Special Ops: A Photo History
One of the most elite special ops units in the U.S. military is the Army's Intelligence Support Activity, (known informally as "The Activity") which can trace its origins to Col. Jerry King, above, second from left. As chief of staff to the Army general in charge of the failed Iranian hostage-rescue mission, King was frustrated by the lack of cooperation between the CIA and the army units tasked with carrying out the rescue. After its disastrous failure, he and others committed themselves to building a military alternative the CIA. Even William Casey, the new CIA Director, agreed, and in 1981 King was appointed the first commander of the Activity.