News World Drone footage shows US troops’ last stand & dramatic escape from Niger...

Drone footage shows US troops’ last stand & dramatic escape from Niger ambush (VIDEO)

Newly released footage from the Pentagon shows how US troops ambushed in Niger prepared for their last stand, the aborted French airstrike on Islamic State militants, and friendly fire by Nigerien rescuers.
The US Department of Defense has put together a 23-minute video showing the October 4, 2017 ambush of US special forces operatives and their Nigerien hosts outside the village of Tongo-Tongo, near Niger’s border with Mali in sub-Saharan Africa.

Only 11 minutes of the video were shown to Congress last week, however. The rest, made public late Thursday, shows the surviving troops bracing for what they thought would be their last stand, and includes the footage from two unarmed US drones that arrived on the scene of the battle.

A total of 46 US and Nigerien troops were returning from a failed hunt for an Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) commander. They were ambushed by more than 100 IS fighters just south of Tongo-Tongo. Four Nigerien troops and four US special forces operatives were killed in the ensuing firefight.

The new video shows seven Americans and four Nigeriens fleeing on foot through a swamp, before arriving at the edge of a forest around 12:50pm local time on October 4. There, they “wrote short messages to loved ones on personal devices,”

Shortly afterward, two US drones arrive at their location. Seven minutes after that, at 13:18, two French Mirage fighters arrive to provide close air support. They can’t bomb the militants, however, because they are “unable to determine friend from foe.” They fly low over the battlefield, scattering the IS fighters.

“At this time, the enemy ceased pursuit, but remained in the area,” the video says.

Some time later, a Nigerien rescue force arrived in several trucks. However, they “mistook the team for enemy forces” and opened fire. According to the Pentagon, the shooting lasted for about 48 seconds, but did not further injure any team members. French rescue helicopters arrived at 16:55 and the team was airlifted out 30 minutes later.

The footage released last week showed the ambush as it unfolded, ending with the US and Nigerien forces escaping into the swamp.

Three Green Berets were killed in the ambush: Staff Sgt. Bryan C. Black, Staff Sgt. Jeremiah W. Johnson, and Staff Sgt. Dustin M. Wright. Sgt. La David Johnson was initially declared missing. His body was found dead two days later by a Nigerien search party, about 850 meters away from the secondary defense position the convoy had taken.

Militants had stripped Johnson of his boots and gear, but he was killed from a distance, the Pentagon said. His body had been shot more than 20 times.

“He made his last stand, and he fought to the end,” said Major General Roger Cloutier, the US Africa Command (AFRICOM) chief of staff who led the inquiry into the ambush, according to Stars and Stripes.

AFRICOM’s probe found a number of problems with the mission. The soldiers did not spend enough time training together beforehand, did not properly prepare for the mission with Nigerien troops, and were not properly equipped to fight a well-trained enemy, the inquiry found.

The team found itself outnumbered and outgunned by the ambushing IS militants. One of the soldiers’ helmet cameras was captured by IS, which published the footage in March as part of a propaganda video.

Read more

https://in-cyprus.com/news/international/israel-strikes-dozens-of-iranian-targets-in-syria/

Source: RT

Top Stories

Paphos hospital A&E shuts as nurse among positive cases

The Paphos hospital A&E department will remain closed on Wednesday as a nurse working there was among the 32 positive cases announced on Tuesday,...

Two more Covid-19 cases, British Bases say

Another two members of British Forces Cyprus have tested positive for coronavirus bringing the total to seven, a BFC spokesperson said on Wednesday. Cyprus Health...

One doctor, two nurses from Larnaca hospital among new cases

One doctor and two nurses from Larnaca hospital are among the 32 new Covid-19 cases announced yesterday by the Ministry of Health, philenews reports,...

Cyprus’ hourly labour costs at €17.4, EU average €27.7

In 2019, average hourly labour costs in the whole economy (excluding agriculture and public administration) were estimated to be €27.7 in the EU and...

The spread of the coronavirus disease in New York

A healthcare worker sits on a bench near Central park in the Manhattan borough of New York City, U.S., March 30, 2020.

Taste

Village olive pie

Mix the yeast with the lukewarm water and put it aside for about 12-15 minutes to settle.  Sift the flour with the salt into...

Skordalia (Garlic paste)

Rinse the potatoes and place, unpeeled, in a saucepan. Cover with water, add salt and allow to simmer for 20-30 minutes until soft. Drain,...

Village salad

A must-have with every meal is a village salad. You will find it in every tavern or greek restaurant you visit in Cyprus. Make...

Courgettes with eggs

Heat the oil in a frying pan and fry the courgettes at a medium heat until they soften. Add salt and add the eggs....