Intelligence Support Activity, JSOC’s most secretive unit

I spend a lot of time doing research, both combing through books, old newspapers, and internet articles as well as interviewing primary sources.  Some of this information finds its way into my fictional work, some of it ends up on SOFREP, and some just gets set aside for the time being.  I’ll try to do a better job about sharing some of this information with our readers.  Today I want to draw your attention to a white paper titled “Truth Conquers All Chains”: The U.S. Army Intelligence Support Activity, 1981-1989 by Jeffrey T. Richelson.  This unit is so secretive that I don’t comment on it regarding my personal experiences but I will point you guys towards some open source information.  In addition to this paper, which first appeared in the International Journal of Intelligence and Counter Intelligence, you should also take a look at the book “Killing Pablo” and “Killer Elite”, the former being one giant OPSEC violation but damn…it’s amazing what the author turned up via the Freedom of Information Act.

When it comes to intra-politics within our own military and government, these books have some great information.  Killing Pablo mentions at one point how when one Presidential administration steps down, that sometimes SOCOM will start freelancing to a certain extent, knowing that it will take the new administration months to play catch up.  Killer Elite contains information about how ISA was getting tailed around DC because of Pentagon petty jealousies.  As the story goes, one ISA operator cornered his tail in a the bathroom of a fast food joint and put the screws to him until he started to sing like a canary.  They had now idea if they were being shadowed by their own people or if it was a terrorist group!

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About the Author
is an eight year Army Special Operations veteran who served as a Sniper and Team Leader in 3rd Ranger Battalion and as a Senior Weapons Sergeant on a Military Free Fall team in 5th Special Forces Group. Having left the military in 2010, he is now working towards a degree in Political Science at Columbia University. Murphy is the author of Reflexive Fire, Target Deck, the PROMIS series, and numerous non-fiction articles about Weapons, Tactics, Special Operations, Terrorism, and Counter-Terrorism. He has appeared in documentaries, national television, and syndicated radio.

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  • Nhedmondson

    Hey guys: shameless, but thought you all might be interested in our latest: "A silencer speaks louder than words." Check it out~

  • Nhedmondson

    Hey guys: shameless, but thought you all might be interested in our latest: "A silencer speaks louder than words." Check it out~

  • SFC

    No expert although I have worked in the same world as JSOC but as JCSE and I have worked with Air Force and Navy

  • fubar

    Does the ISA recruit from all facets of the military and not just the Army?

  • judt73

    Read Sean Naylors- Not A Good Day to Die. Good info on this topic in several chapters. Read carefully and you'll discover a new insight not included in the other books mentioned so far.