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File: 980717_aug97_decls3_0001.txt
Page: 0001
Total Pages: 2

Subject = INVESTIGATION OF POSSIBLE FRATRICIDE BY 3D ARMORED DIV UNITS    

Box ID = BX002451

Folder title = INFORMAL INVES OF NIGHT ATTACK CONDUCTED BY 2D BDE 26-27 FEB 91                                 

Unit = TRADOC      

Parent = TRADOC      


                            L-, ARi@-,;i i. I - An. 7
                       Headquarters, 3d Armored Division
                            APO New York 09760-1000

     AETV-TF-JA                                             1 6 MAR


     MEMORANDUM FOR Commanding'General, VII Corps, APO NY a9756

     SUBJECT: Investigation of Possible Fratricide by 3d Armored
     Division Units


     1. Enclosed are two AR 15-6 investigations into possible
     fratricide by 3d Armored Division units, 4-32 Armor and 4-34
     Armor. The 4-34 Armor investigation indicates that three Bradley
    -Fighting Vehicles (BFVS) of 4-7 Cavalry Squadron were hit by 120mm
     M29AI SABOT rounds. Two were probably hit by 4-34 Armor MIAI'S;
     one was probably hit by an MIAI from either 2d ACR or 4-34 Armor.
     Two soldiers were killed. The 4-32 Armor investigation indicates
     that one BFV of 4-32 Armor was hit by 25mm rounds, but does not
     establish that the rounds were fired by a 4-32 BFV. I have
     concluded, however, that the rounds probably were fired by a 4-32
     SFV, resulting In two deaths.

     2. In each instance, all vehicles involved were in contact with
     Iraqi armored vehicles and dismounted infantry. The vehicles were
     hit during the early fighting, when gusting winds whipped the
     dust, rain, and smoke into-heavy clouds at dusk. Visibility was
     so limited that even thermal sights were hampered. The speed of
     the operation was beginning to quicken, as we made our turn east
     into the thick of the Iraqi armor. Under these circumstances, I
     do not find that any of our soldiers or commanders involved acted
     carelessly or were too quick to shoot. Quite to the contrary,
     there was considerable caution at all levels of command to avoid
     fratricide.  I do not think that any equipment malfunction was
     involved; the vehicles that were hit were either mistaken for
     Iraqi vehicles or were inadvertently caught in a cross-fire.

     3. No one is more saddened than I am by the tragic loss of our
     four soldiers. The fact that they may have died from our own
     rounds in no way detracts from their courage and heroism, or the
     honor bestowed upon them for their sacrifice. I do not believe
     that we can ever determine conclusively which vehicle fired which
     rounds, nor do I believe that further inquiry is necessary. I do
     not believe that any negligence or misconduct was involved.
     Therefore, trying to pin the blame an a particular gunner or tank
     commander at this point would serve no/-purpose but to burden some
     young soldiers with guilt and doubt f)6r @he rest of their lives.




     2 Encls
     as                                 Major Gener
                                        Commanding




                                             P.




                                            4     0    n I

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