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In a memo sent to Gen. John Abizaid on April 29, 2004, Gen. Stan McChrystal warns him that the possibility that Pat Tillman was killed by friendly fire could be embarrassing for President Bush and the secretary of the Army. The text of the memo has been retyped by MSNBC.com, so the format does not exactly match the original. The X's indicate material that was blacked out in the copy of the document received by NBC News.

0 292234Z APR 04
FM TASK FORCE
TO RUCAACC/USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB PL//CDR//
INFO RUCQSAS/USSOCOM FP MACDILL AFB FL//CDR//
RUERHNB/CDRUSASOC FT BRAGG NC//CDR
RUEPVBT/TASK FORCE
BT
XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX PERSONAL FOR CDR USCENTCOM CDR
USSCOM CDR USASOC
DELIVER DURING NORMAL DUTY HOURS XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
DO NOT TRANSMIT VIA OPINTEL BROADCAST
OPER/OEF//
MSGID/GENADMIN/TASK FORCE   //
SUBJ/P4 CONCERNING INFORMATION ON CORPORAL TILLMANS DEATH//

RMKS/SIR, IN THE AFTERMATH OF CORPORAL PATRICK TILLMAN’S UNTIMELY YET HEROIC DEATH IN AFGHANISTAN ON 22 APRIL 04, IT IS ANTICIPATED THAT A 15-6 INVESTIGATION NEARING COMPLETION WILL FIND THAT IT IS  HIGHLY POSSIBLE THAT CORPORAL TILLMAN WAS KILLED BY FRIENDLY FIRE.
THIS POTENTIAL FINDING IS EXACERBATED BY THE UNCONFIRMED BUT SUSPECTED REPORTS THAT POTUS AND THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY MIGHT INCLUDE COMMENTS ABOUT CORPORAL TILLMAN’S HEROISM AND HIS APPROVED SILVER STAR MEDAL IN SPEECHES CURRENTLY BEING PREPARED, NOT KNOWING THE SPECIFICS SURROUNDING HIS DEATH.
THE POTENTIAL THAT HE MIGHT HAVE BEEN KILLED BY FRIENDLY FIRE IN NO WAY DETRACTS FROM HIS WITNESSED HEROIS OR THE RECOMMENDED PERSONAL DECORATION FOR VALOR IN THE FACE OF THE ENEMY.  CORPORAL TILLMAN WAS KILLED IN A COMPLICATED BATTLESPACE GEOMETRY INVOLVING TWO SEPARATE RANGER VEHICLE SERIALS TRAVERSING THROUGH SEVERE TERRAIN ALONG A WINDING 500-600 FOOT DEFILE IN WHICH FRIENDLY FORCES WERE FIRED UPON BY MULTIPLE ENEMY POSITIONS.  CORPORAL TILLMAN DISEMBARKED FROM HIS VEHICLE, AND IN SUPPORT OF HIS FELLOW RANGERS AND DEMONSTRATING GREAT CONCERN FOR THEIR WELFARE OVER CARE FOR HIS OWN SAFETY ENTERED THE ENEMY KILL-ZONE INTO WHICH BOTH ENEMY AND FRIENDLY FIRE IMPACTED. I FELT THAT IT WAS ESSENTIAL THAT YOU RECEIVED THIS INFORMATION AS SOON AS WE DETECTED IT IN ORDER TO PRECLUDE ANY UNKNOWING STATEMENTS BY OUR COUNTRY’S LEADERS WHICH MIGHT CAUSE PUBLIC EMBARRASSMENT IF THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF CORPORAL TILLMAN’S DEATH BECOMES PUBLIC.//
DECL/DERI:DRV. FROM XXXXXXX/-
/INSTXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX//
DT

CLASSIFIED BY: XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
REASON XXXXXXXXXXXX
DECLASSIFY ON: XXX

CLASSIFICATION: XXXXXXXXXXXXXX
CAVEATS: XXXXXXXXXXXX
TERMS XXXXXXXXXXX

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