The FBI formed an alliance with Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) and deployed its agents in hundreds of raids in Iraq and Afghanistan, The Washington Post reported on Friday.
JSOC took advantage of the agency’s ability to utilize digital media to identify suspects. The FBI acquired evidence from JSOC investigations and kept that information in case the suspect would be tried in the United States.
“Digital media and other materials (were used) to locate insurgents and detect plots, including any against the United States,” the report said, adding the FBI “could preserve evidence and maintain a chain of custody should any suspect be transferred to the United States for trial.”
The agents who participated in these military raids by JSOC, described by retired General Barry McCaffrey as the “most dangerous people on the face of the earth,” and came from the FBI’s Hostage and Rescue Team (HRT).
Relations between the FBI and military have increased in recent decades, although many in the bureau were reluctant to participate as they saw the task essentially the military’s job.
FBI agents frequently “questioned whether this was our mission. The concern was somebody was going to get killed,” James Davis, the FBI’s legal attaché in Baghdad in 2007 and 2008, told the Post.
Davis also said shooting events in which agents were involved became a regular occurrence. “It wasn’t weekly but it wouldn’t be uncommon to see one a month,” he said.