Army edits its history of the deadly battle of Wanat
Key Excerpts from Article on Website of Washington Post
Posted: January 3rd, 2011
The Army's official history of the battle of Wanat - one of the most intensely scrutinized engagements of the Afghan war - largely absolves top commanders of the deaths of nine U.S. soldiers and instead blames the confusing and unpredictable nature of war. An initial draft of the Wanat history, which was obtained by The Washington Post and other media outlets in the summer of 2009, placed the preponderance of blame for the losses on the higher-level battalion and brigade commanders who oversaw the mission, saying they failed to provide the proper resources to the unit in Wanat. The final history, released in recent weeks, drops many of the earlier conclusions and instead focuses on failures of lower-level commanders. Family members of the deceased at Wanat reacted with anger and disappointment to the final version of the Army history. "They blame the platoon-level leadership for all the mistakes at Wanat," said retired Col. David Brostrom, whose son was killed in the fighting. "It blames my dead son. They really missed the point." The initial investigation, conducted by a three-star Marine Corps general and completed in the spring, found that the company and battalion commanders were "derelict in their duty" to provide proper oversight and resources to the soldiers fighting at Wanat.
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