Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named 'Mickey Mouse meeting' to ensure its secrecy, new account says - We Are The Mighty
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Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says

  • Former US officials told Politico how the 2011 hit on bin Laden was planned in the White House.
  • Situation Room meetings were labeled “Mickey Mouse meeting” on calendars to hide the subject.
  • The report details in minute detail how the US located and planned to kill the al-Qaida leader.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 mission to kill Osama bin Laden were titled “Mickey Mouse meeting” on official calendars to conceal their purpose, according to a new account of the raid.

On Friday Politico published an oral history, written by Garrett M. Graff, of the bin Laden raid as told by 30 US political, military, and intelligence officials who were central to its success.

The officials said that in the run-up to the strike, which began on May 1, 2011, and concluded early the next day, they took many steps to ensure that news of the raid didn’t leak.

Mike Morell, who was deputy director of the CIA at the time, told Politico that the idea to label the meetings “Mickey Mouse meeting” came from John Brennan, then the White House homeland security and counterterrorism advisor.

“We also had the cameras and the audio in the Situation Room covered or turned off,” Brennan told the magazine.

Ben Rhodes, then-deputy national security advisor, also told Politico that he knew something serious was underway by looking at the titles of meetings listed on the Situation Room schedule.

“Suddenly, there was a very unusual pace of deputies- and principals-level meetings without a subject. I knew that there was something happening,” he said.

“At no other point in my eight years in the White House did that happen until 2016 with the Russian interference in the election.”

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Al-Qaida leader and terrorist Osama bin Laden from a video in 1998. 

Former President Barack Obama was also keen to prevent any news of the mission getting out, especially if it ultimately went badly or failed.

On April 30, 2011, the evening before the raid began, Obama asked his speechwriter Jon Favreau to change a joke prepared for that night’s White House Correspondents’ dinner, where the president typically makes a speech mocking himself.

To hit back at GOP figures for mocking his middle name — Hussein — Obama was going to crack a joke in which he referred to “Tim ‘bin Laden’ Pawlenty,” referring to the then-Minnesota governor, Favreau told Politico.

“He’s like, ‘Why don’t we say his middle name is Hosni, like Hosni Mubarak?’ I remember just being like, ‘That’s not as funny.’ And Obama is like, ‘Trust me on this. I really think Hosni will be much funnier,'” Favreau said.

Dan Pfeiffer, then the White House communications director, said: “No one could figure out why Obama made that change. It seemed like a weird change.”

President Joe Biden on Sunday issued a statement marking 10 years since the raid that killed the terrorist leader, saying: “We followed bin Laden to the gates of hell — and we got him.”

This article originally appeared on Business Insider. Follow @BusinessInsider on Twitter.

Intel

The Army found cannons and other Revolutionary War artifacts in the Savannah River

The Army Corps of Engineers was dredging the Savannah River in Georgia when a historic discovery was made. The dredging pulled up an anchor, a piece of ship timber and three old cannons. At first, they were assumed to be from the Civil War. Army archaeologists examined the artifacts with the help of the British Royal Navy to try and identify them.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
The cannons appear to be from the 18th century and predate the Civil War (Army Corps of Engineers)

The bustling coastal city of Savannah was crucial to the British effort during the Revolutionary War. The British hoped to gain the support of colonial loyalists in the American south. To do this, they occupied Savannah in 1778. However, less than a year later, the city fell under siege. In need of support, the Royal Navy dispatched the HMS Rose to relieve the beleaguered Redcoats at Savannah.

HMS Rose had already developed a reputation among American sailors. With her 20 guns and crew of 160, HMS Rose began her colonial tour intercepting smugglers around Rhode Island. She then patrolled the New York waterways and along the east coast where she clashed with Continental Navy ships before she was redeployed south.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
The anchor that was recovered from the Savannah River (Army Corps of Engineers)

With the patriot siege of Savannah intensifying, the French military dispatched reinforcements to sail up the river and join the colonists. In an incredible strategic decision, British commanders determined that the best way to halt the French was to scuttle HMS Rose and block the river. On September 19, 1779, the ship was sunk in the Savannah River east of where River Street runs in the city today. The ship’s sacrifice paid off for the British who broke the siege and retained control of Savannah for the majority of the war.

The five-foot-long cannons that were dredged up were determined to be of 18th century origin and coincide with HMS Rose‘s fate. The anchor and ship timber require further investigation before any conclusions are drawn. “We are looking at whether they came from a single context, or if the anchor came from a later ship,” said Corps of Engineers district archaeologist Andrea Farmer. The Savannah District Corps of Engineers has experience temporarily preserving historical artifacts after the recovery of the CSS Georgia Civil War ironclad from the river in 2015.

