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INTELLIGENCE SUPPORT TO SPECIAL OPERATIONS IN - page 10 / 35

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Air Force

Air Force Special Operations units provide forward presence and engagement, information operations, precision employment/strike, and special operations forces mobility for all SOF. Among their other flying functions is the EC-130 known as Commando Solo, which conducts psychological operations and civil affairs broadcasts.7

Navy

Naval Special Warfare Command forces are organized into SEAL teams, Special Boat units, and SEAL Delivery Vehicle teams. SEAL teams are multipurpose combat forces trained and equipped to perform various SOF missions. SEALs can be deployed from submarines, aircraft or surface ships.8 There are no Marine special forces units, but Marine Expeditionary Units can be certified special-operations-capable for the duration of their deployment overseas.9

SPECIAL OPERATIONS FORCES INTELLIGENCE

Special operations forces are both users and producers of intelligence. According to the Special Forces Operations Field Manual, SF performs “intelligence activities ranging from developing information critical to planning and conducting operations or sustaining and protecting themselves and the unconventional warfare force, to assessing the capabilities and intentions of indigenous and coalition forces.”10 SF also conducts special reconnaissance, in order to “confirm, refute, or obtain—by visual observation or other collection methods— information on the capabilities, intentions, and activities of an actual or potential enemy.” intelligence officer (S2) is responsible for all aspects of intelligence, from collection to dissemination, protection of intelligence and interface with national systems.12 He does this via the Special Operations Command Research, Analysis and Threat Evaluation System (SOCRATES) LAN, which links him with national databases, imagery processing and communications with other analysts. “It can provide a direct link from national intelligence resources down to the executing level.”13 11 The

THE INTELLIGENCE COMMUNITY

It has been necessary for us to engage, quite literally, in a “full court press,” bringing to bear all elements of our national power. Striking at this [terrorist] network has necessitated an unprecedented level of cooperation among U.S.

defense, intelligence, law enforcement, and diplomatic agencies.

  • Marshall Billingslea

Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense, Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations/Low-Intensity Conflict

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