The father of William Ryan Owens, the 36-year-old Navy Seal killed during Trump’s raid on Yemen just six days into his presidency, is calling for an investigation into that raid.
While the fallen soldier’s widow stood at Trump’s first address to Congress for applause and recognition of her husband’s death, his father blames Trump and his administration for their hasty decision to put his son’s life in danger.
The White House still insists that the raid was a “success” and that any criticism of Trump’s decision to act, including that of war hero Senator John McCain (R-AZ), is a “dishonor” to the slain soldier’s memory, Bill Owens firmly disagrees and sees the White House’s statement as little more than an avoidance of accountability and the true dishonoring of his son’s sacrifice.
‘Don’t hide behind my son’s death to prevent an investigation. I want an investigation…the government owes my son an investigation.’
U.S. military officials who spoke with the New York Times following the raid told reporters that “everything that could go wrong did,” and though the mission was carried out in hopes of finding cell phones and laptops with information “that could yield valuable clues about one of the world’s most dangerous terrorist groups,” little went as planned. The Seal team’s cover was blown almost immediately and the soldiers were fired upon. The raid ended with the death of Owens and 23 civilians, including an eight-year-old girl.
The elder Owens, a retired military man himself, feels the mission was rushed and unnecessary at the time Trump approved it.
‘Why at this time did there have to be this stupid mission when it wasn’t even barely a week into his administration? Why? 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?’
Trump decided to attend the funeral of the Navy Seal killed during the raid, and his father was notified not long before the president arrived. Owens, who did not care for Trump’s disparaging of a Gold Star Family during the elections and had now become a member of one of those families himself, was not impressed with Trump’s decision to attend the return of Owens’ body to his family and was in no way willing to meet with the new president on that day.
‘I’m sorry, I don’t want to see him. 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.’
For more on the raid in Yemen and the soldier who gave his life there, see video below:
Featured image screengrab via YouTube