July 26th, 2012
02:09 AM ET

McRaven on bin Laden raid: One of history's "great intelligence operations"

To watch more of Wolf Blitzer’s interview with Admiral William McRaven, tune to “The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer” on CNN Thursday 4-7pm ET and Saturday 6-7pm ET. 

By Jamie Crawford

While it was one of 11 missions carried out by U.S. special forces that night, the head of U.S. Special Operations command said the raid that killed Osama bin Laden will go down as one of the "great intelligence operations in history."

Admiral William McRaven spoke Wednesday before an audience at the Aspen Institute Security Conference on a panel discussion moderated by CNN's Wolf Blitzer. The talk was his first interview about the raid with a journalist.

McRaven also touched on some of the other pressing issues facing the U.S. military in the discussion that ranged from serious to light-hearted.

At one point, Blitzer asked McRaven how confident they were that bin Laden was actually in that house in Abbottabad, Pakistan. "Suffice it to say we were not certain he was there," McRaven said while declining to offer tactical details of the raid.

"My job was to get him if he was there. If he wasn't there, we would know that pretty quickly and we would get up and get out," he added.

In fact the only nugget he shared about the Navy SEALs team that took bin Laden out was that more than one of the SEALs spoke multiple languages.

McRaven, a Navy SEAL himself who oversees a force of 66,000 special operations forces from all service branches of the U.S. military, said Special Forces operate in 79 countries around the globe. About 7,000 of those are currently deployed in Afghanistan.

In addition to the stealth commando raids the combatant command is known for, McRaven said Special Operations forces also help build civil society and corruption fighting techniques in the countries they operate in.

McRaven also talked about the problem of suicides for veterans and touched on the stresses of serving multiple tours of war.

"We were clearly fraying a year ago, I think that fraying is getting worse," he said.

As the conversation turned to the war in Afghanistan, McRaven said the United States respects the sovereignty of the country. And despite the recent spate of so-called blue on green killings, the killing of NATO coalition soldiers by members of the Afghan military, McRaven said U.S forces trust their Afghan partners "one hundred percent," but still remain on guard for infiltration of militants into Afghan units.

McRaven also conceded the U.S military "uses drones in Afghanistan routinely to conduct strikes," and said the United States goes to great lengths to insure the “intelligence is as precise as it can be” when drones are used in Afghanistan.

When asked what he could tell the audience of the U.S. drone campaign in neighboring Pakistan, McRaven deadpanned "nothing" as the audience erupted in laughter.

McRaven said it did not matter that he serves a commander in chief who has no prior military experience or that the presumptive GOP challenger in this year's presidential election also has no military record.

"We serve the president and commander in chief irrespective of whether they served in uniform or not. We are proud to serve whoever sits in the White House" he said

And party politics do not play a role either, he said. "I very much enjoyed working for President Bush, and I very much enjoy working for President Obama," he said.

McRaven took a firm stand however on the recent spate of leaks to journalists about national security operations that the administration and Congress are currently investigating.

"We are never happy when leaks occur and we go to very great lengths to protect our sources and methods," he said. "Sooner or later it is going to cost people their lives, or its going to cost us our national security."

While continuing to push McRaven throughout the session for more behind the scenes details on the bin Laden raid, Blitzer conceded the admiral did have a sensitive job and needed to protect his sources and methods.

"And my career," McRaven quipped as the audience roared with laughter.

But when he was asked if he was disappointed that he was only a runner up to being named Time Magazine's “Person of the Year” following the success of the bin Laden raid, McRaven deferred.

"It’s not about me," he said. "It's about that young E-5 with two kids on his eleventh deployment. That's who the real heroes are."

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  10. T/O

    I atttended this speech by Admiral McRaven, and let me tell you one thing: I am very, very glad that this man is on *our* side in the conflict with terrorism. One of the calmest, coolest customers I have ever encountered. And the interview was great, with Blitzer and McRaven in a polite chess match over how much information the Admiral was willing to discuss. Really amazing stuff.

    July 30, 2012 at 10:49 am | Reply
  11. Jack Sonberg

    "...the United States goes to great lengths to insure the..." NO, the United States goes to great lengths to ensure the

    July 27, 2012 at 7:59 pm | Reply
  12. 2012marandalaw


    July 26, 2012 at 2:37 pm | Reply
  13. 2012marandalaw

    Reblogged this on Marinchek-Marn and commented:
    As i Said..The Brillian People live at the Pentagon.

    July 26, 2012 at 2:35 pm | Reply
    • George Patton

      Here goes another mindless Tea Partier spewing out his right-wing nonsense!!!

