In Brief—A brief review of the known facts surrounding Cpl. Pat Tillman’s death in April of 2004 leads to the author’s conclusion that in light of the lies by the American military as well as numerous undisputed facts, Tillman was deliberately murdered by one or more individuals in the American military. The case remains uninvestigated by independent sources and unsolved.
Before laying out the facts supporting my view that Pat Tillman was murdered by the American military, you should know that the Pentagon has engaged in a concerted campaign to label those questioning the military version of the Tillman story as “conspiracy theorists.” If their campaign is correct then why has the Pentagon done its utmost to impede an independent investigation and obscure the facts of the case? Surely they have nothing to hide. If that is the case, then why do all the officers involved have a curious lack of recall or “fuzzy” memories of what has been a major incident? You readers will get to decide.
In writing my blog piece on propaganda, my thoughts returned to Pat Tillman, former professional football player who died under suspicious circumstances in Afghanistan in 2004. A review of the facts leads a logical person to the conclusion that Cpl. Pat Tillman was deliberately murdered by the American military. Whether the order for the hit came from the military commanders in Afghanistan or from higher in the chain of command is speculation, but American history leads an unbiased person to believe that this was murder.
First some personal history. I am a skeptic (“realist” is a better word), an atheist (“freethinker” is a more accurate way to put it), a lawyer interested in evidence and an experienced person who for many years has read widely and voraciously. Those who know me know that I place a high value on honesty and personal integrity. Thus, my conclusion is based on realistic research into the known facts of the Tillman case.
The Facts of the Tillman Case—
Now to the facts. A fact is defined by Merriam-Webster as something that truly exists or happens; something that has actual existence; a true piece of information. As frequently pointed out, we are all entitled to our own opinions, but we are not entitled to our own facts. These are the facts supported by credible evidence.
- Pat Tillman has been characterized by family, friends and teammates as uncommonly intelligent, well-read, an atheist, a person willing to openly state his views, patriotic in the best sense of the word and willing to go the extra mile, whether on the football field or in the military.
- The American military is blatantly Christian, “Christian soldiers” as stated in the old hymn. General William Boykin’s (now retired) fundamentalist hyper-Christian views are widely shared in the military as has been the case at least since I was in the army in the 1950’s when even the Jewish men were marched to the Christian chapel on Sundays.
- Tillman’s atheistic views were openly expressed and resented by some in the military. Those views and the views of his family are still denigrated by members of the military.
- Tillman, the former poster boy for the Bush/Cheney Iraq war, was known to have become opposed to the waste of lives and treasure as well as the illegality of the war in Iraq. He was planning to meet with Iraq War critic Noam Chomsky on his return from Afghanistan. Chomsky has confirmed this.
- Immediately after Tillman’s murder, and in violation of military protocols, Tillman’s uniform was destroyed, his body armor, helmet, his personal journal in which he had recorded his thoughts on Afghanistan and Iraq vanished without a trace and even part of his destroyed brain disappeared.
- The military knowingly and deliberately engaged in lying about the circumstances of Tillman’s death. They first said there was enemy fire and Tillman was killed in the firefight. According to those present, even his family was told this lie. When the first lie quickly unraveled, the military then said that it was confused at first and then told a second story: that Tillman was “accidentally” killed by “friendly fire.” In the “official” Pentagon reports, this is where the story now rests. Was this yet another lie as suggested by the evidence?
- Attracted by the news reports of the lies being told by the military, I perused the Internet and came across the autopsy report presumably posted by the military doctor(s) who had examined Tillman’s body. Though I can’t recall the date, it was likely later in 2004. The report showed the hole in the center of Tillman’s forehead just above the eyebrows. As I recall it, the hole or holes made it difficult to determine if it was one or more closely placed holes. This autopsy report abruptly disappeared within days at most, and I was unable to locate it thereafter despite repeated thorough searches. The circumstances raised my level of suspicion that all was not as it seemed.
- The military autopsy report stated that the size and placement of the wound(s) indicated that the gun(s) must have been no further than thirty meters away. Later reports stated that the gun(s) were likely no more than ten yards from Tillman.
- Reports of the night patrol during which Tillman was killed later mentioned that as many as three snipers were assigned. This was unusual and, given that this fact was not reported until considerably later and that snipers do not operate at night, it was doubly unusual.
- A Freedom of Information Act request showed that military lawyers exchanged congratulatory emails after criminal investigations into Tillman’s suspicious death were frustrated by all questioned officers’ claims of faulty memories led to abandonment. Query: Could this have been because the belated “friendly fire” story concealed an execution? Let logic lead you.
A Few Words on Wikipedia—
A few words on Wikipedia are in order here. Wikipedia entries are made by volunteer contributors who are allegedly well-informed on the material they enter. That some contributors may be misinformed or have a particular axe to grind is not out of the question. A writer who frequently comments in The Passive Voice blog has recently said that her entry contains a mistake that she has unsuccessfully attempted to correct.
Thus, I suggest that the “official” report by the Pentagon in Wikipedia be read with skepticism, particularly since the military officers involved all claim to have only fuzzy recollections of a matter that received major attention during and after Pat Tillman’s death. Mass amnesia?
Having said that about the military version—the only “official” version, by the way—of Tillman’s death, please note in Wikipedia the fuller information revealed by the Associated Press’s Freedom of Information Act request. So you understand the implication of the revelations, the Pentagon only provided this information under the compulsion of the Act, not freely.
Read through the facts stated and see where you come out. In my view, Pat Tillman was deliberately murdered possibly because he threatened to rip away the rosy façade surrounding the illegal Bush/Cheney Iraq War and even the nasty war that still claims lives in Afghanistan and the surrounding area. Furthermore, I believe that his avowed atheism could also have been a factor. As suggested in the article, there may be others of a more personal nature.
Readers may recall my piece on propaganda. The Tillman story more than amply meets the definition of propaganda. Nations, and particularly the military, need their heroes to buttress their calls to war. Pat Tillman was the American government’s designated hero…until the Tillman story blew up in their faces. But that doesn’t bring Pat Tillman back.
In light of the seriousness of the Tillman case, you readers can decide whether this piece should get wide distribution via Facebook and other social media. Though it has been ten years since Pat Tillman’s life was taken from him, murder has no statute of limitations, and maybe a loud enough message will get the case reopened and an independent investigation can lead to prosecution of the guilty parties.