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Oregon National Guardsman Disciplined For Facebook Post On 'Executing' Migrant Families
An Oregon Army National Guardsman is being disciplined for posting "they're lucky we aren't executing them" on a viral Facebook fundraiser for immigrant families separated at the U.S.-Mexico border.
Gerod Martin, a military police officer who has been part of the Guard since December 2013, commented on the social media campaign sometime Wednesday, said Maj. Stephen Bomar, a spokesman for the Oregon Military Department. The Oregon National Guard became aware of the post sometime after, when others noticed Martin dressed in military uniform in his avatar and cover photo, and informed the agency.
"Waste of money...." Martin wrote in the comments for "Reunite an immigrant parent with their child," which has raised more than $17.5 million from over 462,000 donors since started by a California couple Saturday. "They're lucky we aren't executing them." The money is intended for the Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services.
Bomar confirmed Martin, 21, admitted to posting the comment. He wouldn't elaborate on what discipline Martin will face but said the "large outcry" from the post spread to members of Martin's outpost.
"This is a horrible thing that he posted, we all know that," Bomar said. "It's unacceptable, horrific and doesn't reflect the values of our organization as a whole."
Martin has apparently scrubbed his Facebook page. Screenshots of his comment and his Facebook page with him in uniform have been distributed on social media. In it, Martin identified himself as living in Salem and "just a young buck serving his country." He could not be reached for comment.
Martin has First Amendment rights like any U.S. citizen and can take part in social media, Bomar said, but he violated the social media policies of the national guard, the Army and the Department of Defense with his comment.
"You can't endorse any sort of political action while in uniform," Bomar said. "You always have to think before you post. Sometimes you can get caught up in the moment, but it's not an excuse."
©2018 The Oregonian (Portland, Ore.). Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
Former Army 1st Lt. Clint Lorance, whom President Donald Trump recently pardoned of his 2013 murder conviction, claims he was nothing more than a pawn whom generals sacrificed for political expediency.
The infantry officer had been sentenced to 19 years in prison for ordering his soldiers to open fire on three unarmed Afghan men in 2012. Two of the men were killed.
During a Monday interview on Fox & Friends, Lorance accused his superiors of betraying him.
"A service member who knows that their commanders love them will go to the gates of hell for their country and knock them down," Lorance said. "I think that's extremely important. Anybody who is not part of the senior Pentagon brass will tell you the same thing."
"I think folks that start putting stars on their collar — anybody that has got to be confirmed by the Senate for a promotion — they are no longer a soldier, they are a politician," he continued. "And so I think they lose some of their values — and they certainly lose a lot of their respect from their subordinates — when they do what they did to me, which was throw me under the bus."
Fifteen years after the U.S. military toppled the regime of Saddam Hussein, the Army's massive two-volume study of the Iraq War closed with a sobering assessment of the campaign's outcome: With nearly 3,500 U.S. service members killed in action and trillions of dollars spent, "an emboldened and expansionist Iran appears to be the only victor.
Thanks to roughly 700 pages of newly-publicized secret Iranian intelligence cables, we now have a good idea as to why.
BANGKOK (Reuters) - Defense Secretary Mark Esper expressed confidence on Sunday in the U.S. military justice system's ability to hold troops to account, two days after President Donald Trump pardoned two Army officers accused of war crimes in Afghanistan.
Trump also restored the rank of a Navy SEAL platoon commander who was demoted for actions in Iraq.
Asked how he would reassure countries such as Afghanistan and Iraq in the wake of the pardons, Esper said: "We have a very effective military justice system."
"I have great faith in the military justice system," Esper told reporters during a trip to Bangkok, in his first remarks about the issue since Trump issued the pardons.
For one veteran who fought through the crossfires of German heavy machine guns in the D-Day landings, receiving a Congressional Gold Medal on behalf of his service and that of his World War II comrades would be "quite meaningful."
Bills have been introduced in the House and Senate to award the Army Rangers of World War II the medal, the highest civilian award bestowed by the United States, along with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
An airman at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base was arrested and charged with murder on Sunday after a shooting at a Raleigh night club that killed a 21-year-old man, the Air Force and the Raleigh Police Department said.