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Navy Seals Disciplined For Revealing Secrets As Consultants On Video Game

samzenpus posted about 2 years ago | from the box-of-rocks dept.

The Military 204

Hugh Pickens writes "CBS reports that seven active duty members of SEAL Team Six, best known for killing Osama bin Laden, have been disciplined for revealing secrets working as paid consultants on a video game, Medal of Honor: Warfighter. The game does not recreate the bin Laden raid, but it does portray realistic missions, such as an attack on a pirates' den in Somalia. Electronic Arts boasts that real commandos, both active duty and retired, help make its games as realistic as possible. EA says Medal of Honor Warfighter was 'written by actual U.S. Tier 1 Operators while deployed overseas,' and that it 'features a dotted line to real world events and provides players a view into globally recognized threats and situations letting them experience the action as it might have unfolded.' It is unclear what secrets members of SEAL Team Six gave away, but while serving as consultants for the game, they used classified material which had been given to them by the Navy and also violated the unwritten code that SEALs are silent warriors who shun the spotlight. 'We do not tolerate deviations from the policies that govern who we are and what we do as Sailors in the United States Navy,' says Deputy Commander of Naval Special Warfare, Rear Admiral Garry Bonelli. 'The non-judicial punishment decisions made today send a clear message throughout our Force that we are and will be held to a high standard of accountability.'"

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Kerching! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41930935)

Wonder how much a Team Six members gets bet EA pays more!

NO FISH FOR THE SEALS !! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41930941)

Seals ??

slap on the wrist (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41930943)

They should have been flat out canned or even prosecuted...

Re:slap on the wrist (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41930977)

They should have been flat out canned or even prosecuted...

or maybe governments shouldn't keep secrets about events that already happened.

"we will attack tomorrow at 2am" makes sense to keep that secret. "we had to fight three groups of guards before we got to bin ladin" makes no sense at all.

of course thats if you are dumb enough to think we really killed bin ladin. we probably "killed" him as a character and rewarded the actor for playing his part in advancing the new world order. after all without a bogey man it would have been real hard to get the PATRIOT act and a couple phoney wars against countries that aren't a threat. i dont know why their money isn't good enough for them but the banksters who run things just love bad laws and fake wars long as the casualties are real.

novus ordo seclorum.

Re:slap on the wrist (2)

Camaro (13996) | about 2 years ago | (#41931025)

And you think Bin Laden would have kept quiet if he hadn't been killed? He would have had one of his videos out pretty damn quick with a copy of the current New York Times and pointing to the date saying "Haha, sorry guys! Better luck next time!"

Re:slap on the wrist (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931095)

And you think Bin Laden would have kept quiet if he hadn't been killed? He would have had one of his videos out pretty damn quick with a copy of the current New York Times and pointing to the date saying "Haha, sorry guys! Better luck next time!"

if he was really the enemy then yeah. if he is really a puppet (think: actor) created by the military industrial complex to justify more foreign wars of aggression, then no.

Re:slap on the wrist (2)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about 2 years ago | (#41931275)

And you think Bin Laden would have kept quiet if he hadn't been killed? He would have had one of his videos out pretty damn quick with a copy of the current New York Times and pointing to the date saying "Haha, sorry guys! Better luck next time!"

if he was really the enemy then yeah. if he is really a puppet (think: actor) created by the military industrial complex to justify more foreign wars of aggression, then no.

Careful there dude, you'll work yourself into a lather and mess up all of that tin foil that you've been working so hard on.

Re:slap on the wrist (0, Flamebait)

Type44Q (1233630) | about 2 years ago | (#41931351)

The fact that this meme gets consistently modded to oblivion when there's more than enough evidence to suggest that it's at least a fucking possibility does nothing but increase the probability of it in fact actually being the case, at least in the minds of those not necessarily hooked on the Fox News/CNN tit...

Re:slap on the wrist (4, Insightful)

kelemvor4 (1980226) | about 2 years ago | (#41931591)

The fact that this meme gets consistently modded to oblivion when there's more than enough evidence to suggest that it's at least a fucking possibility does nothing but increase the probability of it in fact actually being the case, at least in the minds of those not necessarily hooked on the Fox News/CNN tit...

Never say never, I suppose - but the idea does seem a little crazy. He's been dead for quite some time and there's been no problem justifying the foreign wars without him. There was also no problem doing it before any of us ever heard of him. Seems like a long and risky road for the government to take to get a justification that they didn't even need.

Re:slap on the wrist (1)

kelemvor4 (1980226) | about 2 years ago | (#41931551)

And you think Bin Laden would have kept quiet if he hadn't been killed? He would have had one of his videos out pretty damn quick with a copy of the current New York Times and pointing to the date saying "Haha, sorry guys! Better luck next time!"

if he was really the enemy then yeah. if he is really a puppet (think: actor) created by the military industrial complex to justify more foreign wars of aggression, then no.

Since he's out of the picture, they're now using Anonymous Coward to fill the role 'eh?

Re:slap on the wrist (5, Funny)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about 2 years ago | (#41931493)

"we will attack tomorrow at 2am" makes sense to keep that secret. "we had to fight three groups of guards before we got to bin ladin" makes no sense at all.

My orders came through. My squadron ships out tomorrow. We're bombing the storage depots at Daiquiri at 1800 hours. We're coming in from the north, below their radar.

