THE New York Times has reported that Kenyan authorities initially declined offers of assistance from the American government on the Westgate Shopping Mall attack.
According to the paper, the Kenyan authorities were also reluctant to have Britain and France help with attempts to wrest control of the mall from the terrorists.
They instead turned to the Israelis. Israel dispatched advisers from the Israeli Defence Forces who have since been working closely with Kenyan commandos inside the mall, helping plan specific tactical operations.
The New York Times said the Israeli advisers did not engage in combat and stayed out of public view.
"American, French and British officials have been left with a more back-seat role from a command centre just down the street from the Westgate Mall, helping the Kenyans with the investigation of the attack and some intelligence matters," the paper quoted a high-ranking Kenyan official as saying.
The UK's Daily Mail reported that an off-duty member of the Britain's Special Air Service who was at Westgate at the time of the attack single handedly rescued 100 people.
The Sun, also a UK paper, reported that a four-year-old British boy survived the attack after standing up to a terrorist gunman and telling him: "You're a very bad man." It said the terrorists handed the boy a bar of chocolate because of his courage before letting him go.