Tuesday, December 5, 2023

Pentagon Jails Marine Who Publicly Criticized Afghan Debacle

'Lt. Col. Scheller will be afforded all due process...'

The Marine whose criticism of military leaders and their disastrous handling of the U.S.’s withdrawal from Afghanistan went viral is now in the brig awaiting a hearing to determine whether he will be punished.

Lt. Col. Stuart Scheller is “currently in pretrial confinement in the Regional Brig for Marine Corps Installations East aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune pending an Article 32 preliminary hearing,” Capt. Sam Stephenson, a spokesman for the Marine Corps Training and Education Command, confirmed to Task & Purpose.

“The time, date, and location of the proceedings have not been determined,” Stephenson added. “Lt. Col. Scheller will be afforded all due process.”

Scheller went viral last month after posting a video on social media in which he called for accountability from military leaders for the way the Afghanistan withdrawal occurred. 

“The reason people are so upset on social media right now is not because the Marine on the battlefield let someone down,” he said in the video. “People are upset because their senior leaders let them down. And none of them are raising their hands and accepting accountability or saying, ‘We messed up.'”

The day after he published the video, Scheller said he had been “relieved of duty” and would “probably do some jail time.”

Scheller’s father, Stuart Scheller Sr., defended his son’s comments and accused the military of trying to put a “gag order” on him.

Scheller is expected to testify during a military hearing later this week, his father added.

“They had a gag order on him and asked him not to speak,” the senior Scheller said. “He did, and they incarcerated him. They don’t know what to do with him.”

Scheller Sr. argued his son is being punished for asking the same questions everyone else was thinking.

“All our son did is ask the questions that everybody was asking themselves, but they were too scared to speak out loud,” he told Task & Purpose. “He was asking for accountability. In fact, I think he even asked for an apology that we made mistakes, but they couldn’t do that, which is mind-blowing.”

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