Hat Tip: Denim
There have been some interesting developments concerning US special operations forces of late. As I recently noted, Trump has made some incredible moves during his (presumptive) final months in office. They included making a veteran special operator the acting Secretary of Defense; placing one of General Michael T. Flynn's cronies in charge of all special operators and military intelligence; and effectively elevating the US Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) into it's own branch of the Armed Forces.
For all sakes and purposes, the special operations community appears to have gained total control of the Pentagon in Trump's final weeks and have taken steps to ensure they will remain a dominate force for years to come.
All of this is especially interesting in light of recent developments at Fort Bragg. While USSOCOM is headquartered at MacDill Air Force Base in Florida, the real heart of US special operation forces resides at Fort Bragg. It is here that the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) is garrisoned, along with the US Army Special Forces, more commonly known as the "Green Berets." JSOC is comprised of the Delta Force, SEAL Team Six, the Intelligence Support Activity, and draws upon other units such as the US Army Rangers and the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (the "Night Stalkers"). Throw in the Green Berets, and one is left with virtually all of the nation's elite forces falling under the sway of Fort Bragg.
Which makes the rash or murders and suicides that have beset the base during 2020 all the more curious.
Fort Bragg is no stranger to controversy. As I noted before here, the base was a haven for right-wing extremism during the 1990s. In 1995, three paratroopers from the elite 82nd Airborne Division (also garrisoned at Fort Bragg) were involved in the murder of an African-American couple, allegedly to earn their stripes in a neo-Nazi gang active on the base. In all, some 22 extremists were discharged from the Army as part of the fallout from the killings. Also present on the base at the time was white supremacist Wade Michael Page, who later gained infamy when he shot up a Sikh temple in 2012. General Keith Kellogg, a major national security figure throughout Trump's administration, took over command of the 82nd Airborne in 1996, the year following the skinhead flap. He had previously been the 82nd's division command for operations in 1992.
|Fort Bragg man Wade Michael Page|
Interestingly, General Lloyd Austin, Biden's nomination for Secretary of Defense, had a longstanding history with the 82nd. After a few tours with the division during the 1980s, he rejoined it in 1993 and remained there until 1999. This means Austin was present for the rash of skinheads in the 82nd. It also means Kellogg was his commanding officer in the 82nd for two years. Don't expect any of that to come up in the Senate confirmation hearings, however.
|General Lloyd Austin|
So yeah, the Fort Bragg scene during the 1990s has has some wide reaching implications. And once again, it seems like things are getting rather strange at that particular base. Recently, one current special operator and a former one were found dead with foul play is suspected.
The two victims are Master Sgt. William J. Lavigne of the Delta Force and veteran Timothy Dumas, whose service record is currently being kept as hazy as possible. The present story is that Dumas worked as a "property book officer" for the 7th Special Forces Group beginning in 2001. Dumas had joined the military in 1996 and did not retire until 2016. It is unknown if he was still working as a "property book officer" for the Green Berets at that time, but reportedly he was stationed at Fort Bragg for the bulk of his service.
|Timothy Dumas, a former Green Beret "property book officer."|
Elsewhere, Lavigne had previously been under investigation for the murder of a Green Beret in 2018. Reportedly, Lavigne shot his fellow special operator after he came at the sergeant with a screwdriver. Needless to say, there has been much dispute over this incident. Eventually, the military ruled that the slain Green Beret's death occurred "in the line of duty." How he could have died "in the line of duty" while attacking his mate with a screwdriver has never been explained...
|Msgt William Lavigne|
Further muddying the waters are the allegations that the military was already investigating Lavigne and Dumas for both using and selling drugs. This has of course led to speculation that the murders were a drug deal gone wrong. Certainly, both men were staring down looming court dates for a host of charges.
These murders come at a time when the base has already witnessed ample death of late. Over 30 soldiers assigned to the base have died this year, with about half of them from suicide. By far the most incredible of these deaths involves paratrooper Enrique Roman-Martinez. In May, Roman-Martinez went missing while camping off base. A week after his disappearance, his severed head turned up. Whether decapitation was the cause of death or not is unknown, but the death was ruled a homicide. Roman-Martinez's family has questioned the story told by the seven military members camping with the paratrooper, who apparently waited all day to report his disappearance.
It's not just soldiers from Fort Bragg who have died under mysterious circumstances in that particular region either. There appears to be a serial killer presently active in nearby Lumberton, NC. Since 2017, five women (most of whom were Native American) have either disappeared or been murdered there. In 2017 alone, three women were found dead within four blocks of one another.
And in case you were wondering, yes, the Fort Bragg area has acquired it's own monolith. One popped up in nearby Fayetteville earlier in the week. Of course, a monolith suddenly appearing has become rather common of late.
Is there something significant currently playing out in Fort Bragg? Does it involve some type of gang with occult overtones that's infiltrated the special operations community?
Before we get to carried away, it's important to note that Fort Bragg is not exactly an anomaly in terms of dead soldiers. Consider Fort Hood. Nearly 30 soldiers have turned up dead there as well, including one especially vicious murder. Nor is this a recent problem for that particular base. Fort Hood actually has a reputation as the military's most crime-ridden base.
That being said, Fort Hood doesn't house the nation's most elite soldiers. Nor is it directly tied to the Special Operations Command, which certainly seems to be making a major power play during what are, in theory, Trump's final weeks in office.
That power play continued this week as well. As I detailed at length in my first book, Strange Tales of the Parapolitical, the Bush II years witnessed JSOC largely usurping the CIA's previous monopoly on covert operations. The CIA has long relied on special operators, often retired or on "leave," to carry out its paramilitary operations on the ground, but the twenty-first century saw JSOC carrying regular covert operations with little to know CIA involvement on any level. While little remarked upon, this was unprecedented during the modern national security state.
|As the war between CIA and JSOC becomes more intense, consider brushing up on it|
Now, it's looking like the CIA may no longer even have access to special operators to fill their paramilitary forces. The Pentagon has recently informed the CIA that it's considering ending the bulk of the support it provides to the latter's counterterrorism operations. Presently, the CIA has until January 5th to respond to this state of affairs. Incidentally, this is the day before the US Senate counts the Electoral College votes to decide the election. It's also the day of the Georgia Senate runoff.
There are already rumblings that the move is politically motivated. But even without conspiracy theorizing, this decision will be utterly disastrous for the CIA if allowed to stand. The CIA has always been dependent on the DoD for suitable paramilitary forces, be they operating on loan from the DoD or as mercenaries, but especially since the onset of the Global War of Terror. If the DoD manages to box the CIA out from this steady supply of special operators, this will effectively be the end of the CIA as a force in covert operations. And that is huge, especially as the national security establishment reorients itself towards "Great Power struggles."
At the onset of the Cold War, there wasn't just a pushback against the very existence of the CIA from the DoD, but also against its role in covert operations. Many preferred that the CIA remain a mere spy agency, but the freewheeling OSS Old Boys prevailed. Covert operations would be the principal means in which these United States squared off against the Soviet Union in the earlier Great Powers struggle, and granting the CIA a monopoly on such things ensured that it would remain in the driver's seat. It also ensured that the Wall Street interest behind the CIA would remain in control of the emerging deep state.
Some seventy years later, the Pentagon and the thriving military-industrial complex behind it, seem poised to finally reverse this state of affairs. And that should tell you all you really need to know about who really runs this country in 2020. And with that, I shall sign off for now. Until next time dear readers, stay tuned.