Nightly News | August 07, 2011
CARL QUINTANILLA, anchor: Tonight we're learning more about the attack on a US helicopter in Afghanistan that claimed the lives of 30 Americans in the deadliest single incident since the 10-year war began. For that we go to NBC 's Atia Abawi in Kabul . Atia , good evening.
ATIA ABAWI reporting: Good evening, Carl . Well, a senior defense official has confirmed that all remains have been recovered from the crash site, but the effort to retrieve the wreckage is still under way. Amid the confusion and grief, new details emerged today about the deadly attack. The Chinook helicopter carrying 30 Americans and eight Afghans on board was engaged in a rescue mission when it was shot down. US officials say the chopper was brought into the village of Tangi Joy Zarin and Wardak province southwest of Kabul to help a US Army Ranger unit that came under fire as it was searching for a Taliban leader. The rescue team reportedly completed its mission subduing the attackers and it was leaving in the helicopter when it was hit.
General BARRY McCAFFREY, Retired (NBC News Military Analyst): There were a handful of Taliban probably employing an RPG-7 , which is 1960s technology direct fire anti-tank rocket. They brought down this very sophisticated helicopter.
ABAWI: Today a villager described what he saw.
Unidentified Man: After it crashed it caught fire, a huge fire. We were not able to come out during the night because Americans were around. In the morning we saw the American bodies.
ABAWI: The 38 killed included 22 US Navy SEALs , five Army air crewmen, three US Air Force airman, as well as seven Afghan commandos and an Afghan interpreter. A dog, part of a Navy SEAL team, was also killed. Some of the Americans were from SEAL Team Six , the same unit that hunted down and killed Osama bin Laden . Today NATO forces were recovering remnants of the helicopter as American and Afghan troops continued to battle insurgents in the area.
Man: The helicopters are still patrolling over the village, and right now the Taliban are fighting with them.
ABAWI: This remote mountainous region is filled with fighters from the Haqqani network, a brutal and deadly group committed to killing foreigners and anyone who gets in their way. The violence continued in Afghanistan today, as NATO announced the deaths of four more service members in the south and east of the country. Carl :
QUINTANILLA: Atia Abawi joining us from Kabul tonight. Atia , thanks.
CARL QUINTANILLA, anchor: Tonight we're hearing from the families of some of the Americans killed in that attack.