WASHINGTON — Friendly fire incidents like the one that killed former professional football player Pat Tillman have cost the lives of 17 soldiers in the last four years in Iraq and Afghanistan, a lower rate than in other recent conflicts, Army data shows.
So far, the 2004 death of Tillman, an Army Ranger and corporal, during a firefight near the Pakistan-Afghanistan border has been the only one to trigger a formal criminal investigation.
Army officials said the service's Criminal Investigation Command had reviewed other incidents and there had been some reprimands and administrative punishments meted out.
The 17 soldiers who have died in friendly fire incidents in Iraq and Afghanistan are about 1% of the 1,575 Army deaths there overall. More than 2,500 troops from all services have died in the two conflicts.
That rate is substantially less than those in other major military operations, including World War II, Vietnam, the 1991 Persian Gulf War and the invasions of Grenada and Panama.
Of the 17 deaths caused by U.S. or coalition allies, 10 were in Iraq and seven in Afghanistan. They occurred in 11 incidents.
The information the Army provided Friday consisted of numbers and did not name those killed. Identities of the friendly fire victims had been reported.