What we lose in the Shadows (A father and daughter True Crime Podcast)

Saved by SIX: A Rescue Mission in Somalia

October 17, 2023 Jameson Keys & Caroline
Saved by SIX: A Rescue Mission in Somalia
What we lose in the Shadows (A father and daughter True Crime Podcast)
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What we lose in the Shadows (A father and daughter True Crime Podcast)
Saved by SIX: A Rescue Mission in Somalia
Oct 17, 2023
Jameson Keys & Caroline

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Ready for an edge-of-your-seat episode?  We traverse the stormy seas and dangerous landscapes of Somalia. Pirates, child soldiers, land mines, and kidnapping stories are not for the faint of heart. We delve into the terrifying reality of these threats, putting a spotlight on the brave aid worker, Jessica Buchanan. Jessica endured an unimaginable three-month ordeal of captivity at the hands of Somali pirates. Her story is a testament to human resilience.

The thrilling climax of our episode is the recounting of the high-stakes rescue mission by the US Special Operations Forces. Navigating treacherous conditions and medical emergencies, the Navy SEALs and SEAL Team Six undertake a daring operation to liberate Jessica from her captors. Her story doesn't end here though, as we explore Jessica's post-rescue life, her advocacy for military families and the crucial role of government in ensuring the safety of its citizens abroad. Remember to reach out to us on our Instagram at What We Lose in the Shadows with suggestions for upcoming cases. Brace yourself for this riveting journey!

Jessica Buchanan's long journey home-CBS News 1/19/2014
The rescue of Jessica Buchanan CBS News 5/12/2013
New York Post 1/25/2012

Contact us at: whatweloseintheshadows@gmail.com



Background music by Michael Shuller Music

Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Send us a Text Message.

Ready for an edge-of-your-seat episode?  We traverse the stormy seas and dangerous landscapes of Somalia. Pirates, child soldiers, land mines, and kidnapping stories are not for the faint of heart. We delve into the terrifying reality of these threats, putting a spotlight on the brave aid worker, Jessica Buchanan. Jessica endured an unimaginable three-month ordeal of captivity at the hands of Somali pirates. Her story is a testament to human resilience.

The thrilling climax of our episode is the recounting of the high-stakes rescue mission by the US Special Operations Forces. Navigating treacherous conditions and medical emergencies, the Navy SEALs and SEAL Team Six undertake a daring operation to liberate Jessica from her captors. Her story doesn't end here though, as we explore Jessica's post-rescue life, her advocacy for military families and the crucial role of government in ensuring the safety of its citizens abroad. Remember to reach out to us on our Instagram at What We Lose in the Shadows with suggestions for upcoming cases. Brace yourself for this riveting journey!

Jessica Buchanan's long journey home-CBS News 1/19/2014
The rescue of Jessica Buchanan CBS News 5/12/2013
New York Post 1/25/2012

Contact us at: whatweloseintheshadows@gmail.com



Background music by Michael Shuller Music

Speaker 1:

Good morning and welcome to what we Lose in the Shadows.

Speaker 2:

A father, daughter true crime podcast.

Speaker 1:

My name is Jameson Keyes.

Speaker 2:

I'm Caroline. Good morning everyone. I hope everyone is having a good start to the week and it'll only get better from here, right?

Speaker 1:

Absolutely Fingers crossed. So, yeah, did you have a great weekend?

Speaker 2:

I did. How about you?

Speaker 1:

Well, I certainly had a exciting weekend, a very eventful weekend. Last week I was running around here, I was writing, I was trying to get a couple of things accomplished for work and suddenly I heard people yelling nearby in the hallway and I kind of was trying to ignore all that and then some of them started pounding on the door and said there's a fire, there's a fire. So it's funny what you grab. It's funny what you think is important, right? So I grabbed on my way out. I was annoyed that I had to leave, but I grabbed on my way out. I grabbed my computer bag, which had my laptop and all the stuff that we used for recording the podcast.

Speaker 1:

I had my wallet and my keys, and then I grabbed a fire extinguisher and a picture of you and your brother.

