Deadly US raid on Yemen produced no major intelligence

SEAL Team 3 in Afghanistan

… from Press TV,  Tehran

KIA SEAL William Ryan Owens

[ Editor’s Note: It looks like Trump is about to learn that ordering commando raids overseas is not necessarily an easy or fun way to make his bones as a war time leader. Now his team in on the firing line, accused of putting out “fake news” on a large trove of Intel being taken. Press secretary  Spicer went further, claiming that American lives would be saved because of it, an odd, subjective thing to say at this point.

It is generally a safe play to make such claims when you know that what was found can never be made public, but government officials who claim to be in the know are stating that none was really found.

Those anonymous statements by themselves are not enough, but having someone like Admiral James Stavridis challenging the White house claims cannot be spun as cheap political sniping. And the dead SEAL’s father has put a wooden stake though Trump and Ivanka with his refusal to meet them when the body came in, denying Trump his moment and building his daughter up for her future political career.

VT’s information is that the US losses were larger, and there is a history where for national security reasons failed missions can be denied or polished over. That is partially based on Osprey crashes with full loads create a lot of carnage. But a detailed report will be forthcoming, both in unclassified and classified versions. 

What we have confirmed was the night chosen was a no moon one, a critical item in such large team insertion missions, and the Pentagon had signed off as being ready to go, so Trump has some cover there. My bet?…the barking dog wildcard might have foiled the whole mission. That’s all it takes for men to die, a guard dog doing his job well, maybe even better than a president  Jim W. Dean ]

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– First published  …  February 28, 2017

A recent US ground and aerial attack on the Yemeni province of Bayda, which left dozens of Yemeni civilians and a US serviceman dead, has not produced any significant intelligence, officials say in contradiction to earlier claims boasting of the raid’s success.

Senior US officials told NBC News on Monday that they were not aware of any actionable intelligence produced by the January 29 commando raid on the Yakla village of Bayda’s Qifah district.

Earlier, the Pentagon had claimed that the raid had produced “actionable intelligence” about the al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) militant group.

An unnamed Defense Department official had also claimed that the assault had yielded “a significant amount” of intelligence.

Additionally, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer claimed that Washington had “gathered an unbelievable amount of intelligence that will prevent the potential deaths or attacks on American soil,” adding that those who undermine the mission’s success do a disservice to Navy SEAL Ryan Owens who was killed in the attack.

This as Bill Owens, Ryan’s father, criticized the attack and demanded an investigation into it.

“Why at this time did there have to be this stupid mission when it wasn’t even barely a week into [President Donald Trump’s] administration?” he said in an interview with the Miami Herald.

“For two years prior, there were no boots on the ground in Yemen – everything was missiles and drones because there was not a target worth one American life. Now, all of a sudden we had to make this grand display?’’ he further asked.

He had previously refused to meet with Trump when his son’s body was taken off the plane at Dover Air Force Base.

Meanwhile, a senior unnamed US Congressional official said the Trump administration has yet to explain what prompted the rare attack, emphasizing that he was not aware of any new threat from the AQAP.

Retired US Admiral James Stavridis also challenged the fatal US raid.

“When we look at evidently very little actual intelligence out, the loss of a high-performance aircraft and above all the loss of a highly trained special forces member of SEAL Team 6, I think we need to understand why this mission, why now, what happened, and what the actual output was,” Stavridis said.

Some reports said a total of 57 people, including civilians, were killed in the assault, during which Apache combat helicopters struck the Yemeni village from the air before commandos were dropped in for the raid.

The Bureau of Investigative Journalism estimated that at least 25 civilians, including nine children under the age of 13, were among the fatalities.

Yemen has been under regular US drone strikes, with Washington claiming to be targeting al-Qaeda elements while local sources say civilians have been the main victims of the attacks.

Yemen has also been hit by a military campaign by Saudi Arabia since late March 2015. The aggression, which allegedly seeks to restore Yemen’s former government to power, has killed over 12,000 Yemenis according to the latest tallies.

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4 Responses to "Deadly US raid on Yemen produced no major intelligence"

  1. David Odell  March 1, 2017 at 8:02 am

    Owens has it right. “Grand display”. My take is , this was the first of two missions to target the families as Trump promised. With religious extremism in Christianity, always comes rumors of witches, voodoo, and the justification of the killing of women and children. All these are apparent now. Meanwhile, the operation in ND used some frilly numerology, attacking at 2/22 at 2 pm, and when was the last time the moon was mentioned on msm in relation to the timing of a raid. And how much is concealed by the new moon when “sneaking” up on someone with a loaded Osprey ?

    • Jim W. Dean, Managing Editor  March 1, 2017 at 11:46 am

      The Ospreys land a good ways a way, usually behind a hill to diffuse the sound, and these special insertion ones are soundproofed more. It takes some tough people to do a quick hike to the attack point, lugging all they need for the fight. Recon people will have already had the place under surveillance to see how many night guards there are, their positions, and where snipers will need to be to take them out quickly. The plan is always to get enough surprise to overwhelm them quickly. But a lot of things can go wrong. You can lose more people when trying to exit, as you may have come in over open ground at night, so gunships are at the ready to cover a retreat if needed.

  2. ethanallen  February 28, 2017 at 10:22 pm

    It seems unbelievably odd that a raid on a very remote village far out in the hinterlands of Yemen would result in the death of another of the drone murdered Anwar al-Awlaki’s children. Is the US gov’t engaged in a vendetta against the al-Awlaki family?

  3. wjabbe  February 28, 2017 at 4:03 pm

    They can’t do much investigating of the Osprey since they dropped a bomb and blew it up along with civilians and possibly other damage. But they likely already know that sand got into the engines a common problem in desert areas. They are not going to do any investigation, Government can’t investigate itself anyway, Citizens must be empowered to investigate government but they will never allow that.

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