Saturday, October 5, 2013

U.S. Says Navy SEALs Stage Raid on Somali Militants

I hope this information was deliberately provided for some kind of psychological operations purpose to achieve a desired effect (hopefully after some well thought out analysis that was conducted prior to the operation). If this is the result of someone talking out of school or because someone in the media figured it out then I guess we have reached the point where we cannot expect to maintain operational security.  Why is the American official speaking on condition of anonymity? Does he or she require more security protection than the Navy SEALs that he or she has compromised?  It sounds like we had them guessing for awhile with Al Shabab saying it was the Brits or the Turks.  I just hope that this anonymous American  security official was not someone who could not stand someone else getting the credit and therefor decided to leak this to ensure that the US received credit.   Again, I hope that this information  was deliberately provided to achieve a specific effect.  Otherwise we should really rethink our OPSEC protocols which might have to begin with hunting down this anonymous American security official if he was talking out of school. 

October 5, 2013

U.S. Says Navy SEALs Stage Raid on Somali Militants

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http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/06/world/africa/mall-attack-also-involved-kenyans-official-says.html?_r=0&pagewanted=print
NAIROBI, Kenya - A Navy SEAL team targeted a senior leader of the Shabab militant group in a raid on his seaside villa in the Somali town of Baraawe on Saturday, American officials said, in response to a deadly attack on a Nairobi shopping mall for which the group had claimed responsibility.
The SEAL team stealthily approached the beachfront house by sea, firing on the unidentified target in a predawn gunbattle that was the most significant raid by American troops on Somali soil since commandos killed Saleh Ali Saleh Nabhan, a Qaeda mastermind, near the same town four years ago.
The Shabab leader was believed to have been killed in the firefight, but the SEALS were forced to withdraw before that could be confirmed, a senior American official said. Such operations by American forces are rare because they carry a high risk, and indicate that the target was considered a high priority. Baraawe, a small port town south of Mogadishu, the Somali capital, is known as a gathering place for the Shabab's foreign fighters.
"The Baraawe raid was planned a week and a half ago," said an American security official, speaking on the condition of anonymity about a classified operation. "It was prompted by the Westgate attack," he added, referring to the mall in Nairobi that was overrun by militants two weeks ago, leaving more than 60 dead.
Witnesses in the area described a firefight lasting over an hour, with helicopters called in for air support. A senior Somali government official who spoke on the condition of anonymity confirmed the raid, saying, "The attack was carried out by the American forces and the Somali government was pre-informed about the attack."
A spokesman for the Shabab, which is based in Somalia, said that one of its fighters had been killed in an exchange of gunfire but that the group had beaten back the assault. American official initially reported that they had seized the Shabab leader, but later backed off of that account. The deadly assault on the Westgate shopping mall was a stark reminder of the power and reach of the Islamist group, which had a series of military setbacks in recent years and was widely viewed as weakened.
The F.B.I. sent dozens of agents to Nairobi after the shopping mall siege to help Kenyan authorities with the investigation. United States officials fear that the Shabab could attempt a similar attack on American soil, perhaps employing several of the group's Somali-American recruits.
Another United States official said it was still unclear whether any Americans were involved in the Westgate mall episode, though there were growing indications that fewer attackers took part in the siege than the 10 to 15 militants the government had previously announced.
A spokesman for the Kenyan military said Saturday that it had identified four of the attackers from surveillance footage. Local news media reported their names as Abu Baara al-Sudani, Omar Nabhan, Khattab al-Kene and a man known only as Umayr. "I can confirm that those are the names of the terrorists," said Maj. Emmanuel Chirchir, the spokesman.
The footage, broadcast on Kenyan television on Friday night, showed four of the attackers moving about the mall with cool nonchalance, no hint in their demeanor that they had stormed a shopping center and massacred dozens of people, much less that they feared an imminent counterassault from Kenyan security services.
One loitered in the grocery checkout aisle, talking on his cellphone. Another slouched in a storage room like a worker on break.
At least one of the four men, Mr. Nabhan, is Kenyan, and believed to be related to Saleh Ali Saleh Nabhan, the Qaeda mastermind killed four years ago near Baraawe.
(Continued at the link below)
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/06/world/africa/mall-attack-also-involved-kenyans-official-says.html?_r=0&pagewanted=print

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