Speaker 2:

And that cracked me up too, because literally we have all the pictures on our phones.

Speaker 1:

I don't know, it just is funny. Well, so I had no, there's no logic to it.

Speaker 2:

it's just in the spur of the moment, but there is because you grabbed your PC.

Speaker 1:

Well, yeah, I guess the important things that I thought were important at that point A picture of you and your brother yes, absolutely. So. Those are the things that I held in high. I'm important to that level. But then this dumbest thing I did was I actually on the way out? I locked the door because that's what you want to do when there's a fire in the building. So my backpack a picture of you guys, a fire extinguisher, and I ran out outside and really there's really a couple of heroes here, because one of the gentlemen by the name of Toby Toby was walking his dog, I believe and he noticed the fire, smelled the smoke and then started pounding on everyone's door. By the time I got down to the floor, so, sweet.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, absolutely. And by the time I got down on the next level, there was we'll call him Semper Fyme Dave, and Dave was actually. He was trying to knock on the door where the fire was starting and you've seen this stuff in movies before, but Dave kind of rears back and kicks the door and the frame kind of adjusts and then he turned around and he, like donkey, kicked the door and knocked it open and he started using this fire extinguisher to put out part of the fire right. And then, for some odd reason, I start to walk in the place with the second fire Ridiculous ridiculous, absolutely.

Speaker 2:

And his no more walking into any dangerous situation.

Speaker 1:

And thank God, this guy went into a whole different, like you know, military mode. He fires his left arm out in front of me and said you don't walk into a fire. And I'm like, well, that's true, that's a good idea. But he said, give me your fire extinguisher. I said yes, sir, and I did it off to him. But he used the second fire extinguisher and of course it was too much. At that point the fire had spread too much. So fortunately the then we kind of got out there because we thought there was someone in there. The fire department got there in about five or six minutes after that they were able to put the fire out. They were able to to get the lady out that was in the building. So lots of excitement. I got to spend some time at your apartment.

Speaker 2:

Yes, you did. It was nice to see you, even though I felt bad that you were kind of like kicked out of your apartment because of the air quality yeah.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, it was. It was not good, right. I normally monitor my air quality in some way around two, three, four, you know some sort of a nice manageable range, but it was like 224 that night, so I thought it was like 400. Are you right, 424.

Speaker 2:

400.

Speaker 1:

Crazy, so not not exactly breathable. So anyways, all things are good. It didn't really affect my apartment. The air quality is back down. I don't have any real you know problems there. So all things good. But thank you, toby, and thank you today very much.

Speaker 2:

Yes, thank you for keeping my dad safe and everyone else, despite himself.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, oh, my gosh, thank you for not letting my dad walk into a fire at the at his age especially Come on now, you do not need to be hot.

Speaker 2:

No, no, I, literally I try to make him walk down with the railing, holding onto the railing, because he's getting older.

Speaker 1:

I refuse to do that, yes.

Speaker 2:

Ridiculous. I'm like it's so easy, it's so simple. I do it most of the time.

Speaker 1:

Great, that's fantastic.

Speaker 2:

Yes, why don't you follow in the footsteps?

Speaker 1:

That'll be my New Year's resolution. I'll start using the hand raise.

Speaker 2:

It's not January yet. You could just start now I have a few months of freedom before I turn into an old man. Oh, my goodness, you've already turned into an old man. At this point, you need to use the handrail. To all the old men out there and old women and everyone you know what. Just old doesn't even need to be a part of it. To everyone, use the handrail. Today's trigger warnings are kidnapping and imprisonment.

Speaker 1:

Okay. So, carrie, this is, we're kind of breaking the mold a little bit with this particular case. We're going to talk about missing persons and really murder cases and that sort of thing. This is going to be a little different. We're going to be talking a little bit about piracy.

Speaker 2:

Like on the web.

Speaker 1:

Wow no. Piracy isn't like Like bring me the head of Jack Sparrow Piracy.

