Leaked Afghan Combat Video Prompts Military Investigation
The Pentagon has launched an investigation into a leaked video recently shot by U.S. special operations forces in Afghanistan that appears to show an American soldier firing into the driver’s side of a civilian truck in broad daylight.
The footage was recorded by U.S. troops battling the Islamic State’s Afghan affiliate, according to Politico. An anonymous user recently uploaded the video to YouTube under the title “Happy Few Ordnance Symphony,” then quickly removed it. But the video was downloaded before it was deleted, and reposted on social media again.
In the video, a military vehicle is seen approaching a civilian truck with a white cab and black cargo cabin, of the type Afghans often call “Jingle trucks.” As the armored vehicle comes alongside the truck, the U.S. service member lowers his military-style shotgun and fires into the truck’s driver-side window, causing the glass to shatter.
The action could have violated the military’s rules of engagement and may hamper the alliance with the Afghan government.
“The video posted on a public website gives us serious concern,” Army Gen. Joseph Votel, the head of the U.S. Central Command, told Politico in a statement. “The video in question is not authorized and does not represent the professionalism of the service members of U.S. Central Command.
“We are conducting an investigation into this video, and will take appropriate actions as a result of this investigation,” he added.
The troops in the video wear uniforms typical of U.S. special operations forces like the Green Berets, SEALs, Rangers and Marine Raiders, and are seen firing machine guns, grenade launchers, rockets, miniguns, mortars and calling in air or artillery strikes. The video is typical of the unauthorized combat montages that some troops create to share among themselves, often using footage shot from helmet-mounted video cameras.
Military sources identified the first vehicle as a version of the M-ATV armored vehicle specially outfitted for special operations forces.
The video is filmed from the perspective of an individual armed with a shotgun who is standing in a rear hatch of the armored vehicle.
Watch the video below:
Political Dig could not independently confirm the authenticity of the video.