In a disgusting display, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer tried to dodge criticism of the disastrous Yemen raid by claiming that anyone who criticizes the raid is dishonoring the memory of deceased CPO Ryan Owens.
Video of White House Press Sec. Sean Spicer responding to criticism of the raid:
Spicer responded to criticism of the raid by using the sacrifice as a Ryan Owens as a shield to deflect questions about the raid.
The Press Secretary said, “It’s absolutely a success, and I think anyone who would suggest it’s not a success does a disservice to the life of Chief Ryan Owens. He fought knowing what was at stake in that mission, and anyone who would suggest otherwise doesn’t fully appreciate how successful that mission was. What the information they were able to retrieve was, and how that will help prevent future terrorist attacks…I think anybody who undermines the success of that raid owes an apology and a disservice to the life of Chief Owens.”
Spicer continued, “The action that was taken in Yemen was a huge success. American lives will be saved because of it. Future attacks will be prevented because of it. The life of Chief Owens was done in service to this country, and we owe him and his family a great debt for the information that we received in that raid. I think any suggestion otherwise is a disservice to his courageous life and the actions that he took. Full stop.”
The White House was responding to criticism from Sen. John McCain who after receiving a classified briefing on the mission called it a failure. McCain later toned it down a bit but released a statement saying, “Every military operation has objectives. And while many of the objectives of the recent raid in Yemen were met, I would not describe any operation that results in the loss of American life as a success.”
Spicer’s claim of great success contradicts reports from officials who say that everything went wrong in Yemen.
The President’s White House is using the death of someone who they got killed to avoid accountability and criticism for their actions. No one is saying that Ryan Owens wasn’t a brave hero, but there are legitimate questions that need to be answered by this administration about what went wrong in Yemen.
To use a death that their poor planning caused as a shield to deflect criticism is repulsive and unpresidential.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association