French Commando Leader Tells Lester Holt: Bataclan Was ‘Hell on Earth’

By Mark Joyella 

In an interview with NBC Nightly News anchor Lester Holt, the leader of the French commando team that fought terrorists inside the Bataclan in Paris described the scene as “Hell on Earth.”

The commando leader, who agreed to talk to NBC only if his last name was not revealed, was identified only as “Jeremy.” He said he believes his team’s raid on the besieged theater saved many lives, but he will never forget what they saw inside. “We discover like a hell on earth,” Jeremy said. “No sound. Nobody was screaming. Nobody were moving because they were afraid of the terrorists.”

The commandos were forced to ignore the wounded as they searched for the gunmen. “A lot of people…ask us to help them because they were wounded, bleeding and we had to say no — we have to find first the terrorist,” he said. “It was difficult for the guys, for the men on the team.”

And those memories have kept him from sleeping in the days since. “For now sleeping is quite difficult…Falling asleep,” he said. “All the memories of what’s happened in the theater.”