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Rumsfeld testifying at Tillman hearing today

Former JCS chief Myers, CentCom leader Abizaid also among those appearing

Jul. 31, 2007 - 09:10PM   |   Last Updated: Jul. 31, 2007 - 09:10PM  |  
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Former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld will testify before the House Oversight Committee on Wednesday morning about what Defense Department leaders knew about the friendly fire death of Cpl. Pat Tillman, the committee confirmed late Tuesday.

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Former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld will testify before the House Oversight Committee on Wednesday morning about what Defense Department leaders knew about the friendly fire death of Cpl. Pat Tillman, the committee confirmed late Tuesday.

The hearing, "The Tillman Fratricide: What the Leadership of the Defense Department Knew," will begin at 10 a.m. in Room 2154 of the Rayburn House Office Building.

Also confirmed to appear are retired Gen. Richard Myers, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; retired Gen. John Abizaid, former commander of U.S. Central Command; and retired Gen. Bryan Douglas Brown, former commander of U.S. Special Operations Command.

The only invited speaker who has not confirmed his attendance is retired Lt. Gen. Philip Kensinger, former commander of Army Special Operations Command. According to the committee, a subpoena has been issued for Kensinger to appear.

The committee's announcement came hours after Army officials released findings from an investigation by a four-star general into officers in Tillman's chain of command and the role they played in the mistakes and errors made in reporting Tillman's April 22, 2004, friendly fire death in Afghanistan.

During a briefing at the Pentagon by Army Secretary Pete Geren and Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Richard Cody, Kensinger was singled out as the officer who was to blame for why the Tillman family and many Americans believe the Army tried to cover up the circumstances of the former professional football player's death.

Geren has called for an Army Grade Determination Review Board to determine if Kensinger should lose his third star, and officials have issued an official reprimand against Kensinger.

Wednesday's hearing will be the second such session by the oversight committee into Tillman's death. Tillman's mother, Mary, and brother Kevin, along with former soldier and prisoner of war Jessica Lynch testified during a http://www.armytimes.com/news/2007/04/army_tillmanlynch_070424/">highly charged hearing in April.

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