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At Mr. Hunter’s urging, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee is investigating the Army’s handling of Palantir, including a decision to destroy a favorable field evaluation report in April. Army officials say the report contained errors. A three-star general has been appointed to investigate the destruction of the report.

The Times has obtained a number of memos from commanders praising Palantir’s ability to help them find roadside bombs.

Palantir has absolutely proven its utility and effectiveness for special operations forces in combat and most importantly has demonstrated its value by earning the trust of our operators in the field,” a two-star general wrote to Special Operations Command in August 2011 in an attempt to get the system inserted into the Pentagon’s annual budget.

In April 2011, the Pentagon’s technical support office received an email from a Marine Corps special operator that said: “Marines today are alive because of the capability of this system. Palantir is truly an advanced analytical all-source tool that supports both [special operations force] operators and analysts in their prosecution of the battlefield.”