Speaking to the Miami Herald, the father of the Navy SEAL killed during a mission approved by President Trump is calling for an investigation.
William Owens said that he refused to meet with Trump when his son’s body was returned to Dover Air Force Base. “I’m sorry, I don’t want to see him,” Owens claims he told the chaplain. “I told them I don’t want to meet the president.”
“I told them I didn’t want to make a scene about it, but my conscience wouldn’t let me talk to him.”
“Why at this time did there have to be this stupid mission when it wasn’t even barely a week into his administration? Why?” Owens said. “For two years prior, there were no boots on the ground in Yemen — everything was missiles and drones — because there was not a target worth one American life. Now, all of a sudden we had to make this grand display?”
The White House called the operation a success amid widespread criticism of its planning. According to a report from the New York Times, military officials said “everything went wrong” during the raid that took place in Yemen.
“Don’t hide behind my son’s death to prevent an investigation,” he said. “I want an investigation. … The government owes my son an investigation.”
Owens claimed that Trump travel ban on seven Muslim majority countries contributed the mission’s alleged failure.
— Miami Herald (@MiamiHerald) February 26, 2017
William “Ryan” Owens was a member of SEAL Team 6 and was part of a raid targeting a powerful family in Yemen who had connections to an Al Qaeda terrorist. According to reports, a fierce firefight erupted during the operation. The U.S. military claimed 14 militants were killed, but Reuters reported that medics present “said around 30 people, including 10 women and children, were killed.”
“It just doesn’t make any sense to do something to antagonize an ally when you’re going to conduct a mission in that country,” he told the Herald. “Did we alienate some of the people working with them, translators or support people. Maybe they decided to release information to jeopardize the mission.”
“I think these are valid questions,” Owens added. “I don’t want anybody to think I have an agenda, because I don’t. I just want the truth.”
Featured image courtesy of the Owens family, via the Miami Herald. To follow Sky Palma on Facebook, click here.