Speaker 2:

Okay, alright, I'm going to leave it for now. Bye, for when I interpret these. How am I gonna interpret that? I, yeah, yes, thanks for that. Okay, you're welcome. Also, if you know anyone deaf or hard of hearing that is interested in listening to our podcast, I have it available for the eyes via ASL on our YouTube. Fantastic. What we lose in the shadows Right absolutely Podcast. What we lose in the shadows podcast on YouTube, fantastic, right.

Speaker 1:

So yeah, this is a story and like as a piracy in terms of maybe you remember some stories recently from a country called Somalia in Africa. Right, there was a movie called Black Hawk Down and it was about the Somali pirates and this air crew being shot down in Somalia during the Clinton administration and then, not so long, ago I was what's.

Speaker 2:

when was the Clinton administration?

Speaker 1:

When you were born.

Speaker 2:

How would I remember that?

Speaker 1:

Well, 2000 is when it switched, so you would have been four.

Speaker 1:

Anyways, okay, well, no, I do not actually so and there's been a more recent movie named called Captain Phillips and that was starring Tom Hanks, and it's kind of about in Somalia. It's a very poor country, it's a very war-torn country. It's down near the Horn of Africa, right? And so some of the people in Somalia act in these ways to try to get money to survive and that sort of thing, and they do these things like, for example, what they used to do in the case of Captain Phillips.

Speaker 1:

He was a container ship captain that was trying to sail down near the Horn of Africa and what happens is these Somali pirates come out in these small, fast like zodiac boats and small attack boats and they'll try to climb on board these large cargo ships or oil tankers Without being noticed. Well, no, they want to be noticed, right, they're on a faster ship. They come up and there's like 10, 15 of them or something like that in these little attack ships and they'll try to throw ropes up or grappling hooks and try to scamper onto the ship, and the reason being they're armed, they're heavily armed In some cases they have AK-47s, they have RPG missiles and things like that. So they're not just some little thing that you can just basically just ignore.

Speaker 2:

Okay, yeah, no, definitely can't ignore a gun.

Speaker 1:

No, and they get on the ships and then they take control of the cabins and then they try to extort the container companies, the governments, the oil companies for money to release the ship. Now ships have kind of evolved because of this. Piracy's been a thing for hundreds and hundreds of years but they're evolved. They didn't have these crazy weapons like RPGs and things.

Speaker 2:

You know, I never really thought about like pirates other than like a cartoon or like an old-timey pirate. So that's interesting, I haven't thought about this ever.

Speaker 1:

So yeah. So basically, companies have started putting water cannons on the side of their ship so they can like. They're like a fire hose so they can kind of shoot at these people. And they didn't non-lethally, you know, they try to fill their boats up with water and try to make them break off and retreat, oh my goodness.

Speaker 2:

No, I mean, that's a good.

Speaker 1:

Some companies have gone to putting, you know, actually armed people, armed security guards on the ships with like rifles and guns too. But that's changed lately because international naval forces from different countries have signed on to patrol those wars, and so that forced the Somali pirates to change their tactics a little bit. So rather than taking hostages at sea, they began taking aid workers and wealthy Western countries people that are visiting Somalia and trying to help Yikes. Jessica Buchanan was 32 years old then and she was a teacher. She had signed up with a Danish company and what they were doing is they were trying to teach children in Somalia how to avoid and how to spot land mines. Wow, so to that's dark, yeah, because there's so many kids that walk around and they don't know what a land mine looks like, and then they get hurt or harmed or that's horrible, yeah.

Speaker 2:

So why do they have land mines everywhere? Because, Somalia.

Speaker 1:

The government broke up and they broke into all these warring factions, all these warlords that are kind of ruling the country right.

Speaker 2:

Men Men.

Speaker 1:

Yes, largely men.

Speaker 2:

I don't believe that one of those is a woman, huh.

Speaker 1:

No, there are, there are some women, there are women warlords. Not warlords, but some of these people are. Some women are actually participants. Children, are some children or two.

Speaker 2:

Well, that's like forced Right. For the most part, Women can't consent to being an army.

