On October 3rd, 20 years ago today, American Special Operations Forces were sent to capture or kill Mohammad Farrah Aidid. Aidid was a Somali Warlord and was accused of stealing provisions from UN aid for himself and his militia and selling off what they did not take. The following post is a first-hand account of the mission from a member of the 3rd Battalion 75th Ranger Regiment. He asked to remain anonymous out of respect for his fallen brothers and the safety of his family.
Unit: Bravo Co 3rd Battalion 75th Ranger Regiment
Rank: E7 Sgt. First Class
Age at Time of Mission: 34
We were sent to capture or kill General Aidid in order to stop him and his crew from stealing food and supplies from humanitarian aid, which he was keeping for himself and his gang and then selling for profit.
Although Aidid did live to fight another day, we captured 21 of his lieutenants and stopped him from stealing the humanitarian aid. And the number of American losses was far less than that of enemy losses.
All we did was prepare for that mission time and time again. We were sitting on ready. Everyone was ready to go and excited, but we knew they were ready to go too. We ran practice missions all the time and we knew it was coming; we just didn’t know what time it would be. We were used to running night operations so when we found out from our source it would be at 3:00pm in the afternoon it messed things up. Of course when we got there all hell broke loose.
Everyone that I fought beside were the best they could be. I give credit to God and the men I was with. It wasn’t anything I did. I was glad that I came home: although there has been times since that I have felt guilty. We never know who God chooses to take or who he chooses to leave. Words don’t describe the guys I served with. They are, without a doubt, the very best American soldiers God ever made. The brotherhood I had with them was stronger than any family. We are all brothers. They were the greatest soldiers that ever wore a uniform for the United States of America.