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Operation Desert Storm: Investigation of a U.S. Army Fratricide Incident

(Chapter Report, 04/07/95, GAO/OSI-95-10)


Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO investigated the February 27,
1991, fratricide incident during the Persian Gulf War, focusing on: (1)
events and factors that contributed to the incident; (2) the Army's
investigations of the incident; and (3) whether the Army hindered
investigations of the incident or influenced its outcome.

GAO found that: (1) factors contributing to the fratricide incident
included incomplete and confusing operation plans and orders,
disintegrated coordination along the corps, and commanders that did not
maintain control of their units; (2) the Army did not conduct a complete
and thorough investigation of the incident and one investigating officer
had a predetermined conclusion concerning the case; (3) the Army
recommended that three officers be reprimanded and the executive officer
of engineers be admonished, however, two reprimands were not made part
of the officers' personnel files and the third reprimand was withdrawn;
and (4) there was no evidence of internal document destruction, witness
intimidation, or witness retaliation during the investigations, although
questions regarding the completeness and accuracy of the investigations
remain.

--------------------------- Indexing Terms -----------------------------

 REPORTNUM:  OSI-95-10
     TITLE:  Operation Desert Storm: Investigation of a U.S. Army 
             Fratricide Incident
      DATE:  04/07/95
   SUBJECT:  Army personnel
             Accidents
             Airborne operations
             Advanced weapons systems
             Military operations
             Air warfare
             Missiles
             Information disclosure
             Military aircraft
             Investigations by federal agencies
IDENTIFIER:  Iraq
             Kuwait
             Desert Shield
             Desert Storm
             Saudi Arabia
             GPS
             NAVSTAR Global Positioning System
             Persian Gulf War
             M548 Armored Supply Vehicle
             Bradley Fighting Vehicle
             M1A1 Tank
             
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Cover
================================================================ COVER


Report to the Honorable
Fred Thompson, U.S.  Senate

April 1995

OPERATION DESERT STORM -
INVESTIGATION OF A U.S.  ARMY
FRATRICIDE INCIDENT

GAO/OSI-95-10

Investigation of a U.S.  Army Fratricide Incident


Abbreviations
=============================================================== ABBREV

  ACR - Armored Cavalry Regiment
  AD - Armored Division
  AR - Army regulation
  FBI - Federal Bureau of Investigation
  FM - (Army) Field Manual
  FRAGO - fragmentary order
  GAO - General Accounting Office
  HMMWV - High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle
  OIG - Office of the Inspector General
  M1A1 - M1A1 Abrams Main Battle Tank
  M548 - M548 Ammunition Carrier
  mm - millimeter
  MSR - Major Supply Route
  OSI - Office of Special Investigations
  PsyOps - Psychological Operations team
  TAC - Tactical Command Post
  TOC - Tactical Operations Center
  kilometer - approximately 3,280.8 feet or 0.62 mile
  meter - approximately 3.28 feet

Letter
=============================================================== LETTER


B-260897

April 7, 1995

The Honorable Fred Thompson
United States Senate

Dear Senator Thompson: 

In response to your request, and that of former Senator James R. 
Sasser, this report presents the results of our investigation of
events leading to a fratricide incident during the Persian Gulf War;
assessment of the adequacy of U.S.  Army investigations following the
incident; and investigation of allegations that Army officials
hindered those investigations or influenced their outcome.  The
incident involved engineers attached to the U.S.  Army's 1st Armored
Division and elements of the U.S.  Army's 3rd Armored Cavalry
Regiment.  One U.S.  serviceman was killed; a second was wounded. 

We briefed U.S.  Army representatives and the deceased serviceman's
immediate family on the content of our investigation.  However, we
did not obtain written comments from the Department of the Army on
this report. 

As agreed with your office, unless you publicly announce the contents
of this report earlier, we plan no further distribution until April
21, 1995.  We will then send copies to interested congressional
committees; the Secretary of Defense, and the Secretary of the Army. 
We will also make copies available to others upon request.  If you
have questions concerning this report, please call me, or Assistant
Director Barbara Cart of my staff, at (202) 512-6722.  Major
contributors to this report are listed in appendix III. 

Sincerely yours,

Richard C.  Stiener
Director


EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
============================================================ Chapter 0


   PURPOSE
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:1

In the early morning of February 27, 1991, during the Persian Gulf
War, Army Corporal Douglas Lance Fielder was unintentionally killed
by U.S.  soldiers who had mistaken him and his fellow engineers as
the enemy.  Senator Fred Thompson concurred with former Senator James
R.  Sasser's earlier request that GAO (1) determine the events that
had led to the fratricide, (2) assess the adequacy of U.S.  Army
investigations following the fratricide, and (3) investigate
allegations that Army officials hindered investigations of the
fratricide incident or influenced their outcome.  The Army
investigations determined that the actions and decisions of all
individuals involved in the incident had been reasonable and
appropriate under the existing circumstances. 


   BACKGROUND
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:2

On August 2, 1990, Iraqi military forces invaded the emirate of
Kuwait.  They refused to withdraw by the United Nations-imposed
deadline of midnight, Eastern Standard Time, January 15, 1991.  U.S. 
and allied forces thus implemented Operation Desert Storm on January
17, 1991, beginning with an extensive air campaign.  The ground war
began on February 24, 1991, and ended February 28, 1991, when allied
commanders declared a cease-fire. 


   RESULTS IN BRIEF
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:3

Several critical factors, involving mainly the 3rd Armored Cavalry
Regiment (ACR) but also the engineers of the 1st Armored Division
(AD), resulted in the February 27, 1991, fratricide incident.  At
approximately 2:30 a.m.  (Persian Gulf Time) that day near Umm Hajul,
Iraq, elements of<mt:459> <mt:475>
the 3rd ACR crossed a U.S.  Army Corps boundary line into a sector
known to be controlled by the 1st AD.  Their operation plans and
operation orders were incomplete and confusing, in part, because they
did not contain current intelligence information.  Further,
coordination along the corps boundary had disintegrated.  More
importantly, the 3rd ACR commanders did not maintain command and
control of their units.  They, for example, did not determine their
and their troops' positions, thus allowing them to cross the corps
boundary past which they knew friendly forces might be located.  They
also did not abide by the stated rules of engagement--not to fire
below the boundary and not to fire unless fired upon. 

After crossing the southern boundary, elements of the 3rd Squadron,
3rd ACR, identified what they thought were enemy troops around
buildings and fired on them, killing one U.S.  soldier, Corporal
Fielder, and wounding a second, Sergeant James E.  Napier.  They,
along with three other engineers of Charlie Company, 54th Engineer
Battalion, were attached to the 1st AD and were located on a 1st AD
main supply route, awaiting a recovery vehicle for their disabled
ammunition and explosives carrier.  They did not know of or use the
appropriate antifratricide signals during the fratricide incident. 

The 3rd ACR's AR (Army Regulation) 15-6 investigation of the
incident, which consisted of initial and supplemental investigations,
found the 3rd ACR commanders not responsible for the incident.  The
initial Investigating Officer did not conduct a complete and thorough
investigation, counter to Army regulations for AR 15-6
investigations.  Further, neither Investigating Officer sought to
resolve inconsistent claims concerning warning shots fired at the
engineers and purported return fire from the engineers.  In addition,
the Forces Command Staff Judge Advocate who reviewed the AR 15-6
investigation stated his supposition to GAO that the second
Investigating Officer's "objectivity was skewed" and he had a
predetermined conclusion concerning the case. 

After his review, the Forces Command Staff Judge Advocate recommended
that three 3rd ACR officers be reprimanded and the engineers'
Executive Officer be admonished.  However, at the discretion of the
Commander in Chief, Forces Command, two reprimands were not made part
of the officers' official military personnel files, the third was
withdrawn, and the admonishment was allowed to stand. 

GAO found no evidence of intentional document destruction, witness
intimidation, or witness retaliation.  However, GAO questions the
completeness and accuracy of the investigations.  Further, several
3rd ACR personnel received heroism awards, related to the incident,
that were based on misleading statements and inaccurate information. 


   PRINCIPAL FINDINGS
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:4


      THE INCIDENT
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:4.1

Among the critical factors resulting in the fratricide were the 3rd
ACR's Operation Plan and Operation Order for the February 27, 1991,
mission; they were incomplete and contained contradictory, outdated
intelligence information about enemy presence.  Further, coordination
between the VII Corps and XVIII Airborne Corps along the boundary had
disintegrated, and maps used by the 3rd ACR commanders and troops in
preparation for the mission were outdated and did not accurately
depict the 3rd ACR's objective.  Communication failures--from the 3rd
ACR through the squadrons to the troops--also contributed to the
confusion leading to the incident.  Both the 3rd ACR Commander,
Colonel Douglas Starr, and the 3rd Squadron Commander, Lt.  Colonel
John H.  Daly, Jr., failed to maintain command and control of their
subordinate units by, among other things, not ensuring subordinates'
knowledge of their southern boundary, past which they knew friendly
forces might be located; not determining their and their units'
positions relative to the boundary; and not abiding by the stated
rules of engagement. 

In addition, the engineers were not in compliance with all of the
then current U.S.  Army regulations pertaining to antifratricide. 
The failure of the engineer's Executive Officer, 1st Lieutenant Kevin
Wessels, to know of and employ antifratricide recognition signals
during the initial stages of the incident may have allowed the
incident to deteriorate further. 

According to the I Troop Commander, 3rd Squadron, 3rd ACR, Captain
Bodo Friesen, he initially ordered the gunner of his M1A1 Abrams Main
Battle Tank (M1A1) to fire warning shots away from the engineers. 
However, the two engineers who were observing the 3rd Squadron's
vehicles stated that they attempted to identify themselves before and
after they were fired upon and they saw no warning shots.  They
claimed the first shots were fired directly at them.  Immediately on
firing the warning shots, Captain Friesen's tank driver and gunner
reported return fire from the engineers' position, a claim the
engineers and other 3rd Squadron troops dispute.  Captain Friesen
ordered his gunner and two Bradley Fighting Vehicles (Bradley) to
fire.  A cease-fire was then called.  Sergeant Napier was wounded
during this firing sequence. 

While I Troop elements were developing and engaging the targets, the
3rd Squadron Commander, Lt.  Colonel Daly, moved into the engagement
area.  He failed to exercise proper command and control by not
requesting Captain Friesen's assessment of a developing
situation--which at that point appeared to Captain Friesen to be
under control--and ordered his Bradley gunner to fire at an
unconfirmed target.  Corporal Fielder was killed during this firing
sequence.  Further, Lt.  Colonel Daly dismounted two troops from his
vehicle without advising his subordinate units, exposing the
dismounts to the risk of fratricide. 

GAO estimates that the time between the first shots and the fatal
shots was 7 minutes 15 seconds.  Approximately 25 minutes elapsed
between when I Troop, 3rd Squadron, first misidentified the engineers
and their identification as U.S.  troops. 


      INCOMPLETE, INACCURATE
      INVESTIGATIONS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:4.2

Within hours, the 3rd ACR began an AR 15-6 investigation.  By
regulation, such investigations are to be thorough and impartial and
make recommendations as warranted by the facts.  The first
Investigating Officer, in his investigation and reinvestigation,
found that all personnel had acted responsibly and recommended that
all be absolved of any criminal or administrative responsibility for
the incident.  Among other shortcomings, the first Investigating
Officer overlooked numerous documents and other information,
including an audio tape recording of the incident that GAO located. 
(See app.  I.)

Following investigation reviews by the 54th Engineer Battalion
Commander and the VII Corps Staff Judge Advocate, in October 1991 the
XVIII Airborne Corps directed that a supplemental AR 15-6
investigation be conducted.  The second Investigating Officer also
did not elicit evidence that some 3rd Squadron personnel--including
crew members aboard the 3rd Squadron Commander's Bradley--had
recognized U.S.  vehicles before the fatal shots were fired.  He also
misstated facts, such as that the engineers were not wearing Kevlar
helmets or Load Bearing Equipment that would have aided
identification.  The second Investigating Officer concurred that all
involved individuals had acted responsibly and recommended that they
be absolved of all responsibility for the incident. 

Later, a Forces Command Staff Judge Advocate, at the direction of the
Commander in Chief, Headquarters Forces Command, performed a legal
review and analysis of the report of investigation.  He stated his
supposition to GAO that the second Investigating Officer had a
"skewed" objectivity and a predetermined conclusion concerning the
case and would not have determined anything unfavorable about the
XVIII Corps. 

The Forces Command Staff Judge Advocate recommended reversing the two
Investigating Officers' findings, noting, among other failings, the
involved 3rd ACR officers' "negligent" actions that placed their
soldiers at risk and their "dereliction of duty" for assuming that
personnel in a rear area were enemy.  Based on his recommendations,
three 3rd ACR officers were reprimanded and the engineers' Executive
Officer was admonished.  However, at the discretion of the Commander
in Chief, Forces Command, two reprimands were not made part of the
officers' permanent military files, the third was withdrawn, and the
admonishment stood. 

GAO found no evidence of intentional document destruction, witness
intimidation, or retaliation against witnesses.  However, the
investigations' conclusions and recommendations were not supported by
the evidence available to the Army investigators. 


      QUESTIONABLE HEROISM AWARDS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:4.3

GAO determined that heroism awards related directly to the fratricide
incident and given to two officers and several men of the 3rd ACR had
been based on misleading statements and misrepresentations by the 3rd
ACR Commander, Colonel Starr, and the 3rd Squadron Commander, Lt. 
Colonel Daly.  Award support referred to "enemy" presence and
"hostile fire" during the fratricide incident and stated that it had
occurred at an airfield about 28 kilometers from the incident site. 
Following a GAO briefing, the Army Office of Inspector General (OIG)
analyzed the awards and requested in August 1994 that these, and any
similar, awards be revoked.  As of March 1995, the matter was still
pending. 


   RECOMMENDATIONS
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:5

GAO recommends that the Secretary of the Army (1) reexamine, for
their appropriateness, the disciplinary actions taken regarding this
fratricide incident and the disposition of those actions and (2)
follow up on the Army OIG request that improperly supported awards
for participation in fratricide incidents be revoked. 


   AGENCY COMMENTS
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:6

GAO twice briefed U.S.  Army representatives on the findings of its
investigation.  However, GAO did not obtain official agency comments
on this report. 


EVENTS LEADING TO THE FRATRICIDE
INCIDENT
============================================================ Chapter 1

This chapter provides our determination of the events that led to the
February 27, 1991,\1 fratricide incident during the Persian Gulf War. 


--------------------
\1 Almost immediately after the Iraqi military invasion of Kuwait on
Aug.  2, 1990, the United States and allied countries deployed troops
to the Middle East, implementing Operation Desert Shield.  Iraqi
forces refused to withdraw by the United Nations' Jan.  15, 1991,
deadline; and on Jan.  17, 1991, U.S.  and allied forces implemented
the air campaign of Operation Desert Storm.  The ground war began on
Feb.  24, 1991, and ended Feb.  28, 1991. 


   CHARLIE COMPANY, 54TH ENGINEER
   BATTALION
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 1:1

The U.S.  Army's 54th Engineer Battalion, Wildflecken, Germany,
deployed to the Persian Gulf on January 25, 1991,\2 as part of
Operation Desert Storm.  Upon its arrival in the Persian Gulf, the
battalion's mission was to provide direct support for the U.S. 
Army's 1st Armored Division (AD) from Ansbach, Germany.  Charlie
Company, 54th Engineer Battalion, supported the 2nd Brigade, 1st AD
(see fig.  1.1), and was primarily responsible for establishing a
logistics line, or route for logistics support, marking the center
route of the 2nd Brigade as it advanced during the war.  Prior to the
war's beginning, the 1st AD ordered that (1) any vehicle that broke
down was to be moved to the logistics line to await recovery and (2)
personnel assigned to the vehicle were to remain with the vehicle
until recovery. 

   Figure 1.1:  Engineers'
   Assignment Within 1st AD, VII
   Corps

   (See figure in printed
   edition.)

At approximately 1130 hours\3 on February 24, 1991, the 1st AD,
including its support units, began its movement to breach the Saudi
Arabia/ Iraq berm, or border.  (See fig.  1.2.) It encountered little
resistance and moved at a very rapid pace. 

   Figure 1.2:  U.S.  Army's 1st
   Armored Division and 3rd
   Armored Cavalry Regiment

   (See figure in printed
   edition.)

At approximately 1700 hours on February 26, 1991, an M548 Ammunition
Carrier (M548), towing a 1.5-ton trailer full of explosives (see fig. 
1.3), broke down while traveling as part of the combat support
"trains" along the logistics line.  The M548 was attached to Charlie
Company, 54th Engineer Battalion.  Once it was determined the M548
could no longer operate, Charlie Company's Executive Officer, 1st
Lieutenant Kevin Wessels, notified his commanding officer of the
situation and his exact location. 

   Figure 1.3:  M548 Ammunition
   Carrier and Trailer

   (See figure in printed
   edition.)

It was decided that Lieutenant Wessels and the M548 crew, Specialist
Craig Walker and Corporal Lance Fielder,\4 would remain with the
vehicle until vehicle recovery units arrived.  Two vehicles--a High
Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV) (see fig.  1.4) and a
Small Emplacement Excavator towing a 1.5-ton trailer full of
explosives (see fig.  1.5)--accompanying the M548 were also to
remain, along with their crews, Sergeant James Napier and Specialist
Robert Driben. 

   Figure 1.4:  High Mobility
   Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle

   (See figure in printed
   edition.)

   Figure 1.5:  Small Emplacement
   Excavator and Trailer

   (See figure in printed
   edition.)

After contacting his commanding officer, Lieutenant Wessels contacted
the 54th Engineer Battalion Tactical Operations Center (TOC)--the
command post element that includes the staff activities involved in
sustaining and planning operations--and the 2nd Brigade Logistics
Operations Center, advising them of the situation and the engineers'
location.  He was told that it could be the next day before they were
recovered.  Taking a defensive position, the engineers positioned the
HMMWV, a "soft-skinned" vehicle with the unit's radios, between the
M548 and the excavator and assigned guards.  All three vehicles were
equipped with the standard antifratricide\5 recognition decals, an
inverted "V." The crews had previously mounted a blackout light on a
camouflage pole atop the M548.  The light, a 1st AD antifratricide
device, was to be illuminated during combat maneuvers at night when
the vehicle was moving.  However, the light was not illuminated
because the M548 was located on the logistics line and was not
operating. 


--------------------
\2 The dates and times in this report concerning events in the war
theater are based on Persian Gulf Time. 

\3 Military time is measured in hours, numbered from 1 to 24, from
one midnight to the next.  For example, 0100 hours equates with 1:00
a.m., 1300 hours is 1:00 p.m., and 2315 hours is 11:15 p.m. 

