Coulda, woulda, shoulda. Sorry, but being a simple aviation boatswains mate, I don't have the answers. What I do know from talking to various Marine, Army, and others, is that there is no perfect plan in a war zone. Sh*t happens.
Also remember that our assets can't be everywhere every moment. Don't know what else to say, other than if the commander of the rescue operation had air support to back up the Chinook and didn't use it by his own decision, he should pay dearly. If he didn't have such air support, than no fault of his for some once in a lifetime shoot down of all those SpecOps guys.
Obama argued in one of the debates that we didn’t need a large defense budget for equipment because we have this new technology called drones. If we didn’t have ANYTHING that this commander could have sent in with firepower (after 3.5 hours of firefight already) then why would he even think we had the ability to kill/capture this supposed high-value target? Better to do surveillance, follow where this target went, and get him when we actually had some firepower to get him with.
They went right then because they were told they had a high-value target they HAD to get then. This is about like saying that we’ve got Al Capone and his whole mob in a shoot-out at their lair so we have to quick send in an unarmed Little Bo-Peep to capture him. It makes absolutely NO sense. Especially when you decide to send in every Little Bo-Peep you’ve got, all at once, unarmed, to the big bad, VERY ARMED mob of Al Capone.