Three U.S. soldiers slaughtered in a grisly kidnapping-murder plot south of Baghdad last June were not properly protected during a mission that was poorly planned or executed, a military investigation has concluded.
Three 101st Airborne Division soldiers were killed in the June 16, 2006, attack. Spc. David J. Babineau, of Springfield, Massachusetts, was found dead at the scene, and two others -- Pfc. Kristian Menchaca of Houston, Texas, and Pfc. Thomas Tucker of Madras, Oregon -- were abducted. Their mutilated bodies were found three days later, tied together and booby-trapped with bombs
Daugherty concluded that the platoon did not get the supervision or direction it needed. And he said the unit was hurt by the loss of 10 troops, including several leaders, who were killed in action as well as by the need to shuffle the platoon's leadership three times.
The platoon also had been dogged by an ongoing investigation into the rape and killing of an Iraqi girl and the killing of her family by several other members of the unit.