It was the worst loss of life in the continuing war in Afghanistan. August 6, 2011, a military helicopter is shot down, 38 people on board are killed, including 17 members of Seal Team Six. The same military elite squad that was immortalized after successfully carrying out a Mission Impossible and killing Osama Bin Laden.
The families of the Seals killed in action are furious. They feel their sons were purposely targeted by the Taliban after the Obama administration confirmed that it was the Navy SEALs Team 6 who killed Osama bin Laden three months earlier. The families also question the sudden replacement of seven Afghan commandos on board the helicopter just before take-off. As it turned out, the seven Afghan commandos killed in the helicopter shotdown were not the seven listed in the flight manifest. To this day, none of them know who those dead Afghans were.
Bill Vaughn, father of killed Navy SEAL Aaron Vaugh, said the SEALs were ferried by a Vietnam-era Chinook helicopter rather than their customary state-of-the-art special forces choppers, and the Taliban must have seen that as the perfect opportunity to target the troops.
The U.S. fighters were also reminded before landing not to clear the area of potential enemies with suppressing fire because there might be civilians in the areas.
As many questions remain unanswered, such as why the helicopter’s black box was never recovered, the families couldn’t help but believe that the attack was carefully planned and not just a result of a random “lucky shot” as what U.S. military officials had been telling them.
At a news conference, the family members revealed that a Muslim cleric was allowed to attend the military funerals of the servicemembers and disparaged them by “damning them as infidels to Allah.”
The families are prepared to suit the United States and Afghanistan governments to get answers to questions like –