Shadow Wolves join the hunt

Their name conjures up images of the old West, or more recently, the WWII Navajo code-talkers. They are an elite group of trackers who have been recruited from American Indian tribes, including the Navajo, Sioux, Lakota and Apache, called the Shadow Wolves. Recently, they have been used to track drug smugglers on the southern US border. Now, the Pentagon wants them to joint the hunt for bin Laden.

The Pentagon has been alarmed at the ease with which Taliban and al-Qa’ida fighters have been slipping in and out of Afghanistan. Defence officials are convinced their movements can be curtailed by the Shadow Wolves.

The unit has earned international respect for its tracking skills in the Arizona desert. It was founded in the early 1970s to curb the flow of marijuana into the US from Mexico and has since tracked people-smugglers across hundreds of square kilometres of the Tohono O’odham tribal reservation, southwest of Tucson.

shadowwolves.jpgHarold Thompson, a Navajo Indian, and Gary Ortega, from the Tohono reservation, are experts at “cutting sign”, the traditional Indian method of finding and following minute clues from a barren landscape. They can detect twigs snapped by passing humans or hair snagged on a branch and tell how long a sliver of food may have lain in the dirt.

Some military experts want the Shadow Wolves to help to track down bin Laden. Despite a $US25million bounty on his head and the use of billions of dollars worth of sophisticated equipment, US forces have so far failed to fulfil President George W. Bush’s promise to capture bin Laden “dead or alive”.

But a senior US official insisted last week that bin Laden’s trail had “not gone stone cold”. Vice-Admiral Mike McConnell, the new US director of national intelligence, told a Senate committee that bin Laden and his lieutenant, Ayman al-Zawahiri, were setting up new training camps in northwestern Pakistan.

Sounds like a plan to me.


More at cao’s blog

Background on the original Shadow Wolves (thanks swamps)

65 Responses

  1. Last of seven original shadow wolves retires. This is one of the guys traveling around eastern Europe and Asia as a subcontractor.

  2. I used to live right outside the rez and go hiking there. Some of the most beautiful country in the world, IMO, and I’d often be out 12 hours or more on foot without seeing another person (although I always carried extra water for any UDAs in distress that I might run across).

  3. Probably ought to add that was some years ago, about 15.

  4. More at Cao’s blog.

  5. thanks for the links.

  6. Heh. Got a million of them including the one I posted over at GCP about the Border Patrol trodding on the sacred mountain.

  7. Uh, I think that should be “treading”.

  8. Trodding, treading, treaking, trotting.. we knew what you meant.

  9. Thanks for the link. Beautiful inspiring story.

  10. In contrast to this positive step forward, the Appeasers want to take two steps back.

    House Republicans Don’t Want Muslim Group Using Capitol Conference Room

    WASHINGTON — A House Republican leadership group said Monday that Democrats should retract an offer to let the nation’s largest Islamic civil liberties organization use a Capitol conference room for a seminar.

    The House Republican Conference referred to the Council on American-Islamic Relations as “terrorist apologists” and called on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to cancel the forum scheduled for Tuesday.

  11. Oho! The Democrats are up sh** creek with that. Hope they have good paddles.

  12. Good link there Swamps. Now That’s a heartwarming story.

  13. Can the Dhems ever make up their minds? They hate Halliburton with a passion, but when they announce this the Dhems go wild. Halliburton to Move Headquarters to Middle East Hub of Dubai.

    “This is an insult to the U.S. soldiers and taxpayers who paid the tab for their no-bid contracts and endured their overcharges for all these years,” said judiciary committee chairman Sen. Patrick Leahy, a Vermont Democrat.

    Rep. Henry Waxman, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, might hold a hearing on the implications, an aide to Waxman said.

    The Rest

  14. DANG! Hope those guys on the backhoes were well over the horizon when that thing blew.

  15. Swamps #12. That has to be one of the most optimistic assessments I’ve heard about Iraq in a loooooooooong time.

  16. It seems to me that Halliburton is free to open their headquarters where ever they wish and whiny democrats can go suck on that.

  17. #17 Nukes

    Well, the Dems can always manage to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

  18. I’m hoping the same thing Swamps, but with 3 missing and the excavator with it’s bucket in the hole and the burned out cat on the other side, it doesn’t look good.

  19. Nuke, is that gas line explosion affection N2L’s power? Sounds like his neck of the woods.

  20. affecting….

  21. effecting

  22. I read somewhere else, early this morning before I left, that these dudes will be serving as trainers, not as actual boots in the mountain. Which makes alot of sense, as this isn’t their element. Their skills are transferrable, but they aren’t acclimated to the altitudes in that part of the world. Looks like they will train up the young and fit troops.

