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A medevac helicopter pilot flying in Afghanistan, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he feared repercussions from his superiors, challenged the Army’s belief that weighing down medevacs with guns would result in fewer wounded troops being evacuated.

The issue is not how many patients can fit in a helicopter, but how many patients the single medic aboard can treat at a time — and that is one, the pilot said.

He said waiting a long time for an escort is not common — but one time is one too many.

Associated Press writer Pauline Jelinek in Washington contributed to this report.