Speaker 1:

Right. So Jessica Buchanan was 32 years old when she was teaching in Somalia and she was working with a fellow co-worker named Paul Thisted, and he was Danish.

Speaker 2:

Was she Danish?

Speaker 1:

No, she's American. Oh okay, yeah, so when they were leaving one day from one section and Jessica had recently been married and that sort of thing. So they live in a fairly safe part of Somalia.

Speaker 2:

Who is that? Her husband?

Speaker 1:

Her husband oh okay, okay. But no, Paul was actually a co-worker.

Speaker 2:

Paul's, just her co worker. Just yeah, her husband. Where's her husband in America?

Speaker 1:

No, he was in Somalia too.

Speaker 2:

I was gonna say in Danish In Danish no. Oh, my God.

Speaker 1:

In Denmark maybe.

Speaker 2:

Get me a book, get me a history book.

Speaker 1:

So one day they were getting into a car and they had a driver and they had like a sort of like a semi secure vehicle. So when they get out to the car this one day there was a different driver in there and Jessica was a little like this isn't the normal guy, right? Yes, but the man kind of wasn't impressed or worried by it. So they got in the car.

Speaker 2:

Who's the man her co-worker? Paul, yeah, but it's interesting, though, because I do have a best friend who part of her family is from West Africa, and so when she visits she does have armed bodyguards with her, because her family is kind of higher up.

Speaker 1:

In West Africa.

Speaker 2:

In West Africa. Yeah, so, because it can be very dangerous in some parts of the country, and so, yeah, she described it as really intense. But to have a new driver, I'm sure is like unnerving.

Speaker 1:

Right.

Speaker 2:

Why is it all upset the man? Did he just not notice, or was he in on it?

Speaker 1:

No, no, no. He just didn't notice or didn't think it was a threat. So, as they were leaving, they drove just a little bit of ways down the road and the car was surrounded by another car that pulled in front of it and so on, and then a man jumped out with an AK-47 and he started pounding. Then different men got out of this vehicle and started pounding on the windows and stuff and said open the door, open the door. The driver who may have been in on it probably wasn't on it.

Speaker 1:

The driver opened the door and let these men in, and suddenly Jessica was surrounded by these men in this vehicle.

Speaker 2:

My worst nightmare? Yeah, one of them.

Speaker 1:

She noticed that they were all heavily armed, they all had AK-47s Terrifying. And she heard someone in the back and she thought it was a much higher, shriller voice and she thought my goodness, is there a woman here? She looked around and it wasn't a woman. It was a child, a 10-year-old little boy Doing what he was, holding a rifle. That's horrible. He had ammunition like kind of draped around his neck, and so on.

Speaker 1:

And Jessica was just sort of like this is unbelievable. This is so ironic. I've come here to help save children from harm.

Speaker 2:

Oh, but the child is not at fault.

Speaker 1:

Well, no, the child is still at fault. No at 10.

Speaker 2:

They don't know what they're doing.

Speaker 1:

I understand, but still the child has a rifle in his hand. The child is still there.

Speaker 2:

That's just the way that he grew up.

Speaker 1:

It's not his fault that he was in that situation, though I know but it is ironic that she came there to save children and now she's being kind of threatened by a child with a gun, whether it's his idea or not. Yeah, Anyway, she told CBS 60 Minutes that she.

Speaker 2:

Oh, so she survived.

Speaker 1:

She said I figured I was going to be raped or killed or maybe both, I would assume both. And she started really having. She really started having really being upset by this whole thing because she thought I'm just married. She thought I'm just married, I haven't even had a chance to have children yet.

Speaker 1:

So, anyways, they drove fast, they drove through these neighborhoods, they drove over these bumpy things and she was being tossed and bouncing into the window, bouncing on the ceiling and stuff like that, and just living in mortal fear that she was going to be killed at any given point. So they drove for Maz and Maz in three hours in fact, and then they ended up out in the wilderness. They realized that they had an American and they took Jessica and Paul out of the truck and made them kneel down. She thought at that point okay, this is it, I'm going to be shot now.

