Four US Commandos Charged in Strangling of Army Green Beret in Africa

Sergeant Melgar, a graduate of Texas Tech University who joined the Army in 2012, was assigned to the Third Special Forces Group, based at Fort Bragg, N.C., the same unit whose soldiers were attacked by a much larger and heavily armed group of Islamic State fighters near the border between Niger and Mali in October 2017.

According to military officials, Sergeant Melgar was part of a small team in Bamako that was assigned to help provide intelligence about Islamic militancies in Mali to the United States ambassador there, Paul A. Folmsbee, to protect American personnel against attacks. The sergeant also helped assess which Malian Army troops might be trained and equipped to build a counterterrorism force.

Sergeant Melgar, a native of Lubbock, Tex., was about four months into what military officials said was a six-month tour in Mali.

The Navy SEALs were in the country on a clandestine mission to support French and Malian counterterrorism forces battling Al Qaeda’s branch in North and West Africa, known as Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, as well as smaller cells aligned with Al Qaeda or the Islamic State. The Americans helped provide intelligence for missions, and had participated in at least two such operations in Mali before Sergeant Melgar’s death.

During that period in Mali, tensions grew between Sergeant Melgar and the other commandos.

The two Navy SEALs were under scrutiny in the theft of money from a fund used to pay confidential informants. An American service member who knew Sergeant Melgar said he was under the impression that the sergeant had stumbled on the money-skimming scheme and reported it to the authorities, angering the Navy commandos. Sergeant Melgar’s suspicions were first reported in The Daily Beast.

At about 5 a.m. on June 4, after planning their assault, the four commandos confronted Sergeant Melgar at the team house, according to military investigators. After restraining the sergeant with duct tape, military investigators said, Petty Officer DeDolph, a former professional mixed martial arts fighter, put Sergeant Melgar into a chokehold.

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Here’s how Steelers said goodbye to Le’Veon Bell: They ransacked his locker

Bell declined his final opportunity to report to the team – his remaining possessions were being plundered like a scene from “Lord of the Flies.”’ data-reactid=”17″>But he never did. And by 3:30 p.m. – roughly 24 hours after Bell declined his final opportunity to report to the team – his remaining possessions were being plundered like a scene from “Lord of the Flies.”

Ben Roethlisberger said. “He was a great teammate and a great football player. To each their own on what they want to walk away from.”’ data-reactid=”47″>“I texted him [Tuesday] before the deadline, telling him I was hoping he was going to show up, and if he decided not to, I wished him nothing but the best,” Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger said. “He was a great teammate and a great football player. To each their own on what they want to walk away from.”

Did Bell text back?

“Nope,” Roethlisberger said.

That lack of communication has been a big part of the subtext in Bell’s divorce from this Steelers franchise. He didn’t just skip a season – he skipped out on speaking with a majority of the roster, and basically the entire front office and coaching staff. And it would be wrong to assume there isn’t a residue of hurt feelings over how this has all went down. After all, Bell and the Steelers did some great things together. And they still might have gotten to the mountaintop together in 2018. Instead, the only mountain they shared was the stack of items from his locker that ended up getting dispersed among his former teammates.

It’s that kind of disappointment that lends itself to some nuanced shade. Like when Steelers players are asked if they could skip an entire season in their prime – for any reason – and they turned that question into a lesson on battle-tested camaraderie.

“[Skipping a season] would be tough,” Roethlisberger said. “Part of the great thing about this sport is this band of brothers and this group of guys in here. Being with them is kind of what keeps me coming back after so many years, too. But like I said, to each their own. Each guy has their own motives and motivations. I can’t comment on [Le’Veon]. I am glad that we won’t have to talk about this anymore, though.”

Not talking about it “anymore” is a stretch, largely because there are still hurt feelings here. Some anger and disappointment. Some sense of abandonment. And more than anything, unanswered questions. The kind of questions and unknowns that ended up sprouting theories in the hallways of the franchise. There’s no shortage of those inside the Steelers, by the way.


Ben Roethlisberger, pictured with Le’Veon Bell in happier times in 2016, is still awaiting a text reply from his former teammate. (AP)

chosen to tweet a “fairwell” to Miami and then return to Pittsburgh this week – only to skip Tuesday’s reporting deadline.’ data-reactid=”79″>Whatever his reasons, Steelers players haven’t been left with answers. To the point that even Wednesday, some of Bell’s longtime teammates still had no clue why he had chosen to tweet a “fairwell” to Miami and then return to Pittsburgh this week – only to skip Tuesday’s reporting deadline.

Cameron Heyward said Wednesday. “The guys that are coming in [every day]. That’s all we can control. It sucks when a guy doesn’t have to answer his own questions. But if they’re not on the team, I’m not worried about it. … I’m not going to cry over spilled milk. We’ve got capable guys. If one guy’s not here, that’s doesn’t stop the goal. The team moves on.”’ data-reactid=”83″>“Talk about the 53 [players] in here,” Steelers defensive end Cameron Heyward said Wednesday. “The guys that are coming in [every day]. That’s all we can control. It sucks when a guy doesn’t have to answer his own questions. But if they’re not on the team, I’m not worried about it. … I’m not going to cry over spilled milk. We’ve got capable guys. If one guy’s not here, that’s doesn’t stop the goal. The team moves on.”

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