A one-star general is one of 27 former Marine Corps and Navy officers and attorneys calling on the Senate and House Armed Services committees to investigate the actions of Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James Amos, Marine Corps Times is reporting.
The group of officers sent a letter that included 28 pages of enclosures, alleging the Corps' top officer made misleading statements under oath, hid evidence, and worked to discredit a whistleblower who said Amos had engaged in undue command influence.
Those allegations stem from the aftermath of a 2011 incident in Afghanistan, when a group of Marine scout/snipers filmed themselves urinating on enemy fighters. The video was later posted to Youtube, and Amos ordered an investigation.
Lt. Gen. Thomas Waldhauser was appointed to lead the independent inquiry, and later recommended the Marines receive nonjudicial punishment in lieu of a more serious court-martial proceeding.
Waldhauser, who was removed as the convening authority, alleged Amos tried to influence his ruling on the case — a violation of Article 37 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice.
"I do not necessarily remember the exact words or sequence of what was said, but the [Commandant] did make a comment to the effect that the Marines involved needed to be ‘crushed,'" Waldhauser said, according to a sworn statement. "The CMC went on to say that he wanted these Marines to be discharged from the Marine Corps when this was all over."
The letter also brings up the case of Maj. James Weirick, a Marine attorney investigating the sniper case who later filed a whistleblower complaint against the Commandant. He's been enduring alleged reprisals ever since.
“To be sure, Major Weirick should be congratulated, and most certainly not condemned, for bringing these issues to the forefront,” the letter reads, according to The Times. “We urge you to exercise your oversight responsibilities and fully explore these events so that due process, fundamental fairness, and most of all, integrity, remain more revered within the military justice system and in the traditions of the United States Marine Corps.”
Correction: An earlier version of this article said Lt. Gen. Waldhauser made a sworn statement to the Pentagon Inspector General. His statement was made during court-martial proceedings.
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