It is also believed that HMS Rose may have been partially salvaged after she was scuttled. The question remains, how many more artifacts from the 18th century ship remain hidden on the riverbed? “I think it’s fantastic and interesting when artifacts from maritime history come to light,” said Cmdr. Jim Morley, the British assistant naval attaché in Washington. “It just gives us an opportunity to look back at our common maritime history and history in general.” Archaeologists and historians continue to study the recovered artifacts and search for more to uncover the stories that they hold.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
One of the recovered cannons (Army Corps of Engineers)
Intel

This crew tried to drift their tank but rolled it instead

At the Tank Biathlon currently going on in Russia, top crews are driving great tanks through maneuvers, demonstrations, and competitive events. Apparently, one Kuwaiti crew decided to one-up everyone by drifting a T-72 around a turn.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WriPgJFslyY

The T-72 is a fine tank, but it isn’t a drifter. Instead, the tank rolls nearly all the way over. Someone is likely going to have an awkward talk with his commander when he gets back to Kuwait.

NOW: Toyota Yaris plays chicken with 68-ton tank, loses

OR: This Polish made tank is the ground equivalent of the F-117 Stealth Fighter

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Incredible photos of US Marines learning how to survive in the jungle during one of Asia’s biggest military exercises

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
A US Marine biting into a freshly skinned king cobra as part of a survival exercise during Cobra Gold 2006. (Photo: slagheap/Flickr)


The US-led annual multinational military exercise Cobra Gold kicked off in Thailand on Monday, despite a faltering relationship between the two countries following Thailand’s military coup in May 2014.

Cobra Gold 2015 is scaled down due compared to past years because of the frosty relations between Thailand’s ruling military junta and the US. But it’s still a massive military exercise even in a reduced form. This year 13,000 personnel from 7 participating nations have joined in the exercises, the AP reports.

The participant countries are Thailand, the United States, Singapore, Japan, Indonesia, Republic of Korea and Malaysia, while India and China are taking part in humanitarian training missions. Even though the exercise is smaller than in the past, the scope of Cobra Gold has grown since the first one was held in 1982 and involved only the US and Thailand.

Exercises in Cobra Gold 2015 include jungle survival training and civic assistance programs in underdeveloped regions of Thailand.

Survival training is a big part of Cobra Gold. Thai Marines demonstrate how to capture a cobra in the wild.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Photo: Cpl. Isaac Ibarra/USMC

US Marines then help decapitate the cobra and take turns drinking its blood. Cobra blood is surprisingly hydrating and can be used as a temporary replacement for water if a Marine is lost without supplies.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Photo: Cpl. ISaac Ibarra/USMC

Thai Marines also teach their counterparts how to recognize edible jungle fruits.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Photo: Cpl. Isaac Ibarra/USMC

Like cobra blood, several of the fruits can serve as an improvised source of hydration.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Photo: Cpl. Isaac Ibarra/USMC

Marines are also instructed in the proper way to eat scorpions and spiders. Spiders are eaten after their fangs are ripped off, while scorpions are edible once the stinger is removed.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Photo: Cpl. Isaac Ibarra/USMC

Aside from survival lessons, participant countries also take part in construction projects to build greater regional cooperation in the event of disasters like typhoons or plane crashes. Here, Chinese and US soldiers work together to build a school as part of Cobra Gold 2015.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Photo: Cpl. James Marchetti/US Pacific Command

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This article originally appeared at Business Insider Defense Copyright 2015. Follow BI Defense on Twitter.

Intel

Photo of soldiers breastfeeding in uniform goes viral

What was intended as a photo for the wall of a nursing room at Fort Bliss’ headquarters has exploded across social media after the Air Force vet who took the shot posted it to her Facebook page.


“Support for breastfeeding moms wasn’t even an option to consider,” photographer Tara Ruby wrote on Facebook. “To my knowledge a group photo to show support of active duty military mommies nursing their little’s has never been done. It is so nice to see support for this here at Fort Bliss.”

It’s doubtful Army officials will be as enthusiastic. In June 2012, photos of two Air National Guardsman breastfeeding their children went viral and stirred up a national debate over breastfeeding in uniform. Though military officials said the airmen violated a policy against “using the uniform to further a cause,” they were not disciplined.

