With the release of “The Final Mission of Extortion 17” by Ed Darack, new information is brought to light about one of the most deadly days for coalition troops in the War on Terror. Darack’s work goes in-depth on the subject, probing the technical details of military rotary wing aviation, accidents, and shoot downs overseas. The book also includes unique and personal character studies of the human beings who served and died that fateful day.
“The Final Mission of Extortion 17” is an outstanding work worth giving a read, one that dispels many of the ridiculous conspiracy theories that have unfortunately come to surround the attack. There was one bit of information that I noticed. What has been previously undisclosed is that the SEAL Team Six operators of Gold Squadron who were killed had been previously assigned to the CIA’s Omega Teams.
At the time of the Extortion 17 crash, the SEALs were working for the Special Operations Task Force in Afghanistan, not the CIA. However, they were rotating who they were employed by from one deployment to the next. On the previous deployment they had been with Omega and they would have been with that program again on their next deployment had they survived.
Omega consists of small teams conducting sensitive operations. Back in those days, JSOC detached operators to the program for the duration of their deployment overseas. When they got back, no after-action reviews were conducted, no questions were asked. The military didn’t even want to know what the CIA had those guys doing. In some cases, Omega operations were known to get out of control and one team, dubbed Omega-80, came to be disbanded for unspecified reasons.