OPINION: If the Defence Force really wants to show that Hager and Stephenson's book Hit and Run is wrong, all it needs to do is prove it.
The force might think its word is enough. But "cross-referencing" won't cut it - New Zealanders want proof.
Defence Chief Lieutenant General Tim Keating claims the book has got it woefully wrong, with the two villages named not even being involved in the raids in question.
He says Kiwi soldiers have never worked in either Naik or Khak Khuday Dad, and claims Hager and Stephenson have confused them with a village two kilometres away called Tirgiran.
He even released a basic map, but that's inadequate.
Here's what the Defence Force needs to do:
- Show the plan and paperwork for Operation Burnham
- Release the full video footage from the SAS body/helmet cameras
- Release the tracking data from ISAF soldiers
- Release the GPS tracking data for all the helicopters involved
- Release any photographs or images obtained during or after the mission
- Prove there was no loss of civilian life.
All of this would comprehensively prove the Defence Force was not part of the raids that decimated the villages of Naik and Khak Khuday Dad.
Lloyd Burr is a Newshub political reporter.