Secretary of the Navy fired after clash with Pentagon over SEAL controversy

by John Wesley Reid · Nov 25th, 2019 12:25 pm

Last Updated Nov 25th, 2019 at 12:47 pm

The top civilian for naval operations has been relieved of duty by the Pentagon due to a "lack of trust and confidence."

Defense Secretary Mark Esper asked for Secretary of the Navy Richard Spencer's resignation after Spencer allegedly went above Esper's head in making requests to the White House related to the war crimes case of Edward Gallagher, which caught national attention.

Gallagher was accused of killing a captive ISIS teenager and taking pictures with the corpse in 2017. Gallagher was acquitted of the murder charges but convicted of taking pictures with the corpse. He was subsequently reduced in rank, which would have severely impacted his retirement pay.

President Trump has defended Gallagher by reinstating his rank and tweeting that he will not allow the Navy to advance with a review board that was planning to consider whether Gallagher would retain the coveted title of SEAL.

Unbeknownst to Esper, Spencer went to the White House and requested Gallagher's rank be reinstated and his title protected. Esper requested Spencer's resignation for the breach in chain-of-command protocol.


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