The secretary of the Navy deserved to get fired for his actions, says a Navy veteran and military analyst.
On Sunday, at the request of Defense Secretary Mark Esper, Navy Secretary Richard Spencer submitted his resignation for allegedly proposing a deal with the White House behind Esper's back to resolve the matter of a Navy SEAL who had been acquitted of a murder charge and whose case has been championed by President Donald Trump.
Esper said publicly he had lost "trust and confidence" in Spencer after learning the Navy secretary had "privately" proposed to the White House that Chief Petty Officer Edward Gallagher be allowed to retire in his current rank and without losing his status as a SEAL.
Kirk Lippold, who commanded the USS Cole when it was attacked by terrorists in 2000, says the Navy secretary took the view that he could bypass his boss and talk directly the White House.
“That isn't how it works when you work inside the Pentagon,” Lippold says. “I think that Secretary Esper did exactly the right thing, and not only should Secretary Spencer be forced to resign, but I think some of these admirals need to be held accountable as well now."
According to Military.com, Esper told reporters he was "flabbergasted" to learn from a White House official about backdoor communications. The defense secretary also learned Spencer was lying about his threat to resign if Gallagher was allowed to receive the coveted Navy SEAL trident emblem.
Esper has also said President Trump gave him a direct order to give Gallagher the trident, which overruled an evaluation that was under way, and the defense secretary said the issue is now over and behind them.