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Acting Secretary Modly must have slept through his leadership classes at Annapolis.
Those of us who have served as leaders in the Armed Forces of the United States — commissioned and noncommissioned — understand that the most important asset we have to achieve our mission is our troops.
If we want to succeed in our mission, we need to make sure our troops have the resources they need to get the job done and that they are confident we will do everything to ensure their well-being — that we have their back.
Without that confidence, you are not leading, the troops will not follow you, and you will fail. With it, they will follow you into the jaws of Hell.
Secretary Modly fired Captain Crozier because he pleaded for the Navy’s help to accelerate the evacuation of his crew due to confirmed COVID-19 cases on the ship. Afterwards, Secretary Modly publicly accused Crozier of being “naïve and stupid” and using “poor judgment.”
We are flabbergasted!
While Acting Secretary Modly may not have understood the tenets of leadership, Captain Brett Crozier knew them instinctively as a tested and committed combat force leader. His sailors obviously knew that about him. Note how they shouted their praise and support of Captain Crozier. Where was that shout for Acting Secretary Modly? All we heard from them was, “What the f**k!”
From a leadership standpoint, Acting Secretary Modly was “naïve and stupid.” His lecture to the troops showed monumental “poor judgement.”
My fellow veterans here in California are pleased that Representatives Carbajal, Brownley, and Garamendi asked the question, “Is Acting Secretary Modly fit for his position?” They found him unfit and asked for his resignation. Fortunately, he did resign. Now it is time to heal the wound and get the ship and its crew healthy and back at sea.
Sanford D. Cook, USA (Ret) and Shawn Terris, former USMC, are members of Veterans United For Truth, Inc., of which Robert M. Handy, USN (Ret) is national chair.