I’ve read the latest AP piece on Pat Tillman’s death twice now and I am stunned, simply stunned at the depths the Bush Administration has gone to, to cover up this up.
Army medical examiners were suspicious about the close proximity of the three bullet holes in Pat Tillman’s forehead and tried without success to get authorities to investigate whether the former NFL player’s death amounted to a crime, according to documents obtained by The Associated Press.
“The medical evidence did not match up with the, with the scenario as described,” a doctor who examined Tillman’s body after he was killed on the battlefield in Afghanistan in 2004 told investigators.
The doctors – whose names were blacked out – said that the bullet holes were so close together that it appeared the Army Ranger was cut down by an M-16 fired from a mere 10 yards or so away.
Ultimately, the Pentagon did conduct a criminal investigation, and asked Tillman’s comrades whether he was disliked by his men and whether they had any reason to believe he was deliberately killed.
Pat Tillman was American Hero, an NFL star who enlisted. His family deserves better than this, America deserves better than this. The truth must be told…
Pat Tillman’s mother, Mary Tillman, “has long suggested that her son was deliberately killed by his comrades. She said she is “still looking for answers and looks forward to the congressional hearings next week.”
“Nothing is going to bring Pat back. It’s about justice for Pat and justice for other soldiers. The nation has been deceived,” she said.
The documents show that a doctor who autopsied Tillman’s body was suspicious of the three gunshot wounds to the forehead. The doctor said he took the unusual step of calling the Army’s Human Resources Command and was rebuffed. He then asked an official at the Army’s Criminal Investigation Division if the CID would consider opening a criminal case.
“He said he talked to his higher headquarters and they had said no,” the doctor testified.
Also according to the documents, investigators pressed officers and soldiers on a question Mrs. Tillman has been asking all along.
“Have you, at any time since this incident occurred back on April 22, 2004, have you ever received any information even rumor that Cpl. Tillman was killed by anybody within his own unit intentionally?” an investigator asked then-Capt. Richard Scott.
The newly released documents also reportedly “shed new light on Tillman’s last moments.”
It has been widely reported by the AP and others that Spc. Bryan O’Neal, who was at Tillman’s side as he was killed, told investigators that Tillman was waving his arms shouting “Cease fire, friendlies, I am Pat (expletive) Tillman, damn it!” again and again.
But the latest documents give a different account from a chaplain who debriefed the entire unit days after Tillman was killed.
The chaplain said that O’Neal told him he was hugging the ground at Tillman’s side, “crying out to God, help us. And Tillman says to him, `Would you shut your (expletive) mouth? God’s not going to help you; you need to do something for yourself, you sniveling …”
AP reports that “The medical examiners’ suspicions were outlined in 2,300 pages of testimony released to the AP this week by the Defense Department in response to a Freedom of Information Act request.”
For all intents and purposes the new evidence seems to make it clear that Tillman’s death was a fragging. Soccerdad on the Left Coaster notes: “In this case, the moral corruption of the military is on full display, using the murder of one of their “brothers” for political gain.” I think we all know if the truth had come out before the ’04 election, it would have changed public opinion about the Bush Administration and the Iraq War. It’s no small secret at this point that Tillman was against the Iraq War, although he enlisted to serve in Afghanistan after 9/11.
Michael on Discourse.net says, “Are we to believe the White House covered up the fragging of a soldier because he was a well-known sports star? I suppose after war crimes, nothing is unimaginable any more.” And, Hillzoy on Obsidian Wings says, “Please Don’t Let This Be True.” Sadly, I fear it is.
Enough Is Enough.