      July 26, 2012 at 7:14 pm | Reply
  14. Phunnie boy

    I believe everything this McRaven above said, but then again, I'm just a hillbillie Tea Partier from the South who believes in the right-wing politicians and what they stand for! If McRaven said that bin Laden was killed on May 2, last year, then it has to be true! But what do I know? I'm just an ignorant Tea Partier!

    July 26, 2012 at 2:18 pm | Reply
  15. Tb

    Yeah its all a lie you dont hide dead bodies in the middle of the ocean. The Osama Bin laden hoax , Al queda hoax. The corporate media who tell us liss on a daily. Thank god for the internet and real news reporting by amatures.

    July 26, 2012 at 1:04 pm | Reply
  16. sam

    I will consider OSAMA BIN LADEN RAID 100% fake..otherwise the U S government which showed the death and dead body of Saddam Hussain in the past, dead body of Gaddafi for several days, dead body of several other high ranking militants but Bin laden body is thrown in the sea ..deep sea so fast that nobody even can see. it is completely hiding its fake story there. its the third biggest lie by US government after the fake story of involvement of alqaeda in 911 attacks.reality on ground is 100% different than the hybrid news in the internet.

    July 26, 2012 at 11:45 am | Reply
    • Jim

      Note: the US never had custody of the bodies of either Saddam or Qaddafi. I'd recommend getting back in your cave, the big scary world is gonna get you.

      July 26, 2012 at 12:06 pm | Reply
      • bunny rabbit

        you are the one so afraid you believe every lie the government tells.

        August 15, 2012 at 4:45 pm |
      • 11BangBang

        Right... because a free press is controlled by the government. Honestly, if you knew what a free press was, you'd never say that they'd be controlled by the government.

        August 15, 2012 at 4:57 pm |
  17. Bugmenot

    Why don't you's just stand on yer head and soil yer pants awready!!

    July 26, 2012 at 11:28 am | Reply
  18. Big_D

    They should raid the 21 trillion in hidden money that people like Romney have stashed overseas so they don't pay taxes. Heck the penalties alone could pay off the national debt. They are probably why we have a debt to begin with. If people were honest and paid their taxes it would be different but cheats like Romney just get richer.

    July 26, 2012 at 11:13 am | Reply
  19. Richard

    HA HA HA. Specials Ops humor is funny.

    July 26, 2012 at 11:08 am | Reply
  20. Patriot

    Loose lips, sinks ships! Shut the F*&K Up already, White House!!!!

    July 26, 2012 at 11:01 am | Reply
    • vj

      Too bad Osama was killed in Tora Bora. They even have a transcription of his funeral in arabic, and confirmed by many top pakistani officials. And what happens a month after May 1 2011? 30 members of seal team 6 die in a chinook crash!!! I repeat, in a CHINOOK!!!!!

      July 26, 2012 at 11:10 am | Reply
    • Big_D

      Sure, and Valerie Plame was just a mistake.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:14 am | Reply
    • Bugmenot

      Why don't yous just stand on yer head and soil yer pants awready!!!

      July 26, 2012 at 11:19 am | Reply
    • Joseph McCarthy

      Come on Patriot, will you kindly cut that Tea Party lingo out? It has no place here. Besides, what does this McRaven take us for anyway? He must think that we're all idiots here!

      July 26, 2012 at 2:07 pm | Reply
  21. Jay

    Wow, 66,000 deployed trained killers. Is it that many bad guys out there? Has anyone considered what happens when the other guys get drones and carry out their own kill list against Americans?

    July 26, 2012 at 10:56 am | Reply
    • John

      Yeah, there are that many bad guys out there. Your comment about drones is just silly. Drones are useless without air superiority. If our enemies were capable of achieving that, we'd have much bigger problems than drone strikes. But they can't.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:34 am | Reply
      • Chris

        Thank you John for making sense on a comment board full of non military types that don't have a clue how this all works.

        July 26, 2012 at 11:43 am |
    • sonofliberty

      yeah we F them up. thats what happens.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:38 am | Reply
    • Jim

      Last I checked, that number includes all the rear-echelon folks who support the spear. The shaft of the spear, if you will. And honestly, those 66k troops are more effective than whole armies have been.

