The Patriot Files Forums  

Go Back   The Patriot Files Forums > Warfare > Warfare

Post New Thread  Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 05-22-2019, 05:35 AM
Boats's Avatar
Boats Boats is offline
Senior Member
 

Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 11,620
Arrow Retired Navy SEAL who oversaw the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid says Trump 'needs to be v

Retired Navy SEAL who oversaw the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid says Trump 'needs to be very careful' about pardoning several accused war criminals
By: David Choi - Insider Military Defense - 5-22-19
RE: https://www.insider.com/navy-seal-mc...-crimes-2019-5

Photo link: https://amp.insider.com/images/5ce49...2-1920-960.jpg
Retired US Navy Admiral William McRaven speaks at his retirement ceremony in 2014. SSG Sean K. Harp for the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff/Flickr

Retired US Navy Adm. William McRaven, a former Navy SEAL who oversaw the Osama bin Laden raid in 2011, warned that President Donald Trump "needs to be very careful" about a presidential pardon for several military veterans accused of war crimes.

"I think the president needs to be very careful at this point," McRaven said in a Fox News interview on Tuesday. "Obviously the president can pardon [whomever] he thinks is appropriate to pardon."

"But the way it works in the military, you have to be careful as a senior commander about unduly influencing the process before the investigation has been adjudicated," McRaven added.

Trump is reportedly considering pardoning several former service members and military contractors from high-profile investigations around Memorial Day, according to The New York Times.

The White House is believed to have requested dossiers on numerous cases, including one on US Navy Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher, a Navy SEAL who is scheduled to appear in court next week on charges of killing an enemy prisoner with a knife and shooting Iraqi civilians in 2017.

The pardoning process typically takes months, one senior military official told The Times, but the Justice Department was asked to have the files ready by Memorial Day weekend.

Questions surrounding Trump's willingness to pardon the alleged war criminals have intensified after he pardoned the former Lt. Michael Behenna, a US Army Ranger who was convicted of killing an Iraqi prisoner in 2008. The White House in a statement reasoned that Behenna was a "model prisoner" during his incarceration and highlighted the military's "broad support" of his service.

McRaven, who previously rebuked Trump after the president sought to revoke the security clearances of former US intelligence officials, said any pardons from the commander-in-chief ought to be delayed until the criminal matters are settled in court.

"A senior officer is not allowed to imply how he thinks the investigation should come out," McRaven said. "That is called unduly influencing the investigation. So by the president signaling that he wants to or might pardon any individual, I'm concerned that that unduly influences the commanders below him."

"Now, once the trial is over and the president has an opportunity to read all the evidence and make a decision, obviously he's well within his right to pardon whoever he thinks," McRaven added.

McRaven is not alone in this thinking. Retired US Marine Corps Gen. Charles Krulak, the 31st commandant of the Marine Corps, said in a statement that if Trump proceeds with the pardons, "he will betray these ideals and undermine decades of precedent in American military justice that has contributed to making our country's fighting forces the envy of the world."

"We can talk all we want about what he's doing with the rule of law under his authority but to start saying that a trial by jury under the [Uniform Code of Military Justice] is now something that can be overturned is sending just a terrible signal to the men and women who are currently serving," Krulak told Task & Purpose.

"It sets a precedent that we could possibly regret."

Democratic Rep. Jason Crow of Colorado, a retired US Army Ranger and combat veteran, described the possibility as "very troubling."

"The idea that the commander-in-chief, in this case President Trump, will interject before these cases are even heard or adjudicated is pretty astounding," Crow said to INSIDER. "It undermines the good order in the ranks."
__________________
Boats

O Almighty Lord God, who neither slumberest nor sleepest; Protect and assist, we beseech thee, all those who at home or abroad, by land, by sea, or in the air, are serving this country, that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore in all perils; and being filled with wisdom and girded with strength, may do their duty to thy honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

"IN GOD WE TRUST"
sendpm.gif Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 05-22-2019, 08:50 AM
Boats's Avatar
Boats Boats is offline
Senior Member
 

Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 11,620
Arrow Dempsey, Dunford, and the right response to Trump's military pardons

Dempsey, Dunford, and the right response to Trump's military pardons
By: Tom Rogan - Washington Examiner - 5-22-19
RE: https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/o...litary-pardons

Media speculation is growing that President Trump will pardon a number of military personnel convicted of breaching the U.S. Code of Military Justice in Afghanistan and Iraq. But there's a right way and a wrong way for active and retired senior military officers to deal with that possibility.