Speaker 1:

But, she found some little bit of grace in the fact that she thought at least they're not going to rape me first.

Speaker 2:

Honestly, that would be my thought. Honestly, isn't that fucking sad it is, it truly is.

Speaker 1:

And she was terrified. And then they seemed there. They were just kneeling there in front of these guys for what seemed to be a long time and just she was just waiting every second to hear that that last sound.

Speaker 2:

I can't even imagine that's horrible.

Speaker 1:

But instead of that, all of a sudden, she heard from behind her them say sleep now. Yeah, okay, sure, I'll just sleep. So, but she could, because she was terrified and she was exhausted and it was you know. So she laid down and she went to sleep and she slept through the night. When she woke up the next day, there was one of these, these warlords, sitting there and she said she said, are you, are you going to kill us? And the man was like no, no, no, no, we're not going to kill you, money, we just want money. So they figured they have these two foreigners, one of which is an American, so they see a jackpot. So they were taken, like I said, to this deserted area. And you know, they were threatened all the time. They were telling me you know, if you don't behave, then we will kill you. So what these, what these armed men wanted was money, and they wanted $45 million $45 million.

Speaker 1:

Yes, upon their capture. Okay, this Danish organization sprung into action. This is not the first time they've had to deal with this. So one of the first things they do is they cut off all the phones. They cut off her husband's phone, they cut off the agency's phone, they cut off the school's phone, so there's only one phone that still worked, and it went straight to this negotiator, right.

Speaker 2:

Wow. So that's, that's one of their things that they do so so so Jessica's phone could not be, couldn't call anyone except for for the negotiator, her family, her friends. That's really interesting.

Speaker 1:

Well it's, it's a tactic. They want to make yeah, they want to make sure that. Well, they provided her with the phone right, so they knew what all the numbers were. Gotcha, so they cut it off and the only thing that worked was this one number that was to the negotiator.

Speaker 2:

I wonder how people get into that kind of job.

Speaker 1:

That's a good question.

Speaker 2:

You know what I mean. If anyone's a negotiator wants to come on and talk to us about their job, I would love to hear.

Speaker 1:

Absolutely so. Upon the capture, the, the Danish council tried to negotiate with the captors and the council tried to get help from some of the Somali elders and leaders from that area to free the hostages.

Speaker 2:

But it didn't work.

Speaker 1:

The pirates also turned down a $1.5 million ransom offer.

Speaker 2:

Wow.

Speaker 1:

Bold yeah so during that time.

Speaker 2:

That's a lot of fucking money.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, because I think I read somewhere that for the number of men I think there were nine or 10 of them it would have been enough money for them to live on for the next 35 years, just. And you know, during the time they were transferred from location to location, you know the pirates wanted that $45 million right, so they kept them out in the open.

Speaker 2:

They kept them. Oh wait, so pirates can be land pirates.

Speaker 1:

Right, that's what I'm saying. They used to be, they. Their tactic used to be to capture these vehicles. But now that the US military, the American marines and the and the Navy and other nations Navy are patrolling that area, they can't do that anymore because you know they're going to run into a much bigger fish, right?

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

So, yeah, days they were, they were kept out in the open. They were kept, you know, not in buildings, they were kept under trees, you know, and they would move every couple of days, because these guys are really paranoid, and so on. So this went on for months right.

Speaker 1:

They made them record, basically pleas for the US government, for the Danish company, for the American government, to, to, to answer them, to help them right, probably in the 30 or 45th day. They were kept out there for three or four months, right, jessica started to look not so well, right, and even the way that they were kept, like they were kept, like I said, under these trees. They had a blanket, you know. They had to go to the bathroom, like just behind a tree or whatever, right, right, so, and they were fed, like just enough to keep them alive, like Jessica said, that they, you know they were kept under the tree for three or four months but received like one small can of tuna and a piece of bread every, maybe every other day, and so, jessica, it probably weren't giving enough water and some because Jessica noticed she was developing like either a urinary tract or some sort of a kidney infection.

