crew of USS Cole

Which scene was your favorite?

Teaching innovation to the whoops.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

That moment when CDR Lippold was on his way back to the Pentagon. The enormity of the events and emotion from the last 11 months bubbled over. It takes a real Leader to deal with that the way he did.

Any additional comments?

I recommend this book to Audible listeners and people who have read the book. The words describe the best of Integrity, Responsibility, and Leadership, as it is practiced today by our US Military members. But hearing CDR Lippold's voice, you can feel the command presence, and know the integrity is for real as expressed in the written words.

Read More Hide me

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Jeffery P Brown on 07-18-16

Great Book!

Outstanding Book! As a former Cole sailor, it brought back alot of memories for me.

Read More Hide me

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

See all Reviews