The wrong way is what former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey said on Tuesday. Tweeting that, "Absent evidence of innocence or injustice the wholesale pardon of US service members accused of war crimes signals our troops and allies that we don’t take the Law of Armed Conflict seriously. Bad message. Bad precedent. Abdication of moral responsibility. Risk to us. #Leadership."

While I broadly agree with Dempsey that a wholesale pardon would be the wrong action, he is the wrong messenger. Don't take my word for it, take Dempsey's. In a 2016 essay, Dempsey warned against retired general officers engaging in political advocacy. As Dempsey put it then, retired officers should avoid political advocacy because "we have a special role in our democracy, and because we will serve whoever is elected ... So retired generals and admirals can but should not become part of the public political landscape. That is, unless they choose to run for public office themselves. That’s different. If they choose to run themselves, they become accountable to voters. In simply advocating -- or giving speeches -- they are not."

The Dempsey of 2016 was right, and 2003 Dempsey's aggressive combat leadership was right, but 2019 Dempsey is wrong. As with former CIA Director John Brennan, Dempsey should keep his views to himself and protect the integrity of the organization he served.

Still, there are good reasons to oppose Trump's mass-pardoning here. Some of the named individuals are deserving of a pardon (as are the Marine snipers convicted of mistreating Taliban bodies), and others deserve a trial before a pardon is considered. But a mass pardon would shred the principle of military law. There is a special absurdity in the suggestion that a Blackwater contractor convicted of shooting numerous civilians might be pardoned.

So what should be done if Trump does pardon all these individuals at once?

Well, I believe that Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Joe Dunford should, and will, consider resigning. The top ranking U.S. military officer will regard multiple simultaneous presidential pardons as fundamentally detrimental to the U.S. military's integrity. This is not to say that Dunford will become a Trump critic if he does resign, or even that he will openly say why he resigned. The former Marine combat infantry officer is not a politician: He's an old-school Marine, dedicated to the Corps and its central ethos of honor. He is also a veteran of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and keenly aware of the challenges his Marines faced in both theaters.

Dunford may quit out of concern for the Corps' honor, were Trump to pardon all those under consideration. Honor is integral to the Marine identity: imbued in officer candidates from their first day at Quantico. I doubt Dunford would risk its degradation.

Yes, as commander-in-chief, Trump has absolute authority to pardon any military service member he wishes. Dunford could not and would not challenge that authority. Any quiet resignation would simply reflect his defense of honor. Dunford's replacement could then continue serving Trump in the best possible faith.

For more on the USMJ re: Well, I believe that Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Joe Dunford should, and will, consider resigning. The top ranking U.S. military officer will regard multiple simultaneous presidential pardons as fundamentally detrimental to the U.S. military's integrity. This is not to say that Dunford will become a Trump critic if he does resign, or even that he will openly say why he resigned. The former Marine combat infantry officer is not a politician: He's an old-school Marine, dedicated to the Corps and its central ethos of honor. He is also a veteran of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and keenly aware of the challenges his Marines faced in both theaters.

Dunford may quit out of concern for the Corps' honor, were Trump to pardon all those under consideration. Honor is integral to the Marine identity: imbued in officer candidates from their first day at Quantico. I doubt Dunford would risk its degradation.

Yes, as commander-in-chief, Trump has absolute authority to pardon any military service member he wishes. Dunford could not and would not challenge that authority. Any quiet resignation would simply reflect his defense of honor. Dunford's replacement could then continue serving Trump in the best possible faith.

The Uniform Code of Military Justice: Articles 1 thru 146 can be found here.
RE: http://www.ucmj.us/

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The History of the Uniform Code of Military Justice

History: On 30 June 1775, the Second Continental Congress established 69 Articles of War to govern the conduct of the Continental Army.

Effective upon its ratification in 1789, Article I, Section 8 of the United States Constitution provided that Congress has the power to regulate the land and naval forces. On 10 April 1806, the United States Congress enacted 101 Articles of War (which applied to both the Army and the Navy), which were not significantly revised until over a century later. The military justice system continued to operate under the Articles of War until 31 May 1951, when the Uniform Code of Military Justice went into effect.