\4 Corporal Fielder was promoted posthumously to Sergeant effective
Feb.  26, 1991. 

\5 Fratricide is the employment of weapons and munitions with the
intent to kill the enemy or destroy its equipment or facilities but
which results in unforeseen and unintentional death or injury to
friendly personnel. 


   3RD ARMORED CAVALRY REGIMENT
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 1:2


      3RD ACR'S DEPLOYMENT AND
      MISSION IN THE PERSIAN GULF
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 1:2.1

The 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment (ACR) deployed from Fort Bliss,
Texas, to Saudi Arabia on October 1, 1990, as part of Operation
Desert Shield.  Upon arrival in Saudi Arabia, the regiment was
involved in training exercises and later established a base of
operations at Tactical Assembly Area Cactus.  With the onset of
Operation Desert Storm, the 3rd ACR's primary mission was to act as a
screening force\6 to protect the right flank of the XVIII Airborne
Corps.  (See fig.  1.2.) The 3rd ACR's Operation Plan called for it
to move north-to-northeast from the Saudi Arabia/Iraqi border into
Iraq and then turn east, executing what became known as the "Hail
Mary." The boundaries\7 of operation for these movements were defined
prior to the ground war. 


--------------------
\6 A screening force maintains surveillance; provides early warning
to the main body; impedes and harasses the enemy with supporting
fire; and, within its capability, destroys enemy reconnaissance
elements.  (Operational Terms and Symbols (or Army Field Manual), FM
101-5-1, Oct.  1985)

\7 Boundaries are a control measure normally drawn along identifiable
terrain features and used to delineate areas of tactical
responsibility for subordinate units.  Within their boundaries, units
may maneuver within their overall plan without close coordination
with neighboring units unless otherwise restricted.  (FM 101-5-1)


      3RD ACR'S INITIAL GROUND
      BATTLE
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 1:2.2

The direct involvement of the 3rd ACR Commander, Colonel Douglas
Starr, in the initial U.S.  ground battle in the Persian Gulf
conflict is relevant to a full understanding of the February 27,
1991, fratricide incident.  During Operation Desert Shield and the
beginning of Operation Desert Storm, the 3rd ACR was deployed along
the southern edge of the Iraqi border.  On January 22, 1991, Blue
Platoon (scout platoon), I Troop, 3rd Squadron, 3rd ACR, (see fig. 
1.6) became the first U.S.  ground unit to be involved in the
conflict.  Led by Colonel Starr, the platoon conducted a
reconnoitering mission approximately 100 kilometers west of the 3rd
ACR assembly area.  During this mission, the platoon encountered a
Saudi Arabian border guard who requested assistance as his position
had come under attack from Iraqi soldiers across the berm. 

   Figure 1.6:  3rd ACR's
   Assignment Within XVIII
   Airborne Corps

   (See figure in printed
   edition.)

Knowing the scout platoon was without reinforcements and out of
artillery range, Colonel Starr directed the platoon leader to scan
for targets and to advise him before engaging any Iraqi soldiers. 
However, without warning, Colonel Starr began conducting
reconnaissance by fire\8 onto the Iraqi positions.  The platoon
leader took this as a "sign" to engage the enemy and directed his
platoon to "engage any target that presented itself." The platoon
then received return fire from the Iraqi soldiers and breached the
berm.  After suffering two casualties, inflicting casualties on the
Iraqis, and taking several Iraqi prisoners of war, the platoon
withdrew from the engagement. 

According to Colonel Starr, he chose to take charge and become
directly involved because he believed the engagement had "serious
political implications" and he did not want the platoon leader on the
"blame line." Following the incident, Colonel Starr briefed the XVIII
Corps Commander, who questioned Colonel Starr's direct involvement in
the mission and engagement.  Colonel Starr responded by saying,
"Excuse me, but I thought that is why we came over here." According
to Colonel Starr, he advised the XVIII Corps Commander of the
situation that had confronted him and that an "inferior" unit was
firing on him. 

Colonel Starr later briefed his subordinate commanders and troops
concerning what was learned about the enemy.  He felt the engagement
had had positive effects on the 3rd ACR and was a cause of envy, as
one of the 3rd ACR platoons had been "blooded" and was considered
combat qualified.  He said that his briefing--the tone of which was
to "act aggressively to win" the battle--had an effect on his troops
similar to drawing a "moth to a flame."

The Blue Platoon leader also briefed the 3rd Squadron Commander, Lt. 
Colonel John H.  Daly, Jr., and other squadron personnel on the
incident and lessons learned.  These lessons included the following: 

Combat experience is valuable because the commander sets the tone. 

Commanders should develop methods to communicate with dismounts, as
lack of communication can lead to mission failure. 

Safety is paramount, even in combat.  Controlling fire and
maneuvering elements are critical to mission accomplishment and
preserving the force. 


--------------------
\8 Reconnaissance by fire occurs when troops fire on a suspected
enemy position to cause the enemy to disclose its presence by
movement or return fire.  (FM 101-5-1)


      COORDINATION OF THE CORPS
      BOUNDARY
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 1:2.3

Prior to the ground war, the 3rd ACR was assigned to be the right
flank screen force for the XVIII Airborne Corps along the XVIII
Airborne Corps/VII Corps boundary.  The 3rd Squadron was the 3rd
ACR's right flank unit.  The 2nd Brigade, 1st AD, was the VII Corps'
left flank element.  (See fig.  1.2.)

The 1st AD and the 3rd ACR agreed on contact points\9 and exchanged
liaison officers\10 at both the regiment and division levels. 
Additionally, equipment and personnel were dedicated from the 3rd
Squadron and the 1st AD to maintain visual contact and radio
communications along the corps boundary and ensure coordination
between the 3rd ACR and 2nd Brigade, 1st AD. 


--------------------
\9 Designated, easily identifiable points on the terrain where two or
more units are required to meet.  (FM 101-5-1)

\10 Personnel dedicated to communicating between elements of the
military forces to ensure mutual understanding and unity of purpose
and action.  (FM 101-5-1)


      COORDINATION OF CORPS
      BOUNDARY BROKEN
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 1:2.4

On February 22, 1991, in advance of the ground war, the 2nd Squadron,
3rd ACR, began breaching the Saudi/Iraqi berm, penetrating
approximately 10 kilometers inside Iraq.  The remaining squadrons of
the 3rd ACR began moving into Iraq at approximately 1500 hours,
February 24, 1991.  The 3rd ACR advanced with the 2nd Squadron in the
lead and the 1st and 3rd in reserve.  The 1st Squadron eventually
went on line with the 2nd Squadron while the 3rd Squadron continued
as the reserve.  The 1st AD was positioned in Assembly Area Garcia
below the Saudi/Iraqi berm.  (See fig.  1.2.) Its lead elements began
breaching the berm at approximately 1500 hours, February 24, 1991. 

The 3rd ACR and the 2nd Brigade, 1st AD, attempted to maintain the
flank screen coordination during the move into Iraq.  However, the
flank screen coordination between the 3rd ACR and the 2nd Brigade was
discontinued by midmorning on February 25, 1991, after the 2nd
Brigade, 1st AD, bypassed the 3rd Squadron and advanced approximately
18 kilometers forward of the 3rd Squadron's position. 


      3RD ACR MISSION TO ATTACK
      AIRFIELD
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 1:2.5

Several times during the 3rd ACR's movement into Iraq, it came under
the operational control of the 24th Infantry Division, XVIII Airborne
Corps.  (See fig.  1.6.) At 1200 hours on February 26, 1991, the
XVIII Airborne Corps advised the 3rd ACR that it was then under the
operational control of the 24th Infantry Division and ordered it to
attack from the assembly area known as Objective Red Prime at grid
coordinates PU 0862.\11 (See fig.  1.9.) The 3rd ACR was to clear the
airfield at grid coordinates PU 460530 (see fig.  1.7, legend
1)--later referred to as both Objective Bill and Objective Tim\12
--and to seize Qalib Al Luhays Airfield located at grid coordinates
PU 740600 (see fig.  1.8), later referred to as Objective Joe. 

   Figure 1.7:  3rd ACR Assignment
   and Engineers' Location

   (See figure in printed
   edition.)

   Figure 1.8:  Al Busayyah
   Northeast Airfield and Qalib Al
   Luhays Airfield

   (See figure in printed
   edition.)

Source:  U.S.  Army

The 3rd ACR, at 1300 hours, February 26, 1991, informed its squadrons
that they were then under the 24th Infantry Division's operational
control.  The 3rd ACR further advised the squadrons that future
operations would be oriented to the east/southeast with their
northern operational boundary as the 67 east/west grid line and the
southern boundary as the 50 east/west grid line.  The squadrons were
directed to seize Objective Bill, the previously mentioned airfield,
at grid coordinates PU 440495 (see fig.  1.7, legend 3), with a "gas
plant" given as a second objective.  For unknown reasons, the 3rd ACR
used different grid coordinates for the airfield than the XVIII
Airborne Corps had given it.  Further, the PU 440495 grid coordinates
placed the objective below the 50 east/west grid boundary. 

The 1st and 2nd Squadrons, the lead squadrons of the 3rd ACR, began
arriving at the assembly area for the mission, Objective Red Prime,
between 1400 and 1600 hours, February 26, 1991.  The lead elements of
the 3rd Squadron began arriving at approximately 1730 hours and were
located in Tactical Assembly Area Claw at grid coordinates PU 0762. 
(See fig.  1.9.)


--------------------
\11 Grid coordinates identify a geographical point where north/south
and east/west lines intersect in respect to a map grid.  For example,
the grid coordinates PU 0862 indicate the geographical area (PU), the
north/south grid line (08), and the east/west grid line (62). 
Coordinates may be written with varying specificity, i.e., 0862,
080621, and 08006210 represent the same coordinate. 

\12 At 1430 hours, the XVIII Airborne Corps again directed the 24th
Infantry Division to seize the airfield, identified as Objective Tim,
but provided different grid coordinates--PU 470517.  This was the
actual location of the Al Busayyah Northeast Airfield.  (See fig. 
1.7, legend 2.)


   ATTACK PLAN ON AL BUSAYYAH
   NORTHEAST AIRFIELD ISSUED BY
   3RD ACR COMMANDER
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 1:3


      THE PLAN
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 1:3.1

The 3rd ACR Operations Officer, a lieutenant colonel, wrote the
Operation Plan based on direction from the 3rd ACR Commander, Colonel
Starr.  The 3rd ACR Operations Officer then issued an initial Warning
Order\13 to the 3rd ACR squadrons at 1820 hours, February 26, 1991,
by radio, indicating that it would be followed shortly by a
fragmentary order, or FRAGO.\14 The mission, as stated in the Warning
Order, was to attack and destroy an airfield at grid coordinates PU
4650, beginning at 2100 hours.  This was the third grid coordinate
issued for Objective Bill.  (See fig.  1.7, legend 4.) The Warning
Order indicated that, after an indirect\15 artillery bombardment of
the objective, the 1st and 2nd Squadrons would attack east, followed
by the 3rd Squadron.  After direct fire onto the field by the 1st
Squadron, the 3rd Squadron would move through the other two
squadrons, performing a passage of lines, to assault the airfield. 
(See fig.  1.9.) They were told that the north flank was open; no
units were to their right, or southern, flank; and reconnaissance
helicopters with nighttime vision capabilities would reconnoiter the
area 1 hour before the attack. 

   Figure 1.9:  3rd Squadron's
   Mission and Planned Passage of
   Lines

   (See figure in printed
   edition.)

At 1856 hours on February 26, 1991, the 3rd ACR Operations Officer
issued the FRAGO to the 3rd ACR squadrons by radio.  The FRAGO
stated, "enemy resistance was stiffening and to expect mines,
fighting positions and local counterattacks." The squadrons were
advised there was "no left flank unit" but there was a possibility
that the 1st AD was on the right, or southern, flank.  The attack
mission was to begin at 2100 hours, destroying Objective Bill at grid
coordinates PU 4650 and continuing the following day to Objective
Joe, a second airfield (Qalib Al Luhays Airfield) (see fig.  1.8) at
grid coordinates PU 7460.  Further, according to the FRAGO, the
reconnaissance helicopters, which were to target the airfield at PU
4650 beginning at 2030 hours, would report over the 3rd ACR Command
radio frequency any enemy locations they detected.  Colonel Starr
stated that he had the helicopters conduct the reconnaissance only
because "it was so damn dark" and because "if they [enemy] were out
there, they were more likely to be at the airfield than behind a sand
dune."


--------------------
\13 A Warning Order is a preliminary notice that an action or order
is to follow.  Usually issued as a brief oral or written message, it
is designed to give subordinates time to make necessary plans for the
operations.  (FM 101-5-1)

\14 A FRAGO is an abbreviated form of an operation order used to
inform units of changes in missions and the tactical situation.  (FM
101-5-1)

\15 Indirect fire is delivered on a target that the firing unit
cannot see.  Direct fire is delivered on a visible target.  (FM
101-5- 1)


      CONCERN OVER THE SOUTHERN
      BOUNDARY
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 1:3.2

Colonel Starr and the 3rd ACR Operations Officer were concerned about
the southern boundary from the time they received the Warning Order
from the 24th Infantry Division to attack the Al Busayyah Northeast
Airfield.  According to Colonel Starr, the southern-most part of the
airfield was too close to the 3rd ACR/1st AD boundary to allow the
3rd ACR to effectively maneuver and secure the airfield.  Therefore,
he had included a buffer zone in his initial operation plan.  The 3rd
ACR Operations Officer said concern also existed that an enemy force
could use the road running southeast to northwest through the
objective (see fig.  1.7, legend 7) to reinforce the area from the
south. 

According to a 1st AD Liaison Officer who was involved in the flank
screen coordination, at approximately 1300 hours on February 26,
1991, he was directed by the 3rd ACR Command Group to drive east of
the 3rd ACR location to determine the location of the 2nd Brigade,
1st AD.  The liaison officer crossed the XVIII Airborne Corps/VII
Corps Boundary and located the 2nd Brigade's main supply route, or
logistics line.  Although unable to determine the exact location of
the 2nd Brigade's lead units, he did locate a broken-down vehicle
along the 2nd Brigade's main supply route.  The liaison officer
returned at dusk to the 3rd ACR Tactical Command Post (TAC)--the
headquarters element located well forward on the battlefield--and
advised one of the TAC Battle Captains.  The liaison officer believed
the Captain passed the information regarding the 2nd Brigade's
location to the 3rd ACR Operations Officer, as he seemed concerned
about the flank units. 

Colonel Starr, concerned about a lack of communication and
coordination between the 1st AD and 3rd ACR, ordered his command and
control helicopter to transport a 1st AD Liaison Officer and a 3rd
ACR TOC Operations Officer to an area where communications with the
1st AD could be established.  At approximately 1900 hours, the 1st AD
Liaison Officer established radio communications with "Iron Oscar,"
the 1st AD Assistant Division Commander.  The liaison officer
requested that Iron Oscar allow a 5-kilometer buffer zone around the
airfield as the 3rd ACR wanted to fire indirect artillery into the
area.  Iron Oscar denied the buffer zone because the 1st AD had
supply lines and logistics elements in that area.  He also stated
that the 2nd Brigade had previously passed the 3rd ACR objective and
that no enemy was present. 


      ATTACK PLAN ISSUED TO 3RD
      SQUADRON
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 1:3.3

At approximately 1900 hours, Lt.  Colonel Daly, the 3rd Squadron
Commander, 3rd ACR, sent a Warning Order to all 3rd Squadron troop
commanders by radio to be prepared to receive an Operation Order at
2000 hours at the 3rd Squadron TOC.  The troop commanders were
further advised that the mission--to attack an airfield located at
grid coordinates PU 4650--would begin at 2100 hours and that the
1-50,000 kilometer "map sheets" (such as fig.  4.1) would be needed
for the mission. 

At 2015 hours, Lt.  Colonel Daly and others briefed the troop
commanders about the mission.  The squadron was to move in a wedge,
or diamond, formation with M Company, a tank company, at the point; K
and I troops as scouts to the left and right flanks, respectively;
and L Troop following behind.  (See fig.  1.9.) After the indirect
artillery and direct fire by the 1st Squadron, the 1st and 3rd
Squadrons would coordinate the passage of lines at the PU 380550 grid
coordinates.  They were briefed that buildings would be at the center
of the airfield, to expect stiff enemy resistance, and that "surface
laid mines" were possibly at the airfield. 

The 3rd Squadron issued grid coordinates to the troop commanders as
checkpoints to navigate to the airfield, including (A) PU 170550, (B)
PU 290550, (C) PU 450550, (D) PU 462522, (E) PU 467484, and (F) PU
470430.  (The final two coordinates would obviously take the 3rd
Squadron over the southern boundary, the 50 east/west grid line.) The
3rd Squadron would thus attack north-to- south, directly over the
airfield.  To assist their navigation, the 3rd Squadron troop
commanders had a Global Positioning System, a small lightweight
global positioning receiver that allowed users during Operation
Desert Storm to receive map coordinate signals plus or minus 16
meters.  The Psychological Operations (PsyOps)\16 team attached to
the 3rd Squadron was to begin broadcasting an Iraqi surrender appeal
at grid coordinates PU 450550.  After moving over the airfield, the
3rd Squadron would reform south, follow the 1st Squadron after it
bypassed the airfield, and continue to Objective Joe (Qalib Al Luhays
Airfield) at grid coordinates PU 7460 (see fig.  1.8). 


--------------------
\16 PsyOps is a planned psychological activity directed towards the
enemy to create attitudes and behavior favorable to the achievement
of military objectives.  (FM 101-5-1)


THE FRATRICIDE INCIDENT
============================================================ Chapter 2

This chapter provides our determination of the events during the
February 27, 1991, fratricide incident. 

   Figure 2.1:  Times of
   Significant Occurrences
   Involving the Fratricide

   (See figure in printed
   edition.)


   THE ENGINEERS
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 2:1

The engineers were lightly armed, having only M-16 assault rifles,
two M-203 grenade launchers, a .45-caliber pistol, and a .50-caliber
machine gun mounted on top the M548.  During the course of the
evening of February 26, 1991, all the engineers, except for
Lieutenant Wessels who monitored the radios inside the HMMWV, took
turns standing hourly guard duty.  When not on guard, they slept.  At
approximately 0230 hours on February 27, 1991, Specialist Driben was
on guard and had awakened Specialist Walker so that he could assume
the duty.  As Specialist Driben waited for Specialist Walker, they
heard vehicles approaching in the distance.  While Specialist Walker
retrieved a set of night vision goggles from the M548, Specialist
Driben ran to the front of the Small Emplacement Excavator. 
Specialist Walker joined Specialist Driben at the front of the
excavator and stood on top of the excavator's bucket.  Using the
goggles in turn, they identified an M1A1 Abrams tank (M1A1) and
Bradley Fighting Vehicles (Bradley) approaching from their northern
flank.  (See figs.  2.2 and 2.3.)

