Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell (novel)
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Penguin Group U.S. paperback edition
|Genre||Spy fiction |
|December 7, 2004|
|Media type||Print (Paperback)|
|Pages||368 pp (first edition, paperback)|
|ISBN||0-425-20168-6 (first edition, paperback)|
|LC Class||CPB Box no. 2312 vol. 11|
|Followed by||Operation Barracuda|
Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell is a 2004 novel told in the first person by author Raymond Benson, writing under the pseudonym David Michaels. The novel is based on the video game series Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell, the creation of which was endorsed by author Tom Clancy. The series chronicles the adventures and the stealth actions of the fictional character Sam Fisher.
After the book was published in 2004, Raymond Benson announced that he had written it, using the pseudonym David Michaels. Benson is best known for being the official author of the James Bond series of novels from 1997 to 2002. In 2005, a second book by Benson was released entitled Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Operation Barracuda. After the completion of that book, a new author was hired to continue the series under the same pseudonym.
Sam Fisher, a special agent, or Splinter Cell, is called upon to investigate the deaths of other Splinter Cell agents. He finds ties to an arms smuggling ring, and their ties to a mysterious terrorist group known as "The Shadows".
The plot of the novel takes place in 2004 and concerns an Iranian terrorist group called "The Shadows". Led by Nasir Tarighian, it is the goal of Tarighian to use a weapon of mass destruction codenamed "The Babylon Phoenix" against the city of Baghdad as revenge for the actions taken by Iraq against Iran during the 1980s that resulted in the murder of his wife and children. While there really isn't much benefit to the group today, Tarighian attempts to sell the scheme to his organization by claiming that it would also create further disorder in Iraq and in the Middle East, which would inevitably cause the people to turn against the West, namely the United States since Iraq is currently under their watch. Tarighian, a former "great warrior" during the Iran–Iraq War and often proclaimed hero in Iran, hoped that by doing this the Iranian people would rejoice and urge the Iranian government to invade and conquer Iraq after the U.S is forced out of the region. Most of the members of the Shadows disagree with the course of action, feeling that the result is extremely unlikely and that the scheme is nothing more than a 20-year-old vendetta by Tarighian to get back at Iraq for the death of his wife and children during the war. These members feel the same effect of destabilization in the region can be achieved by attacking either Tel Aviv or Jerusalem in Israel.
The novel also involves a terrorist arms dealing organization named "The Shop." Headed by Andrei Zdrok, its aim is purely business: to make money by supplying arms to anyone with money regardless of race, ethnicity, or religion. The Shop is one of the few organizations in the world that is aware of the black-ops division of the NSA, named "Third Echelon", which sends covert agents into the world called Splinter Cells to exercise the use of a "fifth freedom": the freedom to do whatever is necessary to preserve national security and peace for the United States. The Shop, using their knowledge (the source of which is revealed in the sequel, Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Operation Barracuda to be a traitor within Third Echelon itself) and resources, has taken the liberty of assassinating Splinter Cells whenever possible thus to increase their profit margin by keeping the shipment of arms from falling into unwanted hands.
Sam Fisher is deployed by Third Echelon to the Middle East to uncover the truth about the murder of a Splinter Cell agent. There, he tracks down the source of a shipment of arms seized by the Iraqi police and infiltrates numerous locations relating to both the Shop and the Shadows, all the while unaware that the Shop has targeted him and his only daughter, Sarah.
- Rick Benton - A Splinter Cell stationed in Belgium. He asks Lieutenant Colonel Dirk Verbaken to give him a file on Gerald Bull. He is murdered by Vlad and Yuri.
- Lieutenant Colonel Dirk Verbaken - A member of the Belgian Military Intelligence and Security Service, he is one of Rick Benton's contacts. He gives him the file on Gerard Bull. He is also murdered by Vlad and Yuri.
- Lieutenant Colonel Dan Petlow - A Lieutenant Colonel in a U.S. Army outpost, Petlow was one of Benton's contacts. He helps point Sam in the right direction and later arrests a terrorist known as No-Tooth.
- Sam Fisher - Fisher is the protagonist of the story. He is a secret field operative known as a "Splinter Cell" for the National Security Agency and its super-secret sub-agency, Third Echelon.
- Colonel Irving Lambert - Fisher's "controller," Lambert is an agent in the National Security Agency who coordinates most of the missions and objectives.
