2001: Afghan Assassination Trumped by Worst U.S. Terror Event
In a nation with a warrior tradition, Ahmed Shah Masoud was a legend. As the leader of forces against the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan in the 1980s, he made such a name for that he was depicted in "Rambo III."
But after Masoud helped drive out the Soviets, Afghanistan fell into disorder and eventually was taken over by an extremist movement, the infamous Taliban. Masoud helped lead the resistance against that terrorist group, too.
Unfortunately, Masoud's notoriety and comfort with media coverage was exploited by his enemies. On Sept. 11, 2001, U.S. officials announced that Masoud has been assassinated in his camp by a suicide bomber, who had posed as a television cameraman to get close to the rebel leader [source: Wright and Watson].
Normally a story of an antiterrorist leader being killed by a suicide bomber who posed as a TV cameraman would have been big news. But Masoud's murder happened the same day as the terrorist attacks on Washington and New York. So nothing else mattered in the news.