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Jordan releases video showing US troops surrendering before deadly shooting

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During the days of austerity, the US government often finds ways to get “more bang for their buck.”

In the post September 11th era of mass war, Special Operations Forces have grown in people, funding, and importance, however, they have not necessarily grown in the publics general knowledge. SOF are one of the most useful instruments in our national security toolbox.

Unfortunately, they are regularly referred to incorrectly, incompletely, and with little depth of knowledge by most.

Special Operations Forces if utilized correctly, can bring a mass amount of benefit to America, but if used poorly, their capabilities and even their lives can be wasted.

We need to ask ourselves, How should the US think about these compelling, misunderstood warriors and their role in supporting America’s vital national interests?

From foxnews,

A Jordanian military guard hunted down and ruthlessly killed three U.S. Special Forces soldiers as the men held their hands up in surrender, newly released video of the controversial November incident shows – contradicting the Jordan military’s original claim the American troops didn’t follow proper protocol when trying to enter the military base.

Security camera footage released Monday revealed details of the Nov. 4 shooting at King Faisal Air Base in southern Jordan where Staff Sgt. Matthew C. Lewellen, 27, Staff Sgt. Kevin J. McEnroe, 30, and Staff Sgt. James F. Moriarty, 27, were gunned down. The video had previously been shown to the families of the U.S. Army Green Berets.

FILE - In this fall of 2013 file photo, 27-year-old Staff Sgt. James F. Moriarty of Kerrville, Texas, poses after graduating from special forces training in the U.S. Army Green Beret. Moriarty was one of three American soldiers killed in a Jordanian air base. Jordan’s military has released a security camera video of the shooting last year in which a Jordanian soldier killed three U.S. military trainers at the entrance to an air base in the kingdom. (AP photo courtesy of James Moriarty, File)

In this 2013 file photo, 27-year-old Staff Sgt. James F. Moriarty poses after graduating from special forces training.

Jordanian 1st Sgt. Marik al-Tuwayha is seen in the video firing at the four-vehicle U.S. convoy, continuing to pull the trigger even though the American soldiers desperately wave their arms in surrender during the six-minute gun battle. Two of the men get out of their vehicles and take cover behind a barrier – but al-Tuwayha keeps shooting.

Eventually, the Jordanian guard closes in on the men and guns them down. One U.S. soldier involved in the incident survived the attack.

The video doesn’t clearly reveal what prompted al-Tuwayha to open fire. The lack of sound in the video also makes it unclear what those involved were saying.

Spokesman Maj. Adrian J.T. Rankine-Galloway said the Pentagon was aware the video has been released and referred all questions to the Jordanian government.

“The Department of Defense respects the Jordanian judicial process and supports their efforts toward transparency and openness regarding this incident,” Rankine-Galloway said in a statement.

Jordan initially said al-Tuwayha fired at the U.S. soldiers because they failed to stop at the gate, claiming certain entry protocols were not followed.

The U.S. quickly disputed the claim and said it could not rule out a political motive, Reuters reported. An investigation later found the American soldiers “were acting in compliance with all procedures and accepted practices,” according to a U.S. Special Operations Command news release in March.

Jordan eventually changed its position and charged al-Tuwayha with premeditated murder. The guard pleaded not guilty and insisted he was acting in accordance with open-fire regulations. He said during his testimony he heard a pistol shot and feared the base was being attacked.

But the family of the slain U.S. soldiers said otherwise, referencing the surveillance video that was eventually released to the public on Monday. They said the video showed the defendant reloading and shooting at Americans who were waving their hands and yelling: “We’re Americans! We’re friendly!”

“We’ve felt discouraged and disappointed with every way Jordan has handled this case since the moment the bullets were first fired,” Moriarty’s sister, Melissa, told the Associated Press.

Last week, al-Tuwayha was sentenced to life in prison with hard labor. When the verdict was read, he shouted, “I only did my duty!”

Hundreds of people also protested the conviction, blocking the roads to al-Jafr by burning tires and staging a sit-in. Members of al-Tuwayha’s tribe claimed the Jordanian soldier was a scapegoat.

“People from our tribe, especially Marik, know nothing but the military, King Abdullah and God,” Sayel Abu Tayeh, a relative of the Jordanian sergeant, said. “That is all they have. Killing three souls is not a game to us.”



But the video appeared to be released Monday to counter those demonstrating. Jordan’s military said in a statement that Tuwayha “had acted against orders and military instructions and had not acted in self-defense.”

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