31 March 2007

Tillman Controversy A Non-Issue

In my last post, I had noted that Congress may soon be investigating who knew what, and when they knew it, regarding the death of Army Ranger Pat Tillman (a former NFL player). This is because it took just over a month after Tillman's death before anyone in the public was notified that Tillman's death may have been a result of friendly fire.

Just seven days after Pat Tillman's death, a top general warned there were strong indications that it was friendly fire and President Bush might embarrass himself if he said the NFL star-turned-soldier died in an ambush, according to a memo obtained by The Associated Press.

It was not until a month afterward that the Pentagon told the public and grieving family members the truth that Tillman was mistakenly killed in Afghanistan by his comrades.

The memo reinforces suspicions that the Pentagon was more concerned with sparing officials from embarrassment than with leveling with Tillman's family.

ABC News
I fail to see the issue here. The government, knowing that it was widely publicized that Pat Tillman left professional football to become an Army Ranger following the September 11th attacks, cautioned the administration not to speak definitively about the circumstances surrounding Tillman's death because it was quite possibly a friendly fire incident. The public and Tillman's family were not told of this, however, until all the facts were in.

The MSM seems to be making a mountain out of a mole-hill yet again. Pat Tillman was killed in action by friendly fire on 22 April 2004. Thirty-seven days later, on 29 May 2004, Tillman's family was given the details. A period of thirty-seven days between the action in which Tillman died and the notification of family regarding the facts of his death indicates some sort of conspiracy or cover-up? This is a big non-story that is being whipped-up into something more than it is.

The Pentagon would have been negligent if they hadn't warned others in the government to watch what they said publicly about the death of a high-profile Ranger in Afghanistan because the circumstances surrounding his death may not be as cut-and-dried as initially reported. The Pentagon would have been just as negligent if they had shouted, "Friendly fire!" from the rooftops as soon as there were indications that that may be the case, even though the all the facts hadn't been sorted out.

This is a non-issue.


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