Elite team who killed Osama bin Laden reportedly in Kabul to rescue trapped Americans

It is likely that the 160th SOAR and the special operators they carry will be the last Americans to leave Hamid Karzai International Airport


                            Elite team who killed Osama bin Laden reportedly in Kabul to rescue trapped Americans
Representational image (Photo by Majid Saeedi/Getty Images)
ADVERTISEMENT

Latest reports coming from Taliban-acquired Kabul reveal that high-tech helicopters belonging to the elite US Army unit whose members killed Osama bin Laden have been spotted at Kabul's airport. Images of Black Hawk helicopters and AH/MH-6 'Little Bird' helicopters belonging to the 160th Special Operations Airborne Regiment (SOAR) have been reportedly captured at Hamid Karzai Airport in recent days.

ADVERTISEMENT

According to these reports, the Black Hawk's nose was covered with canvas, in what presumably was an attempt to hide its classified features, while the Little Birds were snapped covered with a black tarpaulin, which was spotted at Kabul's airport behind a Turkish Airlines airliner.

ADVERTISEMENT

READ MORE 

Hero of Kabul: USAF pilot flies out 640 Afghans on C-17 cargo jet designed to carry just 150

Terrified Afghan crowd charges aircraft in Kabul airport in chilling echo of Saigon 1975

ADVERTISEMENT

According to a report in The Drive, at least eight of the Little Birds belonging to the regiment, also known as the Night Stalkers, have arrived at the airport in recent days. Their double-rotored MH-47 Chinook helicopters have also reportedly been spotted there. It is likely that the 160th SOAR and the special operators they carry will be the last Americans to leave Hamid Karzai International Airport. Previously, President Biden refused to send US troops into Kabul on rescue missions, citing fears of a Taliban or ISIS attack on them. Despite this overt declaration, the special aircrafts have been spotted.

ADVERTISEMENT

Reports say that British and German forces have both been deployed into Taliban territory to rescue their citizens as well as refugees. At the same time, the US military launched several missions themselves, but they were less ambitious and now, with the growing fleet of Night Stalker aircraft, rescue efforts might speed up.

Little Birds are named so because of their small size. They are small enough to be stuffed into C-130 Hercules aircraft and are to be flown within minutes of being unloaded. They are small, highly manoeuvrable choppers that can be flown into tight spaces. They also contain weaponry, including machine guns and missiles. Both the Little Birds and larger Black Hawk choppers use 7.62 mm and .50 caliber machine guns to make 'strafing runs' while on missions.

ADVERTISEMENT

MH-60 Black Hawks and MH-47 Chinooks are reported to be larger types of helicopters capable of in-flight refueling, which makes them ideal for longer missions. Top secret stealth Black Hawks, on the other hand, were reportedly used in the mission to kill Osama bin Laden. The design of these machines are so high profile that when one crashed during the mission, the US troops blew it up to hide its secrets.

ADVERTISEMENT

After Biden announced U.S. troops withdrawal from Afghanistan, Kabul airport has been filled with Americans and American allies making desperate attempts to flee the Taliban-controlled region —something that resulted in the loss of many lives. 

"Well, that's not a standard Black Hawk. Some C-17s did fly from the 160th SOAR's home base to the Middle East, it now seems that the Night Stalkers are on the deck at Kabul - unless anyone has knowledge to the contrary? Ties up with those dark H-6s too @Aviation_Intel" one user wrote. 

ADVERTISEMENT



 

On Friday, August 20, 2021, the White House confirmed that the US military used three military helicopters to rescue 169 Americans outside Kabul Airport who were trapped at a nearby hotel. When asked why the U.S has not extended their perimeter beyond Kabul airport, Biden said it was to avoid the risk of having US forces and civilians being attacked by terrorist groups, including ISIS. "The reason why we have not gone out — it's likely to draw a lot of unintended consequences," he said on Friday, August 20.

ADVERTISEMENT