Thin Man Press

Real Life Books

Guarding bin Laden: My Life in al-Qaeda


The first English Translation of



by his former bodyguard Nasser al-Bahri

GBL cover large


‘An extraordinary first-hand account of life at the heart of the terrorist organisation’ Le Figaro Magazine

Astonishing revelations…Bahri relates how he saw some of the 9/11 attackers playing Playstation in a house in Pakistan…’ El Pais

‘Bin Laden’s former bodyguard delivers a breath-taking account’ Tele et Vous

‘Bahri’s narrative is a goldmine of information’ Liberation

‘An intriguing glimpse of life inside the al-Qa’ida chief’s lair’ Sunday Times

‘In Iraq and Syria today we risk a situation where al-Qaeda becomes as firmly entrenched as it was in Afghanistan in the 1990s’ Abdel Bari Atwan (author of The Secret History of al-Qaeda and After bin Laden: al-Qaeda the Next Generation).

Now, Osama bin Laden’s personal bodyguard describes al-Qaeda’s 1990s Afghan hey-day with vivid detail and is the only verified senior al-Qaeda leader at liberty to tell the story.

Nasser al-Bahri spent four years in the heart of al-Qaeda, most of them at Osama bin Laden’s side. In Guarding bin Laden: My Life in al-Qaeda, Bahri gives a dramatic account of  daily life in the terror group’s secret HQ and training camps. He details al-Qaeda’s organizational structure, extraordinary security measures and their arrangements with the Pakistani Army and security services.

Yet this is a personal story too…

Bahri reveals how he gradually became disenchanted with violent extremism, falling out with bin Laden and eventually leaving the organization shortly before 9/11, hoping to take his wife and new baby to live a ‘normal’ life back home in Yemen. Instead, he was arrested on arrival in Sana’a.

Bahri’s first doubts had arisen when he was instructed to cold-bloodedly murder a colleague as ‘practice’ for killing an American soldier.

In his memoir Bahri describes the characters and relationships of the al-Qa’ida leaders, including today’s number one, Ayman al-Zawahiri. He relates the domestic arrangements of the late Osama bin Laden, his four wives and their many children.

Bahri hopes that the story of his own radicalization and eventual break with al-Qa’ida will deter other young men from following the path of jihad.

You can buy this book in paperback from Amazon and all good book stores from 10 June 2013 price £9.99/$14.95/Euros 12.99

It is now available on Kindle and other E-formats:


Smashwords (other e-formats):


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