      July 26, 2012 at 12:04 pm | Reply

    !!!!!!!!!!!.........WARNING........WARNING.........WARNING.......Hillary Clinton’s chief-of-staff, Huma Abedin, worked on the editorial board of a Saudi-financed Islamic think tank alongside a Muslim extremist accused of financing al-Qaida fronts. The extremist, Abdullah Omar Naseef, is deeply connected to the Abedin family. Naseef is secretary-general of the Muslim World League, an Islamic charity known to have spawned terrorist groups, including one declared by the U.S. government to be an official al-Qaida front. ......WARNING...........WARNING...........WARNING.........!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    July 26, 2012 at 10:47 am | Reply
    • SteveDenver

      Oh, great.A bachmann psycho. When McCain condems one of his fellow republicans, you should turn of faux news and listen.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:50 am | Reply

      It's facts !!!! Check it out for yourself . She is FRIENDS TO OUR ENEMIES !!!!!!! Her MOTHER is with the women's division of MUSLIM BROTHER !!!!!!!

      July 26, 2012 at 10:56 am | Reply
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      July 26, 2012 at 10:59 am | Reply

      She is friends to our enemies that have sworn to attack us. Her MOTHER is with the women's division of the MUSLIM BROTHERHOOD !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WARNING !!!!!!!!!!!

      July 26, 2012 at 11:03 am | Reply
    • HPNIII

      Have no fear, Mechelle is right on it.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:12 am | Reply
    • Mike

      You know, Daily show analyzed Bachman and the other cookoo GOP reps that said this stuff. It took four degrees of separation to tie Huma Abedein to any kind of bad activity. Through HSBC, who have been dabbling with crooks AND terrorists, Bachman is linked to terrorists by one degree of separation because HSBC donated $1,000 to her nutjob campaign. I can't wait til society finally realizes these right wing nut jobs are exactly what they are.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:14 am | Reply
    • John N Florida

      Joe McCarthy wants to see you -– immediately! You need to go NOW.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:20 am | Reply
    • Bugmenot

      Why don't yous just stand on yer head and soil yer pants awready!!

      July 26, 2012 at 11:21 am | Reply

        Bugmenot, why don't you learn to spell.

        July 26, 2012 at 11:46 am |
  23. Michael C

    I am concerned about his last statement concerning the average E-5 on his ,"...11th deployment." What he is emphasizing is that our military might is endangered by excessive deployments in war zones. Over the past ten years the suicide and violent crime rate among returning veterans has exploded. The treatment of PTSD is hindered by a culture of denial about it as it is seen as a sign of weakness instead of a normal reaction to extreme events.

    July 26, 2012 at 10:38 am | Reply
    • Jim

      PTSD: the knowledge that you will never again be as awesome as you were. (/sarcasm)

      Might help assuage the crime bit if there were actually jobs for vets, vice lip service.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:51 am | Reply
    • BlogARama

      Great comment. I would also like to point out how many times the reaction of the audience was mentioned yet on this line no comment. This was the most serious thing he said all night. 11 Tours of Duty. WOW!

      July 26, 2012 at 11:33 am | Reply
      • Jim

        Most SF or SF-like (as in Rangers) deployments are only 3-4 months long. Rather easy to rack up the deployments if you're only downrange for the summer.

        July 26, 2012 at 12:01 pm |
  24. Aaron Chaney

    DEIR HEZZOR, (SANA)_At the forefront of the Syrian armed forces offensive termed Confront, contain and extinguish, all terrorists are quantified based on internal security reports and special reconnaissance that works in conjunction with a community effort being engaged throughout the whole of the nation. As outlined by a defense ministry spokesman, "The citizens of Syria wholeheartedly support this round them up directive since many of them report being threatened with violence if they refuse to accede to the demands of seditionists. Our CCE policy is a viable and necessary approach to establish order by contending with any individual or group of individuals who are deluded – for whatever reason, into believing that a nation can be hijacked and seized by engaging in organized terrorism."

    July 26, 2012 at 10:28 am | Reply
  25. michaelfury

    Not as "intelligent" as this operation, was it, Wolf?


    July 26, 2012 at 10:26 am | Reply
  26. Jake

    You would assume that CNN would be able to correctly state a huge controversy in the war as "Green on Blue" not "Blue on Green attacks" last i checked our soldiers do not randomly open fire on their Afghan Counterparts.

    July 26, 2012 at 10:23 am | Reply
  27. Lee Harvey Patsy

    A pliant media continues to feed a gullible public.

    July 26, 2012 at 10:19 am | Reply
  28. montana

    since this thread has turned political, do you need reminding that Cheney received 5 draft deferments, Bush checked a box on his National Guard contract that he would not accept an overseas assignment, Romney received two draft deferments and then an additional ministarial deferment while he went on a mission in France. Most Mormon missions are for 12 months but ol' Willard made his a lot longer to stay out of harms way. All when we had people dying every day in Vietnam. Romeny is as phoney as Bush and thats real hard to do. I have never voted for a democrat in my life but after the condition that Bush and Cheney left our Country I will never be a Republican again. Yes, we do need a president that has a real military background.