When will you be back?

I can't tell you that. It's classified.

Re:slap on the wrist (4, Interesting)

X0563511 (793323) | about 2 years ago | (#41931921)

The paranoia is there, because you can't know what will let the enemy connect the dots until it's too late. You can't know what information they need, so you try to hide it all.

Doesn't make much sense for us regular folks, but we aren't likely to be shot or tortured if someone gets some information from us.

Re:slap on the wrist (1)

Matt_Bennett (79107) | about 2 years ago | (#41931319)

Heard the story on NPR this morning- In all likelihood, their careers are over. They also showed some of their specialized gear to the game makers. In general, these types of things are allowed in the military if: #1 they don't get paid, and #2 they get permission first. I think they violated both.

Re:slap on the wrist (1)

Vanderhoth (1582661) | about 2 years ago | (#41931605)

I don't know, with what it costs to train someone and how few people actually have the ability to be a seal it's probably not worth firing them.

and get a dishonorable discharge?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931403)

So the only job they will be able to get will be working for the other side???

Just Get Elected President (2, Funny)

sycodon (149926) | about 2 years ago | (#41931699)

Then, you can simply declassify what you want and get some of your Hollywood buddies to make a movie with the information.

Fucking hypocritical is what it is.

puh...lease (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41930947)

Obviously just a PR stunt for promoting the game. Also serves USA PR interests carrying on myth of that whole bin laden complex raid and mysterious sea burial malarkey!

Re:puh...lease (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931033)

Obviously just a PR stunt for promoting the game. Also serves USA PR interests carrying on myth of that whole bin laden complex raid and mysterious sea burial malarkey!

the sheeple are so dumb they believe anything with no evidence if it is official enough.

you could say something about apple and somebody here will say "citation needed" and wont believe you without some kind of proof. the greatest villian we've been presented with so far in the 21st century dies and there is no evidence and everybody believes it. i tell you it is a crazy world.

Re:puh...lease (1, Troll)

Type44Q (1233630) | about 2 years ago | (#41931461)

the sheeple are so dumb they believe anything with no evidence if it is official enough.

Instead of modding this down (i.e. playing a cowardly game of "shoot the messenger"), would anyone actually care to point out why this statement is invalid? While undoubtedly jaded and cynical, it illustrates the entire reason that governments go to so much effort to engage in domestic psyops (if doesn't, then presumably they're wasting a lot of money!).

Re:puh...lease (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931645)

Most of the people that read this site aren't as smart as they try to make you believe. There is a higher incident of people on this site that have a complex making them feel like they need to appear smart.

So the end result is someone writing [citation needed] at every turn and patting themselves on the back. The same person will not question an official story, because they're just as easily manipulated by the mass media as everyone else. That is, they're not too bright. They're actually really shallow and immature. "Citation needed" is about the extent of their mental depth.

So yes, you're going to get modded -1 for anything that goes against an official US government story just as sure as a group of diehard conservative Christians are going to parrot about that the US President is not natural-born and is a member of the secret Muslim Brotherhood.

Re:puh...lease (2)

Americano (920576) | about 2 years ago | (#41932141)

So the end result is someone writing [citation needed] at every turn and patting themselves on the back.

I'm not sure why you'd think somebody asking you to explain your reasoning and provide a source to support your statements of fact is unreasonable. Well, unless your points are inherently irrational, and have no factual sources to support them, I guess.

Re:puh...lease (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931295)

I beleive that as well, PR for military recruiting and for EA. Get young men of the current generation interested in games to think about the military. Almost all of them are not SEAL material but it gets them in the door thinking about the military and talking to a recruiter.
Either that or it was a potential recruiting idea by one part of the military that was a great PR stunt and another part of the military thought was a terrible idea. I doubt the individual SEAL team members decided to do this on their own without input from advisors and higher ups. I got out of the military 12 years ago, maybe the culture has changed more than I think.

Remember only Generals can Consult. (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41930955)

It is not about secrets.

Good! (4, Insightful)

Tim12s (209786) | about 2 years ago | (#41930959)

How on earth can the military staff haemorage their IP for the sake of an ef'fing book deal. There is too much public information on public deals that put military operations and lives at risk. The whole point of military superiority is based on an advantage of forces as a result of numbers, skill, training, tactics, operations, etc. I know that, as a geek, I love reading aircraft, lazer, and weapons development trials and developments but c'mon. All the US people are doing is destroying its own capability.

Now I understand how freedom of information protects against poor weapons systems, faulty weapons systems, bad quality, abuse of authority, etc. I don't have all the answers but what I do know is stupid - leaking you current tactics manuals and giving away all of your secrets. Might as well open-source the military.

FFS

Re:Good! (3, Insightful)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about 2 years ago | (#41930991)

Look, I'm not a call-of-duty guy or whatever, medal of honor, apparently medal of buttsex on submarines this time around, whatever. But you have to admit that this sort of thing is good, solid cultural advancement. I mean, warfare isn't cultural advancement; access to history is, knowledge in all its forms is. Maybe they slipped some state secrets--I suspect there were implications, less revelation of direct classified data, stuff that hints too close to home. That's bad. But this whole "We should be silent and proud!' thing is stupid. Being an over-egotistical gaudy asshole is one thing, but this... this is a contribution to society. It has value.

