The Defense Department’s inspector general launched an investigation five days after Joe Biden was inaugurated in an attempt to see if any alleged war crimes were committed by U.S. forces over the past several years and essentially swept under the rug.
Just the News reports that, according to a Jan. 25 memo signed by Michael J. Roark, Deputy Inspector General for Evaluations, the IG’s office will investigate how U.S. Central Command and Special Operations Command to see whether either put in place programs “to reduce potential law of war violations when conducting operations.”
“We will also determine whether potential USCENTCOM and USSOCOM law of war violations were reported and reviewed in accordance with DoD policy,” the memo says, though it doesn’t mention any specific suspected violations or incidents.
In other words, it looks like a big, fat politically motivated witch hunt.
Just the News adds:
Both commands have played a significant role in recent conflicts around the world, including Afghanistan, Iraq, and elsewhere.
A SOCOM spokesman, Ken McGraw, directed Just the News to the Pentagon Inspector General for questions regarding the status and scope of the investigation. The IG’s office did not respond to inquiries.
Others within the military community expressed concerns about the inquiry.
“This is a fishing expedition to further drive the reputation of the military into the mud,” said former CENTCOM officer Wolf Wagner, a three-tour veteran of the Iraq war. “They want to re-litigate anything they thought was a war crime.”
He went on to say that any suspected war crimes should be thoroughly investigated and if anyone is found to have violated the laws of war, then they should be held to account.
But that doesn’t sound at all like what’s going on with Biden’s Pentagon, he noted.
“When you have a legitimate war crime, that absolutely has to be investigated and taken care of, but in a way that is focused on justice,” Timothy Parlatore, a former naval officer who also represented now-retired Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher in his war crimes case, told Just the News.
“The vast majority of the Special Operations community are out there doing the right thing,” Parlatore added. “A lot of allegations of war crimes are overblown by the enemy and by some in the media. I hope this won’t cause more problems than is necessary.”
That’s what’s really sparking concerns among currently-serving military members: That a politicized Defense Department (which is already being led by a man, Lloyd Austin, who appears convinced that there are white supremacist extremists throughout the ranks) is going to come after troops for all the wrong reasons.
“Anybody who fought any battle in Iraq and Afghanistan has to worry about whether they are going to be investigated,” Wagner said. “It’s second-guessing the soldiers.”
American warriors will also begin to second-guess themselves and at all the wrong times, Parlatore said.
“It makes people hesitate in a way that will make them afraid to make decisions,” he said. “It’s dangerous.
“The problem with looking into alleged war crimes is there usually is a lack of evidence of these things.” Parlatore noted further. “But there is significant motivation for the enemy to present information that will have our people jammed up.”