However, Crystal Scott, the civilian organizer of the 2012 photo shoot, was fired from her job.

Now: Suck it, monster! Here’s how the Air Force would defend against Godzilla

Intel

11 Photos Showing Jordan’s King Abdullah Being A Total Badass

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Jordan’s King Abdullah II (Photo: The Royal Hashemite Court/ Instagram)


Jordanian F-16s launched 20 airstrikes on Islamic State targets in 2015 following King Abdullah II’s declaration to wage a “harsh” war against militants from the group, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) or ISIS, after the brutal execution of captured Jordanian pilot Moaz al-Kasasbe.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Photo: The Royal Hashemite Court/Instagram

Abdullah participating in a military special operations training exercises as Jump-Master.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
The Royal Hashemite Court/YouTube

King Abdullah II, a former commander of Jordan’s special forces, pledged to hit the militants “hard in the very center of their strongholds,” AP reports.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Abdullah with military officials during an exercise. (Photo: The Royal Hashemite Court/Instagram)

The Jordanian government has denied the king’s physical involvement in any aerial attacks.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Abdullah observing a military exercise in November 2013. (Photo: The Royal Hashemite Court/Instagram)

Dubbed the “warrior king,” Jordan’s 53-year-old leader has clocked in 35 years of military service.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Abdullah at a military ceremony in Jordan. (Photo: The Royal Court/Instagram)

According to the king‘s bio, he enrolled in the UK’s Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst in 1980 and went on to become an elite Cobra attack helicopter pilot.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
King Abdullah II pilots his helicopter while visiting different areas in his kingdom. (Photo: The Royal Hashemite Court/Instagram)

In November 1993, then-Prince Abdullah became commander of Jordan’s special forces.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Abdullah laughing with troop after a meal in the field. (Photo: The Royal Hashemite Court/Instagram)

Three years later he turned Jordan’s small special forces unit into today’s elite Special Operations Command (SOCOM), arguably the best operatives in the Middle East.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Abdullah speaking with soldiers after sharing a meal. (Photo: The Royal Hashemite Court/Instagram)

Frequently training alongside US special forces, Jordan’s units are approximately 14,000 strong and may further contribute to the fight against ISIS beyond Jordan’s airstrikes.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Abdullah observing a military exercise. (Photo: The Royal Hashemite Court/Instagram)

As the head of a constitutional monarchy, the career soldier holds substantial power.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Abdullah, the Supreme Commander of the Jordan Armed Forces, at a military exercise. (Photo: The Royal Hashemite Court/Instagram)

Members of Congress have asked for an increase in military assistance to the kingdom, AP reports. The US is providing Jordan with $1 billion annually in military assistance.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
King Abdullah II starts his day participating in a military special operations training exercises as Jump Master. (Photo: The Royal Hashemite Court/Instagram)

The fight against ISIS lost a crucial partner, the United Arab Emirates, in December after the Jordanian pilot was captured, The New York Times reported.

The UAE demands that the Pentagon improve its search-and-rescue efforts in northern Iraq before it rejoins the coalition, The Times said, quoting unidentified US officials.

More from Business Insider:

This article originally appeared at Business Insider Defense Copyright 2015. Follow BI Defense on Twitter.

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Goodbye, tiger stripe: Air Force adopts OCP uniform for mandatory wear

The Air Force‘s Airman Battle Uniform is getting its official send-off. On Thursday, airmen will be required to retire their old “Tiger Stripe” camouflage for good and switch to the Operational Camouflage Uniform, or OCP. The service has spent three years phasing in the Army‘s service duty uniform.

The Air Force approved the OCP to be worn full-time beginning Oct. 1, 2018, with the expectation that all airmen and Space Force guardians would make the complete changeover by April 1, 2021, after wearing the Airman Battle Uniform, or ABU, for more than a decade.

The OCP already has a history with the service.

Since 2012, nearly 100,000 airmen have worn the uniform when deployed overseas to places like Afghanistan or while operating outside the wire, Maj. Gen. Robert LaBrutta, then-Air Force director of Military Force Management Policy and deputy chief of staff for Manpower, Personnel and Services, said in 2018. LaBrutta retired in 2019.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
U.S. Air Force basic military training trainees from the 326th Training Squadron receive the first operational camouflage pattern (OCP) uniforms during initial issue, Oct. 2, 2019, at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas. (U.S. Air Force/Sarayuth Pinthong)

Air Force Special Operations Command members were some of the first to don the OCP, along with some Security Forces units, LaBrutta said at the time.

