How rocket scientists got into the hearts-and-minds game
OSI staffers suspected that the Pentagon's public affairs staff had taken them out in a turf battle. "I can't say anything more than that the biggest disinformation campaign was leveled at us," OSI's Lt. Col. Marty France told the Los Angeles Times. Worden told friends that the affair effectively ended his career; he retired a year later. In his first public remarks on the affair, Worden calls himself "a casualty of friendly fire" but says the real tragedy was the loss of OSI. "In a war of ideas, we need to figure out how to prevail," he says. "This is about a lot more than bombs and bullets."
As for those satellite radios, some 25,000 of them did make it to Pakistan. But red tape and OSI's collapse left the project unfinished. The Pentagon, however, has not given up on the premise behind OSI. U.S. News has learned that a new office--a 70-person unit called the Joint Psyop Support Element--has been quietly created to replace Worden's team. This time, Pentagon brass put the new unit at the U.S. Special Operations Command in Tampa--far from the turf wars of Washington.