Re:Good! (1)

Tim12s (209786) | about 2 years ago | (#41931061)

Fully agree. I like the approach of classifying certain information and releasing it 10 to 30 years later. From a history perspective this has revealed a ton of insight into Cold War mentalities on both the US and the Russian side. I would argue that the whole middle east is still an active/sensitive war zone even though there are fewer active wars and so most of this should be 10-15 years before it gets released.

Love the saying 'If you don't understand history, you are doomed to repeat it'.

We are stuck in a world were we are surrounded by soo many fantastic toys (Ferraris, Yachts, etc) with such a massive divide between someone who wants to afford a good house for their kids that the desire for fair pay is both acceptable and also discomforting. A whole other topic that should be delved into in this thread.

I understand their rationale for the book deal. Every way we look at it its always messy.

Navy Seals were created. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931283)

The SEALs were created because JFK had Marine envy. I guess making the regular Navy look tougher, it helped him get into Marylin's pants.

Most of the time when I see that the SEALs were called in, I can't help but think, "that job is really for the Marines."

Re:Navy Seals were created. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931475)

As if either kind of soldier isn't anything more than a disposable tool as dumb as the proverbial bag of hammers. Your little rivalry is amusing, like watching special ed kids fight over some mongo poontang.

Re:Navy Seals were created. (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931893)

Considering that many Special Forces unit soldiers have advanced college degrees, or the education equivalent to one, id question your 'source' if information. The average enlisted solider might not always be that smart, but the government doesn't hand someone above an E-5 access to millions of dollars worth of equipment if they are as dumb as a tool bag.

Re:Navy Seals were created. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931865)

RECON!

Re:Good! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931009)

How on earth can the military staff haemorage their IP for the sake of an ef'fing book deal. There is too much public information on public deals that put military operations and lives at risk. The whole point of military superiority is based on an advantage of forces as a result of numbers, skill, training, tactics, operations, etc. I know that, as a geek, I love reading aircraft, lazer, and weapons development trials and developments but c'mon. All the US people are doing is destroying its own capability.

Now I understand how freedom of information protects against poor weapons systems, faulty weapons systems, bad quality, abuse of authority, etc. I don't have all the answers but what I do know is stupid - leaking you current tactics manuals and giving away all of your secrets. Might as well open-source the military.

FFS

If you want to know the answer to your repeated question of "why" here, pick up the average servicemembers pay stub and take a good hard look at it.

If the military was serious about their statement of accountability, then maybe they would get off their own fucking wallets for once and pay that servicemember putting his or her LIFE on the line (something you or I hardly do while going to "work" every day) a decent living wage.

Maybe then, that Silent-but-broke Warrior would not be enticed by the very lucrative gaming industry, succumbing to attractive "consulting" fees.

Re:Good! (1)

WillAdams (45638) | about 2 years ago | (#41931029)

Military pay is _much_ better than it used to be. Retirement is still amazingly good (until the bean counters decide it should become some sort of 401K).

It's a privilege to serve and one should be more concerned about things other than money --- plenty of time for that later (you've more than half your life ahead of you if you retire at age 38).

Re:Good! (5, Informative)

marcuskincad (2669205) | about 2 years ago | (#41931361)

Military pay is _much_ better than it used to be. Retirement is still amazingly good (until the bean counters decide it should become some sort of 401K).

What drugs are you taking? I was discharged (honorably, mind you) recently and I was getting paid shit. Let me preemptively negate the mitigating arguements to justify the green weenie argument of the pay issue: ~ Free housing: I lived in on-base housing that were either condemned and then re-fitted to shove extra soldiers in, or barracks that when reviewed, the base was allocated several million dollars to build new barracks.There's a reason some of us preferred the field. ~ Free healthcare: Performed by people who are fresh out of school and aren't experienced enough to be jaded. Or performed by people who have the mentality that once they put in their eight hours, their day was over. Their day started with PT, one of the few things that movies get right by showing it before dawn. So, yes, they're out of the office by 2 in the afternoon. Oh yeah, unless there is seriously something out of the norm with you, here's some Advil. Walk it off. Knew a guy that seriously injured his spine. Was back at work about a month later. Almost forgot, he deployed 4 or 5 months later. ~ Free food: Bought at a cost ration of greatest weight per dollar, which translated into cheapest food medically allowed. Joke I heard was: Grade E Beef-substitute, suitable for Americans worst and finest, served to our military and death-row inmates. With the way the Army operates, I was lucky to get two meals a day from cooks. Breakfast usually consisted of coffee and cigarettes, a bagel if I was lucky. Lunch and dinner was at the dining facilities where everything was rationed out using grade school sized portions. I ate the best when I was in the field or on vacation. I knew guys that were in that had a wife and children that qualified for food stamps. ~ Free training, vocational/technical style: They teach the bare minimum and expect the units the service member to go to teach the rest. So yeah, it's awesome if you go into the combat arms jobs because they don't want to write any "Dear Mr. & Mrs. Snuffy" letters. Last I check, the only people hiring these guys are the mafia and possibly law enforcement. The vo-tech jobs are slightly different. They promote and train the people who kiss ass, suck dick, stroke the shaft, gurgle the gravy and ask for seconds. (Looking back at my previous point, at least they were getting additional protein.) Everyone else got ignored unless the spotlight was on the person in charge.