   Figure 2.2:  M1A1 Abrams Tank

   (See figure in printed
   edition.)

   Figure 2.3:  Bradley Fighting
   Vehicle

   (See figure in printed
   edition.)

Both Specialist Walker and Specialist Driben said they thought that
the vehicles were part of the recovery unit that was to rescue them. 
Specialist Walker attempted to identify himself to the approaching
vehicles by switching off and on an infrared light affixed to the
night vision goggles.  As the vehicles continued their advance,
Specialist Walker handed the goggles to Specialist Driben, who
confirmed they were American vehicles.  Specialist Driben then gave
the goggles back to Specialist Walker and started to alert Lieutenant
Wessels when they began receiving direct machine-gun fire from the
approaching vehicles.  Both Specialist Driben and Specialist Walker
ran immediately between the vehicles, awakening the other engineers
and announcing that they were taking friendly fire. 

As Sergeant Napier awoke, he was wounded in the right leg by the
incoming fire.  He leaped from the excavator, yelling that he had
been hit.  Specialist Walker then told Sergeant Napier to follow him
as he ran for cover.  However, Sergeant Napier fell, unable to move
further.  Specialist Driben, seeing Sergeant Napier fall, went to his
aid. 

Meanwhile, Corporal Fielder had positioned himself near some bushes
located behind the vehicles.  Specialist Driben saw Corporal Fielder
and directed Sergeant Napier to crawl towards Corporal Fielder, while
he ran to the HMMWV to retrieve his medical bag.  During this period,
Lieutenant Wessels was attempting to contact the 1st AD by radio
requesting help in obtaining a cease-fire.  Specialist Driben ran
back to Sergeant Napier and Corporal Fielder's position. 

When Specialist Walker realized that Sergeant Napier was not
following him, he returned to Sergeant Napier, Specialist Driben, and
Corporal Fielder's position and advised them of an indention in the
sand located approximately 100 yards behind the M548.  Corporal
Fielder directed Specialist Walker to carry Sergeant Napier to the
indention.  Specialist Walker removed his Load Bearing Equipment\17
and, utilizing a fireman's carry, carried Sergeant Napier to that
location.  Corporal Fielder then instructed Specialist Driben to
prepare a "hasty defensive position" beyond where Specialist Walker
had carried Sergeant Napier. 

Specialist Driben ran, followed closely by Corporal Fielder, towards
Specialist Walker and Sergeant Napier's location.  While Corporal
Fielder was running, he was apparently hit in the lower leg by
machine-gun fire, causing him to fall.  Corporal Fielder continued
moving, making it to the edge of the position held by Specialist
Walker and Sergeant Napier.  Corporal Fielder assumed a kneeling
position and began yelling to Specialist Driben to establish another
defensive position. 

Lieutenant Wessels then fired a green star cluster\18 into the sky in
an attempt to illuminate the area.  Within seconds, Corporal Fielder
was hit by three more rounds of machine-gun fire, causing him to fall
on top of both Specialist Walker and Sergeant Napier. 

Within seconds after firing the green star cluster, Lieutenant
Wessels could hear the firing vehicles begin to flank his position. 
Realizing the situation was continuing to deteriorate, Lieutenant
Wessels removed a red lens flashlight from his Load Bearing
Equipment.  Turning it on, he began walking in the direction of the
flanking vehicles with his arms raised.  At this time, he could hear
the command of "cease fire, cease fire" coming from the vehicles. 

As Lieutenant Wessels approached a Bradley, the Bradley's commander
identified him as an American.  In addition, a dismount from Lt. 
Colonel Daly's Bradley approached Lieutenant Wessels as to his
identity and unit.  Lieutenant Wessels advised him and then proceeded
with him to the area where the other engineers were located.  It was
then that Lieutenant Wessels learned that Corporal Fielder had been
killed. 


--------------------
\17 Load Bearing Equipment is the equipment, such as packs, pouches,
straps, and belt, that a soldier uses for carrying various items in
the field in addition to clothes and a weapon.  The items, determined
by the commanders, may include ammunition, radio, canteen, etc. 

\18 Unknown at the time to the lieutenant, a green star cluster was a
daytime, ground-to-ground antifratricide recognition signal.  The
nighttime, ground-to-ground antifratricide recognition signal was a
white star cluster. 


   INITIATION OF 3RD ACR ATTACK ON
   AL BUSAYYAH NORTHEAST
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 2:2

At 2100 hours on February 26, 1991, the day before the fratricide
incident, the 3rd ACR began moving east towards the Al Busayyah
Northeast Airfield in the Umm Hajul area with the 3rd Squadron
following the 1st and<mt:280> <mt:296>
2nd Squadrons.  At approximately 2200 hours, a 1st AD Liaison Officer
reported to the 3rd ACR Executive Officer, a lieutenant colonel, that
the 1st AD had denied the second request for the 5-kilometer buffer
zone.  The 3rd ACR Executive Officer, in turn, advised the 3rd ACR
Commander, Colonel Starr.  Based on the denial, Colonel Starr
directed the 3rd ACR Fire Support Officer to cancel all artillery
targets close to or below the 50 east/west boundary line. 

Although scheduled for approximately 2200 hours, at approximately
2400 hours, two reconnaissance helicopters began conducting
operations along the PU 55 east/west grid coordinate--one in the
northern sector, the second in the southern sector--to detect enemy
in the area, including the Al Busayyah Northeast Airfield.  One
helicopter crew reported to Colonel Starr at approximately 0115
hours, over the 3rd ACR Command radio frequency, that the airfield
was "probably cold," meaning no enemy (or friendly personnel) were
detected. 

As the 3rd ACR continued its advance east, the M Company Commander,
3rd Squadron, received a FRAGO from the Operations Officer, 3rd
Squadron, establishing a new 3rd Squadron limit of advance at grid

PU 465500.  At approximately 0034 hours on February 27, 1991, an M
Company platoon leader began attempting to coordinate the passage of
lines with C Troop, 1st Squadron, at grid coordinates PU 380550. 

While the passage of lines was being coordinated, the 3-18 Field
Artillery unit fired indirect artillery onto the airfield from 0100
to 0110 hours.  At 0118 hours, the 3rd ACR TOC sent a radio message
to all elements of the 3rd ACR, advising the 1st Squadron to "fire
eastward only if fired upon" and the 3rd Squadron not to "fire across
the 50 grid [50 east/west]" boundary. 

Subsequent to the 3rd ACR TOC message, the 3rd Squadron's Operations
Officer issued a FRAGO via the 3rd Squadron Command radio frequency
to the 3rd Squadron troop commanders:  The 3rd Squadron was to
continue following behind the 1st Squadron, pass through the 1st
Squadron after the 1st Squadron's direct fire on the airfield, and
proceed east then southeast.  The 3rd Squadron was to cross over grid
coordinates PU 462522 and proceed to grid coordinates PU 465500, the
limit of advance.  (See fig.  2.4, legends 3 and 5.) The FRAGO
further established three details:  the Rules of Engagement--"will
not fire unless fired upon"; the PU 50 east/west grid coordinate was
the boundary line; and the airfield was "probably cold."

   Figure 2.4:  Map Coordinates
   for Redirected 3rd ACR Attack
   on Al Busayyah Northeast
   Airfield, Objective Tim

   (See figure in printed
   edition.)

The 1st Squadron Commander experienced radio problems at
approximately 0139 hours; and because no enemy had been detected at
the airfield, Colonel Starr canceled the 1st Squadron's direct fire
order.  At approximately 0145 hours, the 3rd Squadron began moving
through the 1st Squadron to assault the airfield.  During the
movement toward the airfield, Lt.  Colonel Daly in his Bradley, the
Bradleys of the 3rd Squadron Operations Officer and the 3rd Squadron
Fire Support Officer, the PsyOps HMMWV, and a FOX\19 vehicle traveled
as the 3rd Squadron Command Group.  The Command Group oriented itself
approximately 100 meters to the rear of the M Company Commander.  The
M Company Commander positioned himself 100 meters behind M Company's
Red Platoon leader, who, in turn, was the point of the 3rd Squadron
wedge formation.  (See fig.  1.9.)

At approximately 0209 hours, the point platoon leader crossed what he
believed to be the airstrip of the Al Busayyah Northeast Airfield
(Objective Bill).  This information was relayed to Lt.  Colonel Daly,
who reported it over the 3rd ACR Command radio net.  Minutes later
Lt.  Colonel Daly reported over the 3rd ACR Command radio net that he
had not found the airfield but instead had crossed a road. 

As the wedge's point moved forward, I Troop's Red Platoon Leader--
the far right element of the 3rd Squadron wedge formation--reported
to the I Troop Commander, Captain Bodo Friesen, that he saw a fence
and spotted a tower in the distance.  (See fig.  2.5, legends 9 and
10.) Captain Friesen reported to the 3rd Squadron Commander, Lt. 
Colonel Daly, that I Troop had found the airfield and, according to
Captain Friesen, received Lt.  Colonel Daly's permission to break the
fence perimeter and secure the area.  The White Platoon, an I Troop
tank platoon, breached the fence and moved directly towards the
tower.  Other platoon elements of I Troop also moved inside the
fence. 

   Figure 2.5:  Troop Positions
   Before and During the
   Fratricide Incident

   (See figure in printed
   edition.)


--------------------
\19 A FOX is a wheeled armored vehicle equipped with a fully
integrated Nuclear, Biological, Chemical, and Reconnaissance System. 


   DETECTION OF THE SUSPECTED
   ENEMY (ENGINEERS) AND
   RECOGNITION OF U.S.  VEHICLES
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 2:3

Once inside the fence, the I Troop elements fanned out while moving
south, unaware that they were approaching the XVIII Airborne
Corps/VII Corps' 50 east/west boundary line.  (During reconnaissance,
one I Troop tank erroneously reported that Chevrolet vans were
fleeing the area; the supposed vehicles were actually two jackasses.)
As the I Troop elements continued their movement, Captain Friesen
detected two human "hot spots," which were believed to be enemy,
moving in and around what were believed to be buildings.  Captain
Friesen reported the detection to Lt.  Colonel Daly, through the I
Troop TOC Commander.  (See fig.  2.6.)

   Figure 2.6:  3rd Squadron's
   Line of Communication

   (See figure in printed
   edition.)

Lt.  Colonel Daly then advised Colonel Starr that enemy dismounts had
been detected but that they appeared to be confused and did not want
to give up.  Colonel Starr told Lt.  Colonel Daly to develop the
situation but to try to get the dismounts to surrender.  Lt.  Colonel
Daly advised Colonel Starr that he would lay down a field of fire in
an attempt to get them to surrender. 

According to the 3rd ACR Fire Support Noncommissioned Officer, Lt. 
Colonel Daly also advised Colonel Starr that he had seen "an M548
vehicle with full ammunition," but he identified it as an Iraqi
vehicle.  The 3rd ACR Air Liaison Officer also monitored this report. 
(Earlier briefings to the Regiment had indicated that the Iraqis had
vehicles in their inventory that looked similar to the M548.) Colonel
Starr then ordered Lt.  Colonel Daly to secure the vehicle so that it
could be destroyed later.  According to Colonel Starr's gunner,
Colonel Starr twice told Lt.  Colonel Daly to confirm that the target
was enemy before firing, and Lt.  Colonel Daly acknowledged this
order at least once. 

Meanwhile, Captain Friesen requested the Blue Platoon, I Troop, to
assist him in developing the situation, as he was approximately 600
meters from the hot spots.  Two Bradleys from Blue Platoon, Blue 35
and Blue 36, joined Captain Friesen.  They continued forward,
approximately 200-250 meters from the target. 


   THE FIRING ON AND FURTHER
   RECOGNITION OF U.S.  VEHICLES
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 2:4

Captain Friesen requested, and received, permission from Lt.  Colonel
Daly to fire warning shots.  At the time, Lt.  Colonel Daly was
located between 1.8 and 2.3 kilometers northeast of Captain Friesen's
location.  (See fig.  2.5, legend 2.) According to Captain Friesen
and his gunner, the machine gun was elevated and angled at 45 degrees
when his gunner fired a short burst left of the target area.  Within
seconds, Captain Friesen's driver and gunner reported return fire. 
Captain Friesen then ordered his gunner and Blue 35 and Blue 36 to
engage the target. 

After approximately 30 seconds of firing, Lt.  Colonel Daly, who
according to the I Troop Executive Officer and others was continually
requesting situation reports, ordered a cease-fire.  The I Troop
Commander, Captain Friesen, passed the cease-fire order to his
platoons.  Captain Friesen was also advised that Lt.  Colonel Daly
was directing the PsyOps team to be brought forward to broadcast an
Iraqi surrender appeal.  Captain Friesen ordered Blue 35 and Blue 36
to continue holding fire and not to fire unless fired upon, as one of
the dismounted troops appeared wounded and he thought the dismounted
troops might be attempting to surrender.  Meanwhile, the five
vehicles of the 3rd Squadron Command Group moved towards the
engagement area.  By the time the Command Group arrived on the scene,
one of the targets was burning. 

When Lt.  Colonel Daly reported contact to Colonel Starr, Colonel
Starr's gunner began scanning the area through his thermal sights
until he was able to see what I Troop was looking at.  The gunner
told us that he located a HMMWV and an ammunition carrier and that he
relayed this information to Colonel Starr, who was talking to Lt. 
Colonel Daly over the regimental command network. 

When the vehicle ignited, the 3rd ACR Fire Support Officer, who was
approximately 2 kilometers away from the targets, looked through his
binoculars at the burning vehicle.  Because it "certainly looked like
an M548 vehicle" and the 3rd ACR used M548s as ammunition carriers,
he called on the artillery command network to inquire if any of his
vehicles were lost.  He was later advised that all 3rd ACR artillery
M548s had been accounted for. 

Meanwhile, Lt.  Colonel Daly positioned his Bradley approximately 200
meters from the target area, forward and left of Captain Friesen's
position.  (See fig.  2.5, legend 5.) His gunner, who was scanning
the area through the Bradley's thermal sights, described the scene to
Lt.  Colonel Daly:  Two soldiers were running to the left, away from
the burning vehicle; one appeared to be "carrying something" that
"looks like an RPG [rocket-propelled grenade]" on his back; one
soldier went down to his knees while yelling at the other soldier;
then one continued running through some bushes; and one soldier
appeared to be moving around to the Bradley's front. 

Lt.  Colonel Daly told us of that scene, "There is a discussion of
them fleeing.  `Fleeing' is the wrong word.  They are moving around
in front of us." The I Troop Executive Officer, who was on the 3rd
Squadron Commander's network, recalled receiving reports from Lt. 
Colonel Daly to the effect, "Hey, they're getting away.  They're
running left.  You got to get on there and stop them.  They're
getting away."

Lt.  Colonel Daly's gunner requested permission to fire, saying,
"Sir, let me fire.  Let me fire.  I can fire at his feet.  I can
switch it to chain and fire in the ground in front of him." Lt. 
Colonel Daly initially denied his request, then gave permission to
fire. 

The gunner fired the machine gun at the ground troops, killing
Corporal Fielder.  Seconds before the gunner fired, a green star
cluster appeared in the sky overhead. 

Upon hearing and seeing the firing but not knowing who had fired,
Captain Friesen reinforced his previous cease-fire command.  The Blue
Platoon Leader told Captain Friesen that Lt.  Colonel Daly's Bradley
had fired.  This was confirmed by the I Troop TOC.  The PsyOps team
then began broadcasting the Iraqi surrender appeal, minutes after the
green star cluster had appeared. 


   3RD SQUADRON DISMOUNTS
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 2:5

At the time Lt.  Colonel Daly's Bradley fired, the first of two
individuals from his Bradley was on the ground, preparing to
reconnoiter the area.  After dismounting, the two individuals ran in
front of the I Troop vehicles that were continuing to hold fire. 
They were initially thought to be enemy troops and were identified as
Americans only after I Troop personnel detected their Kevlar helmets
through their Thermal Imaging System gun sights. 


   REPORTING OF FRATRICIDE
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 2:6

Under orders from Captain Friesen, Blue 35 and Blue 36 began to flank
the engaged area from the west.  During this process, Blue 36
encountered the engineers' Executive Officer, 1st Lieutenant Wessels,
and confirmed that he was an American.  At that same time, Lieutenant
Wessels identified himself to a dismount from Lt.  Colonel Daly's
Bradley and led him to the engagement area.  During this sequence of
events, the I Troop Green Platoon Leader reported that, although he
was unable to identify the dismounted troops on the ground, it
appeared as though enemy prisoners of war had been taken. 

In the meantime, a second dismount from Lt.  Colonel Daly's Bradley
approached Blue 35, as he had become lost trying to follow the first
dismount.  Because ordnance began to explode aboard the engineer
vehicles, Blue 35 started to maneuver away; and the second dismount
got inside Blue 35's Bradley.  Before Blue 35 moved, the first
dismount ran to Blue 35 and advised that American troops had been
engaged. 

Troops from Blue 35 and Blue 36 then dismounted and proceeded to the
engagement area.  They administered immediate medical attention to
Sergeant Napier.  However, ordnance continued to explode; and at one
point, an explosion knocked many of the troops to the ground. 
Fearful that another explosion was imminent, both victims were taken
from the scene using a HMMWV.  All other troops moved away from the
exploding vehicles. 

Both Captain Friesen and Lt.  Colonel Daly were subsequently made
aware that friendly soldiers had been engaged.  Lt.  Colonel Daly
then reported to Colonel Starr that a fratricide had occurred. 
Colonel Starr relayed the information to the 3rd ACR TOC; and a
medivac helicopter was dispatched to the incident site at
approximately 0435 hours to evacuate both victims. 


ARMY INVESTIGATIONS OF THE
FRATRICIDE INCIDENT AND SUBSEQUENT
REVIEW
============================================================ Chapter 3

The Army Regulation (AR) 15-6 investigation\20 to ascertain facts
concerning the incident, conducted by the 3rd ACR Judge Advocate\21
absolved all personnel of any criminal or administrative
responsibility.  A supplemental AR 15-6 investigation, conducted by a
brigadier general with the XVIII Airborne Corps, supported these
findings and recommendations.  However, a Forces Command Staff Judge
Advocate reviewed the supplemental investigation and reversed the
previous findings and recommendations.  He instead found three 3rd
ACR commanders to be negligent before and during the fratricide and
recommended that they receive reprimands.  He also found the
engineers' Executive Officer to be negligent and recommended that the
Executive Officer be issued an admonition.  After consideration by
the Commander in Chief, Forces Command, two of the reprimands were
not made part of the individuals' official military personnel files;
and the other reprimand was withdrawn.  The admonition was allowed to
stand. 


