“We lost more Americans on Extortion 17 than at Benghazi, Fort Hood, and Chattanooga combined. All happened on Obama’s watch.
Paraphrasing Don Brown, the author of Extortion 17,
“No loss is acceptable because of a rules-of-engagement failure, which is why Extortion 17 is the Mother of all Failures. Yet most Americans don’t know about the incident where 30 of our finest servicemen, including 17 US Navy SEALs lost their lives.”
After the killing of bin Laden, before Benghazi, the CH-47D helicopter carrying the 17 Navy SEALs was shot down by Islamic jihadists.
The call sign of the mission was, “Lefty Grove”. On board this flight were most of the members of Seal Team 6 who were responsible for taking out the founder of al-Qaeda. The operation occurred in the early morning hours of August 6, 2011 in the Taliban stronghold along the Tangi River Valley, Wardak Province, Afghanistan.
Some say the incident was a sacrificial offering by the Obama administration to Islamic terrorists for the U.S. Navy SEALs killing bin Laden.
The crash that day took 30 Americans, signified the largest loss in Naval Special Warfare, as well as the largest single day loss since the war on Islamic terrorism was declared. No matter the motive, it is clear that the mission was compromised from the start, and too many red flags have been raised concerning the details of their mission as to dismiss foul play. Several of the concerns are as follows:
- The elite group was placed on a sub-standard helicopter versus the MH-47, which was the more typical transport for such an assignment.
- No return fire was allowed even after the circling CH-47D saw Taliban moving into the landing zone. At that time they were flanked by two Apaches, yet all were denied permission to take out the enemy, as a stand down order was given.
- Even though an AC-130 gunship was available, no suppressive fire was offered to protect the helicopters while flying into a region where a 3 1/2 hour operation had already been underway.
- The flight manifest was not changed, but a last minute swap of 7 Afghan security forces and 1 Afghan translator was made, an unusual happening in itself. So, there was no way of knowing who may have compromised the flight or tipped off the Taliban as far as location of the chopper. The identities of the Afghans are still not known.
If our rules of engagement were constructed in order to protect our soldiers instead of handcuff them, our brave men would all be alive today. The “stand down” order yet again proved lethal to our military.
Even after the incident, a disturbing and outrageous thing happened at the memorial service of these men at the Bagram Airbase. Before their bodies were flown back to the U.S., during the ramp ceremony, a Muslim Imam prayed over the bodies of the Americans. Once the prayers were translated, it appears that the Imam may have damned their souls to hell.
At a 2013 Washington D.C. press conference, Lt. General Jerry Boykin stated,
“What I’m concerned about is that we had an Imam, praying over the bodies of our soldiers, is an indicator that we don’t know who the enemy is, we don’t know the enemies’ doctrine, his theology, or what motivates him.”
General Boykin however, is well aware of those facts of Islamic doctrine and has been a leader in educating others about the dangers of it. Now the Islamic ideology is in our face day in and day out, but what should alarm many is that the more clear the motives of this enemy, the more the administration and leftists showcase their affinity for those practicing and adhering to the radical ideology within our country.
Representative (R – TX) Louis Ghomert states,
“When the families were briefed, one of the father’s of one of the Seal team said, ‘Why didn’t you just send a drone if it was such a hot area.’
And the Admiral stated, ‘Because we are trying to win the hearts and minds.’”
Billy Vaughn, father of Aaron Vaughn, one of the fallen Navy Seals, emotionally stated in the same press conference,
“Aaron Vaughn did not become a Navy Seal, Team 6 Gold Squad, to win the hearts and minds of the Islamic Jihadists. He became a Navy Seal to fight for this republic and defeat the enemy. And I’ll tell you right now any American flag officer that does not want to defeat the enemy, needs to find another job.”
The families of the fallen deserve to hear answers to their questions from the government. In addition, the Rules of Engagement must be changed to free our soldiers from debilitating regulations that continue to give a conquerable enemy an unfair advantage instead of providing our warriors with support to gain a crushing victory.
A documentary titled Fallen Angel is being made about Extortion 17. The intent of the film is to raise awareness of the faulty ROEs, and in turn put pressure on our legislators and top military leaders to change them for the better.