As we remember all of the brave men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice in the service of their country, I hope that you will also remember that those who serve and die in secret with our intelligence services. In the words of CIA Director David H. Petraeus: “The 103 souls represented by the stars on the wall behind me all heard the same call to duty and answered it without hesitation — never for acclaim, always for country. Their words and deeds will inspire us forever, and their service and sacrifice will never be forgotten.”
Jeff, thank you for this article. I'll repost on my Facebook page since these are people who are often forgotten. Yes, I had to do some digging to figure out about the asset lost in the prisoner uprising of Qala-i-Jangi (also erroneously Mazar-e-Sharif), this CNN report was typical of the lack of information when it first happened:
This is a better news report and I hadn't heard the LtCol Mitchell felt the 500 Taliban and AQ who surrendered in Nov 2001 might have been a Trojan Horse attack:
I naturally don't know how accurate any of what I read was, but Wikipedia has a good description and there is quite a lot of video from there on YouTube.It's only one story - each of those stars represents an entire life, career and end story which we'll never know about.
Thanks for the reminder Jeff. These are the heros that aren't in the "spot" light everyday. They should never be forgotten.
Well deserved article about remembering the CIA fallen. I feel he author should have left the line about the first combat casualty out of the article, it takes away from the intent of the article when getting into who was first, plus it may be incorrect...but still a great rememberence and will share.
CIA Officer Spann was the first American to die in combat in Afghanistan in Nov 2001.
SFC Nathan Chapman (1st SFG) was the first US servicemember to die in combat in Afghanistan 2 months later.
Those are not opinions.
@Iassen Donov Hi Iassen, wasn't trying to butt heads or start an opinion/fact exchange, this was a great article and we can't take away the sacrifice made by Spann and others.
My comment which is not a big issue was about the first casualty, I had done a blog post last year about a member of my old unit, 1st SFG, about Nate Chapman being the first casualty, which until last year had been circulating as fact for 10 years...but then find out that Kristofor Stonesifer and John Edmunds of the 3/75th Rnagers were KIA 10/19/2001.
Its all semantics I guess with who was first or what catagory they fall into...They All Gave Their Lives and remembering them for that is our task.
The military types and others that go into the CIA work are Brothers just like the rest.
Take care, Warren
Again, I'm not arguing. I'm just trying to clear things up. Both Rangers served in my unit - and I've met the survivors of that helo crash.
@warrenmartin1956 @Iassen Donov Both Rangers were killed in an accident as part of a CSAR. Not combat.
to read of some of the stories of sacrifice, heroism, and service, read Ted Gup's "The Book of Honor"
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I've been a sofrep reader from the start, I've noticed your posts since the beginning, as someone interested in this type of work, I really appreciate your input on CIA/NSA matters. It's too bad, but thank you nonetheless for always contributing solid commentary on this subject, I hope you keep doing so regardless.
Thank You Jeff. You said it perfectly. I would also include Earthquake McGoon (and his crew) as first casualty in SE Asia in this category as well. We here have a huge debt of gratitude. Those who willingly volunteer to stand for our freedoms get the front of the line at the pearly gates....
In times like this, I turn to various sources of inspiration for something to say and this quote seems appropriate:
Join us, brothers and sisters.
Join us in the shadows where we stand vigilant.
Join us as we carry the duty that cannot be forsworn.
And should you perish, know that your sacrifice will not be forgotten.
And that one day, we shall join you.