Sunday, November 22, 2015

SOF News

Can SF Defeat ISIS? Mike Rogers, writing for CNN, says that SF can only do so much - especially when the numbers deployed are to be small. A projected number to be deployed to Syria is 50 SOF personnel - hardly a robust number. He compares this proposed deployment to Syria with the robust SOF presence in Iraq from 2004-2011. He concludes by saying "A minimal number of special operations forces can achieve a great deal but they are incapable of achieving strategic success." Read more in "Can Special Forces defeat ISIS in Syria and Iraq?"CNN, November 19, 2015.

Mali Attack and U.S. SF? One news report stated that a few U.S. Special Forces members were involved (in some fashion - Intel, advice, etc.) with the rescue of some of the 100 + hostages in the American-owned hotel in Mali taken by al-Qaeda-linked jihadists. Perhaps we will see more in the news about this? See "Mali attack: Special forces storm hotel to free hostages"BBC News, November 20, 2015. To learn more about U.S. SOF involvement in Mali read "Countering Violent Extremism in Mali", by Dr. Mark Moyar, JSOU Report 15-5, November 2015, Joint Special Operations University.

SOF Operator Killed in Iraq. MSG Joshua Wheeler was killed in action while deployed in support of Operation Inherent Resolve (Iraq) in late October 2015 while serving with Delta Force. His death took place during an operation to release 70 individuals that were being held hostage by ISIS. He was assigned to U.S. Army Special Operations Command in 2004 and deployed 11 times in support of combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Read a biographical sketch of MSG Wheeler posted on the U.S. Army Special Operations Command website. Read about his funeral at Arlington Cemetery (The Washington Post, November 18, 2015).

How to Win in Syria with SF. Dave Betz, a retired SGM from U.S. Army Special Forces, tells us how to win in Syria with SF. Read his piece at Small Wars Journal, November 20, 2015.

G1 Trainer Needed for SMW. Raytheon is advertising a position for a G1 Trainer for the Afghan Air Force Special Mission Wing

Jade Helm and Obama. Conspiracy theorists had a field day with the Jade Helm exercise held this past year in the southwest of the United States. This special operations exercise was organized by the U.S. Army Special Operations Command (based at Fort Bragg, NC). Many thought that President Obama was using the exercise as a vehicle to declare martial law in an attempt to stay in power longer than eight years. Obama was recently asked what was the most entertaining conspiracy theory about him and he answered - the military exercise in Texas. Read "Obama names Jade Helm rumors as most entertaining conspiracy theory about him", The Washington Post, November 18, 2015.

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