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Posted by:GREG COROMBOS
‘They’re the people who are actually out there killing and capturing terrorists’
The Obama administration endangered the elite Navy SEALs that killed Osama bin Laden by publicly revealing their role in the mission, and the SEAL culture is under assault from a politically correct Pentagon, according to a new book on the SEALs and their role in the war against Islamic extremism.
In “Eyes on Target: Inside Stories from the Brotherhood of the U.S. Navy SEALs,” authors Richard Miniter and Scott McEwen draw on their close relationships with many retired SEALs to understand the culture of this unit and document their heroism in Afghanistan and sacrifices made by two former SEALs in Benghazi.
Perhaps the best known unit is SEAL Team Six, the group that successfully targeted and killed Osama bin Laden in May 2011. But the fact we know they carried out the mission may also be the reason many of them are now dead. Instead of leaving the identity of the men a mystery to the world, Vice President Joe Biden publicly identified them just two days after the raid.
“Let me briefly acknowledge tonight’s distinguished honorees. Adm. Jim Stavridis is a – is the real deal; he can tell you more about and understands the incredible, the phenomenal, the just almost unbelievable capacity of his Navy SEALs and what they did last Sunday,” the book quotes Biden as saying.
In early August 2011, a rocket-propelled grenade shot down a Chinook CH-47 code-named Extortion 17. The book reports that 38 men were killed, including 15 members of SEAL Team Six. Miniter contends Biden’s comments let our enemies know who took out their leader and many of those mourning the deaths on that attack personally blame the vice president’s loose lips for the disaster.
“This helicopter shoot down, Extortion 17, is the largest loss of life among the Navy SEALs since World War II. The family members, wives, the widows and mothers and fathers of those SEALs think that it’s political. In the course of our interviews, we discovered a number of SEALs think so, too. They think that the shoot down of this helicopter was a revenge plot by al-Qaida, inspired by Vice President Biden’s comment,” Miniter said.
“The SEALs feel increasingly politicized under the Obama administration. One of the things that we demonstrate is SEALs who have been prosecuted for crimes they didn’t commit, found innocent, but sort of forced into retirement. We’ve seen a record number of retirements from the Navy SEALs. This is something the media is ignoring, but it’s an important story because the SEALs, like our other special forces, are the tip of the spear. They’re the people who are actually out there killing and capturing terrorists,” he said.
“Without them, we lose the war on terror. Without them, al-Qaida carries out attacks at America’s public schools, its offices and its shopping malls. Politicizing the SEALs is a dangerous game and, unfortunately, it’s one of the games President Obama is playing.”
According to Miniter, the political games extend to the entire military.
“The Obama administration’s political appointees at the Department of Defense really want to make the SEALs and other special forces more like a college campus, with political correctness and speech codes. This is something that drives the SEALs nuts,” Miniter said.
“One of the reasons why the SEALs are so effective is that enlisted men can challenge their officers. In fact, SEALs have debates before missions, during missions and certainly after missions about what to do next. Those debates are open and honest because nothing is off the table. Any language can be used. Anybody can voice an opinion. It’s not simply a top-down operation. Because every man involved in a SEAL operation is thinking and contributing to the thinking of the operation, it’s much more likely to succeed and much more likely to adapt,” said Miniter, noting this sort of communication can be seen in the book and movie “Lone Survivor.”
“The political correctness is really poisoning the SEALs and the military,” he lamented. “The military should not be a social laboratory for politicians or activists to play out experiments. It’s a serious matter. You don’t want to distract the lifeguard, or people will die.”