A legendary US Special Forces commander known for using unconventional methods in the fight against the Taliban was quietly forced to leave the U.S. Army after he admitted to a love affair with a Washington Post war correspondent.
The Green Beret Major Jim Gant was reportedly carrying on a year-long affair with a former Washington Post reporter Ann Scott Tyson, who quit her job at the Post and left her family to live with him in the mountains of Afghanistan.
The couple kept their affair secret from the military for a year while they lived as natives fighting the Taliban and al-Qaeda.
Gant was secretly forced to resign in 2012 and was charged in confidential files that he had “indulged in a self-created fantasy world” of booze, pain pills and sex in a tribal village deep in Taliban and al Qaeda country with his “wife,” Ann Scott Tyson.
“We did fall in love, I would say over the course of about a week,” Tyson told ABC News in an interview.
She told interviewer Brian Ross that Gant, then 44, had fallen in love with her at first sight and asked her to marry him within days of their first meeting.
Both Gant and Tyson were wearing the traditional tribal clothing of the local Pashtuns and Tyson became so trusted by the locals that she was accepted into the inner circles of the tribe’s women and children.
Gant had also instructed Tyson on how to conduct herself in a firefight and gave her a spare pistol to use in case she ever needed to defend herself.
Gant looked more like Osama bin Laden than a US military officer, with his long hair, unkept bear and flowing robes.
He became famous as Lawrence of Afghanistan with his successful command and said everything he achieved in waging an unconventional fight against the Taliban was worth the punishment and professional blows, despite being stripped of his Special Forces honors, busted down to captain and forced to retire in a case hushed up by the Army for two years.
Gant told ABC News, “We both knew that there was a lot of risk in doing what we did. And I would do it again. It was extremely unconventional, yes, to say the least.”
In response to the wrongdoing, Gant said the results he got were proof that breaking the rules worked.
“I never left the battlefield defeated. I never lost a man. Well over 20 awards for valor for the men that I fought alongside. We went after ’em every single day. I brought all my men home. That’s it,” Gant said.