It's a privilege to serve and one should be more concerned about things other than money --- plenty of time for that later (you've more than half your life ahead of you if you retire at age 38).

It's a privilege? The first two ideas which came to mind for that statement are either: A) you're former military who got so high up that you assume everyone has catered food, weekly manicures after golf, and heard that soldiers these days don't know how to dig a trench; or B) you're a civilian and thought Stripes was an actual account of all things military. Let me guess, you'll let us all have tea and crumpets for a mid afternoon snack. And if we retire by age 38, huh? How about if we make to age 38? That's assuming we all enter at age 18. (We don't. One is allowed in the military well into their 30's. Knew those guys to.) And on the topic of retiring, how about the guys who get medically retired because the Advil and water didn't heal running over an bomb? Yeah, it's a real privilege to be a poor, ahem, well payed member of the military. Please keep paying your taxes so elected officials can decide where to send us minions.

Re:Good! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931855)

Just curious, did you make corporal before you got out?

Re:Good! (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931997)

a bit vitriolic, but I agree with most of what you are saying. I was discharged in 2001 for a spine injury at 24-it kind of fucked up my plans forward. Im in IT now, but I still have constant daily reminders of my service to Uncle-good and bad, mind you, but when it hurts to pick up my 4 yr old daughter and play with her, I get a little jaded.

Re:Good! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41932009)

Grade E Beef-substitute, suitable for Americans worst and finest, served to our military and death-row inmates.

My favorite example of this was doing a stores load (Navy) about 10 years ago and seeing a box of steaks stamped "NOT FIT FOR PENITENTIARY USE" with a date of 1972.

Yeah, that's right, 30 year old steaks that weren't even fit to give to prisoners at the time they were boxed up.

That one "accidentally" went overboard.

Re:Good! (4, Insightful)

X0563511 (793323) | about 2 years ago | (#41932083)

Funny to think how much money we throw at defense and almost none of it gets spent on you guys. That's the real travesty there.

Re:Good! (1)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | about 2 years ago | (#41931181)

It's a racket.

Re:Good! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931021)

Might as well open-source the military.

In that case, make sure to GPL it, so that everyone who includes bits taken from your tactics in his own has to open up all of his own tactics as well. ;-)

Re:Good! (2)

RandomFactor (22447) | about 2 years ago | (#41931065)

While I agree in principle, I'm having difficulty with 7-8 elite military coming to the uniform conclusion that what they were doing was acceptable.

If they broke rules/regs then they get what they deserve. If it wasn't reasonably clear and defined however, then trashing their careers is a harsh way to clarify something for others. (And I know the military is harsh for a reason.)

Re:Good! (2)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 years ago | (#41931851)

If they broke rules/regs then they get what they deserve.

from the article I saw earlier this morning, they're getting written reprimands and half their pay docked for two months. Not too harsh for what they did, their careers should be ok.

Re:Good! (4, Insightful)

Xest (935314) | about 2 years ago | (#41931083)

Does it really matter? Half the stuff that seems to come out as tactics eventually is just plain old common sense.

Most of the militaries secrets are in intel and technology, and it doesn't seem that they've really leaked anything much there as the issuse seems to be about tactics.

Having played the game, I don't think that matters anyway as the AI usually just runs in like a headless chicken and takes a thousand bullets because it's invulnerable. There was one mission based in the Philippines that said it was based on actual events, but again I don't know what of value could really have been given away. That US special forces may have been involved in something in the Philippines once? No shit. That's groundbreaking information.

I recall when the "tactics" for the SAS raid on the Iranian embassy were eventually released and everyone made a big fuss, the tactic in question was sticking a flashlight on the gun, firing from the hip and using the centre of the torch as your aiming point whilst doing so. Hardly something top secret that no one else was ever going to think of.

As I say it's our intel, our training, our combat experience, and our technology that makes special forces what they are. That's something you either can replicate or you can't, no amount of computer games or books are going to make up for it.

Honestly, I think the punishments are more about maintaining military style discipline than because they released anything of any value yet one of the things that makes special forces special is because they recruit people smart enough to think for themselves and who don't need the baby style treatment of run of the mill grunts to ensure they do what needs to be done.

Re:Good! (5, Insightful)

dywolf (2673597) | about 2 years ago | (#41931401)

it may seem like common sense, but that's after years of work creating it, during which some men probably died before it was figured out. Hell we make revisions to tactics after nearly every big engagement. It's called an After Action Report, and everything, every little stinking thing, is written about and analyzed.

And while it may seem common sense to us, it frequently isnt to many combatants around the world. the majority of the taliban and iraqi insurgents have no training whatsoever, and those that do have very little discipline. many many of them emply spray and pray tactics, full of bravado and give em hell, but little thought, little planning, no tactical sensibilities, etc.

Re:Good! (2)

David_Hart (1184661) | about 2 years ago | (#41931565)

The reason why many insurgents use the spray and pray tactics is because they do not have the equipment, training, and skills to act strategically. The seals are picked for their abilities and train in tight units for years. It has nothing to do with understanding techniques or tactics. For example, I may know how to play football and I many know the strategy, but there is no way that me and my buddies could beat a professional NFL team (or a college team, for that matter). It's the training and skills that makes the difference.

