A former member of a secret U.S. special operations task force described to Fox News Tuesday how close American forces came to killing ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in December 2011.
Brett Velicovich, the author of the new book "Drone Warrior," told Fox News' "Hannity" that a targeting unit "had actually located Baghdadi and pinpointed him to a house on the ground."
However, a planned raid to capture or kill the terror leader was hindered by the Obama administration — which had changed the rules of engagement to make way for U.S. troops to withdraw from Iraq.
"So, typically a raid that would have occurred that same night by an assault force ... then had to essentially wait two weeks for the call to be made to allow these guys to go in," Velicovich told host Sean Hannity. "and by that time he was gone. Baghdadi doesn’t stay anywhere for two weeks."
Velicovich added that by the time his team turned their sights to Baghdadi, they had already killed ISIS' two original leaders.
"We were going after these guys before really anyone necessarily cared about them," he said, "and we were taking them out constantly because we knew — a small group of people in our organization knew — how bad these guys were."