SAN DIEGO (The Blaze/AP) – Yesterday, the Blaze reported that the military “handled” a situation involving Marine snipers who posed with a logo resembling a Nazi symbol. But now, just a day after the initial report made its way around the blogosphere, news is breaking that Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has asked the Marine Corps to take another look at its investigation that concluded the men should not be disciplined.
As we reported, Lt. Col. Stewart Upton initially said in a statement that the Marines’ action was unacceptable. While no harsh penalties were paid by the soldiers involved, the sentiment was that, to a degree, the situation had been contended with.
Apparently, verbal warnings, though, weren’t enough. Pentagon press secretary George Little says that Panetta asked the Marine Corps Friday to look into the situation “and to take appropriate action.”
CNN reports that, following the initial discovery of the image, the Marines’ commander decided not to proceed with disciplinary action. However, those individuals involved were told that such behavior wouldn’t be tolerated and that punishment would result if, indeed, they partook in similar conduct again.
So, while the men were “punished” in the sense of receiving a warning and clarification as a result of their actions, no official military retribution was doled out — an action that is clearly now being revisited and reassessed.
The Marine Corps said it became aware of the photo last November and investigated, but found it not to be racially motivated, according to a statement released by a Marine Corps spokesman, Lt. Col. Stewart Upton.
“Those involved acknowledged that the symbol could be misinterpreted and is not in keeping with our Marine Corps ethos and values,” the statement said.
Little, speaking in Washington, says racist and anti-Semitic symbols have absolutely no place alongside U.S. service members.
The Simon Wiesenthal Center, a Jewish human rights group, has demanded President Barack Obama order an investigation and hold the troops accountable.