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Report: Navy SEALs Strangled Green Beret To Death In Mali Over Stolen Cash
When the body of Staff Sgt. Logan Melgar, a Green Beret with the Army’s 3rd Special Forces Group, was discovered in the diplomatic housing he shared with several other special operations forces in the Malian capital of Bamako, military officials with U.S. Africa Command immediately suspected foul play. But according to an explosive new report published Sunday night, the truth may be far more complicated than the Department of Defense first suspected.
The Daily Beast reports, citing several members of the U.S. special operations community, that Melgar was killed by two members of SEAL Team Six after he discovered that the two SEALs were skimming cash off the top of the fund the elite special operators used to cultivate intelligence sources and pay off informants as part of the DoD’s broader counterterrorism mission in the Sahel and Lake Chad Basin region.
According to The Daily Beast, Melgar declined when offered a cut by the two SEALs, and that’s when things got out of control: Following an altercation between the three men on the morning of June 4, the Green Beret lost consciousness and stopped breathing. It’s certainly possible that Melgar’s death was an accident of sorts. AFRICOM officials told The Daily Beast that the two SEALs “attempted to open an airway in Melgar’s throat” after he lost consciousness before “[driving] to a nearby French clinic seeking help.” Melgar was pronounced dead by asphyxiation later that morning.
The investigation into the circumstances surrounding his death remained secret until Oct. 29, when the New York Times reported that NCIS took on the probe from AFRICOM on Sept. 25.
While Melgar’s death could have been accidental, the subsequent SEAL cover-up detailed by The Daily Beast was clearly deliberate. The two SEALs claimed Melgar was intoxicated during some impromptu sparring sessions in the Bamako compound, where Petty Officer Anthony E. DeDolph (a mixed martial arts pro, according to The Intercept) placed Melgar in a chokehold. After Melgar’s death, the SEALS then filed “at least one operational report about the incident and possibly two ... [in which] at least one of the reports included an account that Melgar was drunk.”
AFRICOM did not immediately announce Melgar’s death following the discovery of his body in Bamako, despite commands’ habit of announcing combat and noncombat deaths: According to The Daily Beast, then-U.S. Special Operations Command-Africa chief Brig. Gen. Donald Bolduc was “skeptical of the initial reports from the outset.” Bolduc’s instincts were right. Melgar’s subsequent autopsy report revealed that the Green Beret’s system was clear of drugs or alcohol on the night of his death.
Several military officials told Task & Purpose that a medical examiner changed Melgar’s cause of death from accidental to “homicide by asphyxiation” months later, turning the two SEALs, placed on administrative leave as witnesses to Melgar’s death, into suspects.
“It looks like a sloppy attempt to sweep this under the rug,” one SOCOM official, who asked to remain anonymous due to the ongoing investigation surrounding Melgar’s death, told Task & Purpose. “I don’t know what they were thinking, but even if it was an accident, it makes his death look like anything but.”
CAMP PENDLETON — The military prosecution of a Coast Guardsman accused of murder began Wednesday with a preliminary hearing at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton.
Seaman Ethan W. Tucker, 21, was arrested August 28 after a seven-month Coast Guard investigation into the January death of Seaman Ethan Kelch, 19, who served on the same ship as Tucker— the Kodiak, Alaska-based high endurance cutter Douglas Munro.
ANKARA (Reuters) - President Tayyip Erdogan said on Saturday Turkey would press on with its offensive into northeastern Syria and "crush the heads of terrorists" if a deal with Washington on the withdrawal of Kurdish fighters from the area were not fully implemented.
Erdogan agreed on Thursday in talks with U.S. Vice President Mike Pence a five-day pause in the offensive to allow time for the Kurdish fighters to withdraw from a "safe zone" Turkey aims to establish in northeast Syria near the Turkish border.
President Trump stoked confusion Friday by declaring the U.S. has "secured the Oil" in the Middle East amid continued fallout from the Turkish invasion of northern Syria that he enabled by pulling American troops out of the region.
It wasn't immediately clear what the president was talking about, as there were no publicly known developments in Syria or elsewhere in the Middle East relating to oil. White House aides did not return requests for comment.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A U.S. State Department investigation of Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server while she was secretary of state has found no evidence of deliberate mishandling of classified information by department employees.
The investigation, the results of which were released on Friday by Republican U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley's office, centered on whether Clinton, who served as the top U.S. diplomat from 2009 to 2013, jeopardized classified information by using a private email server rather than a government one.
BYESVILLE — A Meadowbrook High School student removed from class last Friday for being intoxicated is now facing a felony charge after allegedly threatening to shoot people if the previous incident harmed his chances to join a branch of the United States military.
Gabriel D. Blackledge, 18, of Cambridge, is facing one count of making terrorist threats, a third-degree felony, filed by the Guernsey County Sheriff's Office on Thursday. Blackledge remained incarcerated in the county jail on a $250,000 bond with no 10 percent allowed, according to the sheriff's office's website.