Nigerien army soldiers shoot targets under 60mm illumination mortar rounds as a part of Exercise Flintlock 2017 in Diffa, Niger, March 9, 2017.

Photo by Staff Sgt. Kulani Lakanaria

"Poor training, culture of risk" led to deaths in Niger ambush

April 26, 2018 - 10:44 am

The Department of Defense's investigation into the deaths of four soldiers in Niger last year, points to several mistakes that led to the deathly ambush.

The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday evening some of the details in the classified report of the events surrounding the Oct. 3, 2017 attack in Niger, where U.S. Special Forces members were on a patrol with Nigerien soldiers.

The investigation found that “poor training, complacency and a culture of excessive risk contributed” to their deaths, the Wall Street Journal reported.

The Journal spoke to officials with knowledge of the more than 6,000 page report, which has still not been released publicly as families of the fallen are still being briefed on its contents.

NPR is also reporting that it has been sent to Congress.

The report gave no recommendation for punishment to anyone involved.

It also included several directives from Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis to the military, especially the Army, Special Forces and US Africa Command,  to “provide guidance on training, operational discipline and to reinforce normal protocols within the chain of command,” the Wall Street Journal article states.