Trump Has Ushered in the 'Death of Decency,' Former Federal Prosecutor Says After President Meets With Disgraced Navy SEAL

President Donald Trump is facing criticism after welcoming retired Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher—who was accused of war crimes and posed with the body of a dead Islamic State fighter—to Mar-a-Lago this weekend.

Gallagher faced seven charges related to his deployment to the Iraqi city of Mosul during the battle against ISIS fighters holding the city. He was eventually acquitted of six charges, but was found guilty of posing with the body of a teenage militant.

Trump intervened in Gallagher's case despite the military requesting he not do so. Gallagher was demoted after being convicted, but the president said this decision would be reversed. He also said Gallagher would retain his Trident pin, which symbolizes SEAL membership.

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Over the weekend, Trump and First Lady Melania welcomed Gallagher to the president's Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida.

A photo of their meeting was posted on Gallagher's Instagram. Gallagher thanked the president for intervening in his case and gave Trump a gift from his time in Iraq, though it is not clear what.

Glenn Kirschner, a former federal prosecutor and legal analyst was among those who criticized Gallagher's visit on Twitter. "Trump has ushered in the death of decency," he wrote. "Our government is unrecognizable."

Trump has taken pride in defending U.S. soldiers accused and convicted of war crimes. Last month, he pardoned two other soldiers—First Lieutenant Clint Lorance and Major Matthew Golsteyn.

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Lorance was serving a 19-year prison sentence having ordered his soldiers to shoot unarmed men in Afghanistan. Golsteyn was due to stand trial for the alleged 2010 extrajudicial killing of a suspected Taliban bomb-maker.

Earlier this month, Trump even took Golsteyn and Lorance to a campaign event in Florida, prompting allegations that he was using war criminals as political props.

But the president has been unapologetic in his defense of American war criminals. At a campaign rally in Florida in November, the president said, "We're going to take care of our warriors. And I will always stick up for our great fighters."

"People can sit there in air-conditioned offices and complain, but you know what? It doesn't matter to me whatsoever," he added, to cheers from the audience.

The president's defense of convicted and accused U.S. soldiers has created tension between the White House and the military. In Gallagher's case, it cost Navy Secretary Richard Spencer his job.

Defense Secretary Mark Esper forced Spencer to resign after he contradicted Trump on the case and sent a letter suggesting the president did not share his view of "good order and discipline."

Eddie Gallagher, Donald Trump, SEAL, war crime
Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher is pictured after being acquitted of premeditated murder at Naval Base San Diego July 2, 2019 in San Diego, California. Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images/Getty
Trump Has Ushered in the 'Death of Decency,' Former Federal Prosecutor Says After President Meets With Disgraced Navy SEAL | Politics