Update (Bryan): Here is an AC-130 engaging in a live fire exercise. The crackling sound you hear is its extreme rate of fire.
Update: BlackFive confirmed with a retired Delta operator: The fact that ground personnel were painting the target says there was a Spectre on station.
Having spent a good bit of time nursing a GLD (ground Laser Designator) in several garden spots around the world, something from the report jumped out at me.One of the former SEALs was actively painting the target. That means that Specter WAS ON STATION! Probably an AC130U. A ground laser designator is not a briefing pointer laser. You do not “paint” a target until the weapons system/designator is synched; which means that the AC130 was on station.Only two places could have called off the attack at that point; the WH situation command (based on POTUS direction) or AFRICOM commander based on information directly from the target area.If the AC130 never left Sigonella (as Penetta [sic] says) that means that the Predator that was filming the whole thing was armed.If that SEAL was actively “painting” a target; something was on station to engage! And the decision to stand down goes directly to POTUS!