41 Seconds



When Democracy and Terrorism Collide.

One Man’s Story.
Every Nation’s Struggle.

Forty One Seconds to Freedom: An Insider's Account of the Lima Hostage Crisis

(Random House) By Luis Giampietri with Bill Salisbury
and Lorena Ausejo.

41 Seconds

By Admiral Luis Giampietri
With American Journalist Bill Salisbury and Peruvian Journalist Lorena Ausejo

41 Seconds  

Peruvian Vice President Admiral Giampietri’s
first person account of a rare success in the "War on Terror "

---The true story fictionalized by Ann Patchett in her novel Bel Canto, being made into a film written and directed by Bernardo Bertolucci

On December 17, 1996, masked member of the Tupac Amaru Revolutionary Movement (MRTA), a deadly band of insurgents, stormed the Lavish birthday party of the Japanese ambassador to Peru. They seized his residence and demanded the release of four hundred of their comrades from prison – or they would kill all the hostages. One of the hostages, Luis Giampietri, a former field commander of a special operations forces, would play a crucial role in a complex commando rescue operation planned by Peru’s president, Alberto Pujimori. Here is Giampietri’s riveting inside account of the unnerving ordeal, the rescue that took all of 41 seconds from start to finish, and the operation’s unexpected ramifications. By turns encouraging and cautionary, this book is an invaluable account of one of the most dramatic terrorist hostage incidents in history.

Admiral Giampietri reveals how he and 70 other men survived those 126 days at the hands of 14 terrorists (including a teenage girl) who seized

the Japanese Ambassador’s Residence in Lima a week before Christmas in 1996 with the riveting details of the key role he played -- as leader, hero, and human being caught in a lethal political/hostage trap.

Today, it is clear why Admiral Giampietri’s story, a heretofore undocumented piece of history, is even more relevant and important as terror continues to creep and threaten around the world.

The problem of Peru is the problem of the United States and indeed of any country in the entire world.

“…gripping and well-written…better than a novel…” —Dennis Jett, Former Ambassador to Peru