By lex, on May 13th, 2011
Not only did the Navy SEALS in the bin Laden takedown have a UAS overhead, piping imagery back to Washington, they wore helmet cams to record the action for later review, CBS reports:
Officials reviewing those videos are still reconstructing a more accurate version of what happened. We now know that the only firefight took place in the guest house, where one of bin Laden’s couriers opened fire and was quickly gunned down. No one in the main building got off a shot or was even armed, although there were weapons nearby.
The SEALs first saw bin Laden when he came out on the third floor landing. They fired, but missed. He retreated to his bedroom, and the first SEAL through the door grabbed bin Laden’s daughters and pulled them aside.
When the second SEAL entered, bin Laden’s wife rushed forward at him — or perhaps was pushed by bin Laden. The SEAL shoved her aside and shot bin Laden in the chest. A third seal shot him in the head.
The cameras were undoubtedly intended to enable the SEALs to debrief the raid, garnering lessons learned for their next action. But given the nature of their target, they also had to know that the videos would be scrutinized by the political class back home, a prospect that – given recent trends * – could only have added to their burdens.
There are many kinds of courage.
* 10-24-2018 Link Gone; no replacements found – Ed.