The blogs are abuzz with the AP article reporting that Army medical examiners questioned the close proximity of the three gunshot wounds to the forehead sustained by Pat Tillman. These doctors were denied a request for an investigation. Tillman's death, as we know, was initially reported to be the result of enemy fire. Family members persisted in a quest for the truth, with little help from the media who bought into the patriotic bullshit spun by the Pentagon. This quest turned the official story 0n its head and Tillman's death was subsequently declared to have been a case of accidental "friendly fire." Persistence again exposed even more damning evidence as uncovered in an AP report on July 26, 2007:
"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."
Discussions of cover-ups, motives, who was involved, how high up did it go have been the focus of many articles and comments. But, what about those bullet holes - so close together, so accurate. How do we make sense of that? What does it mean? Step in, Bill Perry, Paratrooper-Rifleman with the 101st Airborne Division during the TET Offensive in 1968 to explore the technical aspect of how these injuries may or may not have been executed.
I'm NOT looking for an argument here, on what Wes Clark may, or may NOT have said on Keith Olberman's MSNBC show.
What I DO want to mention is my highly personal experience of killing 4 men at extremely close range, with an M-16. The Doctors examining Pat Tillman stated there was "an extremely close shot group ".... (and they added "fired from less than 10 yards" away).
I'm an expert marksman, and I killed 4 men who ran right up on my point position, AFTER an ambush began, them not realizing I was so far removed from the other 28 men in my platoon. These men were about 3 to 4 yards away, and I had excellent cover... I had probably killed all 4 of them with just my first 6 shots from the expended 19 round magazine... and I went through their pockets, afterwards, while they were still warm.
There was NOTHING CLOSE to a "Shot group" on any of these men. Their wounds reflected their flailing & flying bodies as I blew them away.
A "Shot group " on Pat Tillman's forehead indicates ONE shot killed him, and then he was "double checked", then "triple checked" at POINT BLANK range, to make sure he was dead. ( 3 shots = "Shot Group" )
When the 1st shot hits something like a head or arm, it swings wildly BEFORE the 2nd or 3rd shot can hit it. A "Shot group" indicates the head was up against something ( like the ground ), and the shots were fired on "semi-auto", NOT full automatic. If there were a "fog of war" or an actual ambush, everybody would be on "auto", and you wouldn't EVER find "shot groups." Our After Action Report of our particular firefight indicated 56 KIA, and, believe me, there wasn't a "Shot Group" on any of them.For the folks who have never had neither Military, nor Law Enforcement Rifle Range Training:
"Shot Group" is usually a 3 shot "group", as it hits a paper target, mounted on a wooden silhouette. (World Class Target shooting will use 5 to 10 shot "SHOT GROUPS.") Most caliber ammo ranges from .223 of an inch ( 5.62 mm ) to about 1/2 inch in diameter (.50 & .51 caliber)(12.7MM). A "great" shot group will have ALL 3 shots touching each other. A "good" shot group will have ALL 3 shots within an inch of each other, at 25 yards. A "world class" shot group will have all 3 shots within 0.200 of an inch of each other, @ 200 meters.
A shot group , in a man's forehead, must be administered ONE SHOT AT A TIME, with the head just as stationary as a target silhouette. Nobody, 'cept Superman, can hold an automatic weapon steady enough to deliver a shot group onto somebody's forehead, on full automatic, further than 1 foot away.
If there is a "shot group", then the shots were administered on "semi", and Tillmann was dead after the 1st shot, and his head was held steady, for shots #2, & #3 (AGAINST THE GROUND?)
This article wouldn't have happened without the initiative and help of Cheryl Biren-Wright.