Top Navy SEAL commander resign over Trump disagreementPosted by Ivan Vaquero / February 5, 2020
The fallout for Trump’s controversial war crimes pardons is still happening. Special Warfare Rear Adm. Collin Green, the US Navy admiral responsible for the service’s special-operations forces plans to step down over Trump’s treatment of the Gallagher case.
Last month, Donald Trump restored the rank of Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher, who was demoted for posing with the body of a dead ISIS fighter––he was accused of more, but he was acquitted. Now, recently surfaced interviews with other SEALs reveal that Gallagher was, in their word, “freaking evil.”
President Trump has pardoned two service men who have been accused of war crimes and restored the rank of another who was acquitted. One of the officers he pardoned was serving jail time.
The president’s primary job is to be the commander in chief of the American armed forces. That’s literally the most important thing the president does, and unfortunately our commander in chief is not doing a great job.
Earlier this year, Trump pardoned former Army 1st Lt. Michael Behenna, who was charged with war crimes for shooting an unarmed, captured man suspected of engineering an IED attack. The Week argues that this pardon is an implicit approval of war crimes.
The Washington Post similarly points out that Trump’s reversal on Venezuela is evidence of Trump’s terrible patience and lack of strategic thinking, as well as further evidence of Putin’s sway over Trump.
Furthermore, Trump has opted to spend $20 billion over the next two decades in order to keep the USS Harry S. Truman operating, reversing his February decision to retire it. Here’s the problem: the Navy didn’t want that carrier still running. They planned to use that money on more advanced technologies and preparing for cyber warfare.
This is a terrible decision on Trump’s part, one that comes out of his tendency to appeal to hyper-masculine displays of aggression. The only problem is that wars are no longer won through the kind of aggression the aircraft carrier represents. Wars are now fought in a variety of different ways, from the streets of Afghani villages to cyberspace. Trump’s inability to see that is doubly dangerous because the two biggest threats to the United States––China and Russia––fully understand this fact.