Service member feedback played a big role in the decision to switch to the OCP, top officials have said. Airmen have expressed on social media that moving to a single combat uniform for the service couldn’t come soon enough.

In 2013, The Washington Post reported that there were 10 different types of military camouflage uniforms in use, depending on service and where troops were stationed.

The ABU’s “tiger stripe” pattern was supposed to pay homage to camouflage used during the Vietnam War, according to the Post.

But early iterations “looked slightly off” from one uniform to the next, with multiple shades making up the pattern, according to Master Sgt. Mike Smith, who wrote a farewell tribute to the ABU earlier this year. Smith serves at the I.G. Brown Training and Education Center at McGhee Tyson Air National Guard Base in Tennessee.

Smith asked airmen their opinions of the ABU and received a variety of responses.

“Not since leisure suit wearers were cool has an outfit been so disliked and oppositely loved,” he said in a release. “One opponent compared its camouflage design to an over-patterned couch; another advocate hailed its unique ability to channel the wind down her sleeves, from one arm to the other while driving down the road — she will miss that.”

Airmen at the Tennessee base got together to say goodbye to the ABU one last time March 29, taking selfies in the tiger stripe.

“We’ve come a long way in this uniform, here and deployed,” said Chief Master Sgt. Steven Durrance, the enlisted professional military education center commandant at McGhee Tyson.

“It’s important to capture this moment and take time for our heritage, who we are, and where we come from,” he said in a separate release.

The service will donate leftover uniform gear associated with the ABU to junior ROTC programs across the country, service officials have previously said.

This article originally appeared on Military.com. Follow @militarydotcom on Twitter.

Intel

Army National Guard campaign seeks ‘the next greatest generation’

It is one powerful minute.

The ad begins with a slow build as images of young people, whose options are limited because of the COVID-19 pandemic, few job prospects and skyrocketing tuition, are projected on the screen.

“Who do you think is going to fix all this?’’ the narrator asks.

In a recruiting campaign called “The Next Greatest Generation is Now,’’ which launched last week, the Army National Guard is trying to reach Generation Z.

Gen Z, generally defined as people born between 1997 and the early to mid-2010s, comprises about 20% of the 331 million Americans.

“Ultimately, the ARNG hopes to connect with young people who are interested in making a difference for their communities and our nation, but haven’t considered part-time ARNG service as a means to accomplishing their own life goals and staying true to their other interests,’’ spokeswoman Cheryle Rivas said in an email.

Kathryn Bigelow produces and directs the spots. Bigelow, 69, won the 2010 Academy Award for best director for “The Hurt Locker,’’ a film about the Iraq War starring Jeremy Renner. She was selected after submitting a bid to the Army’s advertising agency.

Three ads were produced in varying formats and will appear on national and local outlets, Rivas said. Ads will be produced in different lengths; one minute is the longest, six seconds the shortest.

Some of the ads can be viewed on YouTube.

“The campaign will employ a mix of youth-targeting advertising media to reach Gen Z prospects across their preferred platforms and areas of interest, including esports and college sports,’’ Rivas said.

The ads began appearing on Monday, Jan. 26, on several online video channels, including CBS, ESPN and Fox Sports, and Hulu. Digital media is slated for Bleacher Report, Twitch, CNN and Gamespot, among others, with a social media push slated for Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram and Reddit.

The campaign will appear during regular-season college basketball games and through March Madness. In hoops terminology, the Army National Guard is planning a full-court press to entice new recruits from Gen Z.

“The ads include actual Army National Guard soldiers who are currently serving and are the same age demographics of Gen Z,’’ Rivas said. “Activities depicted in the ads range from the soldiers’ civilian pursuits to their military occupations and scenarios related to the Army National Guard’s federal and domestic missions.’’

More than 100 pieces of contents have been created, Rivas said. The Army National Guard expects them to be in use for up to two years, she said.

It’s an ambitious program — and not a subtle one.

As the action picks up in the one-minute ad, Guard members are shown in rapid-fire sequences as the narrator discusses the opportunities potentially awaiting Gen Zers.

He mentions building bridges and hospitals, saving families from disaster and assisting others in need.

“We’re going to do all this and more, because we have an appointment with destiny,’’ the narrator said. “We invite you to join us.’’

Early returns are that this recruiting mission is having an impact.

After viewing the ad online, one commenter said he was 19 and was motivated to “help my fellow citizens.’’ He said he plans to join the Guard.