    July 26, 2012 at 10:06 am | Reply
    • TW

      I suggest you get your facts straight if you are going to talk about who has served and in what capacity. Since 1933 only three Presidents were not in the Military and all were Democrats

      July 26, 2012 at 10:22 am | Reply
      • joe800

        of the 12 presidents who did not serve in the military, it's exactly evenly split 6 & 6...please dont warp facts like Faux News and edit the sound bite...

        July 26, 2012 at 10:57 am |
      • jmac

        Really?? Nixon and Reagan were in the military? Really??

        July 26, 2012 at 11:16 am |
      • Jim

        Actually, yes. Both Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan were in the military.

        July 26, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • Germany

      By the way missions for the Mormon church are for 24 months if your male and 18 months for females. get it right if you're going to post something.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:27 am | Reply
  29. Rags

    "In addition to the stealth commando raids the combatant command is known for, McRaven said Special Operations forces also help build civil society and corruption fighting techniques in the countries they operate in."

    It would be really nice to see these highly trained individuals use their 'corruption fighting techniques' here in the US, starting with Rmoney.

    July 26, 2012 at 9:54 am | Reply
    • George Patton

      How about using these "corruption fighting techniques" in Washington D.C. against the all-powerful M.I.C.(military-industrial-complex), Rags? It would be great just to rid ourselves of all these corrupt right-wing politicians who keep this country constantly at war!!!

      July 26, 2012 at 10:00 am | Reply
      • Steve

        How long has the Pinko Obama kept us in Afghanistan and how many more children will be killed in Syria before you libs realize the world is an evil place. Definition of a hypocrite.......A "proud" liberal

        July 26, 2012 at 10:12 am |
    • Brad76

      A military coup d'etat? Those usually don't turn out well lol.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:11 am | Reply
  30. SugarKube

    Opie has a problem with water boarding but not murder.

    July 26, 2012 at 9:52 am | Reply
  31. Mothra Twins

    That's So McRaven.

    July 26, 2012 at 9:42 am | Reply
  32. George Patton

    What would one expect this bozo McRaven to say? Of course he'll brag his head off over the wanton murder of the purported Ussama bin Laden back on May 2 last year! After all, should one consider the assasination of Archduke Francis Ferdinand of Austria on June 28, 1914 also one of " history's greatest events"? Somehow I don't think so!!!

    July 26, 2012 at 9:41 am | Reply
    • Jim

      Wow, you're using the wrong display name for that sort of sentiment.

      As for the "wanton murder" of Osama Bin Laden: he was a legitimate target. Commanders of hostile forces have always been legitimate targets of soldiers on the battlefield.

      July 26, 2012 at 9:51 am | Reply
    • Graves

      It's hard to take anyone talking about the "Purported wanton murder" of a hated terrorist when they can't get historical names right. It was Archduke FRANZ Ferdinand. Fact check or get off the computer.

      July 26, 2012 at 9:52 am | Reply
  33. Tom

    Willard Romney might as well pick his nose for a running mate.

    July 26, 2012 at 9:29 am | Reply
    • Joi Gibson

      Now that was funny!!! Good one!

      July 26, 2012 at 10:17 am | Reply
  34. Tom

    Willard Romney is the epitome of foolishness.

    July 26, 2012 at 9:27 am | Reply
  35. InformedUsurper

    Are we talking about 'Tim Osment' again?

    Laughing off the 'tinfoil hat' allegations in advance, some of you folks really need to look beyond the MSM for your information.

    July 26, 2012 at 9:26 am | Reply
  36. Rosslaw

    I guess the chickhawk right will now insist on court-martialling Admiral McRaven for disclosing classified material. Sure beats actually doing anything. And Mittens can remind us all he was against taking Bin Ladin out before he was for it.

    July 26, 2012 at 9:22 am | Reply
  37. FreddyKrooger

    Bring all the troops home and keep the money here.

    July 26, 2012 at 9:22 am | Reply
  38. Mac

    Imma let you finish, but the Trojans had one of the best military raids of all time.

    July 26, 2012 at 9:22 am | Reply
  39. Lib

    THANK YOU SIR!!!And to all the other heroes in this country and our military. Thank you for not being partisan or bipartisan but just being solid people who have true respect for our country and the Commander in Chief. It is disgraceful how so called patriots disrespect our president or any president.

    July 26, 2012 at 9:17 am | Reply
    • Phunnie boy

      I completely agree with you Lib, but then again like you, I'm just a weak minded Tea Partier with very little education so I too consider these goons to be heroes!

