Religion, Politics and World Events They make great dinner conversation, don't you think? plus Political Film

The Death of Pat Tillman

Old 12-05-04, 12:07 PM
  #1  
DVD Talk Gold Edition
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 2,813
The Death of Pat Tillman

There appears to be a good in depth series on this incident in the Washington Post. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...-2004Dec4.html
It's worth a read, if you're interested.
Mammal is offline  
Old 12-05-04, 03:01 PM
  #2  
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Nazgul's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Jayhawk Central, Kansas
Posts: 7,125
I wonder how this thread will turn out.....
Nazgul is offline  
Old 12-05-04, 09:10 PM
  #3  
DVD Talk Godfather
 
DVD Polizei's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 52,503
It would be nice if newbie terrorist killers would go through a little more training before having weapons shoved into their chests, and sent out into an area only seen in video games. There's got to be a better way to lower the friendly-fire deaths.
DVD Polizei is offline  
Old 12-06-04, 12:27 AM
  #4  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Posts: 488
The article was an interesting read.

They were actually lucky that only one American soldier was killed, given that the other Ranger squad unloaded their .50 cal onto their position until they ran out of bullets.

Another thing is that the military needs to avoid spreading information in their attempts to create heroes. If they had been more forthcoming about what really happened, it would not have lessened Tillman's service and sacrifice in my mind.
Aldarion is offline  
Old 12-06-04, 12:28 AM
  #5  
DVD Talk Gold Edition
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 2,813
War is a confused, wasteful mess...and you can't trust official military accounts near the event, period. The Army protects it's own (officers) where possible. It's the nature of the beast.
Mammal is offline  
Old 12-06-04, 12:38 AM
  #6  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Th0r S1mpson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 36,443
No surprises here... an interesting read though. It's good to hear some details on what took place to help understand the situation.
Th0r S1mpson is offline  
Old 12-06-04, 12:59 AM
  #7  
DVD Talk Godfather
 
DVD Polizei's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 52,503
I think the US Military should start creating bullet-proof vests...the ones where there are 300% more protection on the back, than on the front.
DVD Polizei is offline  
Old 12-06-04, 09:17 AM
  #8  
Admin-Thanos
 
VinVega's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Caught between the moon and NYC
Posts: 31,590
For those of us who don't have a sign in to The Washington Post
Miami Herald link
New account of Pat Tillman's last minutes describes friendly-fire horror

Associated Press

WASHINGTON - The last minutes of Pat Tillman's life were a horror of misdirected machine-gun fire and signals to firing colleagues that were misunderstood as hostile acts, according to an account published Sunday of the death of the NFL player-turned-soldier.

It took the Army a month to change the record to show that Tillman, the Arizona Cardinals defensive back who gave up a $3.6 million contract to become an Army Ranger, was killed last April not by Afghan guerrillas but by his Ranger colleagues.

Even then, the statement by Lt. Gen. Philip R. Kensinger Jr., head of the Army's Special Operations Command, gave few specifics of the corporal's death and implied that he was trying to suppress enemy fire when he "probably died as a result of friendly fire."

The Washington Post on Sunday, in the first article of a two-part series, published what it described as the first full telling of how and why Tillman died. The newspaper said it had access to "dozens of witness statements, e-mails, investigation findings, logbooks, maps and photographs."

A series of mishaps and missteps began the chain of events that resulted in Tillman's death in eastern Afghanistan, the newspaper said. A Humvee broke down, which led to the splitting up of his platoon.

The segment of the platoon with Tillman, Serial One, passed through a canyon and was near its north rim. The other segment, Serial Two, changed its plans because of poor roads and followed the same route into the canyon. It came under fire from Afghan Taliban fighters.

Men in Serial One heard an explosion that preceded the attack, and Tillman and two other fire team leaders were ordered to head toward the attackers, the Post said. The canyon's walls prevented them from radioing their positions to their colleagues, just as Serial Two had not radioed its change in plans.

Tillman's group moved toward the north-south ridge to face the canyon, and Tillman took another Ranger and an Afghan ally down the slope.

"As they pulled alongside the ridge, the gunners poured an undisciplined barrage of hundreds of rounds into the area Tillman and other members of Serial One had taken up positions," the Post said Army investigators concluded. It said the gunner handling the platoon's only .50-caliber machine gun fired every round he had.

The first to die was the Afghan, whom the Americans in the canyon mistook for a Taliban fighter.

Under fire, Tillman and almost a dozen others on the ridge "shouted, they waved their arms, and they screamed some more," the Post said.

"Then Tillman `came up with the idea to let a smoke grenade go.' As its thick smoke unfurled, `This stopped the friendly contact for a few moments,'" a Ranger was quoted as saying.

Assuming the friendly fire had stopped, the Ranger said, he and his comrades emerged and talked with each other, the Post reported.

"Suddenly, he saw the attacking Humvee move into `a better position to fire on us.' He heard a new machine gun burst and hit the ground, praying, as Pat Tillman fell," the Post reported.

The Ranger said Tillman had repeatedly screamed out his name and shouted for the shooting to stop, the Post said. He and others waved their arms, only attracting more fire. Tillman was shot repeatedly by rifles, finally succumbing to the machine gun.

The second part of the Post series, published on the newspaper's Web site Sunday night, tells of "a broader Army effort to manage the uncomfortable facts of Pat Tillman's death."

"Commemorations of Tillman's courage and sacrifice offered contrasting images of honorable service, undisturbed by questions about possible command or battlefield mistakes," the Post reported.

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., told the Post, "You may have at least a subconscious desire here to portray the situation in the best light, which may not have been totally justified."

Mary Tillman told the Post that when she learned friendly fire had killed her son: "I was upset about it, but I thought, 'Well, accidents happen.' Then when I found out that it was because of huge negligence at places along the way - you have time to process that and you really get annoyed."

Eventually, one member of Tillman's platoon received formal administrative charges; four others, including an officer, were discharged from the Rangers but not from the Army; and two additional officers were reprimanded, Lt. Col. Hans Bush, chief of public affairs for the Army Special Operations Command at Fort Bragg, told the Post.
VinVega is offline  
Old 12-06-04, 09:22 AM
  #9  
DVD Talk God
 
Join Date: Jun 1999
Posts: 68,522
Originally Posted by Mammal
War is a confused, wasteful mess...and you can't trust official military accounts near the event, period. The Army protects it's own (officers) where possible. It's the nature of the beast.
Depending upon the 'nature' of the war, IMO, you can trust military accounts about as much as you can trust media accounts.
classicman2 is offline  
Old 12-06-04, 09:41 AM
  #10  
DVD Talk Gold Edition
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 2,813
The motivation of the press an military are different. The press want, well, press - preferably a scoop or something sensational. The military want to project success and minimize failure, both for reasons of morale and to protect careers.
Mammal is offline  
Old 12-06-04, 09:49 AM
  #11  
DVD Talk God
 
Join Date: Jun 1999
Posts: 68,522
Too often the press feel they have 'a dog in the fight.' They take a pro or con position on the war, and this affects how they report it.
classicman2 is offline  
Old 12-06-04, 09:59 AM
  #12  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: East County
Posts: 33,317
Eventually, one member of Tillman's platoon received formal administrative charges; four others, including an officer, were discharged from the Rangers but not from the Army; and two additional officers were reprimanded, Lt. Col. Hans Bush, chief of public affairs for the Army Special Operations Command at Fort Bragg, told the Post
.
At least some of these guys were punished, though the severity of said punishment could be questioned.
B.A. is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.