Navy Acknowledges Railroading of Marine Operator Falsely Accused of War Crimes

| January 10, 2019

U.S. Marines / Getty Images

Article bY: Bill McMorris

I recall my post about SOC Gallagher, and the possibility he was falsely accused of war crimes by an over zealous military legal system. Got shot in the face for that one, and had at least one depart the fix in a huff. Now there are questions being raised about his accusers, and I can only hope Chief Gallagher is given a fair and unbiased trial, to be exonerated of the crimes he is accused of committing.

Which brings us here, to a link kindly provided by HMCS(FMF) ret.

Navy Acknowledges Railroading of Marine Operator Falsely Accused of War Crimes

BY: Bill McMorris

Marine Maj. Fred Galvin petitions for reinstatement

A Marine Special Forces officer has been promoted in retirement after the Navy acknowledged that he was falsely accused of war crimes for leading his men through a terrorist ambush.

The Board for Correction of Naval Records admitted that Marine Maj. Fred Galvin was railroaded when he led the Corps’ first special operations unit (MARSOC) into Afghanistan. In March 2007 his unit was attacked by a suicide bomb followed by small arms fire from terrorists. Galvin and his men returned fire, killing 12 enemies, only to see senior military leaders and investigators accuse his men of massacring civilians.

MARSOC was withdrawn from the region before any investigation was completed. The men were put on trial only to be exonerated after it was discovered that the prosecution “was in possession of overwhelmingly clear evidence” and “suppressed exculpating evidence” that the Marines acted in self-defense. The board found that Maj. Galvin not only acted appropriately but paid a career-ending price for the animosity of senior brass looking for a scapegoat. The report cited one officer’s conclusion that Galvin “was beset by a perfect storm of toxic officers.”

“The convoy’s response was irreproachable… the magnitude of [the initial investigator’s] errors cannot be overstated,” the report says. “The adverse fitness report is inequitable and unjust because it was not fair to relieve him.”

The rest of the debacle may be read here: Free

Category: Blue Falcons, Legal, Marine Corps

Comments (32)

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  1. streetsweeper says:

    What needs to happen next is, Galvin and his Marines need to be given complete exoneration, returned to duty left alone and allowed to sue US Army whatever rank he is, John Nicholson for defamation of character and libel. Or is it slander? Nicholson probably had his heart set on an appointment and further promotion from Obama

    • 2/17 Air Cav says:

      He called the Marines a stain on honor. A stain on honor! GD POS slithering snake.

    • MSG Eric says:

      Libel is print, slander is spoken. Might as well go for both until he’s getting that dickbag’s pension check every month along with his own.

    • J.R. Johnson says:

      GEN(Ret) Nicholson. John, Jr. studied under GEN Shinseki during 9/11 but earned his cred in Grenada (I am guessing a 1LT with the Rangers) earning a Bronze Star with V device. He spent a lot of time in NATO and the previous President liked him so that might tell you about his leanings. He certainly seemed ready to throw the Marines under the bus at the drop of the hat for political points.
      The Democrats should have him run in 2020, since they chewed up and spit on Petraeus.

  2. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    First, the prosecutors need to be pilloried. Second, the prosecutors need to be dunked. Third, the prosecutors need to be put on the rack. Fourth, the prosecutors need to be put to the thumb screws. Finally, the prosecutors need to be drawn and quartered.

    “Prosecutors” is a plural noun. Each has a name. By God, each should be named.

    • Nucsnipe says:

      And the same applies to Nicholson, plus recall him to active duty and court-martial his ass. I hear Leavenworth is real unpleasant this time of year

    • HMC Ret says:

      ^I got nothing to add except I hate to see good men thrown under the bus by assholes who feel they are morally superior to courageous warriors. Fuck those pieces of shit. Just fuck them.^

      • UpNorth says:

        You guys pretty much wrapped it up, not leaving much more to be said. BZ.

        • 5th/77th FA says:

          ^THIS^^THAT^^THE OTHER^ And the top three comments.

          What in the name of the wide world of sports is on going here? Classic example of politicians in uniform maybe? Or a case of REMFs with not enough backbone to have the backs of their troops. If I remember correctly one of the top “rules” of being a leader is to look after your troops. The Major attempted to, but apparently his peers and commanders didn’t.

          I have been a victim of false accusations and it is no fun, trust me. You sure find out who your true friends are. It only took nearly a year for mine to work it’s way through, and tho the charges were dropped, the record is never completely expunged. As we’ve said, the innerwebz is forever.