Speaker 2:

That could be caused by a UTI, though. Yeah it's so common I can't even imagine being kept in those conditions yeah exactly. It's so hard with our like anatomy. It's just, it's honestly a poor structure design.

Speaker 1:

Oh, wow.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, it's really sad and it's interesting, because men or people with that have like a longer urethra, so that's why you guys never get UTIs very often.

Speaker 1:

Is that interesting? That's very interesting.

Speaker 2:

There you go. Just a little bit of health tips with Caroline. Female anatomy for you.

Speaker 1:

So but yeah, so it was obvious in the last recording that they made that Jessica's health was declining. So then they, then it got really elevated up the ladder. It went actually to then president Barack Obama.

Speaker 2:

That she had a UTI.

Speaker 1:

That she was being held captive, she was in danger and she might die within a few weeks. Oh, okay, yeah.

Speaker 2:

And so he oh yeah, it can spread quickly. It could be. Honestly. I mean I'm no medical doctor, but you know that stuff is really serious, so you can get into your blood and cause a blood infection. Yeah, it can be. I mean, you could become delirious and have a fever of 105.

Speaker 1:

Right, and then, and of course, they had no medicine really, and so, oh, this is horrible, and Jessica was just like doubled over with pain. She couldn't really. She was just in very, very bad shape. So president Obama actually found out about it and so he gave the green light for them to start a special operations Wow and potentially go over there and rescue them.

Speaker 2:

Wow.

Speaker 1:

So in January of 2012, almost four months after they were captured, the US special operations forces pinned down location of where the hostages were being held. According to sources familiar with the raid, the hostages were guarded by between nine and 12 pirates Wow that's a lot, yeah, and they were in the northern part of Somalia.

Speaker 1:

The raid force was compiled of several different United States operations forces stationed near Camp Lemon, near Djibouti, as well as others who were aboard ships and off the coast. They were also elements of the United States special warfare's group, also known as SEAL Team Six. Wow. And so on January 25th, president Obama was told that it was gonna be. He was really getting close to when she was gonna be, really beyond, maybe beyond home. That's intense. And it also was gonna be a new moon, and what the new moon meant is that there was no moonlight.

Speaker 2:

Oh God, it was gonna be extremely dark.

Speaker 1:

But that's a good thing, because of the way these guys were gonna come in and rescue them. Wow, on the 25th, two dozen Navy SEALs jumped into the night from their C-130 Hercules. Now they did a halo jump, which means high altitude, so they jumped from where they had to put oxygen on right and they jumped and they fall, and they fall, and they fall for minutes too, so they don't see the parachutes pop up and people come in. So they did this really dangerous jump. At one point the men were jumping out of the plane and reached speeds of almost 120 miles an hour.

Speaker 2:

Sounds horrible.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and the worst thing was it was a cross when it was kind of a stormy night, so it would have canceled. More often than not they would have canceled the mission because it was so dangerous, but they were like no, we're going.

Speaker 2:

That's good, that's really great.

Speaker 1:

When they got to the small town of Cudado and landed in a remote area a few kilometers away from the compound where the pirates had them to the target operators from the Navy SEALs and SEAL Team 6, they traveled the rest of the way by foot, moving through the shadows very, very steady, very, very quiet, very, very slowly. Now they did have the advantage that they had night vision goggles on, so they just put very carefully, very quietly, one foot in front of the other and they kind of marched into the distance. Now, at first it sounds like, you know, they got to within a certain area. Suddenly the captors, the Somali captors, noticed or thought they heard something and they couldn't see anything. They didn't have the advantage of night vision, right, but they heard something.

Speaker 1:

So they got everyone up and they started to, you know, rack their big, large caliber machine guns and so on, and the SEALs were watching all this. Right Now they started firing indiscriminately kind of in the direction of the SEALs, oh my God. But the SEALs quickened their pace right, and they got to the area and then the Navy SEAL snipers took out the pirates that were manning machine guns. Wow, jessica at this point knew something was up again. She saw the terror on the face of some of these pirates, oh God.

