MOGADISHU, Somalia (AP) — Held captive since last fall, an ailing American woman and a Danish man will soon be safely on their way home after a bold, dark-of-night rescue by U.S. Navy SEALs. The commandos slipped into a Somali encampment, shot and killed nine captors and whisked the hostages to freedom.
The raid's success was welcome news for the hostages and their families, for the military and for President Barack Obama, who was delivering his State of the Union speech and beginning a five-state tour as the mission wrapped up. He did not mention it in his address but dropped a hint upon arriving in the House chamber by telling Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, "Good job tonight."
It was the second splashy SEAL Team 6 success in less than a year, following last May's killing of Osama bin Laden in Pakistan.
The SEALs encountered some degree of resistance from the kidnappers at the encampment, two U.S. officials said, and there was a firefight during an approximately 1- to 1 1/2-hour operation.
One defense official said it was likely that the SEALs killed the kidnappers rather than capture them because they encountered armed resistance or the threat of resistance.