Tue Jan 28th, 2020 at 04:18:36 AM EST
Unconfirmed reports a high-ranking CIA officer was on board ...
More below the fold ...
Frontpaged - Frank Schnittger
US military plane crashes in Afghanistan, Taliban claim responsibility | Dawn |
"The plane which was on an intelligence mission was brought down in Sado Khel area of Deh Yak district of Ghazni province," said Zabihullah Mujahid, a spokesman for the Taliban in a statement.
Mujahid did not say how fighters had brought the plane down. He said the crew on board included high ranking US officers. A senior defence official denied that senior American officers were involved.
The Taliban control large parts of Ghazni province. The militant group, which has been waging a war against US- led forces since 2001, often exaggerates enemy casualty figures.
Profile: Michael D'andrea, Trump's new head of the CIA's Iran operations | Baghdad Post - June 2017 |
Michael D'Andrea goes by many names. To those in the CIA, he's the Undertaker, the Dark Prince, Ayatollah Mike, according to NeewsWeek.
To Hollywood, he's the Wolf, immortalized in Zero Dark Thirty, a film about the manhunt for Osama Bin Laden.
To the general public, he is nobody, as he is still undercover, a man who has spent 38 years toiling at the CIA.
People like Michael D'Andrea do not seek the spotlight. Though he joined the CIA in 1979, it was not until April 2015 that a New York Times journalist, Mark Mazzetti, finally outed him.
A month after D'Andrea left his post as director of the CIA's Counter-Terrorism Center (CTC), Mazetti identified the man--known previously only as "Roger"--who had "presided over the growth of CIA drone operations" during nine years as CTC chief .
Two years later, D'Andrea has landed a new job within the CIA.
On June 2, the Times reported that "Ayatollah Mike" will be running the agency's Iran operations, in what amounts to a show of strength against the country President Donald Trump has branded "the number one terror state ."
Outing the CIA's 'Undertaker' Michael D'Andrea | Newsweek - June 2016 |
On the basis of this evidence, the CIA authorized a so-called "signature" strike on the compound. (Pakistan is the only country where the CIA can order a strike against a target without the president's knowledge.) Soon afterward, as CIA analysts reviewed the drone footage, the agency realized something had gone awry. Six bodies, not four, were dragged from the rubble and quickly buried, according to The New York Times. Among the dead were two hostages: Warren Weinstein, an American humanitarian, and Giovanni Lo Porto, an Italian aid worker. It took the CIA several weeks to confirm that the two hostages had been killed in the strike. Afterward, the agency notified President Barack Obama, who then called the families and apologized.
The deaths of the two Western hostages succeeded in doing what the killing of thousands of innocent Pakistanis, Afghanis, and Yemenis in U.S. drone strikes had failed to accomplish. It prompted Mark Mazzetti of The New York Times to act. Frustrated with the lack of congressional oversight over the drone program, Mazzetti defied the CIA and published the name of the man, who as head of the agency's Counterterrorism Center (CTC), was a key "architect of the targeted killing program." His name is Michael D'Andrea.
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