Speaker 2:

And then just an enormous I don't know if I'd be like relieved, scared, probably both.

Speaker 1:

Right.

Speaker 2:

Like who's coming now? Right, absolutely.

Speaker 1:

So, and that's what she thought, Jessica thought my God, is this gonna be another group?

Speaker 2:

Worse Cause. There were worse groups that were oh yeah, I'm sure that would rape them Well, or just murder them because they were. American. I mean that too.

Speaker 1:

So the SEALs closed on them and basically this gunfight erupts. They noticed that, you know, there are two men standing over Jessica, right, and the snipers dispatch them fairly quickly with accurate fire. Now, suddenly Jessica, who's just on the ground, hunched over, she has a blanket pulled over her head and she's just basically you know, my God, now I can't survive this right.

Speaker 2:

Literally, I mean, she's already sick.

Speaker 1:

Right right.

Speaker 2:

I mean, I've had a low level UTI that's turned into a bladder infection and it is like one of the most painful things ever.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, absolutely, it's horrible so.

Speaker 2:

I can't even imagine she's been like this for weeks, For weeks. And she doesn't have any food, she doesn't have any comfort, like what. And she's seeing her coworker get like all disheveled and all abused, like it's just.

Speaker 1:

Oh, this must be like yeah she was terrified, she was absolutely terrified, very traumatic. And then suddenly, after the gunfire stopped, and then suddenly there were hands on her and she said oh my God, now, what is this? And then suddenly, but suddenly, they said Jessica.

Speaker 2:

And she's like Okay, so then she knew, Hopefully, hopefully. She had no idea, she had no idea what was going on.

Speaker 1:

But they said Jessica, and she noticed one thing she noticed was An American accent, an American accent.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, thank God.

Speaker 1:

And they said we're here with the American military and we're gonna take you home. So they kind of sester right. And one of the seals threw up when he sold her and ran away from the encampment right.

Speaker 2:

Did they save the other guy? Yes, okay, good, thank goodness.

Speaker 1:

But they got him away from there. They blew up the ammo dump for these pirates right, that's good. So at one point the Navy SEALs thought they heard something. So they created this human barrier to protect her. And she was still worried. She said what if they come? What if more come? So the one Navy SEAL said we're still team six and we'll kill anyone that tries to harm you now. So during that time there was nothing. They brought her food, they brought her water, they brought her medicine.

Speaker 2:

And the guy right and the guy right right right.

Speaker 1:

So yeah, so they brought them into this area, they surrounded them, they protected them, they gave them food and water, and they knew she was sick, they gave her medicine.

Speaker 2:

Oh, they brought antibiotics. That was very thought forward. Well, yeah, but because in addition to that was a medical professional who was like yeah, you're going to need to give these two her immediately.

Speaker 1:

Well, yeah, because they had not only SEAL team six members but they also had the Air Force paramilitary rescue unit and they had folks that were A doctor. They're not doctors, they're corpsmen, so, but they're medical professionals. So they took care of her.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, and they're like in between a nurse and a doctor, aren't they?

Speaker 1:

I believe so. I believe so. Okay, yeah, but yeah, so they brought these corpsmen in and they took care of them, and then they surrounded her when they thought it was dangerous, and so on.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, it's very beautiful.

Speaker 1:

And then. But they had to walk to where they were going to pick them up with the helicopters.

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

They got there and she said she was afraid. Even when the helicopters were landing she was afraid.

Speaker 2:

I mean, yeah, she's been traumatized this whole time, her and the guy Paul Paul.

Speaker 1:

Paul. So, anyways, as soon as the helicopters landed, the one guy said do you mean need me to carry you? And she said no, no, I don't. And she ran, she ran away from them. The funny thing is she ran toward the helicopter even though she was sick, even though she was hurt, she ran over, she didn't stop running until she jumped up on the helicopter and pushed herself against the back wall of the helicopter. And then, and only then, did she feel kind of safe, yeah, yeah. So during the flight, the SEAL team members got on their flight. She didn't know their names, they didn't know who they were, but there was, you know, military people on the helicopter with her and they handed her American flag and said welcome home, jessica. Now her co-worker, paul, for his part, said that the best thing that could have possibly happened.

