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"The [Untold] Tillman Story" Appendix D2 -- August 1, 2007 Congressional Hearing (7/06/10)

"The [Untold] Tillman Story" Appendix D2 -- August 1, 2007 Congressional Hearing (7/06/10)

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Published by Guy Montag

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Categories:Types, Research, History
Published by: Guy Montag on Jul 14, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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House Oversight Committee Hearing, August 1st 2007
House Oversight Committee Chairman Henry Waxman (August 1, 2007)Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, Gen. Meyers, Gen. Abizaid, Gen. Brown (August 1, 2007)
"There is another man [besides Gen. Kensinger] who will not be in the room. That is Lieutenant General StanMcChrystal. It should be very clear to everyone, General McChrystal is the head of covert special forces. The so-called dark or black forces. The ones who stay undercover ... Because of his extraordinarily sensitive position withcovert special forces, he is not appearing in public. And so he will not be questioned further by the committee in anopen
 -- Barbara Starr, CNN correspondent,(CNN, Aug. 1, 2007) 
Investigation Focused on White House & Departmentof 
Defense Knowledge of Tillman‘s Friendly Fire Death
Following the April 24th 2007
hearing on ―Misleading Informat
ion from the Battlefield
 Chairman Henry Waxman and Ranking Minority Member Davis decided the House OversightCommitt
ee‘s investigation into
Tillman‘s fratricide would focus on the actions of officials at
the top of the chain of command.
Specifically, the Committee sought to determine when thePresident, senior White House officials, the Secretary of Defense, and other top military leaderslearned that Corporal Tillman had been killed as a result of friendly fire and what they did uponlearning this information.
 On April 27
2007, Chairman Waxman sent letters to the White House and Dept. of Defense
asking them to ―
provide documents relating to how and when White House officials learned of the circumstances surro
unding Corporal Tillman's death‖ and
provide documents relating tohow and when high-ranking Defense Department officials learned of the circumstancessurrounding Corporal Tillman's death.
 On July 13
2007, Chairman Waxman and Ranking Minority Member Davis sent a letter to theWhite House and to Secretary of Defense Gates objecting to the withholding of documentsrelated to the death of Pat Tillman.In addition, the Oversight Committee announced that a hearing would be held on Wednesday,August 1
2007 to investigate what senior officials at the Defense Department knew about
Corporal Tillman‘s
death. The Committee invited former Secretary of Defense DonaldRumsfeld and five generals to testify at the hearing: Meyers, Abizaid, Brown, Kensinger, andMcChrystal.
Chairman Waxman said he was ―
that General Myers and Secretary Rumsfeld, who
rearranged his schedule so that he could be here today, are here to testify.‖ … ―and certainly in
the case of Secretary Rumsfeld, who went to great pains to be here. And I appreciate the fact
that he did come.‖
Why was Waxman so grateful Rumsfeld and the other generals appeared to testify? Waxmanhad the power to subpoena on his own authority without a committee vote. In fact, he did issue asubpoena to General Kensinger to attempt to compel his testimony.
Chairman Waxman‘s Opening
Chairman Henry Waxman presided over the
House Oversight Committee‘s August 1
2007hearing to
examine what senior Defense Department officials knew about U.S. Army Corporal
Patrick Tillman‘s death by fratricide.‖
Chairman Waxman said, ―Our focus has b
een to look 
the chain of command, … We have tried to find out what the White House knew about CorporalTillman‘s death. … Today we will be examining the actions of the senior leadership at theDepartment of Defense. … ―what
did the senior military leadership know about Corporal
Tillman‘s death, when did they know it, and what did they do after they learned it?‖
 Chairman Waxman commended
Army Secretary Geren for ―the forthright approach he is takingits [Army‘s] continued investigation‖ … ―Progress has been made, but we still don‘t know who
was responsible for the false information.
Waxman referenced Army Secretary Pete
July 31
 briefing on Gen. Wallace‘s Review, ―As the Army noted yesterday, in seven
gations into this tragedy, not one has found evidence of a conspiracy‖Chairman Waxman said, ―One possible explanation is that a series of counterintuitive, illogical blunders unfolded, accidentally and haphazardly.‖… ―The other possible explanation is
someone or some group of officials acted deliberately and repeatedly to conceal the truth.‖ …―Well, that was the view of Kevin Tillman.‖ Waxman said the Committee was ―looking for 
answers to simple questions. Who knew about the friendly fire attack 
? Why wasn‘t the family
told? Why did it take over a month for the leadership of the Defense Department to tell the
 public the truth?‖
By choosing only to focus looking ―up‖ the chain of command, the Committee failed to provideoversight over the Army‘s so
-called investigations.
The Army‘s
approach to investigating theTillman fratricide
was hardly ―forthright.‖
For example, just the previous day, Geren ignored theDoD
IG‘s findings that McChrystal was accountable for ―inaccurate information‖ that included
 falsified Silver Star witness statements.W
hat ―continued investigation‖?
The Wallace Review was the end, except that Geren slappedsome officers on the wrist. Only Gen. Kensinger,
the Army‘s scapegoat,
lost a star.
Waxman‘s tepid remarks, ―Well, that
was the view of Kevin Tillman
or ―
what roles,
if any
, theDefense Department and the Wh
ite House had in the deceptions‖
were in marked contrast to hisscathing April 24
concluding remarks:
―It wasn‘t misleading information. We
have falseinformation
… These aren‘t things that are
done by mistake.‖ … ―
What we have is a very clear,deliberate abuse intentionally done.
Why the backpedaling?

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