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Tue Nov 26, 2019, 05:41 AM

US veterans say Trump views military 'as tool for massacres' after reinstating accused war criminal [View all]

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/trump-eddie-gallagher-trial-navy-seal-war-crimes-trident-mark-esper-richard-spencer-a9217716.html

US veterans say Trump views military ‘as tool for massacres’ after reinstating accused war criminal to Navy

Chris Riotta New York | @chrisriotta |
Tuesday 26 November 2019 09:42 |

US veterans decried Donald Trump’s orders to restore an accused war criminal's rank in the Navy, saying the decision “sets a dangerous precedent” and suggests the commander-in-chief views the military “as a tool for massacres”.

Numerous veterans spoke out about the move to The Independent after Secretary of Defence Mark Esper confirmed he was ordered by the president to retain Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher’s status in the elite service, as well as his Trident pin, a prestigious special warfare insignia.

“Ever since Donald Trump became president he’s been tearing the military apart, putting troops in the difficult position of needing to choose between obedience to his unhinged orders, and staying true to our code of honour,” said Alexander McCoy, a former Marine and political director of the veteran group Common Defence. “By pardoning war criminals because Fox News told him to, Trump showed he sees our military as a tool for massacres, not as the professional, honourable force we aspire to be.”
(snip)

The president’s demands could cause “significant long-term damage to the Naval Special Warfare community,” according to James Waters, a former Navy SEAL platoon commander and White House staff member in the Bush administration, who told The Independent: “The only people who weigh in on whether a Navy SEAL deserves to keep his Trident are people who have their Trident.”
(snip)

He added: “This is vital to maintaining the high standards required to be effective in the Teams and on the battlefield. The absolute last thing the nation needs is to open the floodgates to outside interests determining who gets to wear and keep the Trident.”
(snip)

“There’s a reason we have the Geneva Convention. There’s a reason we have the Universal Code of Military Justice. There’s a reason we have the morale and ethics that we learn in training,” said Josh Manning, a former Army intelligence officer. “For Trump to just step in and undermine centuries worth of morale and discipline undercuts the very military that he’s trying to command.”
(snip)

Charlotte Clymer, an Army Veteran and press secretary at the Human Rights Campaign, said Mr Trump appeared to be “hell-bent on exploiting” the military justice system for his own purposes.
(snip)

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Reply US veterans say Trump views military 'as tool for massacres' after reinstating accused war criminal [View all]
nitpicker Nov 2019 OP
smirkymonkey Nov 2019 #1
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duforsure Nov 2019 #3
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TomSlick Nov 2019 #5
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NCLefty Nov 2019 #7