Speaker 2:

Did they give him an American flag too? They did not.

Speaker 1:

Oh, oh Well, that would have been kind of sweet, but he said the best possible thing was that he was kidnapped with an American.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, that's one thing that America will do, the United States of America will do, is go after the people that get kidnapped or taken, or what have you in other countries.

Speaker 1:

Absolutely so. Yeah. So, Jessica, you know, was safe and so on. And then Paul was safe too, because they had someone protecting him as well during this whole period of time. Wow, and you know, later that night she was flown, you know, over to Djibouti and then off to Europe and she was reunited with her husband and her father. Her father, John, said he got a call from Barack Obama.

Speaker 2:

Wow, oh my goodness, can you imagine? I don't even know what I would think at that point, like I mean, that's beautiful, that's amazing.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

But like I'm so surprised that Barack Obama took that call himself, like that's really beautiful.

Speaker 1:

I'm not, I'm not surprised at all, really. No, I think that I think he was. I think he was that kind of guy.

Speaker 2:

Oh well, definitely, yeah, I feel like he was too, but I'm just surprised that he had the time to do that he calls him up and said hey, he said John, this is Barack Obama.

Speaker 1:

I'm calling because I have great news.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I mean, I mean I would honestly if someone, if one of the like, especially Barack Obama, but if a president called me, I would be like this is a prank call, but because of the situation, I guess he was just like oh my God, thank God.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, yeah, absolutely.

Speaker 2:

That's crazy.

Speaker 1:

So here's the here's the weird part. So the whole thing has been weird Well true, it's true, it's weird, although good. The pirates were asking for $45 million, right? Do you know how much it costs to pull off that operation?

Speaker 2:

$45 million $100 million.

Speaker 1:

Wow, because the people, the training they trained for two weeks, wow, the aircraft, the air fuel they had to get the people in there, the air, it cost that much money. But that should be a lesson, though. When governing is done right, I don't think anyone. There might be some people that say, oh, I was too much to spend on one person, but is it two human lives that we're trying to do something?

Speaker 2:

good, I feel like a lot of people would say that. Right, I feel like a lot of people would say that. But at the same time, it's like, like you said, like they're literally there trying to, like, help children detect landmines.

Speaker 1:

Right, I just wow. Princess Diana was very much into that cause too.

Speaker 2:

Into teaching children how to spot landmines.

Speaker 1:

Yes.

Speaker 2:

That is heartbreaking, that children are even in the situation where they're around landmines. I mean it's a lot of intense information that just happened in that. That was a lot.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, but yeah, when government is doing the right thing, especially with American citizens and so on, it can be. Costs can be sometimes no matter at all. The main thing is to bring the citizens home.

Speaker 2:

And I think that's great. No, I'm really happy that they went and got her and so she's okay, she healed. That's amazing.

Speaker 1:

She did and actually I think she, I think she has two children now. Oh, shortly thereafter they went back to the United States and started a family and Jessica is doing well. She speaks quite often at different military organizations. She's a very pro military person, obviously at this point and yeah, so she speaks at. They had these different you know fundraisers and things for you know SEAL team members, families that are aren't lucky enough to always make it home and things like that.

Speaker 2:

So yeah, that's, that's beautiful.

Speaker 1:

So that's the story of Jessica Buchanan.

Speaker 2:

Follow the show on whatever streaming site you're listening on.

Speaker 1:

And remember. All of the source material will be available in the show notes.

Speaker 2:

And follow us on Instagram at what we lose in the shadows and let us know if you want to hear a specific case.

Speaker 1:

Or if you just want to give us some feedback.

Speaker 2:

Okay, join us in the shadows next Tuesday. Bye.

Podcast
Piracy, Land Mines, and Kidnapping
Rescue From Somali Captivity
The Story of Jessica Buchanan