KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Kansas City U.S. Marine wrongfully accused of war crimes is telling his story in a new book ” A Few Bad Men: The True Story of U.S. Marines Ambushed in Afghanistan and Betrayed in America.”
Retired Major Fred Galvin commanded Fox Company’s Task Force Violent also known as “The MARSOC 7.”
They were only recently fully exonerated of killing Afghan civilians in 2007. Galvin fought overseas, fought in court, and has been fighting in the court of public opinion ever since. And now wants the whole story out there in a book he calls “A Few Bad Men.”
It seemed like the opportunity of a lifetime for the Kansas City native, the chance to head the Marine Corp Special Operations Command’s first ever overseas deployment. Less than a month after arriving in Afghanistan they came under attack on March 4, 2007.
“We were blown up by a car bomb and we were shot at by two sides of the road by Jihadists,” Galvin recalls.
After killing their attackers, Galvin said they were mobbed by civilians and the Marine special forces unit had to shoot over their heads to clear them out of the way.
“When we returned to our base this was already on BBC radio that we’d allegedly killed 10 Afghan civilians that led to rioting and protests in the streets,” Galvin said.
Galvin was removed from command and he and the rest of Task Force Violent were ordered out of Afghanistan. It led to the first and only Court of Inquiry in the Marines in the past 65 years.
Galvin said Afghan tribal elders encouraged families to claim civilian deaths to get U.S. payment with no proof needed.
“The investigation and trial was meant to fit the narrative of a lot of the senior leaders who were willing to dispose of us and sentence us to jail,” Galvin said.
The court found the MARSOC 7 acted appropriately and in accordance with the rules of engagement tactics techniques and procedures for a complex ambush.
Galvin has spent most of the rest of his life in the Marines or serving a charity here in Kansas City connecting gold star families with the Royals Chiefs and scholarships. But he says he and the rest of the MARSOC 7 faced challenges because they never were officially found to be innocent until a decade later when the Navy and the Commandant of the Marine Corp finally corrected the record exonerating them. He’s anxious for people to find out more about what he calls “the whole story.”
“Many thought it would be permanently classified. This has all been declassified and its shocking people’s heads will spin,” Galvin said.
A “Few Bad Men” hits shelves next week.