The UCMJ was passed by Congress on 5 May 1950, signed into law by President Harry S. Truman, and became effective on 31 May 1951. The word Uniform in the Code’s title refers to the congressional intent to make military justice uniform or consistent among the armed services.

The current version is printed in the latest version of the Manual for Courts-Martial (2008), incorporating changes made by the President (executive orders) and National Defense Authorization Acts of 2006 and 2007.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This thread will allow you to review those issues:
RE: http://www.ucmj.us/about-the-ucmj


The Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ, 64 Stat. 109, 10 U.S.C. Chapter 47), is the foundation of military law in the United States. The UCMJ applies to all members of the Uniformed services of the United States: the Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, Navy, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Commissioned Corps, and Public Health Service Commissioned Corps. The Coast Guard is administered under Title 14 of the United States Code when not operating as part of the U.S. Navy. However, commissioned members of the NOAA and PHS are only subject to the UCMJ when attached or detailed to a military unit or are militarized by presidential executive order.

Members of the military Reserve Components under Title 10 of the United States Code (Army Reserve, Navy Reserve, Marine Forces Reserve, and Air Force Reserve) or Title 14 of the United States Code, Coast Guard Reserve when not operating as part of the U.S. Navy, are subject to the UCMJ if they are either (a) active duty Full-Time Support personnel such as FTS or Active Guard and Reserve (AGR), or (b) traditional part-time reservists performing either (a) full-time active duty for a specific period (i.e., Annual Training, Active Duty for Training, Active Duty for Operational Support, Active Duty Special Work, One Year Recall, Three Year Recall, Canvasser Recruiter, Mobilization, etc.), or (b) performing Inactive Duty (i.e. Inactive Duty Training, Inactive Duty Travel and Training, Unit Training Assembly, Additional Training Periods, Additional Flying Training Periods, Reserve Management Periods, etc., all of which are colloquially known as “drills”).

Soldiers and airmen in the National Guard of the United States are subject to the UCMJ only if activated in a Federal capacity under Title 10 by an executive order issued by the President. Otherwise, members of the National Guard of the United States are exempt from the UCMJ. However, under Title 32 orders, National Guard soldiers are still subject to their respective state codes of Military justice.

Cadets and midshipmen at the United States Military Academy, United States Naval Academy, United States Air Force Academy, United States Merchant Marine Academy, and United States Coast Guard Academy are also subject to the UCMJ. On the other hand, Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) cadets and midshipmen are by law exempt from the UCMJ (even while on active duty for training such as CTLT, LTC, LDAC, or while attending various training schools such as Airborne School, Air Assault School, Mountain Warfare School, etc.).

Members of military auxiliaries such as the Civil Air Patrol and the Coast Guard Auxiliary are not subject to the UCMJ, even when participating in missions assigned by the military or other branches of government. However, members of the Coast Guard Auxiliary can be called by the Commandant of the Coast Guard into the Temporary Reserve, in which case they become subject to the UCMJ.

Retired members of the uniformed services who are entitled to retirement pay are also subject to the UCMJ, as are retired reservists who are receiving hospital care in the VA system.

Below are the Sub-Chapter(s):

RE: UCMJ Sub-Chapter

01. General Provisions
02. Apprehension and Restraint
03. Non-Judicial Punishment
04. Court-Martial Jurisdiction
05. Composition of Courts-Martial
06. Pre-Trial Procedure
07. Trial Procedure
08. Sentences
09. Post-Trial Procedure and Review of Courts Martial
10. Punitive Articles
11. Miscellaneous Provisions
12. Court of Military Appeals

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

In short ("All Branches") "we all know the UCMJ articles" and what to expect if they are not adhered to.

Boats
__________________
Boats

O Almighty Lord God, who neither slumberest nor sleepest; Protect and assist, we beseech thee, all those who at home or abroad, by land, by sea, or in the air, are serving this country, that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore in all perils; and being filled with wisdom and girded with strength, may do their duty to thy honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

"IN GOD WE TRUST"
sendpm.gif Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 05-22-2019, 11:20 AM
Boats's Avatar
Boats Boats is offline
Senior Member
 

Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 11,620
Arrow I Commanded Several of the Servicemen Trump May Pardon. Letting Them Off Will Undermi

I Commanded Several of the Servicemen Trump May Pardon. Letting Them Off Will Undermine the Military
BY: ADMIRAL JAMES STAVRIDIS 2:00 PM EDT
RE: http://time.com/5593657/trump-military-pardons-mistake/

