A grieving Navy seal father provided yet another repudiation of Trump’s foreign policy – and his military adventurism – when he refused to meet with Trump at the Florida airport where his son’s body was returning from Yemen following the failed Yemen raid ordered by Donald Trump.
As reported by CNN, Bill Owens, father of deceased Chief Special Warfare Officer William Owens, not only refused to meet with Trump as his son’s casket arrived at the airport, but he also insisted that an investigation needed to be carried out into the circumstances under which his son was killed.
Bill Owens, who is a retired detective and a military veteran, seems to feel that the Trump administration rushed its way into the Yemen raid without proper preparation. Certainly, it is true that the prior Obama administration had studied a potential raid into Yemen for many months and had concluded that the time wasn’t yet right.
As Owens put it, “I told them I didn’t want to make a scene about it, but my conscience wouldn’t let me talk to him. Why at this time did there have to be this stupid mission when it wasn’t even barely a week into his administration.”
In a later interview, Owens also mentioned that he objected strenuously to how the family of Captain Humayun Khan was treated during the campaign by Donald Trump. Trump chose to attack the Gold Star family for their statements against him at the Democratic National Convention.
Trump’s decision to have Special Forces carry out this raid only days into his administration certainly raises red flags among many experts. It seems unlikely that Trump – who had surrounded himself largely with political yes-men – was in a position to prudently evaluate whether the raid should go forward at that time or be delayed.
Donald Trump – whose own military service in Vietnam was prevented by draft deferment resulting from heel spurs and other causes – seems to be an enthusiastic supporter of using the military at the drop of a hat. But whether he appreciates the gravity and responsibility of sending men and women into combat is an open question.
Trump once criticized Senator John McCain, claiming he wasn’t really a hero for having been captured by the North Vietnamese and tortured for years. Donald Trump also once bragged about receiving a Purple Heart from a supporter, suggesting he had obtained it the easy way. Given this, it’s difficult to imagine what Trump might have said to a Navy seal father who had just lost his son. So it may be just as well that Owens refused to meet him.
Almost every decision Donald Trump has many in the area of security and military matters since assuming office has been at odds with the opinions of experts in government. This includes the various branches of the military and intelligence.
Trump’s decision to reorganize the National Security Council, removing the Joint Chiefs of Staff and a number of other experts so that he could replace them with political cronies like Breitbart’s Stephen Bannon, makes it clear that Trump doesn’t appreciate the complexities of military operations or intelligence gathering.
While it cannot be said for certain at this time that the death of Chief Special Warfare Officer William Owens – not to mention the children and civilians killed in the raid – can be laid at the doorstep of the Donald Trump administration, only a thorough investigation of the matter will reveal whether this is the case. As reported by NBC News, at least one Navy seal father is insisting that such an investigation take place.
[Featured Image by Mark Wilson/Getty Images]