Re:Good! (1)

Xest (935314) | about 2 years ago | (#41931883)

"it may seem like common sense, but that's after years of work creating it, during which some men probably died before it was figured out."

Actually, as the SAS guys involved themselves told it, they came up with the idea only hours before they stormed the place.

"And while it may seem common sense to us, it frequently isnt to many combatants around the world. the majority of the taliban and iraqi insurgents have no training whatsoever, and those that do have very little discipline. many many of them emply spray and pray tactics, full of bravado and give em hell, but little thought, little planning, no tactical sensibilities, etc."

This isn't really about common sense. Common sense in the Taliban's case would be recognising that they're not very good at going head to head with special forces and simply waiting for them to fly off and then popping out of cover to blow their Chinook out the sky with an RPG, or simply laying down IEDs at a choke point you know they have to pass through. That is common sense - it doesn't take a genius to figure out you've got more chance that way.

As you say yourself though, much of the reason they can't go head to head is because they don't have the training and discipline and some don't even have common sense - running in because they believe Allah will magically protect them only to get immediately gunned down. The point is though that no amount of playing Medal of Honour or reading books is going to magically instill that into them, they just come from a background where they have little or no education and what the Seals do or don't do isn't going to change that fact.

Re:Good! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931539)

I recall when the "tactics" for the SAS raid on the Iranian embassy were eventually released and everyone made a big fuss, the tactic in question was sticking a flashlight on the gun, firing from the hip and using the centre of the torch as your aiming point whilst doing so. Hardly something top secret that no one else was ever going to think of.

Possibly not something that no one else was ever going to think of, but it's amazing how, even now, after 50,000 years of thinking, learning, and passing the best techniques down from one generation to the next, new and simple solutions are still being discovered and patented. The best of these leave you saying, "Duh, why didn't anyone think of that before?" Like taping a flashlight to your gun when you go shooting in the dark. It's not that these things are difficult to come up with when asked a specific question - it's that no one ever thinks to ask the specific question. The creativity lies in the question, not in the solution.

This is also why military strategy/tactics are continuously developing: the first time you beat the enemy with a flashlight taped to your gun, they're going to come right back at you with a laser taped to theirs.

common sense (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931587)

I'd love to see your "common sense" batted out against real SEALS in a paintball match. By that I mean in real life, not some online paintball game.

Re:common sense (1)

Xest (935314) | about 2 years ago | (#41931779)

I'm not sure what the point of that would be. I certainly don't have the training or level of fitness they do.

It doesn't mean I don't have an equivalent or better level of common sense though.

They'd win on their physical fitness and training alone, regardless of that.

Re:Good! (1)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | about 2 years ago | (#41931899)

I recall when the "tactics" for the SAS raid on the Iranian embassy

they're up to using SAS drives, now, in iran? its about time they finally upgraded those old IDE's.

Re:Good! (1)

X0563511 (793323) | about 2 years ago | (#41932109)

I recall when the "tactics" for the SAS raid on the Iranian embassy were eventually released and everyone made a big fuss, the tactic in question was sticking a flashlight on the gun, firing from the hip and using the centre of the torch as your aiming point whilst doing so. Hardly something top secret that no one else was ever going to think of.

No kidding. I do that exact thing to bore-sight when I don't have a laser or something else I can use instead. I didn't need anyone to help me figure that part out...

Re:Good! (1)

Clsid (564627) | about 2 years ago | (#41931731)

I think a lot of the US military might has to do with two very basic facts and that's hardly related to military secrets or so called cutting-edge stuff. First of all, the US still has the largest economy in the world by far, and spends 25% of the Federal Budget in the military. With so much money poured into the industry, it is only expected that you would have all sorts of military gadgets, aircraft and vehicles. Pretty much like the Soviets did and ended up destroying their economy in the process.

Second, and this is highly related to the first one. The U.S. has always enjoyed air supremacy after World War 2 and that is a fundamental part of the overall war strategy. Vietnam was only "lost" because of political reasons. The rules of engagement didn't allow the U.S. to invade and take control of North Vietnam out of fears of creating a larger conflict with China.

That being said, all militaries are secretive. I think the US is way more open than a lot of other countries so it is easy for military personnel to forget they are still bound by these ages-old traditions.

As Tom Donilon gets away with leaking everything.. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41930979)

Let's leak details of Bin Laden's death.

Let's leak details about Benghazi - oops, not THAT one!

Re:As Tom Donilon gets away with leaking everythin (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931261)

Don't worry, the right-wing noise machine can manufacture all the details you want about Benghazi.

I'm waiting till Elvis is revealed to have been behind the plot.

Big deal (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931001)

The games helped consolidate corporate America's oligarchical rule more than the war itself.

Put them in jail (4, Funny)

JustOK (667959) | about 2 years ago | (#41931005)

Put 'em in jail. If they can't break out, they weren't really good Seals anyways.

Re:Put them in jail (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931069)

Put 'em in jail. If they can't break out, they weren't really good Seals anyways.

at least the other inmates won't fuck with them more than once. i mean jesus these seals are lethal and fearless. they don't need weapons either. theyre not people you would ever want to mess with.

they could shower in peace. they could even drop the soap without fear of picking it up.

Re:Put them in jail (1)

JustOK (667959) | about 2 years ago | (#41931525)

safe from "the other" inmates, maybe.

