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The United States Senate Special Defense Appropriations Committee was a committee of the United States Senate responsible for discretionary spending on covert operations. Senator David Palmer was chairman of the Committee, which also included Senator Card.

Floating NSA operative Robert Ellis was funded through a discretionary fund of the committee, and had responsibility for orchestrating and planning the committee's approved missions while ensuring total secrecy and deniability for both the committee and the involved operatives.

Three years before Day 1, the CIA brought to Senator Palmer's attention the atrocities that Victor Drazen and his secret police were committing in Kosovo, including mass torture and ethnic cleansing. In addition, the NSA and Department of State determined that Drazen's actions represented a threat to the stability of the emerging Balkan states, including in Bosnia. Unable to take action through the usual channels, Senator Palmer contacted Ellis, who put together the mission that became Operation Nightfall. ("Day 1: 2:00pm-3:00pm", "7:00pm-8:00pm", Findings at CTU)


The cable from David Palmer authorizing Nightfall