  23. Hey Robert D., that splodey is well west of me.

  24. Hi N2L. Good deal.

  25. Been really busy here lately.

  26. I guess the answer to your question, Robert D, was no. 😀

  27. D’OH.

  28. Guess they made it over the horizon. If my tractor would have done that, I’d still be runnin’.

  29. From what I gather, this training is something they’ve been doing for a number of years.

  30. A North Pole expedition meant to bring attention to global warming was called off after one of the explorers got frostbite.
    If the irony gets any richer, we will all die of blood disorders, and not gorebal smarming.

  31. I don’t know what’s going on, but I have made two posts and they have disappeared. Not in the filter, but *poof*.

  32. I don’t see them anywhere. 😦

  33. My double comment on the gas line explosion was because of a lost post. Then it comes back in place like nothing happened. It seems to only happen when trying to link something.

  34. Yeah, happened to me a lot last week to the point that I quit linking for awhile.

  35. My gas card fell out in daughter’s vehicle. She is going to use it until she gets it back to me in two or three weeks or longer.


  36. Spam Akismet has protected your site from 16,114 spam comments.

    Just a note: Last week there were only 9000 spam comments. We’ve been getting bombarded.
    Sorry about losing your posts.

  37. Well, I’m gonna try it one more time.
    Enviro-whack jobs get frostbite.

  38. Not a prob nuke, just odd. I can usually go to the akismet and fetch it out of the goo. These just went by-bye, which happens with the innernut.

  39. All is good nuke, if it keeps the crap out, I like it! We tend to get our point across anyway. 😉

  40. Just watched some of the local news about the gas fire, way over in Parker county. They have to let it burn itself out, which will take until some time tomorrow morning. About one mile of pipeline with gas in it to burn.
    In case y’all aren’t familiar with this gas field, it is mega-huge.
    Barnett Shale.

  41. BTW, all twelve of the gas field workers escaped, and no major injuries, though it is believed the act of running nearly caused some fatalities.

  42. Let me try to grasp this. They were trying to bring attention to GLOBAL WARMING!

    Then there was the cold — quite a bit colder, Atwood said, then Bancroft and Arnesen had expected. One night they measured the temperature inside their tent at 58 degrees below zero, and outside temperatures were exceeding 100 below zero at times, Atwood said.

    That! my friends, is irony to it’s fullest!!! 😆 Stupid is as stupid does.

  43. Guess they thought that it would be all nice and toasty because of global warming.

  44. They would probably drink the Kool-Aid too……

  45. Henh, yeah Robert D. If the gorebal smarmies get any more ironic, we will all die of blood disorders, before the Sun cooks us. LOL.
    They even brought swimming suits, Swampie.

  46. I loved the last line, which sums up the gorebal warming mentality.

    “They were experiencing temperatures that weren’t expected with global warming,” Atwood said. “But one of the things we see with global warming is unpredictability.”

    Yep, no matter what happens, whether it is unbelievably cold weather, no hurricanes, or expanding ice caps, gorebal warming is no longer debatable, it is fact. LMAO!

  47. Yep, got all their bases covered with that global warming. Even too cold.

  48. Not familiar with the field, but sho’ do miss the gas pipelines, gas stove, and gas heat.

    /All electric here.

  49. New technorati rankings
    Nuke’s NEWS & VIEWS

    * Rank: 37,150 (417 links from 100 blogs)
    * URL:
    * Updated: 2 hours ago
    * Favorited by: 3 members

  50. The Gorebals sound a lot like the dhems with their talking points and answers for every possible question. A bunch of robots. If you hear them in a debate situation on TV, and they can’t answer a direct question, they revert to the “Little Red Book” of talking points. If that fails, they recite the talking points louder until the segment is over. Never answer a question honestly, when you can out yell the truth. Seems the Gorbals are just getting wound up.

  51. Excellent piece, as usual, by Amir Taheri.
    When a Power Fades, Another Rises.

  52. Here’s Ol’Newt, flexing his substantial brain muscles again.
    American Solutions: The Cure for America’s Biggest Problems.

  53. Let me try again.
    Ol’Newt, flexing his brain muscles again.
    American Solutions: The Cure for America’s Biggest Problems

  54. Four times I have tried to link to Newt Gingrich’s newest endeavor, and all four times the posts have been sent into the ether.
    I give up, night y’all.

  55. G’nite bud…..

  56. G’nite! This daylight savings time change is kicking my butt right about now.

  57. Well Swamps, It’s Earlier Than You Think!!! Now how many times in your life have you heard that???

  58. the cao’s blog link should be:

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