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SOF experts from three military think tanks told lawmakers Wednesday that SOCOM needs to move away from its focus on direct-action skills needed for high-risk, precision missions such as the raid that killed Osama bin Laden. Instead, SOF should return to the indirect, partnership-building operations that units like Army Special Forces were created to perform.
"What is clear to me is that SOCOM should do a much better job than it has been doing on the institutional side . . . that is where long-term strategic impact comes," Linda Robinson, an adjunct senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, said at a July 11 hearing before the House Armed Services Committee's Emerging Threats and Capabilities subcommittee.