Panel rules in favor of a Marine who broke the rules to send a warning before a deadly insider attack

SIGAR Chief John Sopko on the 1st SFAB's Weaknesses in Afghanistan

After years of trying to get rid of him, the Marine Corps may have to keep Maj. Jason Brezler, who warned Marines in Afghanistan about a corrupt police chief, whose boy servant subsequently killed three Marines in a 2012 insider attack.

A board of inquiry recently decided to retain Brezler, his civilian attorney Michael Bowe told Task & Purpose on Tuesday. Brezler is currently in the Inactive Ready Reserve, but he is trying to join a Select Reserve unit.

Retired Marine Gen. John Kelly, former White House chief of staff, and retired Lt. Gen. Lawrence Nicholson, whom Brezler served under in Afghanistan, both testified on Brezler's behalf at the panel, which made its decision on Aug. 9, Bowe said.

"For seven years, Jason has fought for one reason: He loves the Marine Corps and wants to continue to contribute," Bowe said. "This was the right result from a panel of senior Marines Corps officers, all of whom came up to him after and expressed their support."

However, the panel faulted Brezler for failing to properly discharge the duties expected of an officer of his grade and experience" for mishandling classified information in Afghanistan and the United States, according to the board of inquiry's findings and recommendations worksheet.

On July 24, 2012, Brezler used his personal email account to send classified information as part of his warning about the Afghan police chief, Sarwar Jan, who had recently arrived at Forward Operating Base Delhi, Afghanistan. On Aug. 10, 2012, one of Sarwar's servants, whom a federal judge would later describe as a "sex slave," killed three Marines on the base.

Brezler was subsequently relieved of command for improperly sending the classified information; he received an unfavorable fitness report; and he was referred to a board of inquiry in December 2013, which recommended he be discharged.

Three years later, U.S. District Judge Joseph Bianco in New York reversed that panel's decision, ruling the Marine Corps had not provided Brezler's defense any evidence that Corps officials planned to refer Brezler to a board of inquiry prior to an August 2013 Marine Corps Times story about Brezler seeking help from Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.), which raised the ire of then-Commandant Marine Gen. James Amos.

The most recent panel's Aug. 9 decision was first brought to light by Washington Post reporter Dan Lamothe. The board's recommendation has been forwarded to Navy Secretary Richard Spencer's office for consideration, said Maj. Roger Hollenbeck, a spokesman for Marine Forces Reserve.

Currently, Brezler is nearing the end of the maximum time he can remain in the Marine Corps at his current rank, said Bowe, who added he would pursue "administrative remedies" to allow his client to continue serving.

Hospital Corpsman, 3rd Class, Jennifer Rooney, who was immediately promoted after selection through the Meritorious Promotion Program, was pinned in a ceremony Sept. 20, 2019, by her father, Robert Rooney, and grandfather, John Rooney. (U.S. Marine Corps/Petty Officer 2nd Class Michael Molina)

A U.S.S. Manchester, CL-83, hat firmly tucked on his head, John Ronney, pierced the collar of his granddaughter, Jennifer Rooney's new rank during a special pinning ceremony at Naval Medical Center Camp Lejeune on Sept. 25.

By Rooney's side was his son and Jennifer's father Robert, a Navy veteran. Together, three Navy veterans brought together for military tradition.

"They are the two people who taught me everything I needed to know about the Navy," said Jennifer.

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CAMP PENDLETON — The military prosecution of a Coast Guardsman accused of murder began Wednesday with a preliminary hearing at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton.

Seaman Ethan W. Tucker, 21, was arrested August 28 after a seven-month Coast Guard investigation into the January death of Seaman Ethan Kelch, 19, who served on the same ship as Tucker— the Kodiak, Alaska-based high endurance cutter Douglas Munro.

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ANKARA (Reuters) - President Tayyip Erdogan said on Saturday Turkey would press on with its offensive into northeastern Syria and "crush the heads of terrorists" if a deal with Washington on the withdrawal of Kurdish fighters from the area were not fully implemented.

Erdogan agreed on Thursday in talks with U.S. Vice President Mike Pence a five-day pause in the offensive to allow time for the Kurdish fighters to withdraw from a "safe zone" Turkey aims to establish in northeast Syria near the Turkish border.

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President Trump stoked confusion Friday by declaring the U.S. has "secured the Oil" in the Middle East amid continued fallout from the Turkish invasion of northern Syria that he enabled by pulling American troops out of the region.

It wasn't immediately clear what the president was talking about, as there were no publicly known developments in Syria or elsewhere in the Middle East relating to oil. White House aides did not return requests for comment.

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A U.S. State Department investigation of Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server while she was secretary of state has found no evidence of deliberate mishandling of classified information by department employees.

The investigation, the results of which were released on Friday by Republican U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley's office, centered on whether Clinton, who served as the top U.S. diplomat from 2009 to 2013, jeopardized classified information by using a private email server rather than a government one.

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