Theodore's World: There Are Two Petitions To Free Our Navy SEALs

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December 13, 2009

There Are Two Petitions To Free Our Navy SEALs

Navy SEALs Accused of Abusing Detainee

Sean Hannity interview with Navy SEAL Matthew McCabe’s lawyer.

FOX News

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: Now two Navy SEALs were arraigned earlier today on charges that they mistreated an Iraqi suspect accused of murdering four American contractors in Fallujah. Now, a third SEAL is set to be arraigned later. Now, one of the SEALs, 24-year-old Matthew McCabe, is accused of punching the detainee after his arrest. Mr. McCabe is receiving growing support from American citizens. In fact, protesters gathered in Norfolk, Virginia, today to protest the government's decision to try the SEALs.

And Mr. McCabe, well, he's speaking out, too. Here's what he told reporters earlier today.

MATTHEW MCCABE, NAVY SEAL: I'm kind of like caught off-guard a little bit, especially when the situation hit the media and definitely by seeing my own picture in the media is kind of — it's not standard protocol.

HANNITY: And joining me is Neil Puckett, who is Matthew McCabe's attorney.

Mr. Puckett, thank you for being with us.


HANNITY: I want to go through the facts of the case as we know them. First of all, the Iraqi detainee himself, that bridge incident where people were — contractors were hung from a bridge, this is the type of terrorists we're talking about in this case, correct?

PUCKETT: That's the exact terrorist we're talking about, Sean.

HANNITY: Yes, all right. So just for the sake of explaining to everybody, one of the things that I found most fascinating about this — and I got to give credit to Jed Babbin and Rowan (ph) Scarborough, who both wrote about this.

Chapter 18, Al Qaeda has a training manual. In this training manual that was released by the U.S. Justice Department, it says, "Members must complain, Al Qaeda members, of torture and mistreatment inflicted on them if they're captured." It's part of their training. Correct?

PUCKETT: That's correct, Sean. And it's to be expected in every situation in which they're captured.

HANNITY: All right. So explain, then, how — because as I understand it, the Navy SEALs actually handed over to the Iraqi authorities this suspect and then was given back, and at one point there was some blood on him. Explain how do we even get ourselves in this situation, then?

PUCKETT: Sean, we get ourselves in this situation by listening to the Iraqi complain, taking his complaints seriously, investigating our own SEALs, American fighting men, and taking a terrorist's word over theirs.

HANNITY: Well, — but I want you to go into more detail here, though. So we handed over this terrorist, this murderer to the Iraqis, he's given back to the Americans.

And he just — all he has to do is accuse Navy SEALs, a terrorist makes an accusation. Explain how we got to the point where the SEALs are now put on trial for doing the very job that they're supposed to do.

PUCKETT: Well, Sean, the SEALs are being put on trial because they're suspected of — my client, Matthew McCabe, is suspected of punching the detainee. So the American command structure felt like it needed to take some action.

And they were going to punish all three of these SEALs with something called Article 15, non-judicial punishment. That was a predetermination of guilt. They all understood that. That was telegraphed to them. They all separately refused that non-judicial punishment, as is their right. And the commander, Major General Cleveland, decided to refer their cases to court-martial based on legal advice he received from his legal adviser.

HANNITY: All right. So let's go to Article 15 under the Uniform Code on military justice and explain it in a little bit more detail.

They were requested to pretty much admit some guilt in this, even though they had none. And some of the other SEALs are being accused of covering up. The one SEAL, quote, "Might have punched him," your client.

So the worst-case scenario is they're being accused of punching a terrorist that had hung contractors from a bridge in Fallujah.

PUCKETT: That's exactly right, Sean. And the point here is that I think small unit leadership failed. In the military, small unit leadership is equipped to deal with allegations or suspicions of misconduct at their own local level.

So even if there were some appearance of impropriety, I think it would have been totally reasonable for the direct supervisors of these SEALs, not knowing who did anything, if they did anything, to simply say, "Look, it looks like this guy had blood on him. If are any of you guys are responsible, knock it off. I don't want to see this happen again," assuming they think the SEALs even did it.

HANNITY: Is there — is there any evidence that we know whatsoever? Because in all my research and reading, I don't see any evidence any place anywhere except that the charge was made by the terrorist. Is there any other evidence that we know of involved in here, any eyewitnesses, anything?

PUCKETT: Well, that's a good question, Sean, because as of today we still don't have the evidence from the investigation released to any of the defense attorneys yet, the military or the civilian attorneys. So we don't know what the evidence is.

HANNITY: And what is your plan now for your client and for the other SEALs? Where do you go from here?

PUCKETT: Well, our plan for payoffs for McCabe is simply to enter a plea of "not guilty" and to be tried by his peers at a court-martial to begin on 19 January, 2010. And I want to thank you for recognizing how serious this case is.

HANNITY: Well, I've got to tell you something. Unless some other evidence emerges here, it seems to me that our military chain of command or, for whatever political reasons or motivations may be involved, they would take the word of a murdering terrorist over our Navy SEALs, which is the best of the best. It just doesn't make any sense to me. So...

