NBC News released a report Friday afternoon, based on interview with a senior congressional aide, who stated that four U.S. military members were killed in an ambush in Niger this month due to a “massive intelligence failure.”
On October 4, an estimated 40 to 50 militants ambushed 12 members of the U.S. military as they pursued some men on motorcycles, who lured them right into the ambush.
Four U.S. servicemen were killed, and two others were wounded in the attack, while they were on what was supposed to be a routine patrol which had been carried out nearly 30 times in the preceding three months.
The aide, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told NBC that there was no U.S. overhead surveillance of the mission, and there was no backup force available to come to the rescue should anything to wrong. Instead, French aircraft responded within 30 minutes to come to their aid.
Defense Secretary James Mattis reportedly met with Sen. John McCain, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Friday afternoon to discuss the devastating loss in Niger.
NBC reported: Congress also has many unanswered questions about what happened, he said, including about the specifics of the mission that day and the accounts lawmakers have been given about the timeline of the attack and rescue.
The aide said questions are being asked about whether the U.S. soldiers were intentionally delayed in the village they were visiting.
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