More than a decade ago, in 2011, the leader of al-Qaeda, an extremist Islamist terrorist organization, Osama bin Laden was killed in an operation carried out by the United States Navy SEALs in Pakistan.

The operation named Operation Neptune Spear was headed by SEAL Team 6 with intelligence from the CIA, the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), together with the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne), otherwise known as the Night Stalkers.

An aerial view of Osama bin Laden's compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan taken by the CIA (Wikimedia Commons). Source:
An aerial view of Osama bin Laden’s compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, taken by the CIA (Wikimedia Commons)

This elite military team’s mission was simple, locate and raid the bin Laden compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, and kill-or-capture Osama bin Laden. Although the mission’s objective was disputed by the US and several whistleblowers, stating that it was a kill mission rather than a capture.

Navy SEALs conducting action drills at the John C. Stennis Space Center (Wikimedia Commons). Source:
Navy SEALs conducting action drills at the John C. Stennis Space Center. Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class John Scorza, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Nevertheless, with the SEAL Team Six successfully completing the mission in less than 15 minutes, the threat of al-Qaeda was greatly diminished, making it the Obama Administration’s greatest military success.