After three US soldiers were shot and killed in Jordan in November, the country offered this explanation: A Jordanian guard had opened fire on the American Special Forces soldiers when they failed to stop at the gate of a military base. That claim, however, was subsequently withdrawn, per the AP, and a newly released video shows why. The six-minute security video released by the Jordanian military on Monday shows a four-vehicle convoy carrying American soldiers stopping at the gate to the al-Jafr base in southern Jordan, then two soldiers attempting to take cover as Jordanian Air Force Sgt. Ma'arik al-Tawayha pursues and fires at them, even as they wave their arms in surrender, reports the New York Times.
The video, which offers only a partial view of the shooting and includes no audio, was reportedly released to defuse protests among Tawayha's Howeitat tribe members after he was sentenced last week to life in prison with hard labor for the deaths of Staff Sgt. Matthew C. Lewellen, 27, of Missouri; Staff Sgt. Kevin J. McEnroe, 30, of Arizona; and Staff Sgt. James F. Moriarty, 27, of Texas. It's still unclear what motivated the shooting. While Tawayha has said he believed the base was under attack, Jordan's military says he "acted against orders and military instructions and had not acted in self-defense." Family members of the soldiers killed, who previously viewed the video, say the soldiers identified themselves as allied forces.