Out of Iraq
Aged seventeen, Lewis Alsamari was conscripted into the Iraqi army. Things went from bad to worse once his superiors discovered his ability to speak English. Lewis was selected for Saddam's elite, top-secret intelligence service, an offer he literally could not refuse. This left him with only one option ndash; to flee from his native land, leaving his family behind . . . Going under the wire of the army compound where he was posted, Lewis was shot in the leg, making his escape ndash; a gruelling journey in disguise across the desert at night with a group of Bedouin, at the mercy of ravenous wolves ndash; all the more arduous. Against the odds, Lewis survived this trek, made it across the border into Jordan, and eventually sought asylum in the UK, where he had spent his childhood. Now he had to work out how to rescue his mother, brother and sister, who had been thrown into Abu Ghraib jail once Lewis's escape became known. The only thing which could help was money and lots of it, so Lewis fraudulently transferred pound;37,500 from the accounts of William Hill (where he had a temporary job) into his own bank account, and wired it to Baghdad in order to pay the necessary bribes. But, of course, it wasn't quite that simple . . . Out of Iraq is an exhilarating and terrifying story of one man's escape from one of the harshest regimes of the modern era. It is testament to both the strength of the human spirit and the extremes to which we'll go in order to keep our loved ones safe.