A family wiped out in its sleep and a playing child killed by a stray bullet: horrific details fill the hundreds of compensation claims for US military actions in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The Defense Department released 496 files at the request of the American Civil Liberties Union under the Freedom of Information Act, and the ACLU published them online Thursday.
They detail just some of the compensation requests and decisions for losses relating to US military actions in the war-torn countries.
US Army spokesman Bob Tallman told AFP compensation totaled 31.6 million dollars for civilians in Iraq and 720,000 dollars for Afghanistan.
According to one of the Pentagon files, a civilian from the eastern Iraqi province of Salah Ad Din reported that US forces fired more than 100 hundred rounds on his sleeping family, killing his mother, father and brother, according to the site.
"The firepower was of such magnitude that 32 of the family's sheep were also killed."
"The Army acknowledged responsibility and the claim resulted in two payments" -- 11,200 dollars' compensation and a 2,500-dollar "condolence" bill.
This is a fraction of the total payments for the conflicts so far in Iraq, where US forces are fighting insurgents after invading in the wake of the deadly attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001.
Iraqi authorities estimated in November 2006 that up to 150,000 people in the country had died in violence since the US-led invasion in 2003.
One claim was filed by a man whose only son was killed by gunfire from US forces patrolling the Tigris River where he was fishing.
"There is sufficient evidence to indicate that US forces intentionally killed the claimant's son," the file reads.
"Unfortunately, those forces were involved in security operations at the time. Therefore, this case falls within the combat exception. The claim is denied."
One of the military case files details a "sympathy payment" for a boy who was hit and killed by a military truck when he ran outside after a "handout of gifts and candy" at a school in the central city of Karbala.
In another, the military recommended a 4,000-dollar payment for the family of a nine-year-old boy killed when a stray bullet from a US soldier hit him in the head as he played outside their house.