Thursday, November 19, 2015

Is SOCOM trying to duck the ISIS battlefront?

via CNN
Under Gen. Stanley McChrystal, U.S. Joint Special Operations Command developed a system that linked forceful action with immediate processing of intelligence and real time analysis. Special operators launched missions at dusk and continued all night; hitting one safe house after another, analyzing the information gained in one strike and launching subsequent raids based on what they found, in hours.

How was this operational tempo achieved? First, the United States was working with the full support, consent and backing of the elected Iraqi government. The U.S. dominated the battle space, there was relatively sizable local support, and these teams enjoyed full air support, including medical evacuation, in the event an operation went poorly.
More here.

The author of this piece is Mike Rogers a former representative.  Below is his byline for the article...
Mike Rogers is a former chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, a host of the Westwood One radio program "Something to Think About," and a CNN national security commentator. 
Make no mistake about it.  Rogers is connected.  He has the ear of not only SOCOM but also elements of Special Forces and the Navy SEALs.  If he's writing this then someone is trying to downplay the effect that SOCOM will have in the fight on ISIS.

Quite honestly I view this as a preemptive strike to keep the calls to increase Special Operations activity against ISIS to a minimum.

All of which makes me wonder.  Remember McRaven...the guy that was bragging and chest thumping about the effectiveness of SOCOM while he was its commander?  Remember all the think tanks that have talked about conventional forces almost being an afterthought because future wars would be a Special Operations only affair?  And finally remember the push by some inside the USMC to second MEU's to SOCOM, with the idea that Marine Air and the attached Ground Combat Element needed to hop on the SOCOM bandwagon (as supporting elements) or be left behind (oh and this was the first instance that I can recall of Marine Air attempting to separate from the Ground Component...there was a serious push for them to detach and provide a couple of squadrons to SOCOM exclusively)?

It looks like all that talk was in error.

We're looking at the second truly hybrid war (the first was in Ukraine) and the snake eaters seem to want to take a pass.

I shouldn't be surprised.  Every theory, concept and idea had in the last 8 or so years has been found wanting.  But what is truly startling is that a force estimated to number between 20K -40K troops can force the White House, State Dept and Pentagon to state that it will take years, maybe decades to defeat!  By that estimate the Iraq invasion should have taken 4 years.

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