      July 26, 2012 at 2:12 pm | Reply
  40. BG

    What turdorgs news agencies are CNN says "no big deal on intel leaks" FOX says "big deal on intel leaks" what a joke both are

    July 26, 2012 at 9:09 am | Reply
  41. elvisg

    We need 66,000 special ops forces in 79 countries? Why? I can see Afghanistan, Iraq, etc. But 79 countries? I guess our country is so rich (if you ignore our deficits) that we can afford it.

    July 26, 2012 at 9:08 am | Reply
    • doc marten

      Small groups training in different environments, cross-training with similar friendly units, acting as "force multipliers" to assist friendly forces be more effective with smaller numbers in their own countries, obtaining on-the-ground intelligence, etc. Don't worry, they're extremely cost-effective.

      July 26, 2012 at 9:31 am | Reply
    • Henry

      @elvisg you have no idea what all Spec Ops entails. To even ask that question says how ignorant or clueless you are. I served in the military and Spec Ops is not always about combat. Intel gathering, surveillance, counter intelligence, security, and protection of our interests all involves Spec Ops. The fact that you are able to sleep at night and go out and not worry that someone is coming for you is all owed to these brave men and women.

      July 26, 2012 at 9:33 am | Reply
    • Bugmenot

      Why don't yous just stand on yer head, and soil yer pants awready!!

      July 26, 2012 at 11:35 am | Reply
  42. Puddin

    Some of these posts by Repubs. are laughable. I think they lie about events so often, they begin to believe it themselves. You know....sort of like Mitt Romney, and they have no shame. I wonder if they think the American public (or those who pay attention) agree with them. What an insult to our intelligence!

    July 26, 2012 at 9:04 am | Reply
    • scranton

      Put down your own kookaid and turn off MSNBC.

      July 26, 2012 at 9:11 am | Reply
    • Really

      Some of these posts by Dems. are laughable. I think they lie about events so often, they begin to believe it themselves. You know....sort of like Mitt Romney, and they have no shame. I wonder if they think the American public (or those who pay attention) agree with them. What an insult to our intelligence!

      July 26, 2012 at 9:22 am | Reply
      • Relic8

        so what you're saying is that mittens is at least a liar and possibly a democrat. Good call, sir

        July 26, 2012 at 9:26 am |
    • Thor

      Puddin! Don't ya see? Special forces don't go there just to kill and destroy... oh contraire mon amis! C'est une grace pour libertie! They remain there to teach and coach. Better to offer a strong hand to the poor and beaten, than to battle the evil! If it only takes 66K to keep the world from erupting into a war of millions.... I'd say that is a good exchange rate.

      July 26, 2012 at 9:35 am | Reply
  43. Dave

    How about McRaven for president? Sense of humor. Serious cojones. Good looking guy. He's got my vote.

    July 26, 2012 at 8:53 am | Reply
    • TiredOfPaying

      I was just thinking that we need a candidate from the Military. Not a Military Democrat or a Military Republican, just Military. Our armed forces are probably the only non-partisan group left and will actualy serve the People.

      July 26, 2012 at 9:02 am | Reply
      • joetoast

        Service men and women have opinions like everyone else, we just keep them to ourselves (or are supposed to, anyway) for the sake of the mission.

        July 26, 2012 at 9:12 am |
    • William Wilberforce

      It seems that eventually the US will be a nation governed by the military and no different from African or Southamerican country.Sad.

      July 26, 2012 at 2:22 pm | Reply
  44. jk

    Yeah, drone strikes in Pakistan that violate national sovereignty and kill civilians–hilarious. I can see why an audience would crack up. Wink-wink, ha-ha. What exactly does it mean that Special Forces build a "civil society"? Because that certainly doesn't fit.

    July 26, 2012 at 8:32 am | Reply
    • DD

      You have no idea what you are talking about.

      July 26, 2012 at 8:43 am | Reply
    • Jack

      You're a moron and a coward.

      July 26, 2012 at 8:59 am | Reply
      • Lee Harvy Patsy

        Cowards kill civillians. Morons appear to not have any problems with "collateral damage".

        July 26, 2012 at 1:07 pm |
  45. neal

    Hey guys i think that we should b thanking the special warfare officers who put their lives on the line every time that they get called 2 help stop the terrorists that plague this fine country we live in. If not for them then i think that we will b in a bigger world of hurt than we are already in. So that's why i make it a point to say thank you to any military service member, whether they are wearing their their B.D.U. or are in civilian clothing. It makes me feel great 2 see them smile and say thanks back to me it doesnt take much to show a little apprecication for all of the sacifrices that they have and are going through. So PLEASE TAKE THE TIME TO SAY THANKS TO ANY SERVICE MEMBER THAT YOU MIGHT COME ACROSS.