          So what the average time in grade for a Marine LTC to pin his Bird on? His LTC DOR should go from the time he got his men out of the shit, pin the Bird on, and go ahead and pin his stars on.

          And the shitbirds that hung him out to dry, up to and including any Past NCA/CinCs should suffer all of the punishments listed above, plus any others we can think of on our way out to the administer said punishment.

          This shit just pisses me off.

    • Reverend Pointyhead says:

      The prosecutors need to be cashiered before their peers and loved ones.

      Then draw and quarter the sons of bitches.

  3. OWB says:

    While I like the ideas each of you put forth for the treatment the prosecutors and chain of command each has so richly earned, would it be asking too much for the guys originally prosecuted to be paid as if they had remained in service all this time, given the choice of taking an honorable discharge on a date say, maybe about the 1st of April 2019, with appropriate rank they would have garnered since 2007 OR be returned to service with the rank they would have had in the meanwhile, plus back pay, of course? Their choice.

    No need for lawsuits. Just do what’s right for them and their families.

    • MSG Eric says:

      Oh that’ll happen. If the Major wants to be reinstated he’ll get all the back pay and benefits as if he never left. Same with any of the others.

      If he would’ve been up for promotion, he might even be promoted, not 100% on that one though.

      Each service’s board for correction of military records can do a lot, when they’re given the opportunity and resources to accomplish what they need to. Though in recent years they are overwhelmed and backlogged with PTSD/TBI discharge claims.

      • USMC Steve says:

        That is correct. They would have to go back to when he would first have been eligible for promotion, and reconsider him. If he gets it, then they owe him a metric buttload of backpay at that grade as well. There will be no mention of that bad fitrep in his OQR at all.

  4. HMCS(FMF) ret says:

    Here’s another example of Unlawful Command Influence (UCI) – not sure if this was covered back in September. It involved the (hopefully) former Senior Navy JAG:

    • HMC Ret says:

      Crawford was forced to retire in the middle of the month. I’m hoping there are plans underway to recall him to active duty and court martial his lying ass. He threw good men under the bus in the name of political correctness and political expediency. He is a disgrace to the uniform.

      • HMCS(FMF) ret says:

        Amen, Chief… when politics get in the way of people trying to do the mission, the innocent always seem to get hurt.

        Someone over at Instapundit said it best – “put the lawyers in battle rattle and on the lines getting shot at and see if that doesn’t change their mindset”.

    • AW1Ed says:

      If I may, Senior Chief,
      JAGCmdr. Matt Szoka, left, greets Judge Advocate General, Vice Admiral James W. Crawford III, during a tour of Naval Air Facility Atsugi on June 21, 2017. (Navy)

      The Navy’s top lawyer unlawfully scuttled a SEAL’s case, court rules

      By: Carl Prine
      In a landmark decision Wednesday, the military’s highest court ruled that the Navy’s top lawyer, Vice Adm. James W. Crawford III, illegally meddled in the case of a SEAL accused of rape.

      The split 3-2 decision by the United States Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces tosses out the highly decorated commando’s 2014 court-martial conviction and bars the armed forces from ever trying him again.

      The legal victory of Senior Chief Special Warfare Operator Keith E. Barry — who never quit proclaiming his innocence — will ripple across the entire military.

      Writing for the majority, Chief Judge Scott W. Stucky, a retired Air Force colonel, determined that not only can the military’s most senior attorneys be held responsible for bogus advice that helps to unlawfully coerce a prosecution but that Crawford “actually did so in this case.”

      Called the “mortal enemy of military justice,” unlawful command influence, or UCI, occurs when superiors utter words or take actions that wrongfully influence the outcome of court-martial cases, jeopardize the appellate process or undermine the public’s confidence in the armed forces by appearing to tip the scales of justice.

      Military judges traditionally have held commanding officers solely culpable for committing UCI, not the attorneys who advise them, but Stucky’s 15-page opinion reverses that.

      Designed to buttress the public’s perception of the military criminal justice system, the majority’s decision also raises hard questions about “the political climate surrounding sexual assault” caused by the “increased scrutiny by Congress as well as other political and military leaders” on commanders who convene court-martial cases but also go through Capitol Hill, the Pentagon and the White House to get promoted.

      “It’s justice,” said retired Capt. Lawrence Brennan, a career Navy attorney and now an instructor at Fordham University’s School of Law. “It’s the right answer to a longstanding problem. It’s a well-written and well-reasoned opinion, probably the most significant UCI decision since the Tailhook scandal.”

      The rest may be viewed at the link provided by HMCS(FMF)ret, above.