--------------------
\20 AR 15-6, in general, establishes procedures for both informal
investigations, involving a single investigating officer, and formal
investigations, or "boards of officers," which may involve more than
one investigating officer.  The primary function of any such
investigation is to "ascertain facts and report them to the
appointing authority.  It is the duty of the investigating officer or
board to ascertain and consider the evidence on all sides of each
issue, thoroughly and impartially, and to make findings and
recommendations that are warranted by the facts.  .  .  ." (AR 15-6
Update, sec.  1-4 and 1-5, June 11, 1988)

\21 The 3rd ACR Judge Advocate has since left the military.  He
declined our request for an interview. 


   THE ARMY INVESTIGATION
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 3:1

Within hours of the fratricide incident, the 3rd ACR Commander,
Colonel Starr, ordered the 3rd ACR Executive Officer, a lieutenant
colonel, to begin an AR 15-6 investigation, as he wanted to "capture
the information now, as it would be revisited later." Colonel Starr
also ordered the 3rd ACR Executive Officer to contact the 24th
Infantry Division, XVIII Airborne Corps, and the VII Corps to advise
them of the fratricide, which he did.  The 3rd ACR Executive Officer
subsequently requested the 3rd ACR Judge Advocate, a captain, to
accompany him to the accident site.  Upon their arrival at the site,
the 3rd ACR Executive Officer delegated the investigation to the 3rd
ACR Judge Advocate, based on the Judge Advocate's assertion that the
Executive Officer had been involved in the Operation Plan and,
therefore, should not conduct the investigation. 

The AR 15-6 investigation began on February 27, 1991, and was
concluded on March 3, 1991.  The original investigative materials
consisted of a schematic drawing that indicated the grid coordinates
for the engineers' vehicles and the 3rd Squadron Fire Support
Officer, one other unidentified grid coordinate, and two photographs
of the burned engineer vehicles.  The 3rd ACR Judge Advocate, as the
Investigating Officer, took 11 statements on the morning of February
27, 1991, from those who were directly involved in the incident,
including 3 of the engineers.  Over the next 4 days, 3rd ACR
personnel gave eight additional statements and six follow-up
statements.  At the conclusion of the AR 15-6 investigation, the 3rd
ACR Judge Advocate provided his report of findings and
recommendations to Colonel Starr, who delivered the report to the
XVIII Airborne Corps and the 1st AD Commander. 

The AR 15-6 investigative findings included the following: 

"The airfield overlapped the 50 grid line, thus the proper clearing
of the objective required a boundary violation. 

"Information regarding possible 1st AD 2nd Brigade trains [combat
service support units] in the AO [Area of Operation] was not
disseminated to the troops clearing the airfield. 

"Information regarding 1AD [1st AD] antifratricide thermal devices
was passed to the 3/3 ACR [3rd Squadron, 3rd ACR]. 

"The 3rd ACR and the 1AD LNO [1st AD Liaison Officers] acted properly
in requesting a 5-km [kilometer] safety zone; however, when the
request was denied, a buffer to cover the airfield should have been
requested. 

"Spot reports by I Troop lead [sic] to confusion, especially in the
area of returned fire. 

"Commanders on the scene complied with the Law of War and ROE [Rules
of Engagement] and in fact made numerous attempts to encourage
surrender that were not required by the Law of War or ROE [Rules of
Engagement]. 

"Information regarding our planned attack was not passed to the
engineer personnel in the objective. 

"After hours of review of what were split-second decisions, based
upon the circumstances present, all personnel acted reasonably and
responsibly."

In view of his findings, the 3rd ACR Judge Advocate, as the
Investigating Officer, recommended the following: 

"All personnel involved be absolved of any criminal or administrative
responsibility. 

"Objectives in the future must be entirely within the unit
boundaries. 

"Friendly forces in the area be informed of operations in the area. 

"Coordination regarding anti-fratricide signals be made prior to
operations that will contact sector boundaries, to include
frequencies and call signs. 

"Information regarding potential friendly forces in the area be
passed to the actual attacking force. 

"CPL [Corporal] Fielder be recommended for a Bronze Star with `V'
Device for the valor he displayed in exposing himself to fire in
order to aid his wounded fellow soldier."


   INVESTIGATION REOPENED TO
   ANSWER ADDITIONAL QUESTIONS
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 3:2

Because the VII Corps Commander raised concerns that the AR 15-6
investigation did not answer tactical questions or address questions
of responsibility, the investigation was reopened on May 2, 1991. 
The 3rd ACR Commander, Colonel Starr, appointed the 3rd ACR Judge
Advocate as AR 15-6 Investigating Officer to conduct the reopened
investigation to answer the questions forwarded by the VII Corps
Commander.  The reopened investigation was completed on May 4, 1991. 

In a second report of investigation, the 3rd ACR Judge Advocate
concluded the following: 

"All personnel involved acted responsibly. 

"Additional exchange of information between the 1st AD and the 3d
[3rd] ACR may have proved useful. 

"Better dissemination of known information by both 3d [3rd] ACR and
1st AD to the Commanders and troops in the actual area concerned
would have been beneficial."


   SUPPLEMENTAL AR 15-6
   INVESTIGATION BY XVIII AIRBORNE
   CORPS
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 3:3

The 54th Engineer Battalion Commander and the VII Corps Staff Judge
Advocate undertook subsequent reviews of the AR 15-6 investigation. 
Based on their reviews, they requested that the XVIII Airborne Corps
address additional questions concerning the fratricide incident.  On
October 18, 1991, the XVIII Airborne Corps directed that an informal
supplemental AR 15-6 investigation be conducted.  It appointed a
brigadier general as the Investigating Officer. 

Prior to the supplemental investigation's close, the Department of
the Army's Vice Chief of Staff and Inspector General were briefed on
the investigation's status by the second Investigating Officer. 
Additionally, the Commander in Chief, Forces Command, requested the
Army's Office of Inspector General (OIG) to informally review the
investigation.  Following the OIG review, the Army's Chief of Staff
was briefed.  Because of questions raised by the OIG during its
review and inquiries from Corporal Fielder's family, the Office of
the Army Chief of Staff forwarded additional questions to the second
Investigating Officer.  His supplemental investigation, which
generally supported the original investigation, was officially closed
on March 17, 1992.  (See ch.  4 for the second Investigating
Officer's investigative findings and recommendations.)


   FORCES COMMAND STAFF JUDGE
   ADVOCATE'S REVIEW
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 3:4

Upon completing the supplemental investigation, the second
Investigating Officer's results were forwarded to the Army's
Headquarters Forces Command, which requested its Staff Judge Advocate
to review them.  The Forces Command Staff Judge Advocate, in a report
dated April 3, 1992, recommended reversing the second Investigating
Officer's findings and recommendations and found the 3rd ACR
Commander, Colonel Starr; the 3rd Squadron Commander, Lt.  Colonel
Daly; and the I Troop Commander, Captain Friesen, negligent in their
actions before and during the fratricide incident.  Further, he
recommended that they be issued reprimands.  He also recommended that
the engineers' Executive Officer, 1st Lieutenant Wessels, be
admonished for his negligence. 

Specifically, the Staff Judge Advocate found that Colonel Starr had
"failed to exercise reasonable and prudent caution" when authorizing
3rd Squadron elements to move south without first determining their
exact location and was "negligent" in placing his forces at risk by
allowing them to cross the corps boundary and in failing to ensure
that the individuals in the other zone were in fact enemy before
action was taken against them.  He stated that Lt.  Colonel Daly
"knew or should have known" that the 50 east/west grid line was the
boundary, put his soldiers at "considerable risk" by allowing them to
cross the corps boundary in front of advancing friendly troops, and
was "negligent" in failing to determine his and his subordinates'
locations before allowing them to move south.  Further, Lt.  Colonel
Daly's assumption that individuals sighted outside his axis of
advance were the enemy amounted to "negligence and dereliction of
duty." With regard to Captain Friesen, the Staff Judge Advocate found
that his failure to ensure that he knew the southern boundary of his
line of advance was "negligence," resulting in Sergeant Napier's
injury and endangering the other engineers. 

The Staff Judge Advocate also found that the engineer's Executive
Officer, 1st Lieutenant Wessels, was "negligent" in only placing men
on guard and failing to establish defensive perimeters and a plan of
defense.  Further, Lieutenant Wessels should have taken more steps to
protect his men by identifying himself or indicating that he was
surrendering.  The Staff Judge Advocate recommended that an
admonition be issued to Lieutenant Wessels. 

On the basis of his recommendations, Colonel Starr, Lt.  Colonel
Daly, and Captain Friesen were reprimanded; and Lieutenant Wessels
received an admonition.  After considering replies made by those
reprimanded, the Commander in Chief, Forces Command, the final
authority on the disposition of the AR 15-6 investigation, decided to
withdraw the reprimand to Captain Friesen.  He also decided to file
the reprimand for Lt.  Colonel Daly in his military personnel records
jacket--which is maintained at the local installation level and is
not part of the official personnel records reviewed for promotion
purposes--for 1 year.  Colonel Starr's reprimand was not placed in
his personnel file.  Lieutenant Wessels did not respond


GAO'S INVESTIGATION AND ANALYSIS
OF SUPPLEMENTAL AR 15-6
INVESTIGATIVE FINDINGS
============================================================ Chapter 4

Our investigation and analysis of the supplemental AR 15-6
investigation indicate that its findings--which upheld the initial AR
15-6 investigation--were incomplete, inaccurate, and not supported by
available evidence.  However, those findings were sufficient for the
reviewing Forces Command Staff Judge Advocate to reach conclusions
and make recommendations that were the opposite of those of the two
Investigating Officers. 

We agree in the main with the Forces Command Staff Judge Advocate's
findings, which he based on information derived from the AR 15-6
investigations.  Further, we found no evidence that documents were
intentionally destroyed or that witnesses were intimidated or
retaliated against.  However, the Forces Command Staff Judge Advocate
stated his supposition to us that the Investigating Officer had a
predetermined conclusion for the AR 15-6 investigation and that, as a
result, the Investigating Officer's "objectivity was skewed" in favor
of those in command during the incident.  Our investigation supports
that statement.  In addition, a number of 3rd ACR personnel received
awards for valor during the incident.  Those awards were based on
misleading statements and misrepresentations by officers involved in
the incident, including the 3rd ACR and 3rd Squadron Commanders. 

Although we analyzed both the initial and supplemental
investigations, our analysis emphasizes the supplemental
investigation, quoting the headings and findings from its
investigative report, because it answered questions and provided


   "GRAPHICS AND JOURNALS OF THE
   OPERATION"
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:1


      INVESTIGATING OFFICER'S
      FINDINGS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:1.1

The Investigating Officer found "no evidence of foul play or
misfeasance in the handling of records," as all records for the 3rd
Squadron TAC and TOC had been lost when "the original vehicles used
as the .  .  .  TOC and/or the .  .  .  TAC broke down and records
were left with them." "However, the personal notes of the [3rd
Squadron] Commander and Staff principals involved provide adequate
evidence to reach the findings contained in the [initial


      GAO'S FINDINGS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:1.2

We found no evidence that foul play or misfeasance occurred in the
handling of records.  However, our investigation indicates that the
3rd ACR Judge Advocate did not secure all relevant logs and records
pertaining to the mission as soon as possible after the incident
occurred.  Further, we found no evidence that the 3rd Squadron
Commander, Lt.  Colonel Daly, or his staff provided any personal
notes to the original Investigating Officer, the 3rd ACR Judge
Advocate. 

The second Investigating Officer obtained documents and records from
only three witnesses.  Had both Investigating Officers attempted to
probe further, they would have obtained a wealth of documents,
information, and insight into the incident.  For example, during our
investigation, we obtained an audio tape recording of the fratricide
incident as it occurred (see app.  I.) and evidence of two additional
audio tapes.  Documents outside the


   "OBJECTIVE BILL"
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:2


      INVESTIGATING OFFICER'S
      FINDINGS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:2.1

"Objective Bill was identified as a possible XVIII Airborne Corps
objective prior to the start of the ground war.  It was one of
several Iraqi airfields in the area to be used by the 101st Air
Assault Division for their future operations.  Since this objective
was approximately 130 km [kilometers] deep into Iraq, it was not
determined prior to the start of the ground war which unit would
eventually be assigned to take the Objective.  That decision would be
made later in the war based on the tactical situation at the time. 
The 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment (3d ACR) was assigned Objective Bill
by the XVIII Airborne Corps on the afternoon of 16 [26] February 1991
at about 1600 hours--only five hours before crossing the line of
departure.  The 3d ACR commander decided to attack the objective from
the north in order to attack perpendicular to the long axis of the
airfield.  To execute this plan, it was essential to obtain approval
from the 1st AD for a .  .  .  5 km buffer zone into the 1st AD zone. 
The purpose of the boundary change or buffer zone was to ensure that
no friendly troops were in the vicinity of the objective." When the
request was denied, the revised plan, for a west-to-east attack, was


      GAO'S FINDINGS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:2.2

We were unable to confirm that Objective Bill was an identified XVIII
Airborne Corps objective prior to the ground war's beginning.  The
only reference to this area that we were able to locate was made in a
February 26, 1991, "Critical Facilities Study," which referred to an
"unidentified heliport with a control tower and support buildings."

We determined the 3rd ACR had learned as early as 0400 hours on
February 26, 1991, that it would be placed under the operational
control of the 24th Infantry Division.  At 1200 hours, February 26,
1991, the XVIII Airborne Corps placed the 3rd ACR under the 24th
Infantry Division and ordered the 3rd ACR to first clear the airfield
at grid coordinates PU 460530 (Objective Bill) (see fig.  1.7, legend
1) and then seize the Qalib Al Luhays Airfield at map grid
coordinates PU 740600 (see fig.  1.8).  This was 9 hours, rather than
5 hours, before crossing the line of departure.  At 1430 hours, the
XVIII Airborne Corps directed the 24th Infantry Division to seize
Objective Tim (Al Busayyah Northeast Airfield) at grid coordinates PU
470517 (see fig.  1.7, legend 2).  However, three different sets of
coordinates were given for Objective Bill, possibly contributing to
confusion during the mission. 

The 3rd ACR Commander, Colonel Starr, acknowledged that he was
initially surprised that the buffer zone was denied; he then "assumed
someone must be just over the [boundary] line." He changed the
attack's orientation to west-to-east because to "attack


   "IDENTIFICATION OF UNITS"
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:3


      INVESTIGATING OFFICER'S
      FINDINGS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:3.1

The engineer guards (54th Engineer personnel), using night-vision
devices, "immediately recognized the oncoming .  .  .  3d ACR tanks
as friendly" vehicles since "the M1[A1] tank is easily identifiable
due to its unique profile." The 3rd ACR forces did not identify the
engineer vehicles because

"a.The .  .  .  vehicles were in a slight depression.  .  .  . 

"b.The poor weather conditions caused the 3d ACR forces to conduct
the engagement primarily through thermal sites [sic].  The drivers,
gunners, and commanders tried other night vision devices as well as
the naked eye but found the thermal sites [sic] to be the most
effective.  .  .  . 

"c.The Small Emplacement Excavator (SEE) does not have a distinctive
profile nor is it seen on the battlefield in great numbers.  .  .  ."

d.The 1.5-ton trailer attached to the excavator looked "like a small
building" through the thermal sights.  Based on the other vehicles'
locations, the "trailer was the only vehicle that could be seen
clearly.  The other vehicles could not be clearly seen until the 3d
ACR vehicle[s] maneuvered to the flanks of the engineer unit after
the fatal shots had been fired. 

"e.The HMMWV, which is identifiable, was masked behind the SEE
trailer. 

"f.The M548 ammunition carrier was behind the SEE and trailer and is
not as easily identifiable as the M1A1 tank. 

"g.The engineer unit did not possess blue filtered strobe lights and
white star clusters which were the USCENTCOM [U.S.  Central
Command]-approved anti-fratricide devices.  .  .  . 

"h.The engineer personnel did not wear their Kevlar helmets or Load
Bearing Equipment (LBE) which would have been distinctive through the
thermal sites [sic] of the 3d ACR vehicles."

i.The 3rd ACR did not send mounted or dismounted reconnaissance
patrols to identify the engineer unit because it was believed


      GAO'S FINDINGS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:3.2

To follow the investigator's line of reasoning,

a.The evidence indicates that the engineer vehicles were located in a
slight depression. 

b.Hours before the incident, it had rained.  Reports differ as to the
visibility at the time of the incident, ranging from clear with stars
and moon shining to overcast.  However, weather conditions were not a
factor in the incident and were not the reason 3rd ACR personnel used
their Thermal Imaging Systems.  We were told that 3rd ACR personnel
usually used these systems at night. 

c.The Small Emplacement Excavator has a very distinctive profile (see
fig.  1.5); however, we agree that it may not have been a common
sight on the battlefield. 

d-f.Prior to the fatal shots being fired, the M548 Ammunition Carrier
(see fig.  1.3) was visible to crew members aboard Lt.  Colonel
Daly's Bradley.  Additionally, the gunner for Colonel Starr had
detected the M548 and the HMMWV from approximately 2 kilometers and
advised the Colonel.  Later, the 3rd ACR Fire Support Officer was
also able to detect the burning M548 with binoculars from a distance
of about 2 kilometers. 

g.The engineers were not in complete compliance with the
Anti-Fratricide Standard Operating Procedures in effect when the
incident occurred.  They were unaware of the nighttime antifratricide
recognition devices. 

h.When the incident occurred, three of the five engineers were
wearing their Load Bearing Equipment.  Specialist Walker removed his
Load Bearing Equipment to carry Sergeant Napier.  Specialist Driben
had his equipment and Kevlar helmet on during the entire incident. 
Medical personnel had to remove Corporal Fielder's equipment after
the incident.  Lieutenant Wessels had his Kevlar helmet on during the
incident. 