    July 26, 2012 at 8:29 am | Reply
  46. Stopthemadness


    July 26, 2012 at 7:59 am | Reply
    • c

      Thank you SEALS who were executed the mission at the Command of Commander in Chief of the Armed Services of the United States of America; Barack Hussein Obama. You know (Stopthemadness) he's sorta like the other Commander in Chief who attacked another country and executed it's crazy leader; who as it turned out had no weapons of mass destruction. Obama 2012!!!

      July 26, 2012 at 10:05 am | Reply
  47. beezy

    Yes the econ started going south under President Bush but it was just fine till the dems took control of the house and senate. What has obama done besides try and ruin this country? Thank God the republicans have control or obama would have us speaking what ever language they speak in his native kenya.

    July 26, 2012 at 7:48 am | Reply
    • petty officer paulsen

      Going south?? His administration sold our country out for higher profits for their friends after the got us into 2 wars that only served to fatten their military contractor friends and supporters wallets. They f#$%^ed us plain and simple. if you say otherwise you are just another sheep being led by your simple minded approach to the world and politics. Also the Bush administration had f*** all to do with getting Osama, that was a joint military operation undertaken after Obama took office.

      July 26, 2012 at 8:30 am | Reply
    • Jose

      HAHA you are one of those "birthers" aren't ya lol. You have no credibility. End of conversation. N. I. G. G. E. R.

      July 26, 2012 at 8:34 am | Reply
    • Mark

      Racist fool

      July 26, 2012 at 8:46 am | Reply
    • Honest201

      True, CNN news ARE lacking, no real information anymore from these folks. Anyway, folks that want a Military leader for President, you people are made to be ruled.. sound familiar. How about someone who will give a crap about our roads, bridges, Educating our youth... instead of running scared of some dudes in caves, just an excuse to eradicate. Lost souls.

      July 26, 2012 at 9:25 am | Reply
  48. WhyWhy

    WHY?...a force of 66,000 special operations forces from all service branches of the U.S. military, said Special Forces operate in 79 countries around the globe.
    What is COST/BENEFITS?

    July 26, 2012 at 7:47 am | Reply
    • dave

      Ignorance is Bliss. You, my friend are very ignorant.

      July 26, 2012 at 8:08 am | Reply
    • Youyou

      To keep your ignorant behind free?

      July 26, 2012 at 8:25 am | Reply
    • NeckStomp

      Per man, they are more versatile and much more useful that an average groundpounder/bulletsponge. More expensive to train and deliver, but you are also skipping the mission-specific qualitative measure of the operations they execute. That value versus the standard infantry/occupation role should be enough for your consideration.

      July 26, 2012 at 8:38 am | Reply
  49. beezy

    President Bush did not leave office in disgrace. We never would have been able to find bin laden if it wasn't for President Bush. The credit for getting bin laden goes to President Bush not obama. i love how libs make stuff up to try and make obama look like he has actually done something. I will bet anyone that right before the election obama will make sure the pictures of bin laden dead will be "leaked" because he knows he is screwed and will once again leak classified intel to get a boost. Won't work tho. The American people see right through him.

    July 26, 2012 at 7:42 am | Reply
    • Jose

      Yeah. And bush left this economy in GRRREEAAT shape to. You ppl never cease to amaze with what's in your little f-ing heads.

      July 26, 2012 at 7:45 am | Reply
    • Tod

      Pres. Bush himself said he stopped looking for him years ago. Candidate Obama said he would go into Pakistan if he had to in order to get bin Laden. He did, and we did. You can manufacture opinions all you want, but you have zero truth to your story.

      July 26, 2012 at 8:43 am | Reply
      • angeleyes


        July 26, 2012 at 9:22 am |
    • Ted Striker

      Bush ordered the Bin Laden unit at the CIA SHUT DOWN.

      So no

      July 26, 2012 at 10:02 am | Reply
      • Dude

        Bush wanted to go after that bad bad man who tried to kill his daddy. He wasn't too concerned about some silly terrorist who did a no no on 9-11.

        Clinton's transition team warned Bush that Al-Qaeda was planning something. Bush said "Don't you worry, as we say in Texas, don't leave a bird in the unturned um fool me twice. We will keep an eye on Sadam." While Bush looked frantically for an excuse to go to war with Iraq, 9-11 happened and he had his excuse. He had Bin Laden cornered until he started to re-position troops to attack Iraq. We could have gotten Bin Laden and his whole leadership in 2002. But, instead we allowed Al-Qaeda to re-group, the Taliban to regain power, Pakistan to become a haven for terrorists, Yemen to become a second home for Al-Qaeda, the war costs to bankrupt the US and so on.

