In a rare move, the Commandant of the Marine Corps has recommended that two senior Marine generals retire because of their failure to adequately protect a large base in southern Afghanistan from a Taliban attack last September in which two Marines were killed and six Marine jets were destroyed.
Eight other Marines and eight British troops were also injured in the attack.
The recommendation from Gen. James Amos that two Marine generals responsible for the base retire in effect means they are being fired.
Under the cover of darkness, 15 Taliban fighters dressed in U.S. Army uniforms cut a hole into the perimeter fence of Camp Bastion, the sprawling joint U.S.-British base located in southern Afghanistan’s Helmand Province. The Taliban fighters then snuck onto the base’s flight-line, where they began to destroy Marine aircraft housed at the base, eventually destroying six Marine Harrier fighter jets and severely damaging two others. It was the largest loss of U.S. aircraft in the entire war in Afghanistan.
The two officers Amos is holding accountable for the attack are Maj. Gen. Charles M. Gurganus, the top Marine commander in Afghanistan at the time of the attack, and Maj. Gen. Gregg A. Sturdevant, who headed Marine aviation units there.
- Two Marine generals fired in wake of brazen Taliban attack on Camp Bastion (stripes.com)
- 2 Generals Forced to Retire for Afghan Breach (abcnews.go.com)
- US: Taliban attack could have been foreseen (thenewstribune.com)
- Two Marine generals fired for security lapses in Afghanistan – The News International (thenews.com.pk)
- Two Marine Generals Asked to Retire for 2012 Attack in Afghanistan (abcnews.go.com)