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Navy Blames Fat Leonard: Not What You Think

Updated: Dec 3, 2021

“If Leonard Francis mentioned somebody’s name, or it seemed to us that if somebody had served in a senior position in the Pacific during this time, which covered a lot of folks, they were caught up in this until their name could be pulled out. It took in a huge percentage of flag officers, and it really hamstrung the Navy in terms of promotions, in terms of positions.”

Ray Mabus

Secretary of the Navy

2009 - 2017

Leonard Francis Army
Dr Evil I Presume Via GovernmentExecutive

The US Navy entanglement in the Glenn Defense case continues. As I have previously written, disparate treatment of the individuals involved is something worthy of further study. This is part two of a multi-part look at some of the other aspects of this case. Namely: How did this happen and what can be done to avoid it in the future? However, instead of that sort of discourse, we have the US Navy making statements as if they were a disinterested observer and not present at the creation of the mess. It almost appears now as if the whole thing is a burden, affecting promotions, assignments....Navy business even. There are similarities to Tailhook, but the general lack of introspection (at least publicly) on what role the navy played in these events is a bit disappointing. I suppose the usual tone-deaf, "bad apple" defense commonly used by government institutions is the basic strategy. That is a good way to avoid any sort of real responsibility. So when the Navy blames Fat Leonard....for the current situation...what are they really saying?

Business As Usual

Naval Officer
I Think I Was There...But.. Via Medium

Last time I checked, Naval officers were sentient beings. So when I read statements from Navy officials saying things such as "we have done our part" and it is DOJ that is being "slow" to clear implicated individuals, what are we to make of it? "Done our part?" What the hell does that mean? By clear do they mean early retirement...censure....reprimand...double-secret probation? Yes, that pesky DOJ is tenacious. Sort of like the neighborhood bully...if the bully was a werewolf. In their world we are all just meat sacks when they get the bloodlust up. I am no DOJ apologist, my point being that when it comes to justice, they and the DoN have a totally different view. The Navy whining now that "any officer that was in Asia during this time frame" is being scrutinized, to the detriment of Navy business, is disingenuous and weak. The reason it is taking so long is most likely because individuals are being less than forthcoming on their specific activities during their service in the Western Pacific.

It's Pretty Simple

Manila Hotel McArthur Suite
Don't Cost Nothin Via DudesforFood

The Navy ethics rules regarding gifts from contractors is pretty simple: Not allowed. A gift is anything of monetary value. Oh there are a few exceptions, but short of accepting a bottle of water from a contractor if you are dying of thirst, assume it is not allowed. Situation number 1: You are invited to a dinner in Manila,,,alarm bells should start going off. Who is the host? Who is paying? What is the purpose of the dinner? Simply playing dumb and saying that these things were unclear...or I was just being a good, polite US ambassador...etc...are not acceptable. Situation number 2: You are at an authorized and legitimate reception in Singapore, and some fat, sweaty, grinning oaf, ambushes you, grabs your hand and the moment is preserved forever via social media. Ok...easily explained...and fine...provided you do your due diligence...and found out who the oaf was...and once identified...had no further contact...due know...Navy ethical guidelines. Now the Navy is saying that parsing that behavior out is too hard...too tedious...too time consuming...too burdensome...on important Navy business. Well, that simply demonstrates that there is no real desire to do a full autopsy on what happened and why in order to make the changes necessary to avoid similar events in the future.

Destroyer Of Worlds

So the Navy says Leonard is sort of their Admiral went so far as to say that China could not have done a better job of hurting US Navy business. Really?

Next time I will discuss how this mess was created...and there are no innocent bystanders.

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