In 2012, I was the Supreme Allied Commander at NATO, in overall command of NATO operational forces worldwide. My trusted subordinate commander of the International Security Force Afghanistan was a superb U.S. Marine Corps General and a Naval Academy classmate of mine, John Allen. He called me late in the year to inform me that a group of U.S. Marines had been videotaped and photographed that summer by their fellow Marines urinating on the corpses of Taliban combatants who had been killed in a firefight in Afghanistan. John was deeply, justifiably upset. He outlined the difficulties ahead — particularly the real additional danger to our troops — caused by the enormous backlash that we both knew would come in country, once the world knew what these Americans had done. I remember the anguish in his voice.

Those Marines were subsequently charged and punished by military courts for, or themselves pled guilty to, obvious violations of our code of conduct. Some were demoted a rank or, in at least one case, discharged — albeit honorably. The fellow Marines who conducted the disciplinary activity were sober, thoughtful and fully knowledgeable of the stress of combat operations. (One Marine’s conviction was overturned in 2017, due to meddling by an enraged four-star general who oversaw the investigation into this case, though even then, the general took action to attempt to, he wrote, “protect the institutional integrity of the military justice process.” This was correctly construed by the military appellate system as “undue command influence” — demonstrating the military judicial system is indeed self-policing.)

There was not a shred of “political correctness” in the convictions. Though some judges could not inflict harsher punishment due to plea deals, the Marines’ actions represented a real failure in our overall command discipline, disgraced the Marine Corps and put their fellow Marines in more danger on the battlefield. It was a low point in our campaign in Afghanistan, where at that moment we had 150,000 brave U.S. and Alliance troops engaged in a difficult and frustrating fight.

But according to the New York Times, it appears that President Trump is considering pardoning those men, as well as other military members credibly charged with a variety of crimes, including murdering an enemy captive or killing unarmed civilians. (The President is also reportedly considering pardoning a security contractor twice convicted by a federal court.) All of these actions are gross violations of the laws of war and the U.S. code of military conduct. They are extreme ethical and moral failures.

Some of the Marines who desecrated the corpses accounted their actions to the stress of war. Yet while the impulse to act with leniency toward the servicemen who, in the crucible of combat, fall short of our expectations for acceptable behavior is understandable — especially some sympathetic civilians — actually doing so leads us in the wrong direction. These men are not heroes. Far from it.

Each of the cases is unique. The circumstances, motivations, outcomes and punishments all differ. But they share one crucial element: the military members went through, or still face, the military judicial system, which includes a strong presumption of innocence by fellow military members; a very high bar for conviction; a set of judges, prosecutors and defense teams composed of military personnel, most with real combat experience themselves; and a fully engaged appellate system that likewise was composed of military judges. While there may be a very atypical case wherein a Presidential pardon could right an obvious wrong, such a situation is extremely rare — the punishments meted out take fully into account the circumstances. At a minimum, the President should let the full course of military justice run its course through conviction, potential incarceration and the appellate process — before even considering such an action.

For the Commander-in-Chief to reach into the military system and provide a pardon, especially in a preemptive way before a trial and appeal process, is a mistake. It will undermine our own standards, as junior enlisted personnel try to understand a pardon for doing something we constantly train to avoid. It strengthens enemy propaganda, as they will correctly say that we do not hold ourselves accountable for our own standards. It undercuts our relations with allies who have strong systems in place to prevent these kinds of actions. And it spurs our enemies on to even more barbaric behavior as the battlefield descends into moral chaos on both sides of the line of combat. This kind of pardon disrespects every single one of our soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines who follow the strict standards of the Code of Conduct. They do not abuse captives who have surrendered, use torture to interrogate, cause needless casualties to civilians through collateral damage or desecrate corpses.

For an example of a serviceman who truly is a hero and faced similar circumstances but made the courageous and honorable decision in that combat crucible, consider the story of SEAL Lieutenant Michael Murphy. On a mission in Afghanistan in 2008, his four-man SEAL patrol stumbled across Afghan goat herders. The squad considered killing them to preserve operational security. As the team leader, the decision was Murphy’s to make, and he released them, knowing that execution of civilians would have been a violation of military law. Later, his team was ambushed and three of them died, including Lieutenant Murphy. He subsequently received the Congressional Medal of Honor for his actions in the final firefight, and today his name graces the bow of the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer named in his honor. The man who survived the mission, Navy Seal Marcus Luttrell, tells the story in his memoir Lone Survivor, illuminating the hard choices on the battlefield and the way in which Michael lived up to our standards fully.

