30 American special operations troops, 7 Afghans killed in helicopter crash
By Published: August 6, 2011
UPDATED AUG. 6 3:32 P.M. EST
A Chinook helicopter crash in the Sayd Abad district of Afghanistan's Wardak province has claimed the lives of 30 U.S. special operations troops — 17 of them Navy SEALs — and seven Afghan soldiers. It was the deadliest single incident for American forces in the decade-long war.
An American official said the aircraft was apparently shot down by insurgents, and the Taliban claimed they had downed it with rocket fire.
U.S. officials say they believe that none of the Navy SEALs who died in the crash participated in the raid that killed Osama bin Laden, but were from the same unit that carried out the bin Laden mission.
President Barack Obama, mourning the deaths of the Americans and their Afghan counterparts, said in a statement that the crash serves as a reminder of the "extraordinary sacrifices" being made by the U.S. military and its families. "We will draw inspiration from their lives, and continue the work of securing our country and standing up for the values that they embodied," he said.