Washington D.C. — House leaders introduced the final conference report for the Fiscal Year 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) Nov. 30 authorizing up to $100 million to special operations forces to combat terrorism.
The inclusion follows reports that President Barack Obama is expanding the authority of Special Operations Command (SOCOM) to hunt terrorist cells around the world – according to reports. The expansion is significant because it would allow SOCOM to operate independently of the respective geographic combatant commanders in whose areas of responsibility they serve.
Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-TX), chairmen of the House Armed Services Committee, filed the $619 billion authorization and its accompanying report. The House is scheduled to approve the measure on Friday, while the Senate is expected to consider it next week.
The bill would authorize the Secretary of Defense to use the funds to support foreign forces, irregular forces, groups, or individuals supporting or facilitating U.S. SOF. It does not provide authority to conduct covert operations.