SOF News Update 20171119 – Passing of Hermann Adler, JSOC member to be DoD executive, JSOC Cdr visits CTC at West Point, MG Kraft (USASOC) address to MOAA, SOF units at breaking point, ‘Light Footprint’ counterterrorism strategy, UK special forces units in exhibition, Taliban using night-vision goggles in Afghanistan, Somalia gets uplift of SOF, 193rd SOW gets visit from PA representative, and more.
Passing of Hermann Adler. Old time SF dudes may remember a legendary soldier from their time in Vietnam and Fort Bragg. Retired U.S. Army Major Hermann Adler passed away at the age of 88. Read “Hermann Adler, 88, master storyteller always on the hunt for a great adventure”, Port City Daily, November 17, 2017.
JSOC Member to be High-Level DoD Official. Robert Wilkie has been nominated by President Trump – and approved by the U.S. Senate – to be the next undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness. Wilkie is an intelligence officer in the Air Force Reserve and is assigned to Joint Special Operations Command at Ft. Bragg. (Fayetteville Observer, Nov 16, 2017).
SOF Units at Breaking Point? Members of Congress are concerned that U.S. special operations forces are at the breaking point due to constant deployments with little dwell time. Read “US Officials Warn Special Ops Forces Being Stretched to Possible Breaking Point”, Voice of America, November 17, 2017.
Somalia Gets SOF Uplift. The amount of U.S. military personnel in Somalia is up over 500 – with a one-star general on the ground to supervise / manage things. Many of the increased number are special operations personnel. The general officer is BG Miguel A. Castellanos – a U.S. Army Reserve Civil Affairs officer who is currently the Deputy Commanding General of Combined Joint Task Force – Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA). Read more in “U.S. pursues quiet troop buildup in Somalia”, Politico, November 19, 2017.
‘Light Footprint’ CT Strategy. Steven Metz explains how the United States has pursued a light footprint in its counterterrorism strategy using small SOF and CF units to build up partner capability and capacity. (World Politics Review, Nov 17, 2017).
UK Special Forces in Exhibition. In March 2018 the UK’s National Army Museum will open a major exhibition called Special Forces: Out of the Shadows. The exhibition will feature the UK’s elite units of SAS, SBS, SFSG, SRR, and UKSF. Read more in www.nam.ac.uk/press/special-forces-out-shadows
Taliban Using Night Vision Goggles in Afghanistan. The Taliban have acquired a limited number of high-tech night vision goggles and used them recently in an attack on the ANDSF in Farah province. (VoA, 17 Nov 2017).
Afghan SOF rescue Prisoners. Afghan and foreign special forces raided a Taliban prison in Helmand province and rescued up to 30 prisoners held by the Taliban. “Special Forces Raid Taliban Prison in Afghanistan”, Voice of America, November 19, 2017.
JSOC Cdr visits CTC at West Point. On November 15th, the Combating Terrorism Center at West Point hosted LTG Austin “Scottie” Miller, the commander of the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), for a briefing on its latest research and a discussion of future endeavors that will support the mission. (CTC, Nov 16, 2017).
193rd SOW gets Visit from PA Rep. Representative Tom Mehaffie, a republican from the Commonwealth’s 106th District (Pennsylvania), visited the 193rd Special Operations Wing. (DVIDS, Nov 18, 2017).
MG Kraft Address to MOAA. Major General Jim Kraft, the Deputy Commander of the United States Army Special Operations Command (USASOC) recently addressed members of the Military Officers Association of America (MOAA) in North Carolina. He provided insight on the many deployments of Army Special Operations Forces (ARSOF) personnel around the world. Read “Special ops commander praises troops, MOAA”, The Fayetteville Observer, November 17, 2017.