There is much ado about something that is definitely NOT nothing – the charging of Navy SEALs with assault after capturing one of the most wanted terrorists on the military’s radar. A feature on the Chicago Sun Times talks about one of the SEALs who were charged: Julio Huertas.
According to the feature, Huertas was born and raised in Blue Island, a suburb of Chicago. His family described him as “a dedicated and decorated Navy SEAL,” and they have high hopes that it is justice that will prevail.
The Sun Times source revealed that the assault charges brought against the SEALs did not stem from an incident related to the capture of the SEALs’ alleged accuser, Ahmed Hashim Abed. Apparently, the allegations were based on a report from a master-at-arms sailor who was assigned to guard Abed. The guard reportedly told a SEAL platoon commander that one of the SEAL operators had punched Abed in the stomach.
Whether it was a “punch in the gut” or a bloody lip, the accusations brought us to where we are now: the pressing of charges that include dereliction of duty, making a false statement and impeding an investigation against Navy SEAL Special Operator First Class Julio Huertas; assault of the detainee, dereliction of duty and making a false statement against Navy SEAL Special Operator Second Class Matthew McCabe; and dereliction of duty and making a false statement against Navy SEAL Special Operator Second Class Jonathan Keefe.
All three have refused to submit to non-judicial punishment, which may be viewed as just as good as admitting they were guilty; hence, the arraignment.
We still could not let go of the image of charred remains hanging over a bridge; it is difficult to feel calm, collected and sympathetic toward a suspect of such atrocity that law will consider as “innocent until proven guilty”.