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The Man-Hunters of Task Force 121

February 11, 2004
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from Revolutionary Worker #1223, December 21, 2003 (

The U.S. military has created a highly secret operation of “hunter-killers” called Task Force 121—assigned to kill the leaders of Iraqi’s resistance.

Journalist Seymour Hersh (New Yorker, Dec. 15) reports this Task Force 121 is a rapid-deployment assassination operation built out of elite Special Operations forces from the Army, Navy and Air Force. The death squads have CIA officers officially “attached,” and come with a large accompanying “conventional force” to seal off areas while the killing goes down. Operations are already reported in Iraq and Syria.

The unit is patterned on similar Israeli units that hunt down and assassinate leaders of Palestinian resistance. It is also inspired by the notorious “Operation Phoenix” where CIA death squads murdered and tortured tens of thousands of people to “neutralize the infrastructure” of South Vietnam’s National Liberation Front.

Hersh writes: “According to American and Israeli military and intelligence officials, Israeli commandos and intelligence units have been working closely with their American counterparts at the Special Forces training base at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, and in Israel to help them prepare for operations in Iraq. Israeli commandos are expected to serve as ad-hoc advisers—again, in secret—when full-field operations begin.” The U.S. high command denies Israeli involvement and an Israeli official told Hersh: “Both governments have decided at the highest level that it is in their interest to keep a low profile on U.S.-Israeli cooperation.”

It has come out that a key figure in creating these death squads has been Special Forces veteran Lt. Gen. William Boykin. Boykin became notorious in October for publicly describing recent U.S. military operations as a Christian war against Satan and Islam. He told audiences that George W. Bush got to the White House despite losing the popular vote in 2000, because god himself wanted Bush in power. The Pentagon refused to sanction Boykin for these openly Christian-fascist statements—as Boykin’s Task Force 121 pressed ahead with this unfolding campaign of assassinations.

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