The classified Pentagon investigation concerning the death of four U.S. soldiers in Niger last October during an ambush placed the blame squarely on the unit and listed a list of shortcomings including complacency and a lack of training.
Citing a culture of “excessive risk”, low-level commanders took shortcuts to approve operations — with at least one officer lifting orders from a different mission and pasting them onto the “so-called concept of operations to gain approval,” officials said.
Initially, the mission on Oct. 3, 2017, that ultimately sent the Army Special Forces team, along with Nigerian soldiers, into a deadly ambush, was a planned meeting with local officials. However, the team was redirected to assist in a search for Doundou Chefou, a militant suspected of involvement in the kidnapping of an American aid worker.
Upon returning, the team was later attacked by Islamic State-linked militants in a village near Tongo Tongo, resulting in the deaths of four U.S. soldiers and four Nigerien troops on Oct. 4.
Defense Secretary Jim Mattis told a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing Thursday he has given a 200-page classified summary to Congress.
Mattis acknowledged Thursday there was not one but many problems that led to the American soldiers being ambushed by roughly 50 heavily armed ISIS-affiliated fighters more than six months ago in West Africa.
Mattis said: “I think right now we have found what we believe to be the crux of the problems, not problem but problems that contributed to this. It was not a delegation of authority problem. So, we know immediately how to address and we are doing that right now.”
It doesn’t come as a surprise that the report would come down hard on the unit. Since the Pentagon has changed the narrative on this operation several times since the October ambush.
To read the entire article from Fox News, click here:
Photo courtesy Wikipedia
If you enjoyed this article, please consider supporting our Veteran Editorial by becoming a SOFREP subscriber. Click here to get 3 months of full ad-free access for only $1