We Got Him!: A Memoir of the Hunt and Capture of Saddam Hussein

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When U.S. forces exterminated Osama bin Laden in Pakistan on May 1, 2011, the world cheered not only the death of the 9/11 terrorist mastermind but the unmatched might, skill, and perseverance of America’s military elite. It was a brilliant example of history repeating itself in the most positive way; less than a decade earlier, the capture of Saddam Hussein, a triumph of military strategy in and of itself, opened the door for the most recent and essential victory in the War on Terror. Here is the riveting ...

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We Got Him!: A Memoir of the Hunt and Capture of Saddam Hussein

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Overview

When U.S. forces exterminated Osama bin Laden in Pakistan on May 1, 2011, the world cheered not only the death of the 9/11 terrorist mastermind but the unmatched might, skill, and perseverance of America’s military elite. It was a brilliant example of history repeating itself in the most positive way; less than a decade earlier, the capture of Saddam Hussein, a triumph of military strategy in and of itself, opened the door for the most recent and essential victory in the War on Terror. Here is the riveting account of a grand human saga that tested every element of character and fortitude: the six-month manhunt that ended at a hole on the bank of the Tigris River, and the blow-by-blow plays of the actual raids that netted Saddam, culminating in the electrifying quote heard around the globe, “We Got Him!”

No other event in Operation Iraqi Freedom caught the attention of the world like the hunt for and capture of Saddam Hussein. Square in the middle of the search, living in Saddam’s hometown of Tikrit, were Lt. Col. Steve Russell and his men of the 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Division. Packed with rare photos and insider information, We Got Him! chronicles the day-by-day search and the successes and dead ends as regular and special-operations soldiers tore into Saddam’s social networks. This is the definitive account of this major historical event and of the sacrifice that made it happen. It also provides a rare look at the enemy side of the action. With his extensive journal notes, combat reports, and painstaking research, Steve Russell has preserved the story as only someone who lived the experience can do.

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Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
The story of Saddam Hussein's capture. The events in December 2003 produced headlines and predictions that they would end the increasingly bloody insurgency. This didn't happen, and the event is now considered a historical footnote. However, it was not a footnote in the career of former Lt. Col. Russell, who provides an account of his battalion's actions from May 2003 to February 2004, with frequent asides to express personal beliefs. According to Russell, after Hussein's defeat he went underground to orchestrate a bitter insurgency designed to wear down American forces. It was moving into high gear when Russell assumed command in Hussein's hometown of Tikrit. The author is clearly a professional soldier focused on crushing the enemy, and he writes a nearly day-by-day chronicle of patrols, raids, skirmishes and intelligence gathering as his men fought insurgents while tracking and capturing Hussein's high-level henchmen and eventually the dictator himself. Sadly, according to the author, al-Qaeda immediately stepped in to take over the insurgency, which persisted for many years. Russell credits prayer with facilitating the capture. A dedicated officer, he loves his men, agonizes when they suffer, praises God when they're spared, never doubts that they fought to defend America, and does not hide his contempt for those who felt otherwise: liberals, the media, antiwar demonstrators and spineless politicians as well as any officer who has not experienced battle. Readers not put off by the author's piety and unqualified patriotism will encounter a vivid, nuts-and-bolts account of small-unit tactics during the early years of the Iraq insurgency.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780983410522
  • Publisher: Deeds Publishing
  • Publication date: 1/1/2011

Meet the Author

Steve Russell served twenty-one years in the United States Army as an infantry officer, deploying operationally to Kosovo, Kuwait, Afghanistan, and Iraq. During his command he was widely covered during the first year of the Iraq war by Time, CNN, Fox News, ABC, CBS, NBC, AP, and Reuters. He and his unit were featured in BBC Panorama's Saddam on the Run documentary as well as Discovery's Ace in the Hole. He has also been the subject of numerous books and publications. Russell retired from the Army in 2006 and lives in Oklahoma with his wife and five children, where he serves in the Oklahoma State Senate.

