State senator talks about his role in Saddam Hussein's capture
Updated Jul 31, 2013 at 8:25 AM
Republican state Sen. Mark Green told fascinating tales about interrogating Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein when he attended the Wilson County Conservative Republicans meeting Saturday morning at Logan's Roadhouse.
He represents District 22 and has a past career in the Army and as president of Align MD, a Clarksville-based emergency room staffing company
"I went to West Point and always thought I would be an Army infantry man," said Green.
When his father had a serious throat condition and spent 45 days in the intensive care unit, Green decided he wanted to be a doctor and the Army sent him to medical school.
He described being part of the 160th Special Operations Unit and how he was part of the 2003 mission that captured Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein. The night they captured Hussein, Green was assigned to sit with him throughout the first 24 hours of his capture. This night is the subject of a book he published two years ago called "A Night with Saddam."
He said he happened upon the assignment, but ended up asking Hussein questions for six hours.
"It was an amazing experience," he said.
He described the dictator as "incredibly full of himself."
"He asked what direction Mecca was," said Green. "He then prayed in that direction like Muslims do, but he never did bow. To not bow is to basically saying I'm equal to God. He thought he was equal to God."
Green asked him why he invaded Kuwait.
"He told me all civilization comes from the Tigris River,"said Green. "And that he was leader of Iraq and that he was ruler of everyone."
Greeen talked about a mission he was on when Hussein's son's "fought to the death."
He said Hussein surrendered. Green said his career is book-ended by his involvement with the capture of Hussein and the death of NFL football star Pat Tillman.
Tillman was killed in the sands of Afghanistan during the time the United States was trying to capture Osama Bin Laden. It was by "friendly fire."
"He gave up a million dollar contract to sacrifice and serve his country," said Green.
Green said he got out of the Army in 2006 and was asked by Ron Ramsey to run for state senator. He said he visited West Point and it was "divine intervention" that prompted him to run for senate.
He said he was at the foot of Gen. Douglas MacArthur's statue when he saw the words, "duty, honor, country."
"It hit me like a ton of bricks," he said. "It was my duty."
Green reviewed several bills he's introduced, including one that gives veterans a $10,000 grant to start a business in Tennessee.
He said he hopes to use whatever gifts God gave him to help improve the world.