        Then Obama got Bin Laden, got us out of Iraq and after his first year (under the last Bush budget) he has had the lowest spending growth in history.

        Let's give the Republicans another shot. I'm sure there is another country we can invade. Our grand kids will be happy to work for sub minimum wage to pay for it. But, don't worry no rich people will be harmed.

        July 26, 2012 at 10:40 am |
  50. Aeon6911

    Cool article...

    July 26, 2012 at 7:38 am | Reply
  51. Robert

    "When asked what he could tell the audience of the U.S. drone campaign in neighboring Pakistan, McRaven deadpanned "nothing" as the audience erupted in laughter."

    Hahaha! HAHAHAHA LOLZ and ROFLMAO!!!!! HAAHAA.... no.

    July 26, 2012 at 7:34 am | Reply
  52. ipmutt

    Obama spilling more top secreat info.

    July 26, 2012 at 7:26 am | Reply
    • Jose

      Bush would never do such thing. F-ing naive.

      July 26, 2012 at 7:41 am | Reply
  53. MIke

    Sorry Jaime Crawford, you misspelled INSURE... it should have been ENSURE. My lasik works!!

    McRaven also conceded the U.S military "uses drones in Afghanistan routinely to conduct strikes," and said the United States goes to great lengths to insure the “intelligence is as precise as it can be” when drones are used in Afghanistan.

    July 26, 2012 at 7:24 am | Reply
  54. John

    McRaven is purely acting is self-preservation of the military budget and was coaxed by republicans to follow through on the fabrication that our President or his cabinet leaked sensitive intelligence information. It is nothing but pure election year propaganda and McRaven is gladly complicit because he doesn't want to see any budget cuts to the military.

    July 26, 2012 at 7:24 am | Reply
    • Joe

      Hey John, your "fabrication" about leaks is ridiculous. Are you saying there are no leaks? And try reading the budget request, Obama wants to remove 500 billion from the military regardless of what McRaven says. What a tool you are.

      July 26, 2012 at 7:50 am | Reply
  55. Name*michael feliciano

    Spoken like a true leader-great job on bin laden now let's get our men and women home safe soon.

    July 26, 2012 at 7:05 am | Reply
  56. Encrypted

    spending ***

    July 26, 2012 at 7:02 am | Reply
  57. SugarKube

    Yawn. We need jobs.

    July 26, 2012 at 6:55 am | Reply
    • Saltlick

      Try applying for one.

      July 26, 2012 at 7:24 am | Reply
    • Michelle

      Wouldnt construction work typically be the choice after discharge? And I think Pres. Obama touched on infrastructure jobs at some point in some speech or another. Write your congressman–we need federal programs that kill 2 birds with one stone–maintenance and improvement of infrastructure and creates jobs–at a liveable wage. Or just go work at fast food or cell phone store or big box if you want. Theres a thousand of those jobs.

      July 26, 2012 at 7:34 am | Reply
  58. bigfoot

    George W. Bush DID leave in disgrace having NEVER avenged 9/11 by getting bin Laden. Obama DID get bin Laden. PERIOD.

    July 26, 2012 at 6:18 am | Reply
    • Tom

      The greatest intelligence operations in history would be to free the doctor who was jailed because someone in Washington has a big mouth, they are the one who needs to be in jail

      July 26, 2012 at 7:02 am | Reply
    • OS1USNR

      WRONG. The U.S. Navy SEALs got Bin Laden while Obama sat comfortably ensconced in all the luxury the White House has to offer. He may have given the order, but he damn sure was not the one with his *$$ on the line carrying it out.

      July 26, 2012 at 7:21 am | Reply
      • Michelle

        Well that true, but that is HIS job, and that is THEIR job, and together is how it is supposed to work. You make it sound like you are jealous of an office job.

        July 26, 2012 at 7:36 am |
      • Mark

        What do you want him to do. Go and catch the man himself? I bet you're a coward yourself. Trash mouth!

        July 26, 2012 at 8:55 am |
    • Toestomper

      Bush was having dinner with some close friends when he received the news Bin Laden had been killed. He graciously congratulated Obama for the successful operation. Luckily for Obama the military was able to locate Bin Laden in time for the operation to boost his abysimal approval numbers heading into an election. Granted, he had to postpone another vacation to be available to pose for the war room photo ops but sometimes sacrifices have to be made.

      July 26, 2012 at 7:34 am | Reply
      • Bugmenot

        Why don't youses just stand on yer head and soil yer pants awready!!

        July 26, 2012 at 1:40 pm |
    • BG

      Obozo didn't get bin laden, he still isn't sure exactly what that even means.

