Tag Archives: Bin Laden raid

JACK MURPHY: SEAL Team Six’s Next High Value Target

E-mail received from an active duty SEAL Team Six operator:

I will admit right up front that I am biased, having spent more time at DevGru than Jack Murphy spent in the military. That said I do take exception to your article “Next Time Send Delta or the Rangers”. I find it humorous that you choose to comment on it at all, never having been at a Tier 1 unit.

First I will give credit where credit is due.  Delta is one of two (the other being DevGru) of the most hard core and prolific group of warriors ever assembled in the history of warfare.  And Rangers are the premier Light Infantry unit in the world.

That said, let’s break things down to a digestible level.  Ask your CAG friends about the highest profile Op they’ve done lately… and you’ll hear the crickets chirping loudly.  It’s not because they are not talking about it, but because they are not being chosen to do them.  And don’t even try and use the excuse that it was only because McRaven was running the show. There have been some other Ops (post Bin Laden) that were way more technical than the Bin Laden op and it was an Army General that chose our Navy element to do it.

The real answer is… It was, and still is, OUR time.  Period.

As for the Rangers, and this goes for any battalion in the regiment, no General or President in his right mind would send in Rangers to do that job. Why? Because your previous unit’s average age is 21 with a dauntingly high turnover rate. And your most elite unit still has brand new “meats” that spent 9 weeks in Basic and 2 weeks in R.I.P. and get sent over with the 75th (also not a Tier 1 unit).

Riding on a helo with or being a blocking force for a Tier 1 unit does not make you a Tier 1 unit.  Period.

My estimate of your analysis is that you know just enough to stir the pot,  but still don’t know enough to comment.  Do not hold a unit accountable for one of their own that got out and decided to write a book. It can happen to any of us (Dalton Fury/”NAME REMOVED”).

Shift fire…

Is  anyone asking the bigger question as to why you’re selling an e-book to make money off of another book whose author is donating all profits to charity? That makes you the equivalent to a Remora…you know, the small nuisance fish that swim along side the shark for protection and scraps! That is pretty weak and it’s also your new nickname.

And it’s pretty clear to me that you and your site are all a part of the same clown show.

Respectfully,

[Name withheld]

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ST6: Best of the best or just a lucky role of the dice?

With the amount of self aggrandizing we hear from the Navy and the press who are falling over themselves to be the first to praise SEAL Team Six, now known as DevGroup (even though everyone still calls them by their old designation), an uncomfortable question has been raised in some quarters of the Special Operation community. Was SEAL Team Six selected for the Bin Laden raid because they were the best men for the job or were they simply at the right place at the right time?

Read the rest of my article at Kit Up!

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Mainstream press silent about stealth helicopter?

Strange article from AOL.

It goes in depth into some of the technical aspects of Blackhawk helicopters and even some of the politics surrounding it.  One interesting bit is why the helicopter may have crashed during the Bin Laden raid.  Although not stated in the article, what the author is talking about is called “ground effects”, meaning that a helicopter’s lift capability is effected by what type of terrain it is flying over, with other factors involved as well.

Artists rendering of what the stealth MH-60 may have looked like

Ground effects are one of the big reasons why there has been so much trouble with the V-22 Osprey.  Think about how crazy that gets when you have to main rotors, each hovering over a different type of terrain in some cases.

What is more interesting about the AOL article is what it neglects to mention.  Although the analysis is somewhat in depth for a ultra-mainstream AOL article, it makes no reference at all to the fact that the helicopter in question belonged to an ultra-classified stealth aviation project and/or unit.

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Bin Laden Raid accidently exposed super-secret Stealth Helicopter?

The day after the raid that supposedly killed Bin Laden, Reuters bought this photograph from a Pakistani soldier or policeman.  The official story put out by the US Government is that one of the helicopters involved in the raid lost lift capability sometime during the mission and the SEAL team on the ground had to demo it in place.  Here is some preliminary information about the above photograph:

1. The above appears to show the tail boom and rear rotor of a helicopter.  Having flown with Special Operations aviation, I can say that I have never, ever seen anything that looks like this.

2. Associated Press reported today that 160th Special Operations Aviation was involved in the raid.

3. There is some speculation that the above is representative of a stealth upgrade kit put onto a MH-60 helicopter.

Photo 2:

Here is a photo that appears to show the other half of the wreckage on the other side of the wall.  I got this one off Aviation Weekly’s website.  Someone posted this in the comments section, attempting to point out that the rotor blade (the main rotor in this case) parts resemble that of a UH/MH-60 helicopter.

Hypothesis:

The above photos show a previously undisclosed Special Access Project.  The helicopter is a highly modified and upgraded MH-60 helicopter that includes stealth characteristics.  The pilots may be drawn from 160th Special Operations Aviation and organized into a highly compartmentalized sub-unit.  There is also the possibility that this aircraft is flown by retired pilots working through a corporate cut-out.  Corporate propriety would provide yet another layer of secrecy, including from Congressional oversight.

This is an initial assessment and the verdict is still very much out on this one.

*Update 1

New pic of the tail section:

BuzzFeed Pictorial of wreckage/Pakistanis carting the tail section away

Concept sketch done by David Cenciotti.  Top is the stealth helicopter modification concept with the conventional MH-60 below.  Check out the Gizmodo article about it.

“Initial plans called for the low-observable Black Hawks to be formed into a new unit commanded by a lieutenant colonel and located at a military facility in Nevada, the retired special operations aviator said. “The intent was always to move it out west where it could be kept in a covered capability,” he said.  USSOCOM planned to assign about 35 to 50 personnel to the unit, the retired special operations aviator said. “There were going to be four [low-observable] aircraft, they were going to have a couple of ‘slick’ unmodified Black Hawks, and that was going to be their job was to fly the low-observables.”

SOCOM canceled those plans “within the last two years,” but not before at least some of the low-observable helicopters had been delivered to the Nevada facility, the retired aviator said. “I don’t know if it was for money or if it was because the technology was not achieving the reduction in the radar cross-section that they were hoping for,” he said. In the meantime, MH-60 Black Hawk crews from the 160th’s 1st Battalion, headquartered at Fort Campbell, Ky., would rotate to Nevada to train on the stealthy aircraft, he said.”  –From the Army Times

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