Now that a movie is coming out based on the book lone survivor, I’m guessing there will be more attention brought to this issue.
I read Luttrell’s book a few years ago and liked it, but a few things stood out for me.
(I’m going to assume anyone reading this has a basic idea of the story).
When the 4 SEALs came across the civilians, there was a vote on whether to execute them. The SEAL commander’s father said that wasn’t something his son would do (hold a vote as a commander of a small SEAL team, or execute civilians). Luttrell mostly just used that situation as an opportunity to take political shots at liberals. I have no idea if there even was a vote. It seems unlikely that for one thing, a navy SEAL team would have a vote (I doubt it, being a military org) or that they would even consider the murder of civilians just to complete an operation.
Another thing was Luttrell claimed they had nothing to tie the civilians up with. That seems totally unbelievable to me. They had no zip ties, no velcro, no straps, no shoelaces, no extra fabric? That can’t be true. I’m not even in the military but I usually carry a couple things on me that could be used to tie someone up in a pinch (not that that comes up much in my life anymore).
Now in the movie (at least according to the trailer) they portray Luttrell as being opposed to killing the civilians. In the book Luttrell is very pro killing the civilians, he just votes against it because he fears a backlash in the (his words) liberal media.
Add in the fact that this site, which is supposedly based on info lifted from wikileaks:
States only 8-10 taliban fighters were there, not the 20-100 that are normally presented in the story.
I have no idea what really happened. A lot of things don’t add up.
A vote to kill civilians being treated like a serious issue
Making that decision (rather than abandoning the op after being spotted) the reason the op went bad.
The claim they had no tools to restrain civilians
The claim that there were far more enemy fighters than were later reported (again, 8-10 was the report given later)