2011
01.17

The Guardian
On the 20th anniversary of the start of the 1991 Gulf war, politicians, soldiers and a journalist look back
16 January 2011

Andy McNab is the pseudonym of a former member of the SAS and author of Bravo Two Zero, the story of a failed special forces mission. He received the distinguished conduct medal.

“My most vivid memory of the Gulf war is the morning of 24 January when the eight-man SAS patrol I was commanding, during a covert mission north-west of Baghdad, was compromised by a seven-year-old Iraqi boy. The boy was herding goats in the middle of the desert, and happened to pick out the one tiny wadi where our patrol planned to hide up until last light, and stumbled upon us. I remember his eyes grew wide as saucers in shock and fear. After a split second, he then ran off screaming and shouting, towards the Iraqi anti-aircraft gun crew stationed close by. This resulted in the deaths of three of our patrol members, with four more of us captured and tortured by the Iraqis. Only one patrol member escaped. Being captured and tortured has had a profound effect on the way I now conduct my life. I feel both lucky and guilty about being one of those that survived. But having come through the torture and the mock executions, I endeavour never to take life for granted, and always try to do my best to help others who have experienced war and are still suffering.”

For full article go to The Guardian