Share

A Timeline — And Questions — About The Niger Firefight That Killed U.S. Troops

Gen. Joseph Dunford, authority of a Joint Chiefs of Staff, speaks to reporters about a Niger operation during a lecture during a Pentagon on Monday.

Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP


hide caption

toggle caption

Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP

Gen. Joseph Dunford, authority of a Joint Chiefs of Staff, speaks to reporters about a Niger operation during a lecture during a Pentagon on Monday.

Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP

Amid flourishing domestic fallout, a Department of Defense has put brazen a timeline for a lethal fight with militants in Niger that killed 4 U.S. troops.

Gen. Joseph Dunford, authority of a Joint Chiefs of Staff, pronounced during a lecture that vital questions sojourn about this “tough firefight,” such as either a unit’s goal altered and because it took days to redeem a physique of Army Sgt. La David Johnson. He also pronounced investigators are examining either a infantry had adequate intelligence, apparatus and training.

But notwithstanding those questions, he sketched out a following timeline for how a section came underneath glow from what Dunford described as internal genealogical fighters compared with ISIS while a organisation was streamer behind to bottom with Nigerien forces:

“Early morning of 3rd Oct … U.S. army accompanied that Nigerien section on a reconnoitering goal to accumulate information. The comment from a leaders on a belligerent during that time was that hit with a rivalry was unlikely.

“Mid-morning on Oct. 4, a unit began to take glow as they were returning to their handling base. Approximately one hour after holding fire, a organisation requested support. And within minutes, a remotely piloted aircraft arrived overhead. Within an hour, French Mirage jets arrived on station. And afterwards after that afternoon, French conflict helicopters arrived on hire and a Nigerien discerning greeting force arrived in a area where a infantry were in hit with a enemy.

“During a firefight, dual U.S. soldiers were bleeding and evacuated by French atmosphere to Niamey. And that was unchanging with a misadventure depletion devise that was in place for this sold operation. Three U.S. soldiers who were killed in movement were evacuated on a dusk of 4 October, and during that time Sgt. La David Johnson was still missing. On a dusk of 6 October, Sgt. Johnson’s physique was found and subsequently evacuated.”

It’s not transparent how, exactly, Johnson was distant from a rest of a organisation and where his physique was found in propinquity to a firefight.

These images supposing by a U.S. Army uncover Staff Sgt. Bryan C. Black (from left), 35, of Puyallup, Wash.; Staff Sgt. Jeremiah W. Johnson, 39, of Springboro, Ohio; Sgt. La David Johnson of Miami Gardens, Fla.; and Staff Sgt. Dustin M. Wright, 29, of Lyons, Ga.

U.S. Army/AP


hide caption

toggle caption

U.S. Army/AP

Another vital doubt is because a organisation confronted a militants for a full hour before there was any denote of their job for outmost support.

“I make no visualisation about how prolonged it took them to ask for support. we don’t know that they suspicion they indispensable support before to that time,” Dunford said. “I don’t know how this conflict unfolded. we don’t know what their initial comment was of what they were confronted with.”

Dunford pronounced that according to U.S. process in a area, U.S. infantry crew do not accompany internal infantry if hit with militants is seen as likely. That means they were not awaiting resistance, he said. Five Nigerien partner infantry were also killed in a confrontation.

The occurrence has lifted questions from lawmakers about U.S. infantry impasse in Africa, with senators including Lindsay Graham expressing warn during a couple levels in Niger.

On NBC’s Meet a Press, Graham shielded comments from Sen. John McCain, saying, “This is an unconstrained fight but boundaries, no reduction on time and geography. You’ve got to tell us more. And [McCain is] right to contend that.”

The U.S. has some-more than 6,000 infantry portion in about 53 countries in Africa, Dunford stated.