Share on Google Plus Share on Twitter 1 Share on Facebook Share on LinkedIn Share on PInterest Share on Fark! Share on Reddit Share on StumbleUpon Tell A Friend (1 Shares)  
Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites (# of views)   1 comment

Exclusive to OpEdNews:
OpEdNews Op Eds

Screaming for Help at Ganjgal

By       Message Tim King     Permalink
      (Page 1 of 1 pages)
Related Topic(s): ; ; , Add Tags Add to My Group(s)

View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com Headlined to H3 12/30/13

Author 56565
- Advertisement -
Ganjgal village in Afghanistan was the scene of a brutal ambush on the 8th September 2009, that claimed the lives of four U.S. Marines, an American soldier, and eight Afghan National Army (ANA) soldiers.  

The story is plagued with scandalous decisions and violations of established U.S. policy that make no sense.  Intel received early that morning from drones showed large numbers of heavily armed jihadists walked into Ganjgal from Pakistan.  But the soldiers and Marines, somehow, were not notified, and they walked into a brutal, deadly attack.  

Marine Staff Sergeant Juan Rodriguez-Chavez, Marine Corporal Dakota Meyer, and Army Captain Will Swenson, along with Afghan soldiers, worked together to save as many as they could, and as a result Meyer and Swenson were awarded the Medal of Honor.

The book Into the Fire: A Firsthand Account of the Most Extraordinary Battle in the Afghan War by Dakota Meyer and Bing West, reveals the dangerous refusal of officers responsible for aiding the men who fought and died alone.
  • They were denied critical intelligence.

  • They were denied air support.

  • Two pilots who tried to respond anyway were turned back.

  • They were denied artillery.

  • Calls for assistance were met with the question, "Are you Marines or Army?" when it made no difference at all.

  • The U.S. State Dept. was in Ganjgal one day before the ambush meeting with village elders. What spared them from a deadly ambush?

  • Their Operation Center staff was replaced that morning.

  • Vehicles with defensive guns were parked a mile away.

  • There was no QRF (Quick Reaction Force) to aid the fallen Marines.

  • Special Forces soldiers at Camp Joyce were physically restrained from aiding the Marines.

  • The primary Marine gunner, Dakota Meyer, was kept back with the vehicles, a mile from Ganjgal.
Captain Will Swenson did everything he could from the battlefield at Ganjgal, to being help.
    "This is Highlander 6," he screamed. "Heavy enemy fire. Request immediate suppression. Fire KE 3354. Will adjust. And get that air in here!" Fifty meters behind Swenson, Army Captain Raymond Kaplan, the 1-32 intelligence officer, took up the cause, yelling over his radio that KE 3365 was the proper target. "Fire. Fire, g--d-----. Smoke. Smoke." Kaplan sent the message seven times. Everyone was trying to talk over the same frequency, cutting each other off in mid-sentence. Kaplan was sure his requests were heard loud and clear. "The TOC (tactical operations center) won't clear a mission." Kaplan radioed to Swenson, "The f----- won't shoot the arty."
In their official investigation of the Ganjgal ambush, ISAF (International Security Assistance Force) in Bagram, Afghanistan, lightly touched on the lack of air support, then somehow attempted to justify the commander's role in the bloody battle that took place.

"The investigation concluded that appropriate personnel were not involved with the critical pre-mission planning of fire and air support. This, coupled with the severity of the situation, resulted in a delay in receiving timely support.

"Based on the recommendations in the investigation, Maj. Gen. Curtis M. Scaparrotti, CJTF-82 commanding general, took appropriate action regarding all personnel involved. Scaparrotti also issued guidance to the senior leadership throughout Regional Command East to ensure the lessons learned from the investigation findings and recommendations were incorporated into current practices to prevent or mitigate future incidents."
- Advertisement -


Yet the Army reported that commanders behind the failed mission received reprimands.  Evidence indicates otherwise.  For example, Major Peter Granger, who was blamed for what went wrong, was reportedly sanctioned, and yet in reality he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and given command of a military readiness project.

The U.S. government is repeating in Afghanistan, the same mistakes it made during the Vietnam War.  No lessons learned, the failure to absorb and correct strategic errors is costly.  Sending forces into Ganjgal village is something the Soviets learned not to do during their ten-year war there, the forces in Afghanistan.

One of the Marines killed that day, Staff Sergeant Aaron Kenefick, had twice been named "Marine of the Year".  He worked in highly classified information as an aid to former Army General Mark Kimmitt.  Those who worked with Kimmitt and Kenefick believe Kenefick's existence was a continual threat to General Kimmitt, who arranged for Kenefick to rotate to Afghansitan in 2009.  He died six weeks later in this bizarre ambush at Ganjgal. 
- Advertisement -

 

- Advertisement -

View Ratings | Rate It

______________________________ Tim King in 2008, covering the Iraq War Tim King: Salem-News.com Editor and Writer Tim King has more than twenty years of experience on the west coast as a television news producer, photojournalist, reporter and (more...)
 

Share on Google Plus Submit to Twitter Add this Page to Facebook! Share on LinkedIn Pin It! Add this Page to Fark! Submit to Reddit Submit to Stumble Upon


Go To Commenting

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Writers Guidelines

Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Related Topic(s): ; ; , Add Tags
- Advertisement -

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Screaming for Help at Ganjgal

Feds Plant Inert Bomb in Portland Before Arresting Muslim Man