That’s exactly what the Army National Guard wants to hear.

“‘The Next Greatest Generation Is Now’ campaign lets Gen Z know that the ARNG understands that they are the future of our organization and is confident that Gen Z’s energy, creativity and determination will solve the complicated problems facing our nation and its communities,’’ Rivas said.

Intel

The Israeli Air Force doesn’t need stealth, they have chutzpah

It’s not a secret the Israeli Defense Forces get a lot of help from their longtime ally, the United States. One IDF general even stated his belief the IDF gets more support from the American taxpayer than the Israeli taxpayer, though the math on that is fuzzy and he was probably just exaggerating for emphasis. The U.S. spent $3.15 billion every year from 2013-2015.


So when Israel sends a list of military hardware to purchase from the United States, one would assume it always includes the latest and greatest in military technology. After all, Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system, capable of detecting and intercepting incoming rocket attacks from Lebanon and the Gaza Strip, can intercept most missiles fired at population centers and even operate automatically.

 

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
An Iron Dome missile launches against a missile launched from Gaza

So why would the Israelis request an airframe without stealth capability? Though they did request some of the developing F-35s, they opted to buy a proposed, unmade version of the F-15. Aircraft with stealth capability are designed that way at conception, since much to do with the stealth capability is about the shape of the aircraft (see: B-2 Bomber), which means, the Israelis are buying an undeveloped, much less stealthy plane, one which is inferior to the F-35, for a discount of only $10 million less.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
F-15SE Silent Eagle Concept

Defeating stealth technology is a goal for defense manufacturers and U.S. rivals worldwide and has been for decades. The Israelis’ primary threats operate at many different levels of technology and capability. Even without stealth technology, the IDF has proven itself time and again, throughout Israel’s history to be efficient, lethal, and accurate while taking minimal losses in manpower and equipment.

There could be a number of reasons why the Israelis opted for a less invisible fighter, but the top of the list could be that they just don’t care, they’re just that good. In the Six-Day war, the IDF almost entirely destroyed the Egyptian Air Force while crippling Jordan, Syria, and Iraq’s. In 1973’s Yom Kippur War, the Israeli Air Force was outnumbered 3-to-1 and took heavy losses from Egyptian surface-to-air (SAM) missiles, but still bested the Syrians and Egyptians in less than a month.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says

Israel’s current fleet of fighters and attack aircraft is made up of F-15 Strike Eagles and F-16 Fighting Falcons. The F-16 already beat an F-35 in a dogfight … maybe the Israeli Air Force is onto something.

Intel

Russia and China aim to challenge US in space, say Space Force leaders

Recently, U.S. Space Force General David Thompson, the Vice Space Operations Chief, sat down for a virtual talk with the Association of Old Crows.

Gen. Thompson emphasized the intraservice utility of the Space Force but also of the branch’s need to create and sustain enduring relationships with the other branches, the intelligence community, and other agencies and departments within the US government.

The Space Force is responsible for capabilities and mission-sets such as navigation, orbital warfare, missile defense, satellite communications, electromagnetic operations, and GPS services, among other tasks.

“We have enduring relationships with the National Reconnaissance Office and the rest of the intelligence community,” said Thompson. “We not only need to maintain those but deepen those as well, especially because we’re now partners with them in the need to defend and protect these capabilities from threats.”

Thompson highlighted that the space in a domain where several countries—and even companies—are looking to expand their presence for economic, civil, public safety, and national security purposes. He suggested that the Space Force might be looking to partnerships where there are common interests and goals.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
U.S. Space Force General David Thompson, Vice Space Operations Chief, speaks to representatives during an Electromagnetic Spectrum Operations Leadership series event with the Association of Old Crows, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C., Jan. 13, 2021. (DoD photo by Air Force Staff Sgt. Brittany A. Chase)

The Space Force achieved a landmark point in December when General John “Jay” Raymond officially joined the Joint Chiefs of Staff, becoming the 8th member of the highest military council of the US.

“We recognize it clearly as a warfighting domain. And we also know that we, the United States, we’ve got to maintain capabilities in that domain if we are going to continue to deter great power war,” General Mark Milley, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said during the ceremony. “This is an incredibly important organization for the United States military and for the United States as a country. And it’s really important what we’re doing today, which is [to] induct you as an official member into the Joint Chiefs of Staff.”

The commercial sector is another point of interest for the Space Force despite the high-risk it might entail. The ability of private companies to rapidly field and test new technology appeals to the Space Force, which often has to contend with the lengthy test, development, and acquisition timelines found in any bureaucracy.

