Stephen Farrell, the New York Times journalist kidnapped by the Taliban in Afghanistan, has given his account of what happened and the rescue mission in which his Afghan aide Sultan Munadi, an interpreter and journalist, and a British soldier were killed.
Farrell writes of the moment of his rescue: "I lay on the ground, gave my name and newspaper and pointed to where Sultan was lying behind me, telling them I thought he had been shot.
The body was lying motionless in the ditch where I had seen him go down. I hoped he had dropped and was lying still. I knew it wasn’t the case. They told me they had his picture and would look for him, then dragged me away past the house across a rutted field and toward the helicopter landing zone.
"It was over. Sultan was dead. He had died trying to help me, right up to the very last seconds of his life.
"There were some celebrations among the mainly British soldiers on the aircraft home, which soon fell silent. It later emerged that one of the rescue party was also dead, mortally wounded during the raid. His blood-soaked helmet was in front of me throughout the flight. I thanked everyone who was still alive to thank. It wasn’t, and never will be, enough."
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