  5. Frank says:

    There are too many of these cases to make it just a small localised SNAFU. These were co-ordinated witch-hunts with similar MOs, there appeared to be a competition to jail heroes.
    Don’t trust anyone over E5 or O6.

  6. Cornholio says:

    And nothing will happen to that piece of shit Crawford.

  7. Stephen F. McCartney, M.D. FACS says:

    I met Major Fred Galvin briefly in my office at MARSOC HQ in early 2008. A true gentleman, very pleasant and an extremely impressive officer. I am glad to finally see the painfully delayed justice rendered to him and all of Fox Company, 2d MSOB. Fox Co.’s worst enemy per my observation at the time was USMC HQ who wanted MARSOC to fail. As the USSOCOM Surgeon (also a Green Beret) said ” You really find out who your friends are when the shit starts to fly”. How true. My experience on medical side as MARSOC Surgeon (2006-2009) was that USASOC, 106 miles due W at Ft Bragg were always there to assist us in our early days. Thanks. CAPT Bones USN (ret)

    • AW1Ed says:

      Thanks, CAPT Bones. It’s the human side that puts a face on an article, and helps bring it to life.

      Never met the man, but I too am glad that this travesty has been corrected. The fact he’s willing to go back into the service after all of this speaks volumes of his nature.

  8. Veritas Omnia Vincit says:

    These cases just make me really angry, a group of Marines doing exactly what we expect them to killing the enemy and defending themselves are ruined by a bunch of turds with a hard on for their unit?

    Everyone involved in pursuing this case to its wrongful end needs to lose their job and owe the government all their pay for the last ten years. Because they should be retroactively fired to the day they committed the crime of unlawful prosecution against US Citizens under contract as Marines to the US Government.

    I trust gas station sushi more than I trust the government, cases like this only reinforce my absolute disgust and distrust with political animals seeking to fatten themselves by starving others.

    A proper public spectacle of terminations, charges and fines that ruin the prosecutors, judges, assistants, etc…involved in this criminal conspiracy should be undertaken to make sure any other turds in the bowl thinking they have the right to screw people out of their freedom along with their honorable careers might be dissuaded from pursing such nonsense for fear of their own lives being destroyed when their cowardly deeds are disclosed.

    If someone lies to ruin another’s life and career we should hold that person up to the light and ruin them for all eternity. This kind of crime makes stolen valor seem like a friendly Sunday afternoon picnic. This is despicable and detestable to any decent person’s sensibilities.

    • HMC Ret says:

      “This kind of crime makes stolen valor seem like a friendly Sunday afternoon picnic.”

      Ditto, this is worse than SV. Crawford is truly an immoral piece of shit. I so hope he is recalled to AD to face charges. I DO NOT understand how one can be such a scumbag as to burn a warrior with trumped up charges. Well, I guess I can … he had hopes of lord barry fawning over him and appointing him to some bullshit alphabet soup job. I hope his retirement is miserable. You’re a cowardly PoS, Crawford.

      • Jarhead says:

        Crawford’s picture shows the facial expressions of one arrogant S. O. B., while his hands reflect the future of a coffee barista at a local Starbucks. Candy ass piece of shit will never have to answer to the public unless we make it happen. Of course there is always his card to be pulled when needed. The Chocolate Card is often a life saver these days.

  9. BlueCord Dad says:

    As a civilian, albeit one with a 29 year career in LE behind me and a bent for history, I’ve read that historically the Marine Corps was not enamored with “elite” units. They felt/feel that Marines are elite anyway. A reason perhaps this was allowed to occur? Feel free to throw things, I’m used to it

    • AW1Ed says:

      Not just the Marines, BCD. Big Army and Big Navy traditionally disliked “Special” units, snipers, and the like. Until they wound up needing them as force multipliers, only to disband them after the festivities were over. Wash, rinse, repeat. That this mindset survives to this day speaks to me of envy, and a sick practice of counting coup on warriors by REMFs.

    • Charles says:

      A Marine Special Forces officer has been promoted in retirement after the Navy acknowledged that he was falsely accused of war crimes for leading his men through a terrorist ambush.

      There is one and only one United States “Special Forces” and that is in the Army. There are “Special Operations Forces” in all branches of service, but to refer to a “Marine Special Forces officer” is like referring to “an Air Force SEAL.”

  10. FatCircles0311 says:

    That faggot traitor bergdahl got his back pay. This marine and everyone charged should be getting theirs as well. That’s the least they could do for shitting on warfighters like that.