As for what the Space Force is looking for in future recruits, Thompson said that digitally fluent and cyber-savvy candidates are essential for the Space Force to continue its contribution to the fight but also expand its capabilities.

Headquartered in Virginia, the Association of Old Crows is an international nonprofit professional organization specializing in electronic warfare, tactical information operations, and related disciplines.

In another virtual even, Air Force Gen. John E. Hyten talked about America’s near-peer competitors and their space capabilities and aspirations.

“Russia and China are building capabilities to challenge us in space because if they can challenge us in space, they understand as dependent as we are in space capabilities that they can challenge us as a nation,” said Gen. Hyten during an online event at the National Security Space Association.

Gen. Hyten added that it falls to the Pentagon to continue the education of Americans about US space capabilities but also about the dangers posed by China and Russia and how to best deal with them.

Intel

This Crazy First-Person Footage Shows Korean Navy SEALs Taking Down Somali Pirates


If you have a problem with Somali pirates, South Korean Navy SEALs know how to solve it.

Case in point comes in this remarkable footage captured by one of the operator’s helmet-mounted cameras, while rescuing the crew of a hijacked freighter. The recently uploaded video shows how the Somali pirates’ chances of getting away quickly decimate once the team boards the ship.

Also Read: Here’s How US Navy SEALs Take Down A House

The footage is just over four minutes long, but the mission began long before boarding the ship. A South Korean destroyer chased the Samho Jewelry – an 11,500-ton chemical carrier – for eight days before it was safe enough to carry out the pre-dawn rescue. Once on board, another five hours would pass until the operation was over.

Officials in Seoul said all 21 members of the crew – 11 Burmese, eight Koreans, and two Indonesians – were safe after the rescue mission, according to The Guardian.

Here’s the footage captured from the helmet-mounted camera. Check it out:

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H/T: Funker 350 

Intel

Watch Leonard Nimoy in a Marine Corps instructional video from 1954

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Photo: Wikimedia


Long before he played the greatest Starfleet officer of all time and directed the immortal ‘The Voyage Home‘ Leonard Nimoy spent 18 months in the Army reserve. According to Military.com, Nimoy achieved the rank of sergeant and spent much of his army service “putting on shows for the Army Special Services branch which he wrote, narrated, and emceed.”

Also Watch: Actor Joe Mantegna Is Pushing Hard For Veterans’ Issues On ‘Criminal Minds’

Nimoy acted in the following instructional film along with future “Davy Crockett” star Fess Parker. It addressed what was then called combat fatigue, or the emotional and psychological toll of warfare. The film shows how Marine Corps psychologists were supposed to treat combat fatigue sufferers, giving a glimpse into how the wartime military of the 1950s dealt into the still-vital question of how to address the mental health needs of its troops. Nimoy appears as the first of the two Marines in the clip to undergo treatment.

This clip was made in 1954, shortly after the Korean War ended and 12 years before Star Trek premiered on NBC.

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This article originally appeared at Business Insider Defense Copyright 2015. Follow BI Defense on Twitter.

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The Battle Of Iwo Jima Began 70 Years Ago — Here’s How It Looked When Marines Hit The Beach

The Battle of Iwo Jima kicked off 70 years ago, on Feb. 19, 1945.


One of the bloodiest battles of the Pacific war, the 35-day fight for the desolate island yielded 27 recipients of the Medal of Honor, along with one of the most famous photographs ever taken.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says

According to the The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinal, American military planners thought the battle would only be a few days. Instead, it dragged on for five weeks, at a cost of more than 6,800 American lives. The Japanese lost more than 18,000.

Also Read: This Was The Secret War Off The US Coast During World War II

Here’s what the Marine Corps Historical Company wrote about the first day:

This Day in Marine Corps History. 19 February 1945: At 08:59, one minute ahead of schedule, the first of an eventual 30,000 Marines of the 3rd Marine Division, the 4th Marine Division, and the new 5th Marine Division, making up the V Amphibious Corps, landed on Iwo Jima The initial wave did not come under Japanese fire for some time, as General Kuribayashi’s plan was to wait until the beach was full of the Marines and their equipment. By the evening, the mountain had been cut off from the rest of the island, and 30,000 Marines had landed. About 40,000 more would follow.

Situation Room meetings about the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid were named ‘Mickey Mouse meeting’ to ensure its secrecy, new account says
Photo: US Marine Corps

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