A Marine General Made His Aide Do His Laundry, Pick Up His Meals

Code Red News

They say that rank has its privileges, and Marine Brig. Gen. Rick Uribe certainly benefited from that mindset — until he was investigated for effectively using his aide-de-camp as a personal servant.

A report from the Pentagon's inspector general released Thursday substantiated allegations against Uribe that he "requested or permitted" his aide to use official time to pick up his laundry, grab meals, carry around personal items and snacks, write non-official letters, and reserve equipment for him at the gym, among other no-nos.

Between May 2016 and June 2017, Uribe was deputy commanding general for operations in Baghdad, and director of the Combined Joint Operations Center, Baghdad, Combined Joint Forces Land Component Command, Iraq — which, he reasoned to investigators, was an incredibly busy assignment that didn't afford him much time to go to the chow hall or drop off his laundry.

Except, of course, his predecessor, Maj. Gen. William F. Mullen, had the same job during a similarly intense period and didn't make his aide do bullshit work. In fact, Mullen's aide said his boss "always carried his own stuff" and "made it a point to always pick up and drop off his own laundry."

Not so for Uribe, who goes by the callsign "Rico," according to his LinkedIn.

Uribe’s aide told investigators that he "only did personal matters" for the boss while in Iraq — which included picking up his laundry and dropping it to his quarters, occasionally changing his bed sheets, picking up his meals, carrying around a "huge backpack" filled with the general's sweatshirt, snacks, toiletry items, and sometimes drafting personal correspondence.

On a number of occasions, according to the aide, they'd be in the gym when someone would come by and ask for “Uncle Rico” at the operations center. Uribe would leave to go take care of the problem... and his aide was ordered to keep other people from using the general’s gym equipment, sometimes for more than 30 minutes.

Uribe denied the aide ever waited that long, but did concede that "more often than not" he would ask his aide to stand by the equipment until he returned. Investigators asked him what purpose this ultimately served, and he replied, "Nothing."

Then there were financial dealings. The general's aide paid for WiFi internet access in their quarters, which was $60 a month. The general never paid his share.

Uribe told investigators that he was "more focused on the combat operations" rather than using the WiFi "once in a while," but, he said, "I guess I wasn't thinking. So, guilty as charged." (It's worth noting that the general makes more than $12,000 a month on just his base pay.)

The report recommended that "Brig. Gen. Uribe's supervisor take appropriate action" against him. He's currently the deputy commanding general of I Marine Expeditionary Force.

Calls to 1 MEF Commanding General, Lt. Gen. L.A. Craparotta, went unanswered.

US Marine Corps

On Nov, 10, 2004, Army Staff Sgt. David Bellavia knew that he stood a good chance of dying as he tried to save his squad.

Bellavia survived the intense enemy fire and went on to single-handedly kill five insurgents as he cleared a three-story house in Fallujah during the iconic battle for the city. For his bravery that day, President Trump will present Bellavia with the Medal of Honor on Tuesday, making him the first living Iraq war veteran to receive the award.

In an interview with Task & Purpose, Bellavia recalled that the house where he fought insurgents was dark and filled with putrid water that flowed from broken pipes. The battle itself was an assault on his senses: The stench from the water, the darkness inside the home, and the sounds of footsteps that seemed to envelope him.

Read More Show Less
(U.S. Army/Pvt. Stephen Peters)

With the Imperial Japanese Army hot on his heels, Oscar Leonard says he barely slipped away from getting caught in the grueling Bataan Death March in 1942 by jumping into a choppy bay in the dark of the night, clinging to a log and paddling to the Allied-fortified island of Corregidor.

After many weeks of fighting there and at Mindanao, he was finally captured by the Japanese and spent the next several years languishing under brutal conditions in Filipino and Japanese World War II POW camps.

Now, having just turned 100 years old, the Antioch resident has been recognized for his 42-month ordeal as a prisoner of war, thanks to the efforts of his friends at the Brentwood VFW Post #10789 and Congressman Jerry McNerney.

McNerney, Brentwood VFW Commander Steve Todd and Junior Vice Commander John Bradley helped obtain a POW award after doing research and requesting records to surprise Leonard during a birthday party last month.

Read More Show Less
(U.S. Marine Corps/Staff Sgt. Andrew Ochoa)

Editor's Note: This article by Gina Harkins originally appeared on Military.com, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

Hundreds of Marines will join their British counterparts at a massive urban training center this summer that will test the leathernecks' ability to fight a tech-savvy enemy in a crowded city filled with innocent civilians.

The North Carolina-based Kilo Company, 3rd Battalion, 8th Marines, will test drones, robots and other high-tech equipment at Muscatatuck Urban Training Center near Butlerville, Indiana, in August.

They'll spend weeks weaving through underground tunnels and simulating fires in a mock packed downtown city center. They'll also face off against their peers, who will be equipped with off-the-shelf drones and other gadgets the enemy is now easily able to bring to the fight.

It's the start of a four-year effort, known as Project Metropolis, that leaders say will transform the way Marines train for urban battles. The effort is being led by the Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory, based in Quantico, Virginia. It comes after service leaders identified a troubling problem following nearly two decades of war in the Middle East: adversaries have been studying their tactics and weaknesses, and now they know how to exploit them.

Read More Show Less
(Reuters/Carlos Barria)

WASHINGTON/RIYADH (Reuters) - President Donald Trump imposed new U.S. sanctions onIran on Monday following Tehran's downing of an unmanned American drone and said the measures would target Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Trump told reporters he was signing an executive order for the sanctions amid tensions between the United States and Iran that have grown since May, when Washington ordered all countries to halt imports of Iranian oil.

Trump also said the sanctions would have been imposed regardless of the incident over the drone. He said the supreme leaders was ultimately responsible for what Trump called "the hostile conduct of the regime."

"Sanctions imposed through the executive order ... will deny the Supreme Leader and the Supreme Leader's office, and those closely affiliated with him and the office, access to key financial resources and support," Trump said.

Read More Show Less