Re:Put them in jail (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931823)

I dunno, man. The guys in the showers aren't just all waiting around with an erect penis waiting to cram into the nearest guys unlubricated ass that is sticking up in the air. Jeesus, you people are fucking dumb.

Re:Put them in jail (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931111)

And rename them to the A-Team and queue the theme song

Re:Put them in jail (5, Funny)

EnsilZah (575600) | about 2 years ago | (#41931159)

In 2012 , a crack commando unit was sent to prison by a military court for a crime they didn't commit. These men promptly escaped from a maximum-security stockade to the Los Angeles underground. Today, still wanted by the government, they survive as soldiers of fortune. If you have a problem...if no one else can help...and if you can find them...maybe you can hire...Seal Team Six.

Re:Put them in jail (1, Funny)

geogob (569250) | about 2 years ago | (#41931291)

Putting a whole elite tactical unit together in prison... in the same stockade... seems like a very bad idea to me. Especially if they believe they do not deserve this fate.

I'd put that in the "what could go wrong" department.

Re:Put them in jail (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931365)

*Whoosh ...EnsilZah is quoting the intro to The A-Team [imdb.com]

Re:Put them in jail (2)

geogob (569250) | about 2 years ago | (#41931653)

Regardless who is quoting what, it's still a bad idea.

Re:Put them in jail (2)

JustOK (667959) | about 2 years ago | (#41931533)

They probably couldn't even fly a tank anyways.

Re:Put them in jail (4, Interesting)

magic maverick (2615475) | about 2 years ago | (#41931327)

Yes, put them in jail. But only because they released classified information. And if it's good enough for Bradley Manning to be locked up and tortured, then it is good enough for these people. Oh wait, these people didn't release political damaging and embarrassing information that demonstrated illegal activities by the US military.

I'm not even convinced that Bradley Manning even did anything. He's alleged to have done something, and he's been charged with various "crimes", but innocent until proven guilt amirite? And even if "proven" guilty (or if he admits guilt) I wouldn't be too sure, as he's been tortured (solitary confinement for hundreds of days) and denied access to a speedy trial, I'm sure there are heaps of other irregularities with regards his case.

Re:Put them in jail (1)

zeroryoko1974 (2634611) | about 2 years ago | (#41932145)

And if someone in the white house does it, it's all fine and dandy. Nothing to see here, move along

this is what our soldiers fight for (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931019)

our soldiers fight to allow fat kids to play more realistic killing games

Propaganda-101 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931081)

How to you cement a lie in the public consciousness?

Build strife, conflict and disagreements on top of the original lie; create controversy over details, and the details of details. Contrive heated discussion on top of the faulty premises, and soon the faulty premises will be naturally accepted as true.

PayBack (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931119)

This is nothing but payback for opposing Obama and making him look bad.

Could be worse (2)

nomad-9 (1423689) | about 2 years ago | (#41931121)

Just a consequence of the glorification of elite warriors (or killers, depending on the point of view) in the media and Hollywood, and in a society almost entirely based on money. That can put some pressure on maintaining a sense of duty and code of ethics in the long run.

Could be worse. They could be"consulting" for the Mexican drug cartels, as some of Mexico and Guatemala's former special forces already do...

Re:Could be worse (4, Insightful)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | about 2 years ago | (#41931263)

There is a serious problem of believing in our own hype. It's one thing when the enemy believes that you CAN do something (which you can't, but want them to believe you can), it's a much more dangerous situation where YOU believe you can do something (but cannot reliably do it).

The deification of special forces in popular culture is very dangerous. These people are human beings, physically fit and specially trained to be sure, but regular human beings with an immense logistical system to support them.

I worry tremendously because the general population (and government leaders) will permit actions which while technically possible, are tremendously risky from the perspective of national interests. We blind ourselves with our successes and can easily slip into a might makes right belief system. I feel that we hear far too often the phrase 'teach em a lesson'.

Believing that we can or should 'teach lessons' through the use of our special forces is incredibly dangerous and actions like the raid to kill Osama should only be undertaken sparingly because not only is the risk high, but without maintaining the moral highground it will become an incredibly dangerous world when OTHER actors being to reach out and 'teach' their own 'lessons' on a similar scale.

Re:Could be worse (5, Interesting)

Xest (935314) | about 2 years ago | (#41931545)

"These people are human beings, physically fit and specially trained to be sure, but regular human beings with an immense logistical system to support them."

To be fair it's the level of physical fitness and training that matters and makes a large difference as much as anything.

When I was younger I was in the army cadets in the UK, and on an annual camp once we were sent through a fairly small forested area to try and find 5 professional soldiers hidden in there camo'd up. We did find one, hidden up a tree, but still hard to see, he was in the TA and fairly new to it at that though.

When we'd given up we walked to the edge of the forest and they were told to come out of hiding. One guy comes out with his face covered in mud with some pretty clear signs of a boot print on it. It was my boot print, as he'd been led down in a narrow gully deep with leaf litter which I'd walked straight through. The guy was a gurkha, who aren't even really classed as special forces, but it was this experience above all else that made me realise the gap between what we think is realistically possible, and what is actually possible can sometimes be quite large such that we don't even entertain it. When he showed us exactly where he'd been hidden he literally had his face covered in mud with only his eyes showing through and leaf litter on top, the amazing part was how quickly and quietly he was able to disguise himself the way he did- you could be chasing him, lose him from sight for 20 seconds and he'd have all but vanished. I'm glad I was just an army cadet and this wasn't a real war, as otherwise I suspect he may well have chopped my balls off with his kukri, and I'm kind of fond of my balls being left where they are. Between the softness of the deep leaf litter and the thick sole on my boots, I simply hadn't realised I'd walked right over someone's face.

