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Read and answer the questions from Case Study 1.2. Case Stduy Questions 1. Were

by | Apr 27, 2022 | Business and Management


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Read and answer the questions from Case Study 1.2.
Case Stduy Questions
1. Were Army leaders justified in trying to conceal the real cause of Tillman’s death? Why or why not?
2. Does Pat Tillman remain a hero despite the fact that he died by friendly fire?
3. Was this a case of a series of mistakes by Army officials or an organized cover-up?
4. Would you punish high-ranking officers and officials, including the Secretary of Defense, for what happened in this case?
5. What leadership and followership ethics lessons do you take from this case?
You responses to the questions at the end of each case study should be put into an academic paper.
Your paper should be 5-6 pages in length and follow APA writing standards. Please do not copy and paste the questions into your paper and answer them, rather use the questions to organize the flow of your paper.
Be sure to Include a title page, introduction, summary, and references, APA format, be sure to include and reference specific articles located in the learning activity, titled, Leadership and Shadow.
Case Study:
Former National Football League star Pat Tillman was an authentic American hero. Tillman turned down a 3-year, $3.6-million contract extension with the Arizona Cardinals to join the Army with his brother Kevin after the September 11 terrorist attacks. His determination to defend his country earned him a letter of thanks from then–Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and praise from talk show hosts and ordinary citizens. Tillman took part in the invasion of Iraq and then was transferred to Afghanistan. On April 22, 2004, the two Tillman brothers were part of a patrol that came under enemy fire in a canyon in southeastern Afghanistan. The unit split into two sections (Kevin in one group, Pat in the other) during the battle. In the confusion, soldiers from Kevin’s section began firing at Pat’s group. Pat Tillman was killed while trying to stop the shooting. Attempts to cover up the fact that Tillman died due to friendly fire began almost immediately. Fellow soldiers were ordered not to tell Kevin what happened and to burn Pat’s equipment, including his protective vest. (These items are supposed to be preserved as evidence in friendly fire cases.) After the first reports about the incident went out on military radio, phone and Internet service was cut off to prevent anyone from discussing the incident. The initial casualty report said that Tillman died by enemy fire. A doctor at a field hospital reported that Tillman received cardiopulmonary resuscitation and intensive care before his life ended (even though the bullets had gone through his head). The initial press release implied that enemy forces had killed the Army Ranger, claiming that he died “when his patrol vehicle came under attack.”1 The most blatant distortions came in Tillman’s Silver Star commendation, the third most prestigious military honor. “Above the din of battle, Cpl. Tillman was heard issuing fire commands to take the fight to the enemy,” the recommendation claims.2 It also praises Tillman for getting his group through the ambush, which ignores the fact that Tillman and another soldier were killed while two others were wounded. At Tillman’s well-publicized funeral, top military officials kept silent as speakers declared that the former football star had died at the hands of the Taliban. Eventually the truth about Tillman’s death came out. Army coroners refused to certify that the death was from enemy fire and asked Army criminal investigators to examine the case. The Tillman family began pressing for the facts. An Army inspector general’s investigation found a “series of mistakes” in how the incident was reported but no organized attempt at a cover-up. Four soldiers were given minor punishments, and one had his military pay reduced. The inspector general criticized three generals for their actions, and one was censured for giving a false report and failing to demonstrate leadership. In congressional hearings on the matter, House committee members released an e-mail suggesting that the top-ranking general in Iraq and Afghanistan, General John Abizaid, as well as Defense Secretary Rumsfeld, knew the true cause of Tillman’s death within days. (Abizaid testified that he learned a week later, and Rumsfeld claimed that he didn’t get word until three weeks after the generals.) Tillman perished at a bad time for the military, which is probably what prompted the deceit. The war in Iraq was going badly, and the prison abuse scandal at Abu Ghraib was headline news. Officials apparently hoped to stir up patriotism and support for the war while avoiding bad publicity. They used the story of Private Jessica Lynch in much the same way. The Pentagon claimed that Lynch fought back when captured by Iraqi forces and was rescued in a dramatic hospital raid. In truth, she never fired a shot (she was knocked unconscious by the crash of her vehicle), and hospital staff offered no resistance. “The story of the little girl Rambo from the hills who went down fighting is not true,” Lynch says. “The bottom line is, the American people are capable of determining their own ideas for heroes, and they don’t need to be told elaborate lies.”3 Pat Tillman’s Silver Star medal will not be taken back, although the wording of the commendation will be rewritten. A Pentagon spokesperson acknowledged mistakes in the case and has apologized on behalf the U.S. Army. However, members of the Tillman family remain bitter about the Pentagon’s dishonesty and how the tragedy of Pat’s death was turned into an “inspirational message” designed to bolster U.S. foreign policy.4 They point out that when the truth was revealed, “Pat was no longer of use as a sales asset.”5
Notes 1. Colle, Z. (2007, April 21). Evidence of cover-up key to Tillman hearings. The San Francisco Chronicle, p. A1. 2. Colle, Z., & Collier, R. (2007, April 25). Lawmakers see cover-up, vow to probe Tillman death. The San Francisco Chronicle, p. A1. 3. Cornwell, R. (2007, April 26). Secrets and lies: How war heroes returned to haunt Pentagon. The Independent (London). 4. Collier, R., & Epstein, E. (2007, March 27). Tillmans assail Pentagon report. The San Francisco Chronicle, p. A1. 5. Krakauer, J. (2009). Where men win glory: The odyssey of Pat Tillman. New York: Doubleday, p. 319.


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