The Army has reopened its investigation into a decorated former Green Beret accused of killing an unarmed suspected bombmaker in Afghanistan.
Maj. Matthew Golsteyn confirmed the new investigation in an email to Army Times. The news, first reported by the Washington Post, comes after Golsteyn appeared in a Fox News television interview in October and acknowledged that he had killed a Taliban bombmaker during the bloody battle of Marja in February 2010, according to the Post.
Golsteyn was deployed to Afghanistan as part of 3rd Special Forces Group.
In a letter to Army Secretary Eric Fanning and Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley, Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., called on the senior Army leaders to "fix this stupidity."
Hunter called Golsteyn "a distinguished and well regarded Green Beret" and slammed the "reckless and retaliatory pursuit" of Army Criminal Investigation Command.
Last summer, newly surfaced Army documents alleged that Golsteyn told the CIA during a polygraph test that he killed an unarmed Afghan bombmaker in his custody and later conspired with others to destroy the body.
Then-Army Secretary John McHugh revoked Golsteyn’s Silver Star, the third-highest award for valor, and his Special Forces tab.
An Army board of inquiry later recommended a general discharge for Golsteyn and found no clear evidence the soldier violated the rules of engagement while deployed in 2010. This would allow Golsteyn to retain most of his retirement benefits under a recommended general discharge under honorable conditions.
While cleared of a law of armed conflict violation, the board did find his conduct was unbecoming an officer.
Hunter, in his letter to Fanning and Milley, called Golsteyn "an American hero."
"Why the Army is hell-bent on destroying a combat hero’s career is truly astonishing," he wrote.
Michelle Tan is the editor of Army Times and Air Force Times. She has covered the military for Military Times since 2005, and has embedded with U.S. troops in Iraq, Afghanistan, Kuwait, Haiti, Gabon and the Horn of Africa.