So if this guy, not even selected for the SAS was this talented, I've always wondered what sort of things the special forces themselves get upto, and get away with. Everyone watches war films, and plays Call of Duty or whatever and thinks "Yeah, I could be that badass if I joined the military", but to most of those people you couldn't, you really couldn't. It takes a steely determination and years of practice, exercise to achieve the things they do and these people, the best of the best are the people who if they hadn't gone down the military route and joined the special forces would likely have been Olympic athletes, or other stand out professionals. It's not the sort of thing your average person has the patience and determination for.

Re:Could be worse (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931947)

The deification of special forces in popular culture is very dangerous. These people are human beings, physically fit and specially trained to be sure, but regular human beings with an immense logistical system to support them.

On the flip side, the elevation of enemies from regular human beings to super villains is also very dangerous. It's little wonder why a juvenile comic book ethos pervades throughout US culture.

Can't buy PR like that! (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931149)

And the EA PR team just shared a collective orgasm. They must already be trying different font settings to display "So real, Navy Seals were disciplined for it!" on the game cover.

Hello Security Contractors (5, Funny)

Sponge Bath (413667) | about 2 years ago | (#41931167)

They just created seven new security contractors the government will hire back for 10 times the cost. All that and a video game, win win.

I've never really understood (5, Insightful)

IceNinjaNine (2026774) | about 2 years ago | (#41931229)

this whole "rock star" mentality with the SEALS. If I were that good.. fucking "Jedi" good.. I'd want to remain invisible. Due to compromised identitities, I view it as a matter of time before the bad guys start putting things together and whacking the families of operators as retribution. If I were those guys I'd develop a major case of STFU and teach everybody in my family how to handle a weapon. Of course, for every Mark Owen [youtube.com] there are probably five guys wishing he'd shut up.

A quote:

Retired Army Col. Ken Allard, a career intelligence officer, described Delta Force members as "quiet professionals. Silence is security."

Read more about it here [washingtontimes.com] .

Fascism: it's what's for dinner (0)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 2 years ago | (#41931231)

Medal of Honor: Warfighter is selling so badly that they have to go to this extent to try to sell a few more copies before the new Call of Duty comes out?

Is anyone really surprised by the new "synergy" between our military and private industry? I didn't think so. How long before Seal Team Six goes into battle with logos on their uniforms? Weapons endorsements, energy drinks, etc are just around the corner.

Re:Fascism: it's what's for dinner (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about 2 years ago | (#41931355)

Too fuckin late [tumblr.com] .

I know a SEAL (5, Interesting)

argStyopa (232550) | about 2 years ago | (#41931251)

...and I only know what he is because we've been friends since grade school.

He normally is very clear - he simply can't talk about what he does, where he was or will be, etc. No big, right?

The last year or so, I've heard him make more SEAL-related comments than I've heard him say in the previous 10. He is particularly bitter and annoyed at the 'prima-donna douchebags' that are writing books and showing up in movies.

He gets it, he does: there are great piles of money and fame and hero-worship to be gained. But he points out: nobody does his job because they want to get rich or famous.

Basically, he's disgusted at the SEALs who have taken the 'public visibility' course, and can't really understand why they aren't immediately let go and firewalled. He said he's recognized things that they've discussed, or shown in movies, that are operational methods that while the bad guys may suspect we can do it if they think about it, it's stupid to wave it in front of them. It's going to get operations blown and SEALs killed.

Re:I know a SEAL (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 2 years ago | (#41931925)

Our government itself talks about where seal teams have been when it makes good propaganda. Presumably, some of the information which has leaked has been leaked, as in intentionally. Neither you nor he is cleared to know which is which.

Marketing Ploy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931301)

This is just lies drummed up by the makers of that video game.

Accountability? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931373)

I love the lines in these kinds of articles when the powers that be are reprimanding the small fries at the bottom of the food chain. The line "that we are and will be held to a high standard of accountability" says it all. Our government... and..... accountability....? hahahahaha.. yeah right

Simple solution (1)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about 2 years ago | (#41931397)

Clearly these guys want money and adulation. And that makes sense given the type of guy the military wants to make into a seal. So give it to them. How many seals are there? Not that many... so pay them well... and when they've done something important like Bin Ladin, let them brag about it. Sit down with them, figure out what can get released and what can't. Then let them hit good morning America.

Re:Simple solution (2)

David_Hart (1184661) | about 2 years ago | (#41931627)

... and when they've done something important like Bin Ladin, let them brag about it. Sit down with them, figure out what can get released and what can't. Then let them hit good morning America.

And set up their friends and family for retaliation by other terrorists? Not a good idea....

Re:Simple solution (1)

angelbar (1823238) | about 2 years ago | (#41931631)

If they do that the will need their families under federal protection. If they care.

Re:Simple solution (1)

Nidi62 (1525137) | about 2 years ago | (#41931635)

Clearly these guys want money and adulation. And that makes sense given the type of guy the military wants to make into a seal. So give it to them. How many seals are there? Not that many... so pay them well... and when they've done something important like Bin Ladin, let them brag about it. Sit down with them, figure out what can get released and what can't. Then let them hit good morning America.

