Rescues: Surgical Strike

Surgical Strike

Vowing to die rather than live under Fidel Castro's regime, Cuban inmates at Alabama's Talladega Federal Correctional Institution took over the prison's maximum-security Alpha unit on Aug. 21 and seized nine hostages. Thirty-two inmates, among the 125,000 Cubans who fled in 1980, were facing imminent deportation for crimes committed in the U.S. As the 10-day siege dragged on, & the heavily armed prisoners grew increasingly desperate and threatened to kill three of their hostages.

Just before dawn last Friday, a SWAT team of more than 200 federal officers lobbed two explosives into the Alpha unit, blew the doors open and rushed...

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