Tiger! Tiger! Tiger! is the untold story of the courageous actions of the NSW Tactical Operations Unit (TOU) that unfolded on 15 to 16 December 2014. For over 16 hours, a lone-wolf terrorist - Man Haron Monis, inspired by Islamic State and armed with a pump action shotgun and the threat of a ‘backpack bomb’ - held 18 hostages captive in the Lindt Café in Martin Place, Sydney.
This book will challenge what you thought you knew about the siege that was livestreamed around the world, with details that show how willing ‘the boys in black’ were to sacrifice their lives. However, it is more than an insider's perspective on Australia’s first terrorist hostage rescue mission. Written by the officer who shot and killed the terrorist, this extraordinary frontline account shows that, if Officer A can learn to live with the psychological damage done to him in the line of duty, then there is a message of resilience and hope in this book for everyone.
"Against what standard does one judge a man demanded to stare down death to save strangers. Who will dare say that they could have done better." State Coroner Michael Barnes - Coronial Inquest Findings
'Officer A' VA (Medal of Valor) was brought up in the Hawkesbury north-west of Sydney. He is married with three daughters. 'Officer A' was in the New South Wales Police Force for nearly 20 years. Tiger! Tiger! Tiger! is his first book.
Tiger! Tiger! Tiger! introduces the training and front-line experience of ‘Officer A’ as a tactical asset and operator as well as his battle with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
'Heed the plea for help’
By Mick Carroll, Editor Saturday, and Sunday Daily Telegraph
Saturday 10 December 2022.
There was never any doubt that the trauma of the Linde Café siege would linger long after the terrorist was taken out. The event left a scar on the survivors inside the café, the families of those who died and even the entire community unused to such displays of terror on home soil.
But as revealed in the extract today from the memoir of the police sniper who took out the terrorist, the siege left many first responders and emergency workers with varying degrees of damage.
The handling of the siege and the police response to the threat has been dealt with in various hearings and an inquest, which have led to recommendations about strategies in containing terrorists, but there is one issue that continues to simmer in the ranks of emergency personal – and that is support for those involved in traumatic events.
‘Officer A’ is quite open about the impact of the siege, in particular the death of Katrina Dawson has had on his mental health. He is also critical of the level of support and pastoral care offered to police officers in the line of duty.
He feels let down and has chosen to pen his memoir to highlight his issues and the often-unseen pain of others just like him.
Tiger! Tiger! Tiger! is a confronting portrait of the day of infamy but also a raw and unfettered expression of grief and guilt.
It’s a book emergency services all over the world should read – and consider what they can do to minimise the damage in the future.
PANSW Police News Magazine review
We all remember that day when something happened that scared us or worried us as we wondered how that could have happened on our safe, comfortable little island. There is no denying the long lasting effect and deep trauma that these calamitous events have on our collective psyche. For some, it may have been the Thredbo landslide on 30 July 1997, while for others the destruction caused by the 1989 Newcastle earthquake triggers anxious thoughts each anniversary of that day.
For many Sydneysiders and the wider Australian community, 15-16 December 2014 are dates we will never forget. The fog of mental illness disguised as a deluded brand of religious terrorism left an indelible stain on the city, a small band of unsuspecting innocents and many first responders. The Lindt Café Siege should not have happened if the criminal justice system had worked as it should have and we as a society had been better prepared to catch madness of the kind that inflicted Man Haron Monis before he fell through the cracks in the health and justice system.
Tiger! Tiger! Tiger! by the anonymous Officer A is a memoir of his service as an NSW police officer working General Duties in the racial melting pot of inner western Sydney through to his appointment as a Tactical Operations Unit (TOU) operative some four years into his service. This book is a very blunt retelling of some of the experiences that Officer A had in GD’s and plain clothes. It details the incredible mental and physical effort he had to endure to eventually pass the gruelling TOU course.
For serving police, there are no surprises in this book as all would have experienced similar moments of boredom, fear, despair and the thrill of the adrenaline rush. But for lovers of procedural police true crime, Tiger! Tiger! Tiger! is a fresh, exciting, appetite-whetting roller-coaster of the best and very worst situations police experience.
Officer A is a self-described ‘sh*t magnet’ in the job. An epithet he embraced throughout his career leading the way into a multitude of dangerous jobs that, but for his skill, determination and the teamwork of others, may have ended differently. The rollicking retelling of the officer’s involvement in the hunt and capture of the murderer Malcolm John Naden reveals just how dangerous and laborious police work can be.
The story climaxes with the TOU’s involvement at the Lindt Café Siege in the heart of Sydney CBD. There has been a plethora of journalistic writing and high and mighty opinion written about this tragic event. But until now, there may not have been such a deep insider version of what actually happened throughout the siege.
Officer A and his TOU colleagues were the Alpha, or primary arrest team, who were the first line of surveillance at the scene, rescuing and supporting those innocent captives we all saw flee the café in a panic. The reader is positioned at the door when, after two days and a murderous action by the hostage-taker, the command ‘Tiger Tiger Tiger’ is given.
Sadly, the next 60 seconds shaped the outcome of Officer A’s police career and that of some of his TOU brothers. What happened that day to survivors and victims and subsequently to the officer is difficult to read and understand.
Tiger! Tiger! Tiger! is a very important memoir. For those who risk their lives to save others as first responders or specialists, it may be challenging to read. But it is worth persevering because of the honesty and openness of the narrative. Officer A’s story, and that of a multitude of others who served and continue to serve, will resonate in the mind of future practitioners, their families and the community.