In August 1998 al-Qaeda killed 12 Americans and 200 others in bombings at two American embassies in east Africa. President Clinton ordered the CIA to dismantle al-Qaeda and, in Scheuer's words, "take care" of bin Laden. The Pentagon launched cruise missile attacks on bin Laden's training camps, but he had left the compound hours earlier. Scheuer estimates they had at least eight further opportunities to assassinate bin Laden in the following months. "I'm not saying it would have been simple to take care of the problem, but it got progressively harder when we didn't take those opportunities. One 50 cent round could have put us all out of our agony." In June 1999, he sent off an angry memo to senior officers asking why his men were risking their lives on someone America apparently had no interest in stopping. "I don't know what you are doing when you talk to the President but he will not get a better opportunity than this," he told them. Scheuer was dismissed from his job and spent the next two years running counter-heroin operations in Pakistan and the Middle East. On September 11, 2001, he was back at CIA headquarters in Langley. Arriving home exhausted at 11.30pm, he took a shower and crawled into bed when his phone went. It was his successor at the bin Laden unit. "We need you back," he said. ...And the next generation of al-Qaeda? "They will be even more cruel and bloody-minded."