   "CEASE FIRE"
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:4


      INVESTIGATING OFFICER'S
      FINDINGS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:4.1

"There was no binding cease-fire in effect that applied to the [3rd]
Squadron Commander, LTC [Lt.  Colonel] Daly, when the fatal shots
were fired.  The I Troop Commander, CPT [Captain] Friesen, had
previously ordered his unit to stop firing because he determined that
a sufficient volume of fire had been delivered and he was no longer
receiving return fire from the `enemy' unit.  This so called
cease-fire or check-fire was, in essence, CPT Friesen ordering the
troops under his command to stop firing and not fire again without
his permission.  It was simply a fire control measure that applied
only to I Troop and was not a cease fire in the legal sense that
applied to any other unit.  In fact, the I Troop cease- fire was
never violated because no I Troop unit fired again in this encounter. 
LTC Daly, the next higher commander, monitored the cease-fire on the
radio and took it as a fire control measure that CPT Friesen had
imposed on I Troop.  LTC Daly was clearly authorized to order the
resumption of firing independently of any I Troop fire control
measures.  His order to fire at what he thought were maneuvering
and/or escaping enemy troops was justified and


      GAO'S FINDINGS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:4.2

We determined that both AR 15-6 investigations did not address all
relevant issues, specifically (1) the issue surrounding the firing of
the warning shots by Captain Friesen, (2) return fire from the target
area, and (3) Lt.  Colonel Daly's direct involvement in the incident
and the elapsed time from the warning shots until the fatal shots. 
Based on our investigation and review of an audio tape of the
incident, transcribed in appendix I, we are providing a detailed
analysis of the events. 

As Captain Friesen moved inside the fence, he detected dismounted
soldiers (the engineers), who he presumed were "enemy soldiers,"
moving in and out of "buildings." He requested elements of I Troop's
Blue Platoon to assist him.  Those elements became confused and had
difficulty locating his position.  By this point, Captain Friesen had
cut off his auxiliary speaker that monitored the 3rd Squadron's
frequency, thus severing his ability to listen to the 3rd Squadron
Commander's radio communications.  Moving closer to the detected
soldiers, he requested and received permission from Lt.  Colonel Daly
to fire warning shots, although he had not confirmed that his target
was the enemy.  After receiving permission, according to Captain
Friesen and his crew, they shot at an elevated 45-degree angle away
from the engineers. 

However, Captain Friesen's and his crew's statements about the angle
of the warning shots were not consistent with the engineer guards'
description of the firing sequence.  The engineer guards stated the
first firing they saw was directly at them; one of the engineers
described the firing as the "tracer rounds walked right past [me]."

Further, according to Captain Friesen and his crew, once the "warning
shots" were fired they saw what they believed to be return fire. 
This was contradicted by (1) the engineers, as they stated they did
not fire any weapons during the incident, and (2) other I Troop
personnel, who were told by Captain Friesen that they were taking
fire, as they did not see return fire.  Based on Captain Friesen and
his crew's perception of return fire, the warning shots fired by
Captain Friesen were perhaps (1) mistakenly fired directly at the
engineers, striking their vehicles and creating sparks or arcs that
appeared like muzzle fire or bullet tracers to the I Troop Commander
and his crew, or (2) the warning shots arcing from Captain Friesen's
vehicle, which had the appearance of return fire. 

Prior to the warning shots being fired, the 3rd Squadron Commander,
Lt.  Colonel Daly, was approximately 2.5 kilometers northeast of the
engineers' location, following approximately 100 meters to the rear
of the M Company Commander.  (See fig.  2.5, legends 1 and 2.)
Colonel Starr, the 3rd ACR Commander, directed Lt.  Colonel Daly to
move to the area.  As Lt.  Colonel Daly and the 3rd Squadron Command
Group moved south towards the area, Captain Friesen fired the warning
shots, just as Lt.  Colonel Daly was moving through the fenced area,
approximately 1.8 kilometers from Captain Friesen's position.  This
caused the engineers on guard to alert the other engineers that they
were receiving friendly fire and seek immediate cover.  Based on what
Captain Friesen thought was return fire, he ordered Bradley Fighting
Vehicles Blue 35 and Blue 36, along with his own gunner to engage. 
During this volley of fire the Small Emplacement Excavator was hit,
wounding Sergeant Napier. 

Lt.  Colonel Daly--seeing the firing by Captain Friesen, Blue 35, and
Blue 36--interpreted all the firing to be part of the warning-shot
sequence and believed it was excessive.  Lt.  Colonel Daly ordered
Captain Friesen to cease fire; Captain Friesen, in turn, ordered Blue
35 and Blue 36 to cease fire. 

As Lt.  Colonel Daly continued to move towards the area, he was told
that the I Troop elements had received fire.  He directed that I
Troop continue observing the "enemy" while the PsyOps team was
brought forward.  As the situation developed, Captain Friesen
determined that at least one soldier appeared to have been wounded
and one appeared to be surrendering.  He reaffirmed to his
subordinate units to "continue holding fire" as he believed the enemy
had been contained.  All of this information was relayed to the I
Troop TOC over the I Troop Command radio frequency.  Further,
according to the I Troop Executive Officer, Lt.  Colonel Daly was
given constant situation reports during this period over the 3rd
Squadron Command radio frequency. 

As Lt.  Colonel Daly moved closer, his Bradley driver commented that
he could "run him [a soldier] over." Once Lt.  Colonel Daly had
arrived on the scene and moved forward of the I Troop elements there,
transmissions came across the Squadron Command radio frequency
network from both Lt.  Colonel Daly's and the 3rd Squadron Operations
Officer's vehicles that "[t]hey're getting away; they're running
left." Lt.  Colonel Daly's gunner stated that one of the soldiers
looked as though he might have a weapon or rocket- propelled grenade
on his back.  The gunner insisted on firing and requested that Lt. 
Colonel Daly "allow him to fire at his feet," saying "I can switch it
to chain and fire in front of him." Lt.  Colonel Daly's initial
response to firing was "no." However, he then gave permission.  His
gunner fired the machine gun, fatally wounding Corporal Fielder. 

Approximately 3 minutes and 45 seconds before Lt.  Colonel Daly's
gunner fired the fatal shots, Captain Friesen noted Bradley vehicles
(which we now know included Lt.  Colonel Daly's) to his left. 
Approximately 22 seconds before the fatal shots, Captain Friesen was
informed that the 3rd Squadron Command Group was near him.  After the
shots were fired, Captain Friesen immediately inquired of his own
troop.  He was then directed (by Lt.  Colonel Daly) to switch radio
frequencies and speak directly with Lt.  Colonel Daly.  (See fig. 
2.6.)

The time sequence from the initial warning shots to the fatal shots
was approximately 7 minutes 15 seconds.  Captain Friesen, the Blue
Platoon Leader, and the I Troop Executive Officer all thought the
situation was under control before the Lt.  Colonel arrived on the
scene and fired.  Other soldiers on the scene saw Lt.  Colonel Daly's
actions as unwarranted and believed the Lt.  Colonel wanted,


   XVIII AIRBORNE CORPS/VII CORPS
   "BOUNDARY"
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:5


      INVESTIGATING OFFICER'S
      FINDINGS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:5.1

"The I Troop 3/3 Armored Cavalry Regiment (ACR) Command Group was on
the XVIII Airborne Corps side of the XVIII-VII Corps boundary during
the incident despite not knowing the location of that boundary. 
Therefore, the warning shots from the I Troop Commander's vehicle
were fired across the boundary into the VII Corps zone.  Current Army
doctrine (FM 100-5-1) [FM 101-5-1] allows firing direct fire across a
boundary at an enemy position.  .  .  .  Two I Troop Bradleys, I-35
and I-36, had unknowingly maneuvered to the VII Corps side of the
boundary when they later fired the shots that wounded SPC
[Specialist] Napier.  When the 3/3 ACR squadron commander, LTC [Lt. 
Colonel] Daly, arrived on the scene he was faced with a situation
where the suspected enemy unit and I Troop had exchanged fire. 
Therefore, he believed that the engineer unit was a confirmed Iraqi
unit. 

"Additionally, it was reasonable to believe the `enemy' force might
be deploying anti-tank weapons, other weapon systems and/or calling
for artillery fire.  LTC Daly, at this point, did not conduct a
position check to determine his location relative to the boundary
because he felt he was in a combat engagement situation.  The primary
rule of engagement--protection of the force--allowed LTC Daly to
maneuver to what he believed was the optimum combat location which
was approximately 900 meters into the VII Corps zone.  The fatal
shots were fired from that location.  Based upon FM 100-5-1 [FM
101-5-1] and the Rules of Engagement, the 3/3 ACR did not violate
Army doctrine by firing into or crossing into the


      GAO'S FINDINGS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:5.2

Colonel Starr and Lt.  Colonel Daly knew the 50 east/west grid line
was the corps boundary.  The I Troop Commander, Captain Friesen, was
unaware of the corps boundary's significance, since he was unaware of
the change in the attack's orientation.  According to the original
operation plan, the 3rd Squadron was to proceed 7 kilometers south of
the 50 east/west grid line.  Captain Friesen and elements of I Troop
crossed the 50 east/west boundary before any shots were fired.  The
warning shots and subsequent firing by Captain Friesen occurred
approximately 1 kilometer inside VII Corps territory. 

When I Troop first reported contact, Colonel Starr was approximately
800 meters north of the boundary.  Lt.  Colonel Daly was
approximately 1.3 kilometers north of the boundary.  Neither
Commander determined his own location, or those of their subordinate
units, even though they knew that they were operating near the corps
boundary and friendly troops might be across the boundary.  Further,
after contact was first reported and the elements of I Troop had
engaged the target, Lt.  Colonel Daly moved approximately 2.3
kilometers, crossing the corps boundary and became directly involved
in the incident. 

As Lt.  Colonel Daly and the 3rd Squadron Command Group moved toward
the area, they passed the 3rd ACR Command Group, situated adjacent to
the fence.  (See fig.  2.5.) The 3rd ACR Fire Support Coordinator
announced over the 3rd ACR Command radio network that "you've got 800
meters" to the 50 east-west boundary.  The Fire Support Coordinator
received a confirmation of "Roger" from someone. 

No firing was conducted across the corps boundary; all firing
occurred on the VII Corps side of the boundary.  However, the
boundary stipulated in the FRAGO had been breached before Captain


   "ESSENTIAL INFORMATION .  .  ."
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:6


      "FROM THE REGIMENT TO THE
      SQUADRONS"--INVESTIGATING
      OFFICER'S FINDINGS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:6.1

"Intelligence before 24 February 1991 (Ground Day) indicated that
Iraqi ground forces had .  .  .  anti-armor weapons which could
defeat, at the very least, Bradley Fighting Vehicles." Intelligence
also "indicated that the first belt of Republican Guards" was in the
Objective Bill area, with "a possible Battalion-sized element dug in
on the airfield at Objective Bill and other Iraqi units in the
vicinity."

"The .  .  .  3d ACR, upon receiving the mission to seize Objective
Bill, issued a warning order at approximately .  .  .  1800" on
February 26, 1991.  The Regimental Operation Officer gave the Warning
Order "face to face with at least two of the three Squadron
Commanders .  .  .  with notice that a FRAGO (Fragmentary Order)
would follow shortly.  The gist of the Warning Order was to attack an
airfield [at] grid PU 447520 and destroy the enemy located at or near
that airfield," leaving enemy prisoners of war minimally guarded in
large groups after reporting their location.  "The unit was to
advance no farther than the 58 North/South grid.  At the time, it was
believed that no one was on the 3rd ACR's right (south) flank." The
basic plan was for the 3rd Squadron to seize the airfield with the
2nd Squadron holding the enemy in the north and the 1st Squadron
providing a base of fire as support. 

"The 3d ACR was to cross the Line of Departure [the 20 north/south
grid line] at 2100 hours.  After the warning order, the FRAGO
followed.  It was issued over the radio at 1856 from the Regimental
Tactical Operations Center (TOC) by the Regimental Operations
Officer.  The enemy situation was briefed as resistance stiffening. 
The unit was to expect mines and protected dug-in fighting positions. 
Local counter-attacks were to be expected.  The friendly situation
was briefed as possibly the 1st AD on the right flank.  The mission
remained the same.  The 3d ACR Line of Departure was the 20
North/South grid line.  At .  .  .  the 39 North/South grid line, the
units were to stop and an Artillery preparation of the objective was
to be fired.  At the end of the Artillery preparation the 2d and 1st
Squadrons were to move forward until halted by the Regimental
Commander.  The 1st Squadron was to begin a direct fire preparation
of the objective and the 3d Squadron was to pass through the 1st
Squadron and attack from North to South.  There was to be an OH-58
[helicopter] reconnaissance of the target at 2030.  The FRAGO called
for a 2,500 meter buffer zone around the airfield.  There was a
follow on mission to another airfield some 25 kilometers to the east. 

"The available graphics, chiefly supplied by the personal notes of
the 1st Squadron Commander, clearly show the 50 [east/west] grid line
as the southern boundary.  They also depict a buffer zone roughly
bounded by PU 445465 to PU 500465 as a southern limit of advance. 

"Sometime after 2200, the Regiment was aware that the request for the
buffer zone from 1st AD had been denied.  The helicopter with the
Regimental Liaison Officer .  .  .  and Regimental Assistant
Operations Officer .  .  .  did not return to the Regimental Command
Post until after 2130, at the earliest.  Their discussions with the
1st AD Command .  .  .  were reported soon thereafter to the
Regimental Command Group.  [The 3rd ACR Executive Officer] recalls
that [the Regimental Liaison Officer] reported that the 1st AD had
passed by the objective much earlier in the day.  He reported that
the 1st AD told [the Regimental Liaison Officer] that there did not
appear to be enemy on the airfield.  He did not report a specific
grid location of friendly forces; only that there may have been
elements of the 2nd Brigade, 1st AD logistical units south of the
airfield. 

"In a combat situation commanders at each level receive and process
the full range of information on the intelligence situation, friendly
situation, etc.  Essential information is then passed to subordinate
commanders in the form of plans, orders, reports and/or guidance. 
Full verbatim information is usually not passed to each lower level. 
In this case, the Regimental commander was faced with a vague enemy
situation.  The progress of the attack was so rapid that the
intelligence information flow never caught up with the maneuver. 
Even though the 1st AD reported that they had not seen any enemy on
the airfield as they passed near it twelve hours earlier,
intelligence clearly revealed that Iraqi forces were in the area. 
The [helicopter] reconnaissance conducted five hours before the
attack did not detect any enemy on the objective.  Based on this
information, the Regimental commander believed that there was
probably no enemy on the objective and he passed that assessment to
the 3/3 ACR [3rd Squadron].  However, based on this information, it
would have been foolish for the Regimental or Squadron commanders to
assume that no enemy was on the objective. 

"In this uncertain enemy situation, the only prudent course of action
to minimize potential U.S.  casualties was to attack the airfield as
if enemy was present.  It is unclear whether or not the information
concerning the buffer zone denial and report that friendly troops
might be in the area was successfully passed from Regiment to
squadron.  However, the essential conclusion based on that
information was, in fact, successfully passed to the squadrons when
COL Starr ordered no one to fire south of the 50 East/West grid line. 
There was no time to issue written orders or to have face-to-face
coordination meetings.  Under the existing circumstances, the
regiment verbally disseminated the essential combat information to
the squadrons."


      "FROM THE SQUADRON TO THE
      TROOP"--INVESTIGATING
      OFFICER'S FINDINGS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:6.2

"All troop commanders, as well as the operations officer and
intelligence officer of the 3/3 ACR [3rd Squadron], agreed that they
expected `heavy' or `stiff' resistance on Objective Bill.  They all
understood that the plan called for a west to east movement along the
55 east/west grid line followed by an artillery preparation and a
direct fire preparation of the objective," and "a north to south
attack on the airfield" through the 1st Squadron by the 3rd Squadron. 

"When the axis of the attack was changed from N-S to W-E the squadron
issued orders by radio while on the move.  The Troop Commanders knew
of a southern boundary.  They all knew they were the southern most
XVIII Airborne Corps unit.  They all, however, were unaware of the
location of the 1st Armored Division units.  Some Troop Commanders
knew of the 50 [east/west] grid line as being the boundary.  .  .  . 
[T]he M Troop [Company] Commander has notes which reflect the
identification of the 50 east/west grid line as the Southern
Boundary." He recalled that he had received information about the
grid-line boundary "while on the move"; and "[h]e believed that that
information was passed to him on the Operations and Intelligence
[communications] net." Further, "he wrote it at the time in his
commander's notebook."

"However, CPT Friesen, [the I Troop Commander,] testified that he was
unaware of the 50 east-west grid line as the boundary.  All other
Troop Commanders were north of CPT Friesen, and consequently their
knowledge of the boundary was not as critical because they were not
near the boundary.  At no time did the 3/3d ACR [3rd Squadron],
either through the Commander or Staff, pass to the Troop Commanders
the possibility that friendly forces might be in the area.  This was
because no such specific information was received by the Squadron
from the Regiment.  Based on the information passed to the Squadron
and the location of the airfield as it appeared on the map, the
Squadron Commander and Troop Commanders felt that they were a
comfortable distance from any boundary. 

".  .  .  Throughout the operation, M Troop [Company], the tank
troop, remained the centerpiece of the 3rd Squadron's attack plan. 
The attack on the airfield went as planned.  All 3/3 ACR [3rd
Squadron] forces and fires remained well above the 50 grid line.  It
was not until I Troop reported a possible `enemy' unit to the south
that the element of I Troop and the 3/3 ACR [3rd Squadron] command
group moved south to counter what they believed to be an enemy
threat.  The importance of the boundary at that point was not
significant to the I Troop Commander and 3/3 ACR [3rd Squadron]
Commander because


      GAO'S FINDINGS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:6.3

Neither Colonel Starr nor Lt.  Colonel Daly ensured that their
subordinate commanders received essential tactical information,
ranging from intelligence to orientation of attack. 

Most of the intelligence information collected prior to the ground
war about potential 3rd ACR objectives became obsolete once the
ground war began.  As a result, commanders had to rely on the most
current intelligence that could be obtained.  However, intelligence
information contained in the operation order from the 3rd ACR to its
squadrons was inaccurate. 

According to the 3rd ACR intelligence personnel we interviewed, the
3rd ACR Command Group knew that no known enemy were present at the
objective at the time the operation plan was issued because the enemy
had moved to the Qalib Al Luhays Airfield.  According to the 3rd ACR
intelligence personnel, they focused their attention on Objective
Joe--the Qalib Al Luhays Airfield, located approximately 28
kilometers further east and north (see fig.  1.8) that was to be
attacked the following day--and not on Objective Bill.  One
intelligence officer considered Objective Bill the "regiment's own
little internal mission," undertaken only as an afterthought as the
regiment pushed east. 

The 3rd ACR Commander, Colonel Starr, ordered two helicopters to
reconnoiter the 3rd ACR sector in advance of the attack.  Using the
3rd ACR Command radio frequency, one of the helicopters reported to
Colonel Starr that it had seen no enemy at Objective Bill.  The 3rd
Squadron Fire Support Officer advised Lt.  Colonel Daly of the
report, and Lt.  Colonel Daly acknowledged receiving the information. 
Further, while the 3rd Squadron was engaged in the passage of lines
attacking Objective Bill, the 3rd Squadron's Operations Officer
advised the M Company Commander that the airfield was "probably cold"
and established that the Rules of Engagement were "not [to] fire
unless fired upon."

