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Trump orders dismissal of murder charge against former Green Beret accused of killing a suspected Taliban bomb maker
President Donald Trump has ended the decade-long saga of Maj. Matthew Golsteyn by ordering a murder charge against the former Green Beret dismissed with a full pardon.
The Army charged Golsteyn with murder in December 2018 after he repeatedly acknowledged that he killed an unarmed Afghan man in 2010. Golsteyn's charge sheet identifies the man as "Rasoul."
Defense Secretary Mark Esper was tightliped on Wednesday on what he recommended to President Donald Trump about possibly exonerating three service members accused or convicted of war crimes.
Trump could order the Army to dismiss charges against Maj. Matthew Golsteyn and former 1st Lt. Clint Lorance as well as tell the Navy to restore Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher's rank as a chief petty officer, Fox News contributor Pete Hegseth said on Monday's edition of Fox & Friends.
"I had a robust discussion with the president yesterday and I offered – as I do in all matters – the facts, the options, my advice, the recommendations and we'll see how things play out," Esper told reporters on Wednesday after meeting with a Qatari official.
Prosecutors headed to Afghanistan to interview witnesses in case of Green Beret who allegedly murdered Taliban bomb-maker
Prosecutors plan to argue that the man a former Special Forces soldier is accused of killing in February 2010 was a farmer, not a bomb-maker for the Taliban.
A military judge heard motions Monday in the case against Maj. Mathew Golsteyn, who in June pleaded not guilty in the killing of an unarmed Afghan national named Rasoul. The trial is set for Dec. 2.
Golsteyn was a Green Beret captain with Fort Bragg's 3rd Special Forces Group. He contends the killing was justified under the wartime conditions in Afghanistan because the man was thought to be an insurgent who made a bomb that killed two Marines.
A prosecutor, Maj. Brent Goodwin, said Rasoul was a poor farmer with no connection to the Taliban. The man was uneducated and had no training in explosive devices, Goodwin said.
"Rasoul was not a bombmaker," Goodwin said.
Capt. Nina Hillner, a defense lawyer, said Rasoul's brother said Rasoul was a member of the Taliban.
Nearly a decade after he allegedly murdered an unarmed Afghan civilian during a 2010 deployment, the case of Army Maj. Matthew Golsteyn is finally going to trial.
Former Army Special Forces Maj. Matthew Golsteyn will plead not guilty to a charge of murder for allegedly shooting an unarmed Afghan man whom a tribal leader had identified as a Taliban bomb maker, his attorney said.
Golsteyn will be arraigned on Thursday morning at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, Phillip Stackhouse told Task & Purpose.
No date has been set for his trial yet, said Lt. Col. Loren Bymer, a spokesman for U.S. Army Special Operations Command.
Former Special Forces Maj. Matthew Golsteyn, who was charged with murder after admitting he killed a suspected Taliban bomb maker, claims he "conducted an ambush" when he engaged the unarmed man.
"Over these years, what the Army – particularly this time, the United States Army Special Operations Command – seems to be intent on doing is characterizing an ambush as murder," Golsteyn told Fox & Friends' Pete Hegseth during a Sunday interview. "What Army special operators and regular Army, like infantry soldiers, have done over the last 15 years, those routine combat actions are now being characterized as murder."