Thursday, January 26, 2012

Special Forces Rescue Hostages

Well, our guys did it again. In addition to their Navy rescuing Moroccan sailors whose boat had capsized in the Mediterranean 3 days earlier and Yemen sailors in the Red Sea whose boat was sinking, our Special Ops guys went in and rescued 2 hostages (one American and one Dutch citizen) who had been taken at gun point and held for ransom in Somalia. Now, tell me again that a strong American presence overseas is not a good or necessary thing.

As for the hostage rescue, details are hard to find (our Special Operations Command does not like to publicize it's operations very much). But I was able to find the following statement released by Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta Jan. 25 regarding the hostage rescue operation in Somalia:

Last night U.S. Special Operations Forces conducted, by order of the President of the United States, a successful mission in Somalia to rescue two individuals taken hostage on October 25, 2011. Ms. Jessica Buchanan, an American citizen employed by the Danish Demining Group, and her Danish colleague, Mr. Poul Thisted, were kidnapped at gunpoint by criminal suspects near Galcayo, Somalia.

Ms. Buchanan and Mr. Thisted have been transported to a safe location where we will evaluate their health and make arrangements for them to return home.

This successful hostage rescue, undertaken in a hostile environment, is a testament to the superb skills of courageous service members who risked their lives to save others. I applaud their efforts, and I am pleased that Ms. Buchanan and Mr. Thisted were not harmed during the operation. This mission demonstrates our military's commitment to the safety of our fellow citizens wherever they may be around the world.

I am grateful to report that there was no loss of life or injuries to our personnel.

I express my deepest gratitude to all the military and civilian men and women who supported this operation. This was a team effort and required close coordination, especially between the Department of Defense and our colleagues in the Federal Bureau of Investigation. They are heroes and continue to inspire all of us by their bravery and service to our nation.

Yes, I agree. They are true heroes -and mostly unsung ones at that.

Live Long and Prosper....

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