Concerning the attack's orientation, the 3rd ACR and 3rd Squadron
Commanders knew the 50 east/west grid line was the corps boundary. 
Colonel Starr advised Lt.  Colonel Daly, who was in the process of
coordinating the passage of lines, to change the attack's orientation
to west-to-east and that the 50 east/west grid line was the boundary. 
However, the 3rd Squadron's Operations Officer told the M Company
Commander, the lead attack company, that the movement was being
changed to east-to-southeast with the 50 east/west grid line as the
boundary.  Neither the right flank unit, I Troop, which would be
closest to the corps boundary, nor the rear attack unit, L Troop,
received any of the information.  Our attempts to interview the K
Troop Commander were unsuccessful; however, he indicated during the
AR 15-6 investigation that he was aware of the attack's changed
orientation and of the 50 east/west grid line as the southern
boundary.  There was no indication that Lt.  Colonel Daly attempted
to confirm that the subordinate units had received the information or
to relay information that friendly forces might be


   "CONDITIONS CONTRIBUTING TO
   INCIDENT"
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:7


      INVESTIGATING OFFICER'S
      FINDINGS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:7.1

".  .  .  [T]hree conditions .  .  .  increased the likelihood of a
fratricide incident.  These contributing factors were: 

"a.  BOUNDARY PLACEMENT:  The boundary between the two Corps passed
through the southern tip of Objective Bill.  U.S.  Army doctrine is
to place an objective solely within the zone of the attacking force. 
Efforts to deconflict the attack on this objective were not
successful.  Although some safeguards to prevent friendly fire
incidents were taken by the Commander of the 3rd ACR (shift of the
artillery preparation, cancellation of the direct fire preparation,
and attack parallel to the boundary), they proved to be inadequate. 

"b.  BATTLEFIELD CONDITIONS:  The conditions that existed at the time
were difficult.  It had been raining, it was cold, cloud cover caused
almost zero illumination and the unit believed it was attacking at
night against an enemy of unknown size.  Due to poor visibility the
entire operation was conducted primarily with thermal sights.  FM
radio communications were sometimes poor due to the distances between
units and the weather conditions.  Additionally, the 3d ACR forces
had been continually moving with little rest for over 60 hours. 

"c.  INFORMATION FLOW:  The 3d ACR and its subordinate units had the
mission of attacking assigned objectives and maintaining contact on
the boundaries of the XVIII Airborne Corps with the VII Corps. 
Therefore, all 3d ACR commanders at every level should have been
acutely aware, without being specifically informed, that they were
often operating near a boundary, potentially near friendly troops. 
Under the existing adverse circumstances the minimum essential combat
information was passed from Regiment through Squadron to the troop
commanders.  However, the Regimental Commander and the Squadron
Commander should have placed more emphasis on the proximity of the
objective to the boundary, possible friendly forces in the area,
reasons why the buffer zone was denied, and why the attack plan was
changed.  Had the I Troop Commander been fully apprised of all the
available information,


      GAO'S FINDINGS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:7.2

With concern to (a) boundary placements, the maps in use when the 3rd
ACR developed the Operation Plan reflected that the southern- most
tip of the objective airstrip was approximately 900 meters north of
the boundary and within the XVIII Airborne Corps zone.  Further, the
maps did not show the fence line that crossed the boundary.  (See
fig.  4.1.)

   Figure 4.1:  U.S.  Army Map of
   Attack Area for Objective Bill

   (See figure in printed
   edition.)

Source:  U.S.  Army

As the 3rd Squadron advanced, I Troop encountered a fence and saw a
tower in the distance.  (See fig.  2.5.) I Troop then reported that
it had identified the airstrip even though the maps that the 3rd ACR
and the 3rd Squadron used did not depict a fenced area within the
area of the attack.  The attention of the 3rd Squadron focused on
this report.\22 Lt.  Colonel Daly believed the fenced area was the
airstrip.  All 3rd Squadron troop units, except I Troop, stopped. 

The 3rd Squadron Commander, Lt.  Colonel Daly, gave I Troop
permission to move inside the fence.  As I Troop moved inside the
fenced area, it unwittingly breached the corps boundary.  Had Captain
Friesen, the I Troop Commander, relied on his maps and Global
Positioning System, he would have realized that the airstrip was
approximately 2 kilometers to the northeast. 

Weather was not a factor in the incident's (b) battlefield
conditions.  The incident did occur at nighttime, but reports varied
as to illumination--from clear with stars and the moon shining to
overcast. 

The Investigating Officer was correct in his assessment concerning
(c) information flow that all 3rd ACR commanders should have been
aware that they were near a boundary and potentially friendly forces
and, more importantly, that the 3rd ACR and 3rd Squadron Commanders
should have emphasized those two aspects and provided the reasons for
the buffer zone's denial and the Operation Plan's change.  We also
agree that if Captain Friesen had had all available information, the
fratricide incident might have been avoided.  But the radio
communications flow was also limited within the 3rd Squadron. 
Although most communications within the squadron were conducted using
"secure voice," the PsyOps HMMWV and the FOX vehicle, part of the 3rd
Squadron Command Group during the incident, did not have "secure"
radio capability, because they lacked connecting cables and
cryptographic equipment.  Both vehicles were, in effect, without
communications throughout the ground war as well as the fratricide
incident.  This may have resulted in the PsyOps HMMWV's delayed
receipt of a report over the "unsecure" radio to broadcast an Iraqi
surrender message.  Additionally, the 1st Squadron Commander's radio
went dead at the same time that the 3rd and 1st Squadrons were
coordinating the passage of lines.  Further, the erroneous radio
reports of vans fleeing when they were actually jackasses heightened
the anxiety


--------------------
\22 Prior to this report, the 3rd Squadron Commander reported to the
3rd ACR Commander that a hard-packed road the squadron had crossed
was the airstrip.  He then realized that it was not. 


   INVESTIGATIVE CONCLUSIONS
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:8


      INVESTIGATING OFFICER'S
      "CONCLUSION"
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:8.1

"The actions and decisions by the 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment
Commander; 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment Executive Officer; Commander,
3d Squadron, 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment; Commander, I Troop, 3d
Squadron, 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment; and all other involved
individuals were reasonable and appropriate under the existing
circumstances.  [1] The troop commander reported the suspected enemy
unit to higher headquarters before firing; [2] a warning shot was
ordered by the squadron commander and fired by the troop commander;
[3] the troop commander did not fire directly on the suspected enemy
until he believed that he was under fire from that force; [4] the
squadron commander stopped his attack, went to the scene, [and]
ordered a PsyOps team to broadcast an Iraqi surrender message on the
loudspeakers.  [5] The squadron commander ordered a short burst to be
fired only when he thought the suspected Iraqis had returned fire,
had rejected the chance to surrender, and were trying to escape or
occupy fighting positions.  [6] All personnel involved complied with
the published Rules of


      GAO'S CONCLUSIONS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:8.2

We found nothing to dispute the Investigating Officer's conclusion
regarding the 3rd ACR's Executive Officer.  However, we disagree with
the Investigating Officer's conclusion that the actions and decisions
of the commanders of the 3rd ACR, 3rd Squadron, and I Troop "were
reasonable and appropriate under the existing circumstances." Based
on our analysis of the evidence available to the Investigating
Officer--and the Forces Command Staff Judge Advocate, with whose
conclusions we are in general agreement--and the additional evidence
found in our investigation, we believe the following concerning the
actions and decisions cited by the Investigating Officer: 

1.The I Troop Commander, Captain Friesen, did report the suspected
enemy to higher headquarters as cited.  However, Captain Friesen did
not confirm that the target was the enemy before firing. 

2.The 3rd Squadron Commander, Lt.  Colonel Daly, did order a warning
shot; and Captain Friesen then directed his gunner to fire, which he
did.  This order countermanded the FRAGO, i.e., not to fire unless
fired upon and not to fire below the 50 east/west grid line. 

3.The statement concerning Captain Friesen's not firing directly on
the suspected enemy until perceiving return fire was disputed by the
engineers.  They stated that the first shots were fired directly at
them and denied engaging in return fire.  However, the Investigating
Officer did not resolve this issue. 

4.The actions the Investigating Officer described--Lt.  Colonel
Daly's stopping his attack, going to the scene of the sighting, and
ordering a PsyOps team broadcast--were reasonable and appropriate as
far as he delineated them; but he failed to address pertinent facts. 
According to Lt.  Colonel Daly, Colonel Starr ordered him to the
scene at that point.  Once at the scene, Lt.  Colonel Daly did not
establish contact with the I Troop Commander, who believed he had the
situation under control with the "enemy" appearing to surrender;
fired on an unconfirmed target and fired below the 50 east/west grid
line--violating the existing Rules of Engagement as stated in the
FRAGO; and endangered his own men by dismounting them without
informing the other U.S.  troops in the area.  In addition, although
his directions to the PsyOps team occurred before the fatal shots
were fired, the engineers did not hear the message until after those
shots were fired. 

5.Lt.  Colonel Daly allowed his gunner to fire after the gunner
reported seeing an individual running away from the burning vehicle
then moving around to the Bradley's front "carrying something" that
looked like a rocket-propelled grenade launcher on his back.  There
was no indication of return fire at the time Lt.  Colonel Daly fired. 
Further, we found no evidence that Lt.  Colonel Daly provided an
opportunity for the engineers to surrender.  We agree that the
engineers could have appeared to be escaping as all were seeking
cover from the shots fired at them. 

6.Although those involved complied with the "published" Rules of
Engagement, they violated the Rules of Engagement as stated in the
FRAGO, i.e., not to fire unless fired upon and not to fire below the
50 east/west grid line.  In addition, Lt.  Colonel Daly did not
confirm that the targets were enemy before firing, as ordered by
Colonel Starr. 


-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:8.3

In his conclusions, the Investigating Officer did not address all
pertinent "actions and decisions" of Colonel Starr and Lt.  Colonel
Daly that demonstrated the failure of the two commanders to exercise
proper command and control\23 of their respective units.  Further,
the AR 15-6 investigation, on which the Investigating Officer based
his recommendation against the engineers' Executive Officer,
contained inaccurate information and did not fully address whether
the engineers had established defensive perimeters and a plan of
action. 


--------------------
\23 Commanding a cavalry troop and controlling the efforts of
subordinate elements requires four basic skills:  "Make sound
tactical decisions based on your most current information"; "Turn
your decisions into plans and orders"; "Communicate your plans and
orders to subordinate leaders"; and "Supervise and control the
actions of your subordinate units as they execute your orders."
(AR-FM 17-97, pp.  2-1 and 2-2)


      COLONEL STARR'S FAILURE TO
      EXERCISE PROPER COMMAND AND
      CONTROL
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:8.4


         ESSENTIAL INFORMATION NOT
         DISSEMINATED TO
         SUBORDINATES
------------------------------------------------------ Chapter 4:8.4.1

Colonel Starr did not disseminate essential information to
subordinate commanders, specifically about the buffer zone's denial
and the existence of a 1st AD logistics line just below the 50
east/west corps boundary, one reason for the buffer's denial. 

Colonel Starr and the 3rd ACR Operations Officer based the original
3rd ACR operation plan on the assumption that the 1st AD would grant
a buffer zone, allowing the 3rd ACR to cross the 50 east/west corps
boundary into an area controlled by the 1st AD.  Colonel Starr was
advised that his request for a buffer zone had been denied before the
original operation plan was issued at approximately 1856 hours,
February 26.  Yet, he issued the plan without modification and
without indicating that the initial request for the buffer zone had
been denied.  The 3rd ACR plan became the basis for the 3rd
Squadron's operation plan. 

Further, before the original operation plan was developed, Colonel
Starr and his operations officer knew that a 1st AD logistics line or
Major Supply Route (MSR) existed just below the 50 east/west corps
boundary.  This MSR had been preplotted prior to the ground war's
beginning and was clearly shown on the 3rd ACR Operations Officer's
maps and graphics.  However, we found no indication that Colonel
Starr accounted for the MSR in his operation plan.  He also did not
advise his subordinate commanders that the buffer zone had been
denied because the 1st AD had logistics lines in the area, had
bypassed the airfield (on its left flank) earlier in the day, and had
not detected any enemy there. 

The 3rd ACR operation plan was initiated at 2100 hours, as the 3rd
ACR began its movement towards Objective Bill.  Approximately 1 hour
later, Colonel Starr's second request for a buffer zone was denied. 
Colonel Starr then canceled the indirect artillery fire of all
targets in the area south of the airfield and below the 50 east/west
corps boundary but did not disseminate the reason for the
cancellation to all subordinate commanders.  According to Colonel
Starr, he also canceled the direct fire onto the airfield because he
knew no known enemy was present.  He then proceeded with the passage
of lines.  (Colonel Starr stated that one reason for proceeding with
the passage of lines was to give Lt.  Colonel Daly the experience of
leading a regimental attack because "John had not been out in front
yet.")

At approximately 0034 hours, February 27, 1991, while the 3rd
Squadron was beginning to execute the passage of lines with the 1st
Squadron, Colonel Starr told Lt.  Colonel Daly to change the 3rd
Squadron's scheme of maneuver to attack the airfield west to east,
instead of north to south.  This was almost 4 hours after the
operation plan had been initiated and almost 3 hours after the second
request for a buffer zone had been denied. 

Our investigation showed that confusion existed throughout the 1st
and 3rd Squadrons as a result of the changed plan.  In particular,
the 1st Squadron Commander did not meet with Colonel Starr and was
unaware of the reasons for the changes in the original operation
plan.  The 1st Squadron Commander's radio went dead at approximately
0139 hours.  At that time, Colonel Starr directed him to "cease
fire," cancel the direct fire on the airfield, and begin passing the
3rd Squadron through the 1st Squadron.  According to Colonel Starr,
the 1st Squadron was not to provide direct fire unless it was
engaged.  The 1st Squadron Commander believed his communications
problem was the reason Colonel Starr had directed the passage of
lines to begin. 

Further, according to witnesses we interviewed who were directly and
indirectly involved in the mission's planning process, the assault
onto Objective Bill took on the characteristics of an internal
mission and/or a "training mission." This is best illustrated by the
fact that the 3rd ACR Executive Officer was asleep at the time of the
attack.  Further, Colonel Starr acknowledged that this was not a
critical mission. 


         INCORRECT, CONFUSING
         INFORMATION DISSEMINATED
------------------------------------------------------ Chapter 4:8.4.2

Colonel Starr issued the original operation plan to the 3rd ACR
Squadrons with intelligence information about a second airfield 28
kilometers further to the northeast and with reference to both
Objective Bill--the Al Busayyah Northeast Airfield--and Objective
Joe--the Qalib Al Luhays Airfield.  Further, the squadrons were
advised that battalion-size units were located at the "airfield." The
3rd Squadron misconstrued this information as describing the enemy
situation at Objective Bill when the statements actually referred to
the possibility of enemy battalions being at Objective Joe.  Third
ACR intelligence personnel and operations officers told us that they
knew no known enemy was present at Objective Bill when the original
operation plan was being developed.  They were more concerned with
Objective Joe--the Qalib Al Luhays Airfield--that was located 28
kilometers further to the northeast. 

The 3rd ACR Operation Plan also described enemy resistance as
"stiffening, with mines, fighting positions and local
counterattacks," although Colonel Starr had been advised by the 1st
AD before the plan's issuance that probably no enemy was present at
Objective Bill.  The plan's description pertained to the overall
theater of operations, not activity at or near the airfield.  As a
result, that information may have confused the 3rd ACR subordinate
commanders regarding enemy strength at Objective Bill. 


         POSITIONS NOT DETERMINED
         AND BOUNDARY NOT SECURED
         AGAINST BREACHING
------------------------------------------------------ Chapter 4:8.4.3

Although Colonel Starr told Lt.  Colonel Daly on February 27, 1991,
that the 50 east/west grid line was the corps boundary and not to
fire south of it, Colonel Starr did not determine his position
relative to the objective and allowed elements of the 3rd Squadron to
cross the corps boundary. 

Further, the 3rd ACR TOC radio log notes that--20 minutes after the
3rd Squadron began passing through the 1st Squadron--Colonel Starr
was concerned about the "right flank" or corps boundary.  Yet, he did
not place a unit or vehicle to screen along the 50 east/west corps
boundary to ensure that the boundary was not breached. 

In addition, when elements of the 3rd Squadron detected the fenced
area and spotted a tower, they believed they had located the
objective.  Subsequently, Colonel Starr parked on a road adjacent to
the fence approximately 800 meters north of the 50 east/west corps
boundary.  From his position, he should have determined that the
objective airstrip was located approximately 2.2 kilometers northeast
of his location and that the 3rd Squadron units were breaching the
corps boundary. 


      LT.  COLONEL DALY'S FAILURE
      TO EXERCISE PROPER COMMAND
      AND CONTROL
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:8.5

Lt.  Colonel Daly failed to exercise proper command and control of
the 3rd Squadron during Operation Bill:  He did not ensure that all
of his subordinate commanders were fully aware of the changed
operation plan, did not ensure that his subordinates were aware of
the corps boundary, became confused as to the location of the
airfield and allowed I Troop to cross the corps boundary, did not
advise the I Troop Commander that he was assuming control or
dismounting soldiers, and violated the stated Rules of Engagement. 

Lt.  Colonel Daly based the 3rd Squadron Operation Plan on the
original 3rd ACR Operation Plan, which noted the possibility of the
1st AD being on the 3rd ACR's right flank.  It was issued to the 3rd
Squadron troop commanders approximately 45 minutes before the 3rd ACR
began to move at 2100 hours, February 26, 1991.  According to the I
and L Troop Commanders, the troop commanders' briefing on the 3rd
Squadron Operation Plan lasted between 5 and 30 minutes.  They were
told that the 3rd Squadron would conduct a passage of lines through
the 1st Squadron and attack the airfield, Objective Bill, from north
to south.  There is indication that the 50 east/west grid line was
identified as the corps boundary.  However, there is no indication
that they were told of the possibility of the 1st AD's presence on
their right flank. 

After the 3rd Squadron began to move, the 3rd Squadron Operations
Officer issued a FRAGO to the troop commanders establishing a new
Limit of Advance on the 50 east/west corps boundary--in effect,
directing the troop commanders to attack against the corps boundary
and stop.  Subsequently, while the 3rd Squadron was coordinating the
passage of lines, Lt.  Colonel Daly and his operations officer were
told by Colonel Starr to change the 3rd Squadron attack plan and
scheme of maneuver to attack from west to east and not to fire south
of the 50 east/west grid line. 