PUCKETT: It doesn't make any sense, and it's not too late for them to withdraw and dismiss the charges.

HANNITY: All right. Well, we will watch the case slowly, and we hope that's — that's the case in the end. Thank you, Counselor, for being with us.

PUCKETT: Thank you, Sean.


Here is the LINK for the Petition

I sgned this one and posted it before. Also there is another one that I have also signed.

You can CLICK HERE to sign this one as well. The Human Events petition below goes to SECDEF Gates.

Hon. Robert M. Gates
Secretary of Defense
The Pentagon
Washington, DC

Dear Secretary Gates:

We, the editors and staff of HUMAN EVENTS, and the many Americans who have attached their signatures to this petition, hereby request your personal intervention to dismiss the charges against Navy SEAL operators SO2 Jonathan Keefe, SO1 Julio Huertas and SO2 Matthew McCabe.

These three men are charged with abusing a terrorist they captured in a daring nighttime raid on or about 1 September 2009. On that night, they — as part of a platoon from SEAL Team 10 — captured and detained Ahmed Hashim Abed, one of the most barbaric and dangerous terrorists in Iraq. The terrorist — in a move that is literally right out of the al-Queda training manual — complained of abuse, apparently alleging he was struck in the stomach.

We had hoped that the SEALs’ commanders would dispose of this matter at the lowest level — with a scolding and perhaps a few hundred pushups — for anyone actually guilty of inflicting an inconvenience on this bloody-handed barbarian. But on 29 September 2009, Gen. David H. Petraeus signed a letter authorizing MGen. Charles T. Cleveland to dispose of the allegations of misconduct. In that letter, Gen. Petraeus said that MGen. Cleveland could, “…dispose of these matters in any manner you deem appropriate. This includes the authority to convene courts-martial at any level up to and including General Courts-Martial and to refer charges concerning these individuals to any court-martial.”

The three now face special courts-martial next month. We believe their commanders — including General Petraeus — have failed you, the SEALs and the American people by not preventing the matter from going this far.

You are the person next in line above General Petraeus in the chain of command. You can, legally under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, intervene to dismiss the charges against the three SEALs and direct that they be restored to duty.

We respectfully request that you do so forthwith. For this matter to continue — and to place the honor and fighting future of these three men at stake — is manifestly a gross injustice.

Interviews and local coverage

Two Navy SEALs accused of mistreating an alleged terrorist denied the charges Monday — one during a formal arraignment and the other in more plain-spoken terms after the court proceeding.

“No — the answer’s no, point blank,” said Special Operator 2nd Class Matthew McCabe, as he met well-wishers outside Naval Station Norfolk.

McCabe is one of three Navy SEALs charged with mistreating Ahmed Hashim Abed, the suspected mastermind of the March 2004 attack that killed four Blackwater employees. The SEALs have also been credited with his capture.

The grisly ambush created worldwide headlines as the bodies of the burned and mutilated victims were displayed for the press to photograph.

…Capt. Moira Modzelewski, who presided over the arraignment, set a Jan. 11 trial date for Huertas and Jan. 19 for McCabe.

The case has attracted widespread public attention. About 20 members of Congress have signed a letter circulated by Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., calling on Defense Secretary Robert Gates to intervene.

It has also attracted grass-roots support from people like Richard Berndt, of Virginia Beach, who arrived at the naval base at 6 a.m. with a sign that read, “You Fought For Us — Now We Fight For You.”
“I just feel I owe these guys everything I can give them,” said the 24-year Navy veteran. “They just need our support.”

Donna Zovko, the mother of one of the four slain Blackwater employees, drove from Cleveland, Ohio, to stand with the supporters. In one emotional moment, she found herself next to Marty McCabe, the father of the accused Navy SEAL.

The two shared a few words before embracing.

Until the charges became public, Zovko had never known the names of the SEALs credited with Abed’s capture.

“It took me a few minutes to talk to her,” McCabe said later. “I kind of got choked up. This is closure for her.”

Posted by Wild Thing at December 13, 2009 01:40 AM


It is so damned sad that our military has its own share of politician types.
note: A Statesman loves his voters.
A Politician loves himself.
These jerks, these self-serving individuals, (from the C-in-C on down, that put themselves above my security have no place in MY military. As for the Raghead that claimed the beating; I wonder why he was not shot in the face when he resisted arrest. (They all resist arrest, don't they?)
As SEALs, they were trained in the pugilistic arts, were they not? And the asshole only got a split lip? I don't think so. If they had set upon him, he would have shown much more damage than that.
Political Correctness has no place in the military, nor in America either. This shit has to stop!

"Never Forget Ft. Hood Texas 11/5/09!"

Posted by: Frankly Opinionated at December 13, 2009 10:18 AM

Frankly, thank you for the wonderful
comment and input.

Posted by: Wild Thing at December 14, 2009 12:20 AM