How did Delta Force operators confirm that they got al-Baghdadi?

Eric Sof

Delta Force was the unit that carried out the raid on al-Baghdadi in Idlib province a few days ago. Delta Force (1st SFOD-D) was heavily involved in the global campaign against ISIS as the United States premiere counter-terrorism unit. But, a few days after a military raid in Syria which ended with the death of the notorious ISIS leader, there are some open questions in public.

For most of the public interested in this case, there is one emerging question: How did Delta Force operators confirm that they got al-Baghdadi? How the U.S. officials minutes after the raid claimed it was Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi if he killed himself with a suicide vest? Assuming that after the explosion there isn’t so much left of his corpse?

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi killed in Delta Force raid in Syria
Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, notorious ISIS leader, was killed in Syria’s Idlib province. The video still from his latest public appearance (Photo: VideoScreen)

DNA testing on-site

According to the public statement, al-Baghdadi was killed when he was cornered by Delta Force operators. He activated his suicide vest killing himself and three of his children. But, how he was identified? How did the Delta Force operators confirm on the scene it was al-Baghdadi himself?

President Trump told us that DNA (Deoxyribonucleic acid) testing was done on-site. Assuming the only present on the scene were Delta Operators, those testing would be performed by them.

Forensic scientists can use DNA in blood, semen, skin, saliva or hair found at a crime scene to identify a matching DNA of an individual, such as a perpetrator. This process is formally termed DNA profiling, also called DNA fingerprinting.

It’s not something impossible, yet, according to David H. Kaye, a Penn State Law School professor, the latest DNA-testing machines, which are now used by some state and local authorities, can provide positive identification in about 90 minutes. Kaye, who has specialization in this sector also said that military commandos probably fortified their conclusions on several other factors, including human intelligence and, when possible, basic facial features.

How did Delta Force operators confirm that they got al-Baghdadi?
How did Delta Force operators confirm that they got al-Baghdadi? (Photo: Pinterest)

Possible controversies

Ok, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was identified by DNA testing done on-site. But, the first question is, where they did found a verified legitimate sample of al-Baghdadi’s DNA? And a more serious question, how is possible to have DNA results in 15 minutes?

Further, the operators who were handling DNA samples are supposed to collect samples of the man they believe to be al-Baghdadi, who blew himself up. These samples need to be uncontaminated, which would be hard since a wife and three children blew up with him. The samples also need to be uncontaminated by extreme heat… oops, …explosives. But maybe they can collect something.

Official statement

The answer to those questions was given by Pentagon on Wednesday. A Defense Intelligence Agency DNA laboratory-processed DNA samples from the enemy killed in action suspected to be Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. The DNA analysis resulted in a direct match to a 2004 DNA sample collected at an Iraq detention center (Camp Bucca) from Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Statistical analysis indicates a probability of 1 in 104 septillions to support this match.

Views and opinions expressed in this article are those of Nauman Sadiq and do not necessarily reflect those of Spec Ops Magazine. 

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