The 3rd Squadron Operations Officer then issued another FRAGO stating
that after the direct fire onto the airfield and the passage of
lines, the 3rd Squadron was to proceed east then southeast.  The
FRAGO established the Rules of Engagement to "not fire unless fired
upon"; established the 50 east/west grid line as the corps boundary;
and stated that the airfield was "probably cold."

Based on our investigation, the I Troop and L Troop Commanders did
not receive the FRAGO outlining the changed 3rd Squadron Operation
Plan.  The FRAGO contained essential information regarding the
operation, yet Lt.  Colonel Daly did not verify that all his troop
commanders received this information.  Additionally, the 3rd Squadron
Fire Support Officer, who was part of the 3rd Squadron Command Group,
said he was confused about the 50 east/west grid line.  He advised us
that he was unaware that it was the corps boundary line but instead
thought it was a fire support coordination point.  I Troop was also
unaware that the 50 east/west grid line had been established as the
corps boundary and that there were possible 1st AD troops on its
right flank.  Further, Lt.  Colonel Daly knew that the 50 east/west
grid line was the corps boundary.  Yet he did not ensure that his
subordinates were aware of the boundary, which may have prevented I
Troop's boundary breach. 

As the 3rd Squadron advanced east towards the airfield, Lt.  Colonel
Daly initially reported that the squadron had found the airfield but
then reported that they had crossed a road.  (See fig.  2.5.) Minutes
later, when I Troop reported seeing a fence and a tower, Lt.  Colonel
Daly authorized I Troop to breach the fence and reconnoiter the area,
failing to first determine I Troop's location in relation to his own. 
As a result, he allowed I Troop to unwittingly cross the corps
boundary. 

Once I Troop had fired the warning shots, Lt.  Colonel Daly crossed
the corps boundary.  Without attempting to communicate directly with
the I Troop Commander, Lt.  Colonel Daly moved forward of the I Troop
Commander's vehicle.  After observing the dismounted troops
(engineers) through his Thermal Imaging System, he did not contact
the I Troop Commander to obtain his assessment of the situation or to
announce to the I Troop Commander that he was assuming control. 

Further, while authorizing his gunner to engage the target, Lt. 
Colonel Daly did not advise the I Troop Commander that he was
dismounting two soldiers from his Bradley to sweep the area.  His
failure to communicate this information led to confusion and
endangered the lives of the two dismounts, as they were initially
thought to be enemy soldiers. 

Lt.  Colonel Daly also violated the rules of engagement in effect at
that time.  Specifically, he authorized I Troop to fire warning shots
below the 50 east/west grid line at an unconfirmed target, resulting
in the wounding of a U.S.  soldier.  Further, relying on his gunner's
assessment, he allowed his gunner to fire below the 50 east/west grid
line at an unconfirmed target, resulting in the death of a U.S. 
soldier. 


      EXECUTIVE OFFICER, CHARLIE
      COMPANY, 54TH ENGINEER
      BATTALION
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:8.6

The Forces Command Staff Judge Advocate, based upon his review of the
AR 15-6 investigation, found 1st Lieutenant Wessels negligent for
failing to establish defensive perimeters and a plan of defense. 
Specifically: 

(1) "1LT Wessels failed to ensure that his soldiers were wearing
their helmets, web gear, and flack [sic] jackets." (2) "Knowing that
1AD personnel had been engaged by Iraqi dismounts in the 1AD rear
area, he should have done more than only placing men on guard." (3)
"While there is some discrepancy in the number of times that I Troop
fired on his position, it seems almost without controversy that this
action lasted from approximately 30 to 45 minutes with sporadic
activity." (4) "1LT Wessels should have taken more positive steps to
either identify himself or indicate that he was surrendering to
preclude further harm to his men."

Our investigation indicates that the AR 15-6 contained inaccurate
information and did not fully address these points.  As a result, the
basis for the findings of the Forces Command Staff Judge Advocate was
limited. 


         LOAD BEARING EQUIPMENT
         AND KEVLAR HELMETS
------------------------------------------------------ Chapter 4:8.6.1

The Investigating Officer reported that "[t]he engineer personnel did
not wear their Kevlar helmets or Load Bearing Equipment (LBE) which
would have been distinctive through the thermal sites [sic] of the 3d
ACR vehicles." This conclusion appears to be based on statements by
the I Troop Commander that had the engineers been wearing Kevlar
helmets and Load Bearing Equipment, "we could have probably
identified them earlier." However, as previously noted, the engineers
disputed this evidence, as several were wearing Load Bearing
Equipment and/or Kevlar helmets. 


         GUARD ROTATION
------------------------------------------------------ Chapter 4:8.6.2

We do not dispute this finding. 


         INCIDENT'S LENGTH OF TIME
------------------------------------------------------ Chapter 4:8.6.3

The Investigating Officer reported that "[t]he airfield proper was
taken at approximately 0230 hours" and that "[a]t about 0300 (local)
on 27 February 1991 the I Troop Commander, CPT Friesen, fired warning
shots to the left (southeast) of the target." Thus, according to the
Forces Command Staff Judge Advocate, he determined the entire
incident occurred in about 30 to 45 minutes.  Yet, several of the
soldiers we interviewed indicated that the entire incident took no
more than 5 to 10 minutes, and the tape of the incident (see app.  I)
lasts approximately 7 minutes and 15 seconds.  Our investigation
indicates that the warning shots were fired at approximately 0300
hours with the fatal shots being fired at approximately 0307 hours. 
(See fig.  2.1.)


         IDENTIFICATION EFFORTS
------------------------------------------------------ Chapter 4:8.6.4

According to the Forces Command Staff Judge Advocate, based on
information contained within the AR 15-6 investigation, he determined
that had 1st Lieutenant Wessels established a defensive perimeter and
developed a plan of defense, the approaching 3rd ACR vehicles would
have been able to identify the Engineers' vehicles and would not have
been able "to sneak up" on them.  In addition, 1st Lieutenant Wessels
should have known the radio frequency for the 3rd ACR's flank unit;
he should have known that the white star cluster was the appropriate
antifratricide signal; and he should have used his flashlight earlier
to identify his unit. 

Our investigation indicates that the targets were identified by some
3rd ACR personnel as a HMMWV and an ammunition carrier (i.e., "a U.S. 
type vehicle") before the fatal shots were fired, although they were
not confirmed as friendly vehicles.  Further, the 3rd ACR did not
"sneak up" on the engineers, as the engineers heard the vehicles
approaching and, using night vision goggles, immediately identified
them as friendly vehicles.  While 1st Lieutenant Wessels perhaps
should have known the radio frequency for the 3rd ACR's flank unit,
that issue was not addressed in the AR 15-6 investigation.  In
addition, 1st Lieutenant Wessels maintains that he was never told
that the white star cluster was an antifratricide signal.\24 Finally,
our investigation indicates that when the incident began, 1st
Lieutenant Wessels attempted to make radio contact with the 1st AD to
request a cease-fire.  He next fired the green star cluster in an
attempt to illuminate the area, not knowing that the green star
cluster was an antifratricide signal.  He then began walking toward
the 3rd ACR vehicles with his arms raised while holding a red lens
flashlight.  However, the entire incident--from warning shots to
fatal shots--occurred in approximately 7 minutes and 15 seconds, not
the 30 to 45 minutes as


--------------------
\24 Unknown at the time to the lieutenant, a green star cluster was a
daytime, ground-to-ground antifratricide recognition signal.  The
nighttime, ground-to-ground antifratricide recognition signal was a
white star cluster. 


   "INITIAL INVESTIGATIONS"
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:9


      SECOND INVESTIGATING
      OFFICER'S CONCLUSIONS AND
      RECOMMENDATIONS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:9.1

The second Investigating Officer, who conducted the supplemental AR
15-6 investigation, concluded that "[t]he investigation and reopened
investigation conducted by [the 3rd ACR Judge Advocate, a captain]
were done in a professional manner.  His appointment as investigating
officer during combat operations was justified due to the
unavailability of more senior officers.  However, an investigating
officer senior to LTC Daly [the 3rd Squadron Commander] should have
been appointed upon conclusion of the hostilities.  The [reopened]
investigation .  .  .  answered many previously unanswered questions
and disclosed additional facts which supported [the 3rd ACR Judge
Advocate's] original recommendations and findings."

At the conclusion of the supplemental AR 15-6 investigation, the
second Investigating Officer recommended the following to the Army: 

"That all personnel involved be absolved of any criminal or
administrative responsibility. 

"That the Army doctrine that an objective be entirely within the
attacking unit's zone be reemphasized. 

"That anti-fratricide measures and devices be emphasized and
disseminated to all units/detachments on the battlefield.  However, I
would urge that future anti-fratricide measures be passive and not
restrict the proper applications of firepower. 

"That the importance of information flow to subordinate units on
objectives, boundaries, intelligence information, and


      GAO'S CONCLUSIONS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:9.2

The original Investigating Officer, the 3rd ACR Judge Advocate,
declined our request for an interview.  However, our analysis of the
original investigation indicated that the Investigating Officer did
not conduct a complete and thorough investigation.  Taking into
consideration the 3rd ACR's continued combat situation and other
extraneous factors, he did not interview several key personnel who
were directly or indirectly involved, including Colonel Starr and the
I Troop Commander's gunner; did not obtain documents at the troop,
squadron, and regimental levels; did not resolve the warning
shot/return fire issue, by not questioning the I Troop personnel or
the remaining engineers concerning the issues; and did not note the
locations of any of the firing units. 

In addition, the findings and recommendations of the second
Investigating Officer are not supported by available evidence
uncovered during his and the original Investigating Officer's
investigations.  Further, the Forces Command Staff Judge Advocate
stated his supposition that the second Investigating Officer had a
predetermined conclusion concerning the case.  As part of the XVIII
Airborne Corps, according to the Staff Judge Advocate, the
Investigating Officer would not have determined anything that was
unfavorable about the Corps, which had had a successful operation in
the Persian Gulf War.  As a result, the Investigating Officer's
"objectivity was skewed." That predetermined conclusion and skewed
objectivity, in our belief, resulted in findings and recommendations
that favored those in command whose actions and


   "CPT FRIESEN ALLEGATIONS"
--------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:10


      INVESTIGATING OFFICER'S
      FINDINGS
------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:10.1

The second Investigating Officer also addressed allegations of a
cover-up and retribution raised by the I Troop Commander, Captain
Friesen.  Specifically, Captain Friesen alleged that members of the
3rd ACR would not provide statements in support of his officer
evaluation report appeal because they feared retribution from the
Squadron Commander.  The second Investigating Officer concluded that
"[t]here is no evidence of any attempt by anyone to hinder the
investigation or wrongly influence the conclusions and
recommendations of the investigating officer.  There is no evidence
that any retribution was taken against any individual that


      GAO'S FINDINGS
------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:10.2

We found no evidence that documents pertaining to the incident were
intentionally destroyed or that witnesses were intimidated or
retaliated against.  However, we question the initial decision to
appoint an officer of lesser rank to investigate senior grade
officers.  Further, the AR 15-6 investigations were incomplete and
inaccurate; the investigators' findings and conclusions were not
supported by available evidence; and the investigators'
recommendations favored the command. 

AR 15-6 authorizes commanders to investigate matters within their
command, particularly those that are conducted to find facts that
would assist them in the efficient and safe operation of their
command.  However, a 1994 study\25 on the investigative capability of
the Department of Defense indicated that command-directed
investigations "are, as a class, the type of investigation most
subject to abuse" and "investigators who conduct commander-directed
investigations are more subject to command influence than MCIO
[military criminal investigative organization]
agents.  .  .  .  This `influence' can occur even when there is no
overt action by a commander.  .  .  ."

In addition, the Department of Defense study found that AR 15-6
investigators often lack investigative training and experience and
"the investigations often are of such poor quality that a matter must
be reinvestigated by a judge advocate before any disciplinary action
can be taken against the subject."

Regarding this fratricide incident, a judge advocate from the 3rd ACR
Command was involved in the initial investigation.  His investigation
was not thorough and some of the evidence--the command logs that
documented the events as they occurred--was not maintained.\26 The
Army's internal review process outside of the command raised concerns
and caused a reinvestigation of the incident at the corps level. 
However, as the reviewing Forces Command Staff Judge Advocate found,
the second investigator's findings favored the 3rd ACR Command. 
Indeed, using the same investigative information that the two Army
investigators used, the Forces Command Staff Judge Advocate
recommended disciplinary action be taken against the commanders. 
However, at the discretion of the Commander in Chief, Forces Command,
two of the three reprimands were not made part of the officers'
official permanent records, and the third reprimand was withdrawn. 


--------------------
\25 At the recommendation of the Congress, on Nov.  27, 1993, the
Secretary of Defense announced the formation of an Advisory Board on
the Investigative Capability of the Department of Defense.  The Board
held hearings, conducted interviews, and reviewed testimony and
documents.  Their findings and recommendations were reported to the
Congress in the "Report of the Advisory Board on the Investigative
Capability of the Department of Defense."

\26 Although we agreed with the overall findings of the Army's AR
15-6 investigation in our investigation of the Apache helicopter
fratricide incident (Operation Desert Storm:  Apache Helicopter
Fratricide Incident (GAO/OSI-93-4, June 30, 1993)), we noted that the
investigators failed to secure the most critical pieces of evidence
in that case--the three Apache gun tapes that had recorded the entire
incident.  Months after the chain of custody had been broken in Saudi
Arabia, a U.S.  news agency returned the tapes to the Army.  The Army
never discovered who had released the tapes to the news agency. 


   QUESTIONABLE AWARDS RELATED TO
   FRATRICIDE INCIDENT
--------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:11

During our investigation, we learned that a number of 3rd ACR
personnel had received awards for events directly related to the
February 27, 1991, fratricide incident.  These awards included three
Bronze Star Medals with "V" Device for valor, the same medal awarded
posthumously to Corporal Fielder.  These three awards were issued on
the basis of misleading statements and misrepresentations by Colonel
Starr, the 3rd ACR Commander; Lt.  Colonel Daly, the 3rd Squadron
Commander; and other 3rd ACR personnel. 


      AWARD LANGUAGE
------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:11.1

Following the fratricide incident, the 3rd ACR surgeon, who assisted
the wounded Sergeant Napier, was awarded a Bronze Star with "V"
Device.  According to the support for his award, the surgeon was
recognized for "bravery and valor" when he was asked to "perform an
emergency medivac mission" while the regiment was "still in contact"
and "clearing the sector of enemy." The mission was conducted during
the "early morning hours" when there was "little or no available
ambient light due to marginal weather conditions." He and his crew
were able to "successfully locate and extract the wounded." The
surgeon's actions were in the "best tradition of the service." When
the award was presented, the surgeon was cited for "heroism involving
conflict with an armed enemy."

The second individual was an 82nd Airborne Liaison Officer, a
captain, attached to Lt.  Colonel Daly's Bradley during the
fratricide incident.  He, along with another soldier, dismounted from
the Bradley during the incident.  According to the support for his
award, the Liaison Officer was cited for "exceptionally meritorious
heroism in the face of hostile fire" during a regimental attack to
seize "Qalib Al Luhays Airfield." He distinguished himself by
"volunteering to dismount and take `enemy' personnel prisoner."
Rushing forward of friendly vehicles, he was responsible for
"defusing the situation, restoring order and saving the lives of at
least four American soldiers." When the award was presented, the
Liaison Officer was cited for "heroism involving conflict with an
armed enemy."

The third individual, a sergeant attached to Lt.  Colonel Daly's
Bradley during the fratricide incident, dismounted from the
Commander's Bradley during the incident.  According to the support
for his award, the sergeant was cited for "exceptionally meritorious
heroism in the face of hostile fire" during a regimental attack to
seize "Qalib Al Luhays Airfield." The sergeant distinguished himself
"by volunteering to dismount and assist in taking enemy prisoners."
Rushing forward of friendly vehicles, he was responsible for
"defusing the situation, restoring order and saving the lives of at
least four American soldiers."


      GAO'S FINDINGS
------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:11.2

The awards were based on misleading statements and
misrepresentations, as indicated by the language from the award
support, from Colonel Starr and Lt.  Colonel Daly.  We also found
additional misleading statements and misrepresentations given by
other individuals in support of the awards.  These statements
seriously masked the actual events of the fratricide.  Furthermore,
the support for two of the awards placed the fratricide incident at
the wrong Iraqi airfield--the Qalib Al Luhays Airfield, which was
approximately 28 kilometers to the northeast of the Al Busayyah
Airfield that the 3rd ACR and 3rd Squadron were attacking when the
fratricide occurred.  (See fig.  1.8.)

As a result of our briefing to Department of the Army officials in
May 1994, the Army Office of Inspector General conducted a
preliminary analysis of the valorous awards that had been presented
to members of the 3rd ACR.  On August 4, 1994, the Deputy Inspector
General requested the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Manpower
and Reserve Affairs to take "action
.  .  .  to revoke these awards" and "to identify and revoke similar
valorous awards improperly authorized for the incident at Qalib Al
Luhays airfield or other known fratricide incidents." However, as of
March 29, 1995, the matter was still pending. 


   RECOMMENDATIONS TO THE
   SECRETARY OF THE ARMY
--------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 4:12

In light of the additional evidence determined in our investigation,
we recommend that the Secretary of the Army reexamine, for their
appropriateness, the disciplinary actions resulting from the February
27, 1991, fratricide incident and the disposition of those actions. 
We also recommend that the Secretary of the Army follow up on the
request put forth by the Army Office of Inspector General concerning
revocation of improperly supported valorous awards for participation
in fratricide incidents. 


TRANSCRIPTION OF AUDIO TAPE
RECORDED DURING FEBRUARY 27, 1991,
FRATRICIDE INCIDENT
=========================================================== Appendix I

The following transcript is of radio communications that were
recorded during the February 27, 1991, fratricide incident.  A
crewman aboard an M1A1 Abrams Tank--part of I Troop, 3rd Squadron,
3rd ACR--recorded the event using a hand-held audio microcassette
tape recorder.  His stated intent was to capture historical events
and battles of Operation Desert Storm. 

The tape includes (1) the secure-voice FM radio conversations of I
Troop, 3rd Squadron, 3rd ACR and White Platoon, I Troop, 3rd
Squadron, 3rd ACR and (2) the intercom conversations of the M1A1
Abrams Tank crew.  The Information Resources Division of the Federal
Bureau of Investigation (FBI) thoroughly analyzed the tape and
determined that the tape was original and, except where noted, was
continuous and unaltered.  Further, as part of our extensive efforts
to produce an accurate transcript, the M1A1 Abrams Tank Commander
assisted us in editing the tape. 


