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DoD Report Reveals Details About SEALs Punished For Flying Trump Flag
The blue Trump flag, affixed “to a rear [Humvee] antenna with zip ties,” was flown on a convoy of 11 vehicles containing 12 Navy personnel, said the Department of the Navy inquiry obtained using the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The names of the individuals were redacted in the report because disclosure would endanger the lives or safety of personnel, the Navy said.
The flag was attached by a Navy Seal who, according to an interview the Department of the Navy conducted with him on Feb. 3, “made the decision to place the flag on the Humvee without discussing it with anyone in the convoy.”
“He placed it on the Humvee on Friday before departing,” the documents stated. “He did not know who owned the flag because he has bought many campaign flags for the members of his Troop. He was unaware of any regulations that flying the campaign flag would have violated. [The man who attached the flag] drove home for the weekend and was not with the convoy while it transited.”
The Navy Seals group was traveling from Ft. Knox to Muscatatuck Urban Training Center (MUTC) in Butlerville, Ind., roughly 110 miles away, the documents stated. The convoy commander, unnamed in the report, traveled with the convoy on Jan. 29 at 11 a.m. This commander was responsible for inspecting all the vehicles prior to departure and was aware the flag was on the vehicle.
“[The convoy commander] was also aware of the rules precluding Department of Defense (DoD) endorsement of political candidates during an election,” the documents stated. “However, he believed that flying the flag was not inappropriate since the election was over and since the candidate was now the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces.”
This thinking violated a long-standing DoD policy to avoid any activity that might imply DoD endorsement of a political campaign, the documents stated.
About 30 minutes into the drive on I-65, the convoy commander noticed that the flag was getting a good deal of attention from civilian drivers, “some of which was negative attention.”
“At this point, he felt like the correct course of action would have been to take the flag down,” the documents stated. “However, he was concerned that it would be unsafe for the convoy and its members to pull over while on the highway.”
The preliminary inquiry officer disputed the convoy’s safety concerns, adding that “there would have been multiple opportunities to safely exit I-65 to a rest stop or gas station and remove the flag.”
The convoy decided to wait until they reached their destination before taking down the flag.
“This episode served to cast a bright and unwanted spotlight on our actions and location,” the preliminary inquiry officer said.
At least two videos of the flag garnered significant local and national attention, particularly from ABC, CBS, and Fox News. The Department of Defense (DoD) initially told the Herald-Leader that the vehicles didn’t belong to an active military unit.
The Navy Seals formally punished the unit on Feb. 28 but none of the details were released, said Lt. Jacqui Maxwell of the Naval Special Warfare Group 2 in Virginia Beach, Va. According to the documents, the commanding Seals officer directed a teamwide remedial training on safe convoy operations and partisan political activity. That remedial training was completed by Feb. 9.
“It is my hope that this incident will serve as an reminder about how seemingly minor errors in judgment can have far reaching 2nd and 3rd order effects,” the commanding officer wrote in one of the documents, “which can in turn have major implications for our Command, Naval Special Warfare, and ultimately our reputation in the eyes of the country which we are sworn to protect.”
©2017 the Lexington Herald-Leader (Lexington, Ky.). Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
Army Staff Sgt. Albert Leon Mampre, who served during World War II with the famed Easy Company, 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division depicted in the HBO series 'Band of Brothers,' was laid to rest on June 15th, the Army announced
Mampre, who died on May 31 at 97 years old, was the last living medic from Easy Company, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. A number of soldiers assigned to his unit provided an honor guard for his funeral service.
NIEUWEGEIN, Netherlands (Reuters) - Three Russians and a Ukrainian will face murder charges for the 2014 downing of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine which killed 298 people, in a trial to start in the Netherlands next March, an investigation team said on Wednesday.
The suspects are likely to be tried in absentia, however, as the Netherlands has said Russia has not cooperated with the investigation and is not expected to hand anyone over.
"These suspects are seen to have played an important role in the death of 298 innocent civilians", said Dutch Chief Prosecutor Fred Westerbeke.
"Although they did not push the button themselves, we suspect them of close cooperation to get the (missile launcher) where it was, with the aim to shoot down an airplane."
Navy SEAL under investigation for allegedly manipulating (and hitting on) the widow of the Green Beret he helped kill
A Navy SEAL sentenced to one year in prison for the death of Army Special Forces Staff Sgt. Logan Melgar is under investigation for allegedly flirting with Melgar's widow while using a false name and trying to persuade her that he and another SEAL accused of killing her husband were "really good guys," according to the Washington Post.
The push finally allow troops to sue the military over medical malpractice just got a major boost in Congress
A senator has taken up the cause to negate a controversial court ruling that bars service members from suing the federal government in cases of medical malpractice by military doctors.
NAVAL BASE SAN DIEGO — The trial of Navy SEAL Chief Eddie Gallagher officially kicked off on Tuesday with the completion of jury selection, opening statements, and witness testimony indicating that drinking alcohol on the front lines of Mosul, Iraq in 2017 seemed to be a common occurrence for members of SEAL Team 7 Alpha Platoon.
Government prosecutors characterized Gallagher as a knife-wielding murderer who not only killed a wounded ISIS fighter but shot indiscriminately at innocent civilians, while the defense argued that those allegations were falsehoods spread by Gallagher's angry subordinates, with attorney Tim Parlatore telling the jury that "this trial is not about murder. It's about mutiny."