Pentagon sources said Foley and the others might have been successfully rescued but Obama took too long to authorize the mission. Of course Obama is denying the allegation stating ‘it’s not my fault.’
U.S. officials told the Associated Press and other publications that several dozen U.S. troops participated in the operation in eastern Syria on July 4. One U.S. soldier was injured while a “number” of ISIS militants were killed, according to the AP.
Anthony Shaffer, a former lieutenant-colonel in US military intelligence who worked on covert operations, said:
“I’m told it was almost a 30-day delay from when they said they wanted to go to when he finally gave the green light. They were ready to go in June to grab the guy [Foley] and they weren’t permitted.”
‘I’m hearing from my friends in the Pentagon,’ Shaffer said during the talk radio stations’ morning show. ‘They are giving [Obama] every single option way ahead of time.’
‘And let me give you a little secret here: The reason that raid into Syria failed to get Foley and those guys was because the president drug his feet. He waited too long, the intel got stale, and by the time we actually gave the “go” word it failed because we just didn’t react quick enough.’
Another US defense source said:
“The White House constantly goes back and forth on these things. These people are a bunch of academics who endlessly analyze stuff and ordering up another deep-thinking paper but can’t decide what to order for lunch.”
Real Clear Politics reports:
It was shortly after midnight on the Fourth of July when the specially modified Black Hawk helicopters fitted with radar-evading equipment swooped down over Ukayrishah, a small town next to the Euphrates River, close to the northern Syrian city of Raqqa.
Flown by pilots from the US 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment — known as the “Night Stalkers” — the Black Hawks’ first job was to destroy a jihadist anti-aircraft battery three miles away. But their main role was to drop several dozen elite troops from Delta Force and SEAL Team 6, the unit that killed the al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden in 2011, into the heart of territory controlled by Isis, or the Islamic State.
Syrian radar had been jammed and fighter jets were patrolling overhead as the commandos blocked access roads. The troops moved swiftly towards their objective: an abandoned oil refinery used as a military post and known as the Akershi base.
The CIA had concluded that the base contained a secret prison in which a number of western hostages were languishing.
James Foley, 40, an idealistic freelance journalist from New Hampshire who had once been kidnapped in Libya and held for 44 days, was thought to be among them.
When the commandos reached the base, scores of Isis fighters swarmed out. A US air force AC-130 gunship laid down a wall of fire, killing up to 15 of the jihadists.
According to locals, some of the commandos were wearing Jordanian insignia, perhaps to mask their nationality. They entered the buildings and found the prison. But the hostages were not there. The special forces troops had found what they term a “dry hole”.
On the evening of August 13, five days after American airstrikes on Isis targets began, Foley’s parents John and Diane received an email from their son’s captors addressed to “the American government and their sheep-like citizens”.
America, it said, “will pay the price” for the bombings. “The first of which being the blood of the American citizen, James Foley! He will be executed as a direct result of your transgressions towards us!”
Obama, whose aides said that he had not viewed the video, was briefed on its contents on Air Force One as he flew to resume his holiday on Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts to resume his golf game.
Photos courtesy of Google. com