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New York Times: Leaked videos show SEALs describing Gallagher's conduct

Navy SEALs paint disturbing picture of their platoon leader, Edward Gallagher, in new video obtained by the New York Times. In July 2019, Gallagher was acquitted of nearly all charges in the death of a young ISIS fighter in Iraq. But he was convicted of bringing discredit to the armed services after posing in a photo next to the fighter's body.

Posted: Dec 27, 2019 9:41 AM
Updated: Dec 27, 2019 6:00 PM


Members of SEAL Team 7 Alpha Platoon described their platoon leader, retired Special Operations Chief Eddie Gallagher, as 'toxic' and 'evil,' according to video recordings of the interviews obtained by The New York Times.

Gallagher's war crimes case gained national attention after President Donald Trump controversially intervened on his behalf, ignoring Pentagon leaders who had told the President such a move could damage the integrity of the military judicial system.

'The guy is freaking evil,' Special Operator First Class Craig Miller said of Gallagher during his interview with Naval Criminal Investigative Service agents, the Times reported.

'You could tell he was perfectly O.K. with killing anybody that was moving,' Special Operator First Class Corey Scott said of his former platoon leader, the newspaper reported.

'The guy was toxic,' Special Operator First Class Joshua Vriens told investigators, the report said.

In the videos obtained by the Times, the platoon members accuse Gallagher of shooting at a 12-year-old, refer to Gallagher as a 'psychopath,' and tell of rumors that Gallagher had targeted civilians.

The video interviews were included in a hoard of Navy investigative materials the Times received about the prosecution of Gallagher, who was accused of war crimes. They provide rare insight into the elite force with a code of silence -- and into the men of Alpha Platoon, SEAL Team 7 who have never spoken publicly about the case against their former platoon leader. The SEALs declined to comment to the Times.

'My first reaction to seeing the videos was surprise and disgust that they would make up blatant lies about me, but I quickly realized that they were scared that the truth would come out of how cowardly they acted on deployment,' Gallagher said in a statement.

'I felt sorry for them that they thought it necessary to smear my name, but they never realized what the consequences of their lies would be. As upset as I was, the videos also gave me confidence because I knew that their lies would never hold up under real questioning and the jury would see through it. Their lies and (Naval Criminal Investigative Service's) refusal to ask hard questions or corroborate their stories strengthened my resolve to go to trial and clear my name.'

Timothy Parlatore, Gallagher's lawyer, said the SEALs' interviews contained falsehoods and inconsistencies that formed 'a clear road map to the acquittal.'

A decorated SEAL team leader, Gallagher was convicted in July of bringing discredit to the armed services after posing in a photo next to a dead ISIS fighter's body in 2017 in Iraq, which is against regulations.

He was acquitted of premeditated murder in the death of the ISIS prisoner in Iraq. That case took a turn when a key prosecution witness testified that he caused the prisoner's death, not Gallagher. Special Operator First Class Corey Scott, a SEAL medic, said that he saw Gallagher pull out his knife and stab the prisoner under his collarbone at least once.

On cross-examination, Scott told the defense that he never saw any blood after the stabbing. That's when Scott claimed he caused the prisoner's death by holding his thumb over his trachea tube until he suffocated. Scott described the killing as an act of mercy because he was concerned the boy -- a prisoner of the Iraqi forces -- would be tortured by the Iraqis.

Following the trial, Gallagher was demoted in rank -- a decision Trump reversed in a move that angered military officials and led to a review of Gallagher's status in the elite group.

Gallagher retired from the Navy on November 30 as planned.

This story has been updated.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 293542

Reported Deaths: 6638
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto19601229
Hinds18712386
Harrison16569277
Rankin12637263
Jackson12483219
Lee9671160
Madison9420196
Jones7914146
Forrest7159136
Lauderdale6798226
Lowndes6014137
Lamar585880
Lafayette5716113
Washington5182129
Bolivar4599121
Oktibbeha440391
Panola428392
Pearl River4138128
Warren4122113
Pontotoc408068
Marshall400392
Monroe3981126
Union393673
Neshoba3777167
Lincoln3491100
Hancock341674
Leflore3363118
Sunflower317385
Tate301574
Pike299193
Scott292868
Alcorn290760
Itawamba289072
Yazoo284962
Coahoma276367
Tippah276165
Copiah276057
Simpson272778
Prentiss268858
Leake252171
Marion251578
Wayne251541
Covington248278
Grenada246277
Adams233377
George231145
Newton226352
Winston221375
Jasper212744
Tishomingo211965
Attala206369
Chickasaw200851
Holmes181770
Clay178250
Stone171829
Tallahatchie170039
Clarke168971
Calhoun157128
Smith152431
Yalobusha143536
Greene127233
Walthall123640
Noxubee122829
Perry121434
Montgomery121338
Lawrence119521
Carroll117923
Amite110932
Webster110030
Jefferson Davis101231
Tunica98823
Claiborne97929
Benton93324
Humphreys92427
Kemper89623
Quitman77114
Franklin75619
Choctaw69516
Wilkinson62226
Jefferson61927
Sharkey48817
Issaquena1676
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 491849

Reported Deaths: 9869
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson707641366
Mobile35937724
Madison32307450
Tuscaloosa24024410
Montgomery22502499
Shelby21848214
Baldwin19698277
Lee14926151
Morgan13624251
Calhoun13202285
Etowah13154319
Marshall11243208
Houston10058259
Limestone9348134
Elmore9345182
Cullman8879179
St. Clair8799221
Lauderdale8588210
DeKalb8436174
Talladega7500163
Walker6509251
Jackson6483102
Autauga622890
Blount6084125
Colbert6004118
Coffee5235102
Dale4627106
Russell402930
Franklin398876
Covington3949106
Chilton386298
Escambia377472
Tallapoosa3572141
Clarke343149
Chambers3399108
Dallas3397141
Pike292972
Lawrence282284
Marion281295
Winston246266
Bibb244560
Geneva238870
Marengo233755
Pickens223954
Barbour210651
Hale209068
Fayette199956
Butler195265
Henry182041
Cherokee176438
Monroe166038
Randolph163140
Washington156334
Crenshaw144054
Clay143454
Macon141643
Cleburne137139
Lamar132432
Lowndes130749
Wilcox121425
Bullock116336
Conecuh106523
Perry105427
Sumter98331
Coosa88623
Greene87132
Choctaw54923
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