WASHINGTON (CNN) – Soldiers watch as a U.S. aircraft is about to drop a 500 pound bomb on what the air crew thinks is a group of Taliban fighters, but in a rare mistake, the bomb hits the U.S. outpost instead.
Video has just come to light of this September 2012 incident in eastern Afghanistan; another reminder of the uncertainty of combat.
“This was a major mistake from a targeting perspective. The way targeting works is you have to get the coordinates right,” said Col. Cedric Leighton, U.S. Air Force (Ret.).
An investigation determined the aircrew had the wrong coordinates.
Leighton said, “Unfortunately in wars, this does happen, but with precision-guided munitions, it’s a much rarer occurrence than it used to be.”
Everyone quickly moves to check on each other.
CNN was told that no one was hurt, and investigators ruled it was an accident, so no one was punished, but it could have been a terrible tragedy.