When he was a boy growing up, Michael Murphy’s nickname was “the protector,” because he tried to shield the weak and always take the moral and ethical path forward. That is the kind of young leader we cherish in the U.S. military, and Michael’s actions in combat represent the vast majority of America’s extraordinary armed forces. President Trump would do well to consider the actions of leaders like him as he considers wielding the enormous powers of the presidency in pardoning those at the other end of the moral spectrum. He should tread carefully indeed.
__________________
Boats

O Almighty Lord God, who neither slumberest nor sleepest; Protect and assist, we beseech thee, all those who at home or abroad, by land, by sea, or in the air, are serving this country, that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore in all perils; and being filled with wisdom and girded with strength, may do their duty to thy honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

"IN GOD WE TRUST"
sendpm.gif Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 05-22-2019, 11:28 AM
Boats's Avatar
Boats Boats is offline
Senior Member
 

Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 11,620
Arrow War Crimes Pardons: A Terrible Memorial Day Idea

War Crimes Pardons: A Terrible Memorial Day Idea
By: Thomas Knapp - OpEdNews - 5-22-19
RE: https://www.opednews.com/articles/Wa...90522-674.html

On May 16, 2008, near the town of Baiji in Iraq, 1st Lieutenant Michael Behenna, US Army, murdered a prisoner. That was the verdict of the jury in his 2009 court martial, anyway. He was sentenced to 25 years in prison, but paroled in less than five. On May 6, 2019, US president Donald Trump pardoned Behenna.

As I write this, news reports indicate that Trump intends to celebrate Memorial Day by pardoning several other Americans convicted of (or accused of and not yet tried for) war crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan. That's a horrible idea for several reasons.

#1 -One reason is that it's morally repugnant to excuse the commission of crimes, especially violent crimes, for no other reason than that the criminal is a government employee.

#2 A second reason is that it is detrimental to the good order and and discipline of the US armed forces to excuse violations of law by American soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines.

That phrasing is not random: "[D]isorders and neglects to the prejudice of good order and discipline in the armed forces" are themselves crimes under Article 134 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice. Yes, Trump has absolute power to pardon under the US Constitution, but this would be an abuse of that power that conflicts with his duties as commander in chief.

#3 A third reason is that pardons of this type essentially beg other governments to take matters into their own hands where allegations of war crimes by US military personnel arise.

Among the US government's excuses for refusing to join the International Criminal Court, and for forcing agreements by other governments to exempt American troops from prosecution under their own laws, is that the United States cleans up after itself and holds its troops to at least as high a standard as would those other governments. These pardons would give lie to that claim and expose US troops to greater risk of future arrest and prosecution abroad.

Don't just take my word for these claims. Here's General Charles Krulak, former Commandant of the US Marine Corps:

"If President Trump issues indiscriminate pardons of individuals accused -- or convicted by their fellow servicemembers -- of war crimes, he relinquishes the United States' moral high ground and undermines the good order and discipline critical to winning on the battlefield."

And here's General Martin Dempsey, former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff:

"Absent evidence of innocence or injustice the wholesale pardon of US service members accused of war crimes signals our troops and allies that we don't take the Law of Armed Conflict seriously. Bad message. Bad precedent. Abdication of moral responsibility. Risk to us."

After World War Two, the US and other governments which participated in victorious alliance versus the Third Reich and the Empire of Japan tried and punished -- up to and including execution -- German and Japanese soldiers accused of war crimes and the political leaders who ordered, encouraged, or excused those crimes.

If the US doesn't hold itself to at least as high a standard, eventually someone else will.

About this writer: Thomas L. Knapp is director and senior news analyst at the William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism (thegarrisoncenter.org). He lives and works in north central Florida.
__________________
Boats

O Almighty Lord God, who neither slumberest nor sleepest; Protect and assist, we beseech thee, all those who at home or abroad, by land, by sea, or in the air, are serving this country, that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore in all perils; and being filled with wisdom and girded with strength, may do their duty to thy honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

"IN GOD WE TRUST"
sendpm.gif Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 10:40 AM.


Powered by vBulletin, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.