Whom did they talk to? Did they go to the area and observe and ask questions?
"Pentagon Reports U.S. Airstrike Killed 5 Afghan Civilians, Not 90
By Ann Scott Tyson
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, August 29, 2008; A04
A U.S. military review of an airstrike last week in western Afghanistan maintains that only five civilians were killed, Pentagon officials said yesterday, a finding that starkly contradicts reports by the United Nations and Afghan officials that the civilian death toll from the bombing was at least 90.
Please read: 76 Civilians Killed by Coalition in Afghanistan
The completed review corroborates an initial assessment by the military of the operation Friday by U.S. and Afghan forces in a village in Herat province. "We did not kill up to 90 civilians as has been alleged," one U.S. military official said. The review "comports with our operational understanding" of the events, said the official, who like others spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak on the record.
And the proof is....?
Senior U.S. military leaders have in recent days voiced doubt about the credibility of reports that scores of Afghan civilians died in the airstrike. "I've seen the account stated from both the U.N. and certainly from the Afghan government. I've also seen it . . . discussed that, in fact, that didn't happen," Adm. Michael Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said in a media roundtable at the Pentagon yesterday morning.
Why? Because Mullen says it didn't!
Mullen said he had not yet seen the results of the review. The use of airstrikes in Afghanistan increased tenfold from 2004 to 2007 as a result of a growing Taliban insurgency and a lack of adequate ground forces.
Mullen, who this week met with Pakistan's senior military leadership on a U.S. aircraft carrier, also said that the U.S. and Pakistani militaries must intensify efforts to crack down on insurgents flowing across the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, warning of "syndicate-like behavior" among extremist groups in Pakistan's tribal areas.--more--"
I've never been more ashamed to be an American!