In a story that has remained largely under the mainstream media radar, Congress announced late last month that it would finally investigate the Aug. 6, 2011 helicopter crash in Afghanistan that resulted in 38 deaths, including 22 members of SEAL Team 6, made famous three months earlier when they killed Osama Bin Laden. Grieving family members insist that soldiers in the elite unit were placed in unnecessary danger by the recklessness of the Obama administration, whose actions they characterized as criminal. “We’re going to dive into this,” said Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT), chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform subcommittee on National Security.
The families of the slain soldiers have every right to be furious. SEAL Team 6 is a covert unit whose operations are ostensibly classified. As a result, it has never been revealed which members of the team were involved in the killing of the terrorist mastermind, or how many of those same men were among those killed when the Chinook helicopter in which they were traveling was shot down by Taliban terrorists.
The focus of the families’ fury and shock, along with that of SEAL Team 6 members themselves, was the administration’s desire to tout their success in killing Bin Laden — compromising the safety of the unit in the process. Only two days after the raid, Vice President Biden gave a speech at the Ritz Carlton hotel in Washington, D.C. “Let me briefly acknowledge tonight’s distinguished honorees: Adm. Jim Stavridis is a — is the real deal; he could tell you more about and understands the incredible, the phenomenal, the just almost unbelievable capacity of his Navy SEALS and what they did last — last Sunday,” Mr. Biden revealed to audience members gathered for the 50th anniversary of the Atlantic Council, an international affairs think tank.
What followed was a testament to Biden’s disturbing ability to speak before thinking. “And what was even more extraordinary was — and I’m sure former administration officials will appreciate this more than anyone — there was such an absolute, overwhelming desire to accomplish this mission that although for over several months we were in the process of planning it, and there were as many as 16 members of Congress who were briefed on it, not a single, solitary thing leaked. I find that absolutely amazing,” Biden added, apparently oblivious to the reality that he had just perpetrated one of the more egregious leaks of national security information in recent history.
As a result, SEAL Team 6 members realized they had a target painted on their backs. That reality was hammered home in a May 10, 2013 Fox News interview with Karen and Billy Vaughn, whose son Aaron was killed in the chopper crash. Karen spoke first. “As soon as Joe Biden announced that it was a SEAL Team who took out Bin Laden, within 24 hours, my son called me and I rarely ever heard him sound afraid in his adult life….He said, ‘Mom, you need to wipe your social media clean…your life is in danger, our lives are in …read more