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Table of Contents

Foreword xi

Prologue 1

1 Tigris 5

2 Towns 9

Trek to Tikrit 9

Commuters and Captives 13

Wake-up Call 18

A Fighter to the End 27

Keeping Tikrit Beautiful 31

To the Colors 33

High Power 36

3 Tips 41

We Have Some Information 41

The Enemy Is Still Here 46

You Don't Know Jack 49

Dolphins and Sharks 52

Ace of Diamonds 55

Queens and Cash 59

Transitions 67

Borders, Reporters, and Orders 71

Fireworks 78

Not Too Shabby 81

Pepsis, Rubber Boats, and Graffiti 84

The Strong Man 88

The Return 91

4 Tactics 99

The Hunters 99

Salt Lick, Catfish Traps, and Spawns 101

Brothers, Brother-in-Law 106

Continued Success, Discontinued Support 116

Tough Guy 119

Paying Us Back, Paying Our Respects 125

Rats' Nests and Rocks 130

Crackers and Kalashnikovs 134

5 Targets 139

Raids and Rocket Grenades 139

Duck, Duck, Goose 150

Bombs and Bombast 156

A Free and Democratic Iraq 176

Taps 182

As Long As We Have Breath 194

Raids and Rotor Blades 211

Good Mission, Bad Timing 221

Jagged Fence, Crooked Town 230

Fire Island 241

The Beer Hall Faithful 252

Draining the Swamp 258

Faithful Efforts 265

A Sense of Mortality 271

Holy Months and Milk Monitors 276

6 Tyrant 283

The Race 283

The Boy 291

Fat Man, Firefights, and Firefighting 299

Phone Calls 307

Red Dawn 316

Jackpot 319

Cesar Romero 324

7 Tumult 329

Fallout 329

Uppity 340

For Another Day 342

Cucumbers and Christmas 347

Cracking the Whips 351

Get It Done 354

New Year, Old Fight 359

Death Throes 365

How's Business? 369

8 Torment 379

Fighting for a Nation 379

A Chance to Say "Goodbye" 388

Inside, Outside 400

Long Beards 406

9 Triumph 415

Rat Patrol 415

Wish They Were You 421

Saddam's Social Network 429

Task Force 1-22 Infantry "Regulars" Order of Battle 431

Task Force Roster 433

Author's Note 443

Index 449

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 3 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 7, 2012

    Powerfully Written

    Ignore the snobbish Kirkus review above and listen to the Wall Street Journal, Army Magazine and New York Journal of Books instead. This is a powerfully written book. As General Ray Odierno states in his forward, this is the most accurate account of the capture to date. You will not be disappointed.


    "With We Got Him! Steve Russell has written a superb combat memoir that immediately equals such contemporaries as Nathaniel Fick (One Bullet Away) and Craig Mullaney (The Unforgiving Minute). It may even rival classics like Hal Moore and Joseph Galloway’s, We Were Soldiers Once . . . And Young."

    -- Kenneth Allard, New York Journal of Books

    "An insider's story of the surprise tips, Napoleonic tactics and dramatic end of the manhunt in Iraq."

    – Wall Street Journal

    “Superbly written in plain English with asides that ring true. In short, Russell tells a good yarn about good people, both Americans and Iraqis, in Saddam’s stronghold, Tikrit. This good book is well worth buying.”

    -- ARMY Magazine

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2014

    Her Prisoner

    (long peice of story/part 1)

    Mason woke up at the sound of the window banging closed.<p> He got up to lock the doors then layed down again, resting his head on his pillow. He closed his eyes and dozed. Mason then felt strong hands grip his shoulders and before he could scream, a hand landed on his mouth, muffleing his crys for help. The person draged him from his bed to the ground, hitting his head on the wooden floor. Hard. Then evreything went black.<p> Mason groaned and blinked open his eyes, dizzy from the hit in the head. He tried to move but his arms and legs were bound, along with a gag in his mouth. Mason gave up and sighed. Moments later a weird, snake like feeling crawled up his leg. Mason tried franticly to see it or shake it off but it was already up his pant leg to his thigh. He let out a muffled cry as he felt another one start up his other leg. They reached his waist and pulled down. There was a ripping sound and soon he was in his gym shorts underneath. The things, tentecles, continued up his stomach and to his shoulders. Seconds later his shirt was gone. He shivered as they continued up and wound around his neck. He swollowed and a whimpering sound came out. He felt a hand on his shoulder and looked up to see a girl.<p> She wore a black mask as if going to a dance. Mason started to squirm as she picked him up like a little kid and put him on a bed. She snapped her fingers and more thick, long tentecles slithered onto him. He struggled until a squeeze around the neck stoped him. The girl smiled and left, leaveing mason in a bed of tentecles. <p>One of them went into mason's back between the shoulder blades like a shot. His muffled scream was choked away by the tentecle around his neck. Suddenly his fear and anger melted into a strange peace. The tentecle that was giveing him the injection slithered away, along with the rest of the tentecles. <p> Mason couldnt move. He just layed there, stareing at the wall in front of him. He couldnt move at all, even though his mind screamed to get the heck out.<p> to be continued.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 15, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

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