From SAS to Blood Diamond Wars
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Even by SAS standards this is the story of an outstanding warrior.
On the point of being demobbed from the SAS, Fred Marafono was recruited by David Stirling for his private security company. After Stirling’s death, Fred found himself in the midst of Sierra Leone’s Blood Diamond wars, and formed an unbreakable bonding with the country’s champion of democracy, Chief Hinga Norman, whose leadership and tragic death are integral to the story.
Fred was recruited by Simon Mann for the finest of all private military companies in Africa, Executive Outcomes. Fewer than two hundred of them defeated the rebels in their strongholds. Through political weakness, Executive Outcomes were made to leave the country, and chaos ensued. Committed men like Hinga Norman and British High Commissioner Peter Penfold saw that in the absence of military commitment from the west, only high caliber mercenaries would win the fight to restore democracy: three of them kept a vital air bridge open − ‘What God abandoned, these defended’. Fred’s final action was supporting the SAS in their brilliant hostage release, ‘Operation Barras.’
Peter Penfold sums it all up in the book’s foreword, writing of the, ‘confidence, trust and admiration I have for this remarkable man.’
- Pen and Sword, July 2011
Pen and Sword
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