      Plus, he is a liar

      July 26, 2012 at 7:36 am | Reply
      • TakeSIdesButBeObjective

        It is ok to flirt with either the left or right but disrespecting the presient and discrediting his true efforts make you one very sorry worthless piece of solid waste. Offer a solution for a change; and one grounded in some semblance of intellect.

        July 26, 2012 at 9:25 am |
  59. Dover

    For all of you rabid conservatives that want to give Bush credit for getting Bin Laden, on the day he was killed, someone actually involved in the operations says: "Suffice it to say we were not certain he was there,"......three years after Bush left office in disgrace.

    July 26, 2012 at 5:51 am | Reply
  60. Ino

    It is green on blue and not blue on green.
    Green on blue attacks have gone up.

    July 26, 2012 at 5:34 am | Reply
    • Jim

      Thank God someone already mentioned this. I was about to have a cow...

      July 26, 2012 at 6:30 am | Reply
      • Jose

        f-ing drama queen

        July 26, 2012 at 7:40 am |
  61. robertd188

    As important as terrorism is, in my opinion the US should be more concerned with competing with the other global powers.

    July 26, 2012 at 4:44 am | Reply
    • Michelle

      Why do we need to compete, and what for?

      July 26, 2012 at 7:37 am | Reply
  62. robertd188

    A great success they got him. And it's unfortunate it took so long.

    July 26, 2012 at 4:41 am | Reply
  63. Aret

    Great interview/story... I didn't learn anything from it... CNN's stories and news are lacking – they seem to provide less info on what they are telling you every week. Although its not as bad as ABC.

    July 26, 2012 at 4:39 am | Reply
    • Ralph

      It is obvious that you prefer propaganda to news, go to FOX and be happy.

      July 26, 2012 at 9:28 am | Reply
  64. bob doles

    This is almost like the NSA saying they never listen in on American's conversations.

    July 26, 2012 at 4:27 am | Reply
  65. sam

    what a funny tale....Because for a conscious state of mind , the reality is that -both the helicopters were targeted by ISI when it was flying over no fly Zone in Abbottabad, one was shot down and another escaped. Bin laden was not killed there(for he was died in 2003 due to renal failure and half body paralysis) and US soldiers killed in the blown up helicopter were called the seal team 6 that might have been killed in the another helicopter shot down by Taliban the next week.. they were same troops killed in abbottabad. same person never dies time and again in a week interval.

    July 26, 2012 at 3:47 am | Reply
    • Shane

      Yeah, I'll actually go with the evidence that points to him being alive past 2003,

      July 26, 2012 at 4:48 am | Reply
    • Dave

      Well, let's see...no Americans were killed in the raid, no helicopter was shot down, Bin Laden released tapes discussing current events after 2003, and you're pretty much talking out of your south orifice.

      July 26, 2012 at 5:00 am | Reply
    • Black Cat

      And if bin laden were dead, why were two helicopters full of seals flying over Abbottabad? Were they looking for Elvis?

      July 26, 2012 at 5:53 am | Reply
    • Hear Ye

      That tinfoil hat needs an upgrade – badly.

      July 26, 2012 at 6:34 am | Reply
      • Encrypted

        Ha Ha! That comment made me LOL.
        And I would like to suggest smoothing out the tinfoil hat, less crinkles, more effective.
        So try that before spening Tens of Thousands of Dollars on that "upgrade"

        ROFL!!! xD

        July 26, 2012 at 6:51 am |
      • Encrypted

        spending ***

        PS sorry for double post

        July 26, 2012 at 7:04 am |
    • Johnny 5

      I agree with the statement that Bin Laden died of renal failure but it would've been around the 2001 time period most likely. As a medical professional, at his stage of marfan's syndrome

      July 26, 2012 at 8:16 am | Reply
      • TiredOfPaying

        I believe you are confusing Bin Laden with Kadaffi. And it was 'rectal failure' not 'renal failure.' Caused by having a bayonette being used to give an enema. Understandable mistake. Spoken as a patriotic American, backstage at the Man Show.

        July 26, 2012 at 9:12 am |
      • Johnny 5

        No, I meant Bin Laden. You are lucky to survive 6 months in the later stages of marfan's.

        July 26, 2012 at 11:09 am |
    • Colonel

      Sam, You must be a Pakistani. It is clear from both (a) your English (you wrote "for he was died in 2003"), and (b) your indignation over Bin Laden's death. Yes, Pakistan was utterly humiliated. Pakistanis were caught hiding a terrorist. Get over it now. Instead of coming up with some unbelievable fantastic stories, just admit it and stop harboring all those terrorists in your country.

      July 28, 2012 at 7:32 pm | Reply

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