I wouldn't really call roughly 2000 members (and total unit size, including support staff, of about 6500) to be "not that many". Compared to about 400 for Recon Marines and 800-1000 (including support staff) for Delta. And remember, most SEALs do work that is closer to what Recon marines or Army Special Forces do. It is only Team Six that is the equivalent to Delta. SEALs are generally just the navy version of your basic special forces soldier. That being said, I know and used to work out with a guy that is finishing up his SEAL training, and they are all intelligent, highly trained, and dedicated soldiers. But you are bound to run into a few guys with egos and that desire for recognition, which goes against the very ethos of most special forces groups.

But it's ok for zero dark thirty (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931471)

And giving access to classified docs if there's official political propaganda purposes behind it.

Bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931503)

Maybe if the fucking Navy paid them for what they do, and the risk they take, they wouldn't need to get extra cash from a video game company. But since their retiredment cash from the US Navy means they'll be schucking oysters after their done with active duty you can bet I'd look for some extra cash too

CoD clones are not realistic (2)

ikaruga (2725453) | about 2 years ago | (#41931507)

What is the point of having real counseling from the military for realism if the game still features regenerative health, undestructable covers and stupid A.I.? The Navy should sue EA for false advertisement.

The game was much better than the movie (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931537)

And Charlie Sheen really is a horrible actor, worse than Tom Cruise.

Cruel Punishment (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931541)

So they have been given a letter of reprimand? This seems to me a very cruel and unusual punishment. I mean, c'mon, the same punishment was administered to Marine Staff Sgt. Christopher van Goethem, for killing a man while driving under the influence of alcohol. For their crime, the SEALs should've been - at most - yelled at.

unwritten code (1)

fche (36607) | about 2 years ago | (#41931559)

"violated the unwritten code that SEALs are silent warriors who shun the spotlight."

Oh dear, there goes THAT bit of secrecy. Or maybe it was already gone:
http://usnavysealfoundation.org/SEAL_CODE.html [usnavysealfoundation.org]

There are no charges (1)

patriciacurtis (920142) | about 2 years ago | (#41931639)

How can they be charged with giving secrets away when they did not kill bin laden. he was killed pre 2008 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xKDYZfEbEow [youtube.com] 2:10 mins in

So how is this any different... (3, Insightful)

pongo000 (97357) | about 2 years ago | (#41931679)

...from the active duty SEALs used in Act of Valor [imdb.com] ? Oh wait, I know the answer: Because Act of Valor was a nice little right-wing propaganda film that showed the Navy in their best light. And EA is just a gaming company. Or something like that.

Say "Hi" to Bradley Manning for us (2)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about 2 years ago | (#41931721)

The are going to be locked in solitary for years for revealing State Secrets, right?

SEAL members have some problems (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931753)

Was never a 'speacil' operator, or anything close. As a former federal employee, had encounters with members of this group that made me wonder what these people were being fed. They frequently interferred with essential test operations at San Clemente, would park water-borne vehicles (Del Mar Boat Basin of Pendelton's 21 Area) that blocked use of research and tactical training equipment, walk into buildings next to dock to use the head and leave a mess, leave open fuel containers on the dock, allow POLs to leak into the water, etc. At least for the SEAL members that I have encountered, their demeanor was not professional, they were loud and arrogant, and certainly not representative of the professional warfighters of today's American military.

If a typical marine grunt or army ranger had done a similar opsec violation, they would have been busted down in rank and served brig time.

Read between the lines. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41931771)

Accountable to whom? Us or their masters?

So if I was critical of the "Medal of Honor" series, I might actually have been critical of something based more in fact then fantasy. When you go overseas and do bad shit to bad people and maybe the occasional collateral innocent. Bad shit can potentially happen to you and your pals. Its dishonorable to put your pals at risk. But its not amoral. And in some cases some of the SEALs might deserve some critisizim or backlash from the institutions or people they have involved themselves with. So it may not be entirely dishonorable. Particularly if certain members felt that by cooperating with a major media institution was the only way to tell a controversial story, one they felt deserved public critisism.

Also who knows if these guys were not delibertly feeding misinformation to the game companies and this is just to legitimise it.

Maybe if you did honorable things, and had an honorable service people might be honorable and keep their mouths shut. But you cant blame the truth for becoming known, no matter how obscure its channels.

Opsec is why these guys are being punished. Which is legitamete, but the ones doing the punishment are responsable for training the punished and accepting missions that might have broken the moral and integrity of their soldiers.

Dummies (1)

Sun.Jedi (1280674) | about 2 years ago | (#41931979)

It's rather upsetting the SEALS were not using common sense. I thought these were the best and brightest. How much brain power does it take to know they probably should have asked permission, or at least notified someone they were assisting with a game. Equally sad is that MOH:Warfighter had tons of exciting potential in the theme but ended up predictable and lackluster in the delivered product.

This is bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41932091)

So it's ok to make a movie using seals(Act of Valor) but a video game is a problem? This sounds like someone missing out on a piece of someone elses pie, and now we get to listen to him cry about it. NO ONE CARES! Your game and your movie SUCKED anyway. Fuck off.

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