A look at politics, society, culture and anything else on the radar...
Thursday, May 5, 2011
The vital but relatively obscure part of the OBL-kill team...
The view from above...
One of America's most obscure intelligence agencies helped make the raid on Osama bin Laden's compound (top photo) the success that it was...
Here's a great story from the National Journal that's just part of the rich OBL-kill tapestry:
President Obama’s first brush with the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency was ignominious. Outfor lunch in May 2009, at a Five Guys burger franchise in Washington, the new president started to shake the hands of other customers, TV cameras in tow. Then he turned to men with government IDbadges. (See video below.)
“So, what do you?” Obama asked. “I work at NGA, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency,” onesaid.
“Outstanding. How long have you been doing that?” the president wondered. “Six years.” Obama then asked: “So, explain to me exactly what this National Geospatial--” His voice trailed off. “Uh, we work with, uh, satellite imagery.” Obama: “Sounds like good work.” The response is obscured by the audio.
Suffice it to say: Obama knows what the NGA does today.
What's great about this story is that it shows how complex/multi-faceted an operation like this truly is. Not only do you have the brave special forces operators low-roping into an enemy position and overwhelming opposition with precise force (not to mention killing the target), but you've also got a host of people working behind the scenes who make these operations possible.
Special "Kill OBL" bonus: The NGA is the only U.S. intel-related agency headed by a female. (Ya gotta love that a misogynistic bastard like OBL owes at least part of his demise to a smart American woman.)
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