Four US soldiers died in an attack on the joint US-Nigerien military patrol on Oct. 4, 2017. The US offers a reward of $5 million for information that leads to the arrest or conviction of the militants who were involved in the attack. The US Department of State’s Reward for Justice Program has also offered $5 million for information on Adnan Abu Walid al-Sahrawi, the leader of the Islamic State in the Greater Sahara.
The Islamic State in the Greater Sahara is an offshoot of the ISIS. This organization claimed the attack on the joint US-Nigerien military patrol in which a US team for special operations and Nigerian troops were targeted. The attack was carried out near the village of Tongo Tongo, Niger.
The US and Nigerien soldiers were on a patrol for pursing an ISIS commander, Doundoun Cheffou. Four US soldiers named Sgt. First Class Jeremiah Johnson, Staff Sgt. Bryan Black, Staff Sgt. Dustin Wright and Sgt. La David Johnson lost their lives when the military was attacked. The soldiers were on the assignment of Army Special Forces Operational Detachment Alpha 3212. The investigation found that the patrol was planned badly as there were flaws in the planning prior to the patrol.
The paperwork of the concept of operation was not clear to the team. The team was also not authorized for carrying out the missions of capturing and killing. The investigation found that the officers who filed the paperwork were not being deceptive. Maj. Gen. Roger Cloutier, the former chief of staff of AFRICOM, said, “Our forces were outnumbered approximately three to one.” The enemy achieved a tactic surprise in that attack and outnumbered the US and Nigerien soldiers, he added.
Maj. Gen. Marcus Hicks, the commanding officer of Special Operations forces in Africa, and many other officers were reprimanded after the attack. The soldiers who lost their lives received the award of valor. The US authorities are still looking for information related to the people behind that ambush and they offered a huge reward for information.