Special Ops

18 Stories

US Special Ops Force Being Sent to Fight ISIS in Iraq, Syria

'We are acting to defeat [ISIS] at its core'

(Newser) - The US will be sending an unspecified number of special operations troops to Iraq to "put even more pressure" on ISIS in both Iraq and Syria, NBC News reports. "These special operators will over time be able to conduct raids, free hostages, gather intelligence, and capture [ISIS] leaders,... More »

Airman Killed in Jump Was About to Tie the Knot Again

Marty Bettelyoun had recently proposed to his wife of 8 years

(Newser) - Married for eight years, Jennifer Bettelyoun was about to have the dream wedding she and hubby Marty Bettelyoun missed the first time around. After a quick romance, the couple were married by a justice of the peace just before Marty, a special operations airman, was posted to a base in... More »

Marines Reclaim Historic Name for Elite Troops

Meet the 'Marine Raiders'

(Newser) - The Army has the Green Berets, while the Navy is known for the SEALs. Now, an elite branch of the Marine Corps will officially be known as Raiders. The Marines renamed several special operations units as Marine Raiders at a ceremony yesterday, resurrecting a moniker made famous by World War... More »

As Yemen Deteriorates, US Pulls Last Troops

About 100 special ops forces evacuating

(Newser) - Another sign of the chaos in Yemen: The US is pulling its last troops from the country. CNN reports that about 100 special ops forces were evacuating the Al Anad airbase as militants affiliated with al-Qaeda cement their gains in the country. Those militants recently took control of the nearby... More »

Seized al-Qaeda Laptop Yields Intelligence Goldmine

New York Times reports it's led to a surge in special ops raids

(Newser) - This should be a quiet time for US troops in Afghanistan: Not only is the US winding down its mission, but winter traditionally brings a lull in activity. But all that goes out the window when an al-Qaeda laptop turns up. The New York Times reports that the intelligence gleaned... More »

US Nabs Suspected Benghazi Mastermind

Special forces capture Ahmed Abu Khattala

(Newser) - US Special Forces captured Ahmed Abu Khattala, the man long suspected of leading the 2012 attack on the US consulate in Benghazi, over the weekend in a secret raid, official sources tell the Washington Post . American troops, working with the FBI, apprehended Khattala near Benghazi, and are currently holding him... More »

SEAL Team Six Member Dies in Daring Rescue From Taliban

Troops free kidnapped American doctor

(Newser) - A member of Seal Team Six died during a daring rescue mission in Afghanistan yesterday, in which special forces successfully freed an American doctor from the Taliban. "He gave his life for his fellow Americans," President Obama said in praising the man, while Leon Panetta called him a... More »

Special Forces Boss Seeks Freer Hand

Admiral William McRaven wants more autonomy in deploying special ops

(Newser) - As the US increasingly turns to Special Forces instead of troop deployments to make surgical hits, the admiral in charge of Special Forces Command is looking for more autonomy in positioning his elite units and their equipment around the world, reports the New York Times . Admiral William McRaven, who oversaw... More »

CIA Fills Void in Iraq, Afghanistan

Agency expects to maintain large stations there for years

(Newser) - US troops may be leaving Iraq and Afghanistan, but the CIA isn't. The agency's stations in the two countries may see staffing levels fall off a bit, but they'll remain its biggest overseas locations for years, officials tell the Washington Post . The Obama administration is counting on... More »

US Sending 'Mothership' to Gulf for Special Ops

Navy retrofitting warship for commando missions: Washington Post

(Newser) - With the US increasingly relying on targeted special ops instead of large military forces, the Pentagon will send an aging warship to the Gulf region to serve as a "mothership" for Navy SEALs and other special forces fighting Somali pirates, al-Qaeda, and other threats (like maybe this ), reports... More »

Even in Death, Secrecy Shrouds SEAL Team 6

Navy asks for caution, saying news already 'has become a threat'

(Newser) - Little is known about the Navy's vaunted SEAL Team 6, but not much more is known about the 17 members killed in a helicopter crash last week in Afghanistan , reports the LA Times in a look at how the secretive unit even grieves under the radar. The widow of... More »

Was Crashed Copter's Rescue Mission Necessary?

Investigators probing that question

(Newser) - A heartbreaking twist in the helicopter tragedy that claimed 38 US and Afghan lives: The rescue mission the troops were en route to may not even have been necessary. Special Operations forces in the remote Tangi Valley requested assistance after coming under fire from "several" insurgents, even though they... More »

30 US Troops Die in Afghan Chopper Crash

Deadliest incident in decade-old war; Karzai sends condolences

(Newser) - A helicopter crash in Afghanistan's eastern Wardak province has killed 30 US special operation troops and seven Afghan soldiers, Hamid Karzai said today. (The US figure was revised from 31.) It was the highest number of casualties recorded in a single incident in the decade-long war. NATO confirmed... More »

Meet the Secret Team That Took Down bin Laden

'National Journal' offers an inside look at the JSOC

(Newser) - An elite Navy SEALs team is credited with taking down Osama bin Laden, and in the National Journal , Marc Ambinder offers a look inside the "highly mythologized" SEAL Team Six and the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) to which it belongs. SEAL Team Six, officially known as the Naval... More »

Pentagon Presses for Special-Ops Raids in Pakistan

But some in administration fear political fallout will be too great

(Newser) - Frustrated US military commanders in Afghanistan are pushing for a series of Special Ops ground raids in Pakistan, sources tell the New York Times , in essence opening up a new front in the war. The raids would likely need approval from President Obama himself, and the wary administration fears political... More »

Obama Doubles Special Ops in Afghanistan

Administration fears time is running out to stop Taliban

(Newser) - The Obama administration has more than doubled the number of special forces in Afghanistan, tasking them with hunting down Taliban leaders—in part because it’s worried that the US has a dwindling window to defang the insurgency before its scheduled 2011 withdrawal, senior officials tell the LA Times . They’... More »

US Going After New Al-Qaeda Haven: Somalia

Military helping government retake capital from insurgents

(Newser) - Worried about Somalia's growing role as a sanctuary for al-Qaeda, the US is helping the government prepare for a major offensive to retake its capital after a decade of fighting, writes Jeffrey Gettleman at the New York Times . So far, most of the help has been in the form of... More »

Military's New Afghanistan Chief Gets Free Rein

Allowed to choose own team as Obama prioritizes effort

(Newser) - With Afghanistan a priority for the administration, officials have given the new US commander there free rein to select his team, the New York Times reports. Gen. Stanley McChrystal’s job “is that important. Afghanistan is the main effort right now,” said the chairman of the Joint Chiefs.... More »

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