Pentagon leaders didn't know US troops were injured in Iran's missile attack until a week later, DoD says
Pentagon leaders didn't know US troops were injured in an Iranian missile attack on US and coalition forces until a week after the attack, the Defense Department said Friday. Eleven service members with concussion symptoms were transported to facilities in Germany and Kuwait for additional screening and treatment, US Central Command said Friday. The revelation comes days after President Donald Trump insisted that "no Americans were harmed" in the attack. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
Pentagon leadership had no idea that nearly a dozen US troops were injured in the Iranian missile attack on US and coalition forces in Iraq until a week after the attack, the Department of Defense said Friday. Despite President Donald Trump's assurances that "no Americans were harmed" in the barrage that damaged parts of two Iraqi bases housing US and coalition forces, US Central Command revealed in an emailed statement that "several [US service members] were treated for concussion symptoms from the blast and are still being assessed." Eleven service members who were at Al Asad air base the night of the attack were transported to either Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany or Camp Arifjan in Kuwait. Some observers suggested that the Pentagon intentionally sat on this information, possibly for political reasons. But a Pentagon spokesperson insisted that was not case. "This idea that there was an effort to de-emphasize injuries for some sort of amorphous political agenda doesn't hold water," the spokesman said, according to Reuters. The Pentagon said Secretary of Defense Mark Esper was not aware of the injuries until Thursday, one week after the attack. Esper was informed by Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. John Hyten, who interrupted a meeting Esper was in to give him an update from Central Command, Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman and Defense Department press secretary Alyssa Farah told reporters Friday, according to Task & Purpose. Farah said that typically only cases where life, limb, or eyesight are threatened are reported to the Pentagon. Hoffman added that some service members did not show or report symptoms until later. The spokesman added that Trump would not have known about the injuries because he gets his information from Esper. The Iranian missile attack was a response to a US drone strike a week earlier that killed Iranian Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani, who led Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps' Quds Force. After the missile attack, Brig. Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh, commander of the IRGC Aerospace Forces, claimed without evidence that "tens of US troops have likely been killed and wounded."SEE ALSO: Trump obsessively hunts 'celebrity' terrorist targets and ignores other threats to the US, former CIA officer says Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: A groundbreaking discovery reveals that wounds heal 60% faster if they occurred during the day instead of at night
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The total number of service members in Iraq diagnosed with traumatic brain injury (TBI) is now...The total number of service members in Iraq diagnosed with traumatic brain injury (TBI) is now 50, a Pentagon spokesman said in a CNN report. The TBI diagnoses follows a missile strike at the Iraqi military's Al-Asad Airbase, where US and coalition troops were present. Fifteen of the 16 US service members who were recently diagnosed returned back to duty in Iraq. Officials said that the number of diagnoses is expected to change. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. Sixteen additional cases of traumatic brain injury (TBI) have been diagnosed amongst US troops stationed in Iraq, bringing the total number of service members diagnosed to 50, a Pentagon spokesman said in a CNN report on Tuesday. The TBI diagnoses follows a missile strike at the Iraqi military's Al-Asad Airbase, where US and coalition troops were present. Iranian forces on January 8, launched a barrage of missiles at the airbase and other US-locations in the country, but no American or coalition forces were killed. The Iranian missile strike was a retaliatory gesture after the US conducted a drone strike killing the regime's Quds Force commander, Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani. US officials, including President Donald Trump, said at the time that no US troops were harmed. It wasn't until a week later that the Defense Department corrected the record and said "several were treated for concussion symptoms from the blast and are still being assessed." A total of 34 US troops were initially diagnosed with concussions and TBI. Eleven US service members were transported to medical facilities in Germany and Kuwait for additional screening and treatment. Fifteen of the 16 US service members who were recently diagnosed returned back to duty in Iraq, according to CNN. Officials reportedly said that the number of diagnoses is expected to change. Pentagon officials reasoned that the fluctuation in the number of diagnoses were attributed to TBI, which they claim "comes over time." According to the US's Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), TBIs are defined as "a disruption in the normal function of the brain that can be caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head, or penetrating head injury." The CDC says that the severity of each TBI case can range from mild, "a brief change in mental status or consciousness," to severe, "an extended period of unconsciousness or amnesia after the injury." Despite the seriousness of the condition, Trump downplayed the diagnoses and likened them to "headaches." "I heard that they had headaches, and a couple of other things," Trump said during a public press conference in Davos, Switzerland, last Wednesday. "But I would say, and I can report, it's not very serious. Not very serious." Trump's remarks drew concern from medical experts and veterans, including the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), one of the largest veterans organizations in the country. "The Veterans of Foreign Wars cannot stand idle on this matter," VFW National Commander William Schmitz said in a statement to Task & Purpose. "The VFW expects an apology from the president to our service men and women for his misguided remarks."SEE ALSO: US military's Special Operations Command says its newest recruits may have an 'unhealthy sense of entitlement' Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: We can thank the US military for the smelliest weapon in the world
A Pentagon spokesman said that eight of the affected service members returned to the United States...A Pentagon spokesman said that eight of the affected service members returned to the United States from an American military hospital in Germany.
Trump downplayed injuries: ‘I heard they had headaches’Expert calls president’s comment ‘insulting and disrespectful’Thirty-four US soldiers...Trump downplayed injuries: ‘I heard they had headaches’Expert calls president’s comment ‘insulting and disrespectful’Thirty-four US soldiers have been diagnosed with concussion or traumatic brain injury from an 8 January Iranian missile attack on their base in Iraq, the Pentagon has revealed.The Pentagon spokesman, Jonathan Hoffman, said on Friday that eight service members who had been previously transported to Germany had been moved to the United States. Continue reading...