- Carly St. John - A cryptographer for Third Echelon, she is considered brilliant by Fisher. St. John handles most of Third Echelon's computer-related tasks including network security and aiding Fisher, when possible, in the field.
- Sarah Burns - Fisher's daughter. She defies Sam by taking a vacation to Israel with her best friend, Rivka Cohen, and her boyfriend, Eli Horowitz. She is later kidnapped by Horowitz, who has secretly been working for The Shop. Held hostage as bait to draw Fisher to Israel where he can be assassinated by The Shop, she is rescued by her father with the aid of the Shin Bet.
- Namik Basaran - Namik Basaran is the head of Akdabar Enterprises in Turkey and a supposed informant for the CIA. In truth, Basaran is Nasir Tarighian, the head of The Shadows. The Shadows is a terrorist group that formed during the final days of the Iran–Iraq War. Tarighian was at one point a peaceful man, however, during the war, Iraq bombed his home killing his wife and children. Since that day, he sought revenge and has gone to great lengths to get it. Tarighian aims to use the Babylon Phoenix developed by Professor Mertens to obliterate Baghdad. His group, however, feels that Baghdad, being a Muslim city, should not be the target and instead perform a last minute coup. Tarighian, his bodyguard Farid, and all his loyalists are killed on the orders of Ahmed Mohammed.
- Reza Hamadan- Reza Hamadan is an NSA informant living in Iran. Fisher meets with him to gather information on Namik Basaran and for rest. Once Fisher sets out again, Hamadan lends him his car.
- Ahmed Mohammed - Mohammed is the second in command of The Shadows. He is a loyalist of Nasir Tarighian, however, after Tarighian decides to use the Babylon Phoenix to target Baghdad, he betrays Tarighian and stages a coup by killing Tarighian. Mohammed then orders the target changed to Jerusalem. Mohammed is prevented and presumably killed during an aerial raid carried out jointly by the US, the British, and the Turkish airforce.
- Albert Mertens - Professor Mertens is the engineer who designs the Babylon Phoenix. His work was strongly influenced by his mentor Gerald Bull and his Project Babylon "supergun". Mertens allies himself with Mohammed against Tarighian, saying that attacking Jerusalem is a better tactically idea and would avenge Gerald Bull, as Mertens is sure the Mossad killed him. Mertens was presumably killed by the aerial raid on the Shadows' compound, like Mohammed.
- Andrei Zdrok - Zdrok is the leader of The Shop, an arms dealing outfit with the goal of making profit by supplying arms to anyone. Zdrok has supplied Namik Basaran with arms; however, he quickly turns against Basaran after one of his warehouses is destroyed presumably by The Shadows, in addition to The Shadows having decided not to pay for a shipment of arms that was captured by the Iraqi police. In truth, Sam Fisher destroyed the warehouse and Third Echelon prevented The Shadow's transaction from reaching him. After being discovered as the leader of The Shop, Zdrok was forced to leave behind anything he could not carry in his own two hands and flee.
- Vlad and Yuri - Vlad and Yuri are assassins working for The Shop. They have been hired by The Shop to eliminate the Splinter Cells. They were told to find Fisher and they used Eli Horowitz to kidnap Fisher's daughter as "bait". Both are eventually killed by Fisher and the Shin Bet during a raid on the warehouse where they held Sarah.
- Eli Horowitz - Horowitz is Sarah's boyfriend at Northwestern University in Illinois. While there he studied music, but was deported for an expired visa and for being listed on the terrorist watch list. He has been assigned by The Shop to kidnap Sarah and deliver her to Vlad and Yuri. He was ambushed by Fisher, and after the rest of his Shop team was killed, Fisher was going to kill Eli for endangering Sarah's life, but went lenient on account of the expression of cowardice on Eli's face stopped him, so Fisher spared him, and handed him over to the Shin Bet, who imprisoned him for his crimes.
- Noel Brooks - Brooks is Eli Horowitz's friend and works for the Shop. He is gunned down by Shin Bet soldiers in the firefight inside the abandoned warehouse.
- Heinrich Eisler - Eisler is a friend of Albert Mertens and was Alberts cellmate in prison. He also murdered Basarain's aka. Tarighian's bodyguard Farid with his knife, which he is very skilled with. Eisler is presumably killed along with Mertens and Mohammed.
- Clancy, Tom (2004). Splinter Cell. United States: Penguin Group.