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11 Marines Booted From The Corps In The Wake Of The 'Marines United' Scandal — So Far
The Marine Corps continues to wade through prosecutions of active-duty troops found to have been involved in the swapping of nude photos of troops through the "Marines United" Facebook page last year, or other social media misconduct in a similar vein.
As of this month, 101 prosecutions have been completed, with 11 troops sent to court-martial, Assistant Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. Glenn Walters said Tuesday. Walters, who was made head of initiatives to investigate the social media scandal and root out underlying cultural issues, told members of the Defense Advisory Committee on Women in the Services that, in all, the Marine Corps had identified 185 persons of interest suspected of social media misconduct, including 163 Marines and 22 civilians.
Of the 101 dispositions complete as of Sept. 5, the results were as follows:
- 3 general courts-martial
- 6 special courts-martial
- 2 summary courts-martial
- 16 non-judicial punishments
- 8 administrative separations
- 29 adverse administrative actions
- 37 cases concluded without formal adverse action
All of the courts-martial resulted in bad-conduct discharges, with defendants busted down to private and forced to forfeit all pay and benefits, Walters said.
For the larger number of Marines who received administrative adverse action, Walters said they likely still will see their careers ended over their actions.
"They got a 6105 [adverse counseling] in their record, which means if you're a sergeant or below, you're probably not going to have the cutting score required [to be promoted]," he said. "You know how tight the promotion boards are."
It remains unclear exactly how many active-duty Marines shared or viewed the drive passed around the Marines United Facebook group containing nude photos of troops, some of them identified and shared without the subjects' consent. Some 50,000 users were reportedly members in the group, which was shut down before criminal investigators could act.
Walters said Tuesday that Naval Criminal Investigative Service officials had analyzed 131,000 images across 168 social media platforms, using face-recognition technology to identify victims where possible and take legal action.
While the relatively small number of prosecutions in the year-and-a-half since the existence of Marines United was made public has drawn criticism, Walters highlighted a number of other new policies implemented since the scandal that emphasize the requirement to behave respectfully and professionally on social media.
These include a class on social media offered to all Marine recruits during boot camp; a contract new Marine accessions must sign acknowledging that they're aware of service social media standards and expectations; and new policies requiring mandatory reporting of social media misconduct.
Walters said one recent trend in reporting misconduct is giving him cause for hope.
"What I'm encouraged by is that some of the reports are being generated not by the female Marines, but by male Marines who are seeing another Marine doing something wrong," he said. "It's not a significant number. It's probably in the 8 percent range. But that's 8 percent that we didn't have. So I'm very happy with that."
This article originally appeared on Military.com
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Moments before Army Staff Sgt. David Bellavia went back into the house, journalist Michael Ware said he was "pacing like a caged tiger ... almost like he was talking to himself."
"I distinctly remember while everybody else had taken cover temporarily, there out in the open on the street — still exposed to the fire from the roof — was David Bellavia," Ware told Task & Purpose on Monday. "David stopped pacing, he looked up and sees that the only person still there on the street is me. And I'm just standing there with my arms folded.
"He looked up from the pacing, stared straight into my eyes, and said 'Fuck it.' And I stared straight back at him and said 'Fuck it,'" Ware said. "And that's when I knew, we were both going back in that house."
Former Army Special Forces Maj. Matthew Golsteyn will plead not guilty to a charge of murder for allegedly shooting an unarmed Afghan man whom a tribal leader had identified as a Taliban bomb maker, his attorney said.
Golsteyn will be arraigned on Thursday morning at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, Phillip Stackhouse told Task & Purpose.
No date has been set for his trial yet, said Lt. Col. Loren Bymer, a spokesman for U.S. Army Special Operations Command.
John Wick is back, and he's here to stay. It doesn't matter how many bad guys show up to try to collect on that bounty.
With John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum, the titular hitman, played by 54-year-old Keanu Reeves, continues on a blood-soaked hyper-stylized odyssey of revenge: first for his slain dog, then his wrecked car, then his destroyed house, then ... well, honestly it's hard to keep track of exactly what Wick is avenging by this point, or the body count he's racked up in the process.
Though we do know that the franchise has raked in plenty of success at the box office: just a week after it's May 17 release, the third installment in director Chad Stahleski's series took in roughly $181 million, making it even more successful than its two wildly popular prequels 2014's John Wick, and 2017's John Wick: Chapter 2.
And, more importantly, Reeves' hitman is well on his way to becoming one of the greatest action movie heroes in recent memory. Few (if any) other action flicks have succeeded in creating a mind-blowing avant garde ballet out of a dozen well-dressed gunmen who get shot, choked, or stabbed with a pencil by a pissed off hitman who just wants to return to retirement.
But for all the over-the-top acrobatics, fight sequences, and gun-porn (see: the sommelier), what makes the series so enthralling, especially for the service members and vets in the audience, is that there are some refreshing moments of realism nestled under all of that gun fu. Wrack your brain and try to remember the last time you saw an action hero do a press check during a shootout, clear a jam, or actually, you know, reload, instead of just hip-firing 300 rounds from an M16 nonstop. It's cool, we'll wait.
As it turns out, there's a good reason for the caliber of gun-play in John Wick. One of the franchise's secret weapons is a professional three-gun shooter named Taran Butler, who told Task & Purpose he can draw and hit three targets in 0.67 seconds from 10 yards. And if you've watched any of the scores of videos he's uploaded to social media over the years, it's pretty clear that this isn't idle boasting.
The Navy's electromagnetic railgun is undergoing what officials described as "essentially a shakedown" of critical systems before finally installing a tactical demonstrator aboard a surface warship, the latest sign that the once-beleaguered supergun may actually end up seeing combat.
That pretty much means this is could be the last set of tests before actually slapping this bad boy onto a warship, for once.
The Justice Department has accused Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.) of illegally using campaign funds to pay for extramarital affairs with five women.
Hunter, who fought in the Iraq War as a Marine artillery officer, and his wife Margaret were indicated by a federal jury on Aug. 21, 2018 for allegedly using up to $250,000 in campaign funds for personal use.
In a recent court filing, federal prosecutors accused Hunter of using campaign money to pay for a variety of expenses involved with his affairs, ranging from a $1,008 hotel bill to $7 for a Sam Adams beer.