   IDENTIFICATION OF
   SPEAKERS/TROOP REFERENCES
--------------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:1

Call Sign<mt:300>Unit and Vehicle Bumper Number

Black<mt:300>Troop Headquarters
 Black 6 <mt:300>I Troop Commander, Captain Bodo Friesen
 Black 5 <mt:300>I Troop Executive Officer
 Black 3 <mt:300>I Troop TOC

White<mt:300>2nd Platoon (Tank)
 White 1<mt:300>White 2-1 Platoon Leader
 White 2<mt:300>White Platoon 2-2
 White 3<mt:300>White Platoon 2-3
 White 4<mt:300>White Platoon 2-4
 White 4 (IC)<mt:300>White Platoon 2-4 (Intercom)

Blue<mt:300>3rd Platoon (Scout)
 Blue 1<mt:300>Blue 3-1 Platoon Leader
 Blue 5<mt:300>Blue Platoon 3-5
 Blue 6<mt:300>Blue Platoon 3-6

Red<mt:300>1st Platoon (Scout)
 Red 1<mt:300>Red 1-1 Platoon Leader
 Red 3<mt:300>Red Platoon 1-3

Green<mt:300>4th Platoon (Tank)
 Green 1<mt:300>Green 4-1 Platoon Leader

Thunder 3<mt:300>3rd Squadron Operations Officer

Thunder 6<mt:300>3rd Squadron Commander, Lt.  Colonel John H.
<mt:300>Daly, Jr. 

Bravo Section<mt:300>Blue Platoon


   ABBREVIATIONS
--------------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:2

***<mt:300>inaudible radio transmission
aux<mt:300>auxiliary speaker used to monitor various radio
<mt:300>frequencies
CO<mt:300>commanding officer
co-ax<mt:300>7.62 mm co-axial machine gun
dismounts<mt:300>personnel on the ground
EPW<mt:300>enemy prisoner of war
H-E<mt:300>high explosive ammunition for 25 mm automatic
<mt:300>gun
heat round<mt:300>type of ammunition
higher<mt:300>referring to 3rd Squadron Commander
IC<mt:300>intercom
net<mt:300>radio frequency (network)
PsyOps<mt:300>Psychological Operations team
red lens<mt:300>flashlight with a red lens
sit rep<mt:300>situation report


   TRANSCRIPT
--------------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3


         WHITE 1: 
----------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.1

We have three little white spots at the top of the tower, break.  ***
They're not big enough to be humans, but there is something there,
over.  [According to White 1 and others, the "white spots" were later
determined to be birds in a tower.]


         BLACK 6: 
----------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.2

*** go ahead; get a pull red lens out; see who can spot it.  [The I
Troop Commander, Captain Friesen, used a red lens flashlight to
direct elements of the Blue Platoon to his location.]


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
----------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.3

There's what he's talking about.  Go down a little bit.  See it? 
There's two up on the top. 


         VOICE: 
----------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.4

Roger. 


         BLACK 6: 
----------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.5

You got the lens, Bravo? 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
----------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.6

They say they've seen the dismounts. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
----------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.7

Black 6-6 said he's closing in on them.  I couldn't find them.  I
scanned.  He's over to my left somewhere. 


         WHITE 1: 
----------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.8

White 4, White 4, White 4.  Break. 


         WHITE 1: 
----------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.9

Did you copy my last?  Over. 


         WHITE 4: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.10

This is White 4.  Negative.  Over. 


         WHITE 1: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.11

Roger.  We have three hot spots in the tower.  Break.  There's one in
the top, two at the bottom.  Break.  They're hot, they're not big
enough to be human, but there's something in there that's hot.  Over. 


         WHITE 4: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.12

White 4.  Roger.  Break. 


         WHITE 4: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.13

Black 6, White 4. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.14

Watch out for the bottom. 


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.15

Blue, Black 6.  You got that Bravo Section coming? 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.16

I'm backing down off this hill. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.17

There might be somebody behind you, man.  Hold on. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.18

I Troop.  We check and see. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.19

Okay, go straight back a little bit. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.20

That ought to scared them all away.  [Engine noise in the
background.]


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.21

[Expletive deleted.]


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.22

Okay, hold up right there. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.23

*** everybody stand ***


         WHITE 4: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.24

Black 6, White 4. 


         BLUE 5: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.25

*** Blue 5. 


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.26

Bravo Section, Blue, this is Black 6.  You coming this way? 


         BLUE 5: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.27

I don't know where you are.  Over. 


         RED 1: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.28

Black 6, this is Red 1.  My Bravo Section's got a visual on you. 
Over. 


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.29

Roger.  We've got two dismounts about 600 meters out in front of us,
next to some buildings.  We'll wait for you to come up, and we'll see
what's what. 


         RED 1: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.30

This is Red 1, wilco.  Let me pass it down. 


         BLUE 1: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.31

Blue-5, are you in touch with Black-6? 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.32

Yeah, Blue-5 done got... 


         BLUE 1: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.33

*** [expletive deleted] it.  Get your [expletive deleted] over to
Black 6.  ***


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.34

Okay, calm down.  Just get a section up here.  These guys aren't
going anywhere. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.35

Who the [expletive deleted] is he talking to? 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.36

Sergeant [Blue 5]. 


         RED 3: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.37

Black 6, this is Red 3.  You still got that red lens up? 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.38

That was Sergeant [Blue 5] ***


         VOICE: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.39

*** say again? 


         RED 3: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.40

Black 6, this is Red 3.  Do you still got that red lens up? 


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.41

Negative.  I've got my head inside right now.  [He was inside his
vehicle.]


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.42

Don't blame you.  So do I. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.43

You know Sergeant [Blue 5] is going to have something to say to him
about this fussing. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.44

Yeah, he will. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.45

That wasn't *** sound like it was [expletive deleted] [Blue 5]. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.46

*** I don't know. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.47

That's who it sounds like. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.48

Whoever it was is stressing hard, man. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.49

That *** was Blue 1. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.50

Stressing hard as a [expletive deleted]. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.51

Look for the buildings, man. 


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.52

Three, this is 6.  You been monitoring all this? 


         BLACK 3: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.53

This is 3, roger.  Higher [3rd Squadron Commander] is aware.  He just
keeps asking for situation report. 


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.54

Roger.  I cut the aux [3rd Squadron Command radio frequency] off,
cause it's just too much ...  confusion. 


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.55

These guys aren't going anywhere.  I'm not sure if they see us or
not, but they're standing still. 


         BLACK 3: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.56

Three, roger that. 


         BLACK 3: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.57

There's just two of them, correct? 


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.58

As far as we know, but there's some dwellings and -- I can't make it
out, possibly vehicles, but I'm not certain.  I'm going to wait a
little bit more before I go up. 


         BLACK 3: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.59

This is 3.  Roger. 


         BLACK 3: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.60

How far past the tower are you? 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.61

There is some Bradleys there. 


         BLUE 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.62

Black 6, this is Blue 6.  I'm back to the right of you.  Over. 


---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.63

TAPE STOPS/STARTS

[WARNING SHOTS FIRED]


         VOICE: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.64

*** See where ***


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.65

Yeah.  They're hauling ass. 


         BLACK 3: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.66

Six, this is 3.  Sit rep. 


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.67

They got one coming over to the wire towards us, looks like. 


         BLACK 3: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.68

Roger. 


         BLACK 3: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.69

Does it look like they're going to surrender, over? 


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.70

They're firing.  We're engaging. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.71

That's close. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.72

[Expletive deleted], need to pull some tanks up. 


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.73

*** hold your fire. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.74

That [expletive deleted] lightening up out there. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.75

That's tracer rounds, man. 


         BLACK 3: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.76

Cease fire, 6. 


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.77

Cease fire real quick, Blue.  Let's see if there's anything else down
there. 


         BLUE 5: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.78

Roger. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.79

That's twice it was H-E from the Bradleys. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.80

Yeah, that was Bradleys firing. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.81

That was looking about 6-6, firing some co-ax too. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.82

Man. 


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.83

Blue, pump a couple of rounds into that far building.  There's still
some guys in there. 


         VOICE: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.84

Black 6, you're coming in really good. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.85

See 'em? 


         BLACK 3: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.86

Cease fire, 6.  Cease fire.  [Thunder] 6 wants you to stop. 


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.87

We're cease fire. 


         BLACK 3: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.88

Black 6, you monitoring. 


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.89

This is 6, roger.  I gave a cease fire.  We're holding. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.90

*** whoever in that building up, comin' out of that [expletive
deleted]. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.91

Yeah, arms raised. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.92

*** put a heat round in that [expletive deleted], man. 


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.93

Blue elements, you all be real careful.  Scan left and right.  Make
sure there's nothing else out there. 


         BLACK 3: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.94

Roger.  He [Lt.  Colonel Daly] wants you to keep a good close eye on
it.  They're bringing the PsyOps guys up here, so they can talk to
them in their own language and try to get them out.  Over. 


         BLACK 6: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.95

We've got one already down.  I'm not sure if he's wounded or not. 
We're observing.  Continue to holding fire, night hawk elements. 


         WHITE 1: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.96

*** this is White 1, sit rep. 


         WHITE 1: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.97

Are they at a building.  Break.  With occupants in it.  They fired
shots to left and right.  Break. 


         VOICES: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.98

*** [Simultaneous transmissions.]


         VOICE: 
---------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.99

*** and we've got one coming over the wire towards us. 


         VOICES: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.100

*** [Simultaneous transmissions.]


         BLUE 5: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.101

Black 6, this is Blue 5.  I have one underneath the truck and one
behind the building.  Over. 


         VOICES: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.102

*** [Simultaneous transmissions.]


         BLUE 5: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.103

This is Blue 5 ***


         BLUE 5: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.104

This is Blue 5.  I have dismounts underneath the truck.  Over. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.105

[Expletive deleted.]


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.106

Roger.  Continue to observe.  Fire only when fired upon. 


         BLUE 5: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.107

*** standing behind the building ***


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.108

Roger.  One under the truck, one standing behind the building. 


         BLACK 3: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.109

Six, this is 3.  They did engage you, correct? 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.110

Roger. 


         GREEN 1: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.111

Black 6, this is Green 1.  We're right behind you.  Do you want us to
move up?  Over. 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.112

Roger.  Cover my left.  We've got one guy standing up.  I'm not sure
if he's going to surrender or what.  He's in clear sight, though.  He
must be trying. 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.113

Green, just stand back.  I've got Brads on the left already.  You're
good where you are. 


         VOICE: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.114

***


         BLACK 3: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.115

Six, this is 3.  You got them all?  They're contained now, correct? 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.116

Say again, 3? 


         BLACK 3: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.117

This is 3.  Roger.  You've got them contained right now, correct? 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.118

Affirmative.  They're not going anywhere. 


         BLACK 3: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.119

Okay.  Roger.  They're going to bring the PsyOps guys up


         WHITE 1: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.120

White-1 ***


         VOICES: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.121

*** [Simultaneous transmissions.]


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.122

Roger. 


         VOICES: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.123

*** [Simultaneous transmissions.]


         WHITE 2: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.124

Did the Brads dismount some people, over? 


         VOICES: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.125

*** [Simultaneous transmissions.]


         WHITE 1: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.126

White 1, roger.  Break. 


         WHITE 1: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.127

The enemy is dismounted to your right front. 


         VOICE: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.128

Roger. 


         WHITE 1: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.129

...  approximately a thousand meters. 


         WHITE 2: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.130

That's a roger.  We're watching.  I just wanted to make sure we had
some guys out there. 


         WHITE 1: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.131

White 1, roger.  Break.  ***


         VOICE: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.132

***


         WHITE 1: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.133

I'm watching the six *** building. 


         WHITE 2: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.134

This is White 2, roger. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.135

That's a Bradley there. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.136

Bradley? 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.137

Yeah. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.138

Okay, [Blue 5]. 


         BLUE 1: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.139

Black 6, Bravo-Blue is reporting dismounts down on the ground. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.140

Blue 1 don't know his people on the ground. 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.141

Blue 1, say again? 


         BLUE 1: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.142

Roger.  There's still dismounts on the ground. 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.143

Roger.  We've got two in sight right here.  They're not going
anywhere, though. 


         BLUE 1: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.144

Okay.  There's at least three. 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.145

One's making a run towards us here.  Let's see what he does. 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.146

Bravo Section, can you see what that guy's doing?  He's running
toward you. 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.147

He's stopped at the wire now. 


         WHITE 1: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.148

*** White 3, can you see any of this? 


         WHITE 3: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.149

White 3.  Say again?  Over. 


         WHITE 1: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.150

Roger.  Do you see dismounts on the ground in front of you, over? 
Break.  Enemy type? 


         WHITE 3: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.151

White 3.  Negative. 


         BLACK 3: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.152

Six, is there a vehicle out there with dismounts, over? 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.153

Bravo Section can see a truck.  I can see some dismounts.  Bravo,
what kind of vehicle they got? 


         BLUE 5: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.154

*** It's hard to say.  It might be an old pickup truck.  Break.  ***


         VOICE: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.155

***


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.156

He's not running any more.  I think he stopped behind a berm
somewhere there. 


         BLACK 3: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.157

Thunder 3 is somewhere up there by you. 


         BLACK 3: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.158

They saw two of them running to that truck. 


--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.159

TAPE STOPS/STARTS


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.160

Roger.  I don't think these guys know that we got them in our sights. 


--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.161

FATAL SHOTS FIRED


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.162

Cease fire.  Everybody hold your fire.  Hold your fire. 


         BLUE 1: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.163

Black 6, that's higher elements doing that. 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.164

Understand. 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.165

Three, get on higher net.  There's somebody else here engaging these
guys. 


         BLACK 3: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.166

That was Thunder 6. 


         BLACK 3: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.167

He wants you to come up on the net, 6. 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.168

Roger.  I'm switching. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.169

Oh, Thunder 6 done got in the [expletive deleted]. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.170

They did not fire up on him. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.171

Who is that, that's the CO?  That's the Colonel, ain't it. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.172

Yeah. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.173

Just wanted get in some shots. 


         BLACK 3: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.174

Black 6, you coming up on the net? 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.175

They're engaging him, [expletive deleted] him. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.176

I heard something that sounded like a main gun, [expletive deleted]. 


         VOICE: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.177

***


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.178

Where's my cigarette box at?  ***


--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.179

TAPE STOPS/STARTS


         VOICE: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.180

*** get away. 


         VOICE: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.181

What's your direction?  Over. 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.182

I don't have an orientation.  They're on the far side of the
building.  Over. 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.183

Bravo Section, are you in a position where you can see anything? 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.184

Blue, go ahead and sweep around the building and go after those guys. 


         BLACK 3: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.185

Six, did you monitor? 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.186

Roger, Blue's going to sweep. 


         VOICE: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.187

***


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.188

That's the PsyOps guys. 


         VOICE: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.189

***


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.190

Blue, did you monitor instructions specific? 


         BLUE 1: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.191

Roger. 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.192

Roger. 


         VOICE: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.193

***


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.194

[Expletive deleted], Blue in this [expletive deleted] again, boy. 


         VOICE: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.195

*** that truck ***


         BLACK 5: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.196

White, this is Black 5. 


         WHITE 4: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.197

White 4. 


         WHITE 4: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.198

Black 5, White 4. 


         BLACK 5: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.199

Roger.  Still no hot spots over by the tower? 


         WHITE 4: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.200

This is White 4, negative.  There are like two little-bitty hot
spots.  If they're not big enough to be people, I don't know what
they are. 


         BLACK 5: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.201

This 5, roger.  Continue to monitor. 


         WHITE 4: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.202

Four, roger. 


--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.203

TAPE STOPS/STARTS


         GREEN 1: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.204

I do not know who's on the ground.  But I see apparently two
individuals walking around, and it looks like they have gathered
three or four of the people, which I assume are the prisoners, and
they're up on their knees now. 


         BLACK 3: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.205

Roger.  They've got the prisoners on their knees *** they got the
prisoners.  Over. 


         BLACK 3: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.206

Six.  He said it says looks like two friendlies has rounded up three
or four of the EPWs.  Break.  They got them away from the burning
shack and on the ground and on their knees.  Over. 


         WHITE 4 (IC): 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.207

And now he's a [expletive deleted] hero, great.  Send him home. 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.208

Green, do you still see any dismounts or vehicles that are not
amongst our Bradleys, over? 


         GREEN 1: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.209

Ah, negative. 


         BLACK 6: 
--------------------------------------------------- Appendix I:3.0.210

Roger. 

[End of recording.]


SCOPE AND METHODOLOGY
========================================================== Appendix II

We conducted our investigation between March 1993 and November 1994. 
In doing so, we conducted over 108 interviews of current and former
U.S.  Army and Air Force personnel who were directly or indirectly
involved in the February 27, 1991, fratricide incident.  These
included the four surviving engineers, 3rd ACR Commander, 3rd
Squadron Commander, I Troop Commander, the second Investigating
Officer, and most crew members of the armored vehicles that were
party to or witnessed the incident.  The first Investigating Officer
declined our request for an interview.  We also interviewed
archivists at the division and regimental levels and at the Center
for Military History. 

We reviewed personal notebooks, a photograph, aerial imagery, and
diaries of many of the above personnel.  In addition, we reviewed
records and documents at the corps, division, regimental, and
squadron levels; the entire AR 15-6 investigation, its reviews, and
two related U.S.  Army Inspector General investigations; and
regulations governing Army investigations, as well as Army policies
regarding command and control.  We also examined historical records
and documents at the Center for Military History. 

During our investigation, we found a previously unknown audio radio
transmission recorded during the incident.  (See app.  I.) With the
FBI's assistance, we thoroughly analyzed the transmission.  The M1A1
Abrams Tank Commander also assisted us in transcribing the tape. 
Further, we sought assistance from the Defense Mapping Agency in
developing special mapping products. 

We formally briefed Senator Thompson's office on January 6, 1995, and
Senator Sasser's office on April 21, 1994, concerning our
investigation.  At the April 1994 briefing, we were requested to
brief Douglas Lance Fielder's immediate family.  We did so on April
22, 1994, in Nashville, Tennessee.  We also provided briefings to
U.S.  Army representatives on May 10, 1994, and June 3, 1994, on the
content of our investigation.  We did not obtain official agency
comments on a draft of the report. 


MAJOR CONTRIBUTORS TO THIS REPORT
========================================================= Appendix III

OFFICE OF SPECIAL INVESTIGATIONS,
WASHINGTON D.C. 

Barbara J.  Cart, Assistant Director for Defense and National
Security Crimes
Randy Stone, Senior Special Agent
M.  Jane Hunt, Senior Communications Analyst

ACCOUNTING AND INFORMATION
MANAGEMENT DIVISION, WASHINGTON,
D.C. 

Richard J.  Hynes, Senior Evaluator

OFFICE OF THE GENERAL COUNSEL,
WASHINGTON, D.C. 

Barbara Coles, Senior Attorney