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Trump invites Navy SEAL who posed with dead ISIS fighter to Mar-a-Lago

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  • The president and first lady invited Navy SEAL Edward Gallagher, who was charged with and later cleared of war crimes, to their Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida over the weekend.
  • Gallagher was acquitted in July of murdering a teenage ISIS captive in Iraq in 2017 and targeting civilians, but convicted of posing for a photo with the captive’s dead body. Trump intervened to restore his rank. 
  • “Finally got to thank the President and his amazing wife by giving them a little gift from Eddie’s deployment to Mosul,” Gallagher’s wife wrote alongside several Instagram photos of the couple with the Trumps.  

  • Visit Business Insider’s home page for more stories. 

President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump invited Chief Petty Officer Edward Gallagher, a Navy SEAL convicted of posing with a dead teenage ISIS fighter in Iraq in 2017, to Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida over the weekend.

Gallagher was charged with war crimes after he was accused by six fellows SEALs of murdering the young ISIS captive by stabbing him in the neck with a hunting knife after his platoon had captured and medically stabilized the fighter. Gallagher then posed with the dead captive, holding him up by his hair. His platoon also accused him of targeting civilians for assassination while shooting from sniper nests in Mosul.

The SEAL was acquitted on all the charges in July except for one charge of posing for a celebratory photo with the captive’s corpse. Trump controversially intervened in Gallagher’s case and last month overturned Gallagher’s demotion, restoring his rank. 

“Congratulations to Navy Seal Eddie Gallagher, his wonderful wife Andrea, and his entire family,” Trump tweeted last July. “You have been through much together. Glad I could help!”

Trump’s intervention followed an aggressive campaign by Fox News to have Gallagher acquitted. The SEAL repeatedly disparaged the Navy’s leadership in appearances on Fox. 

Gallagher’s wife, Andrea, posted several photos of herself and her husband alongside Trump and the first lady at Mar-a-Lago on Sunday. 

“Finally got to thank the President and his amazing wife by giving them a little gift from Eddie’s deployment to Mosul,” she wrote. 

The dramatic series of events led to Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper firing the Navy’s top civilian leader, Richard Spencer, late last month after the Spencer publicly disagreed with the president’s intervention. 

“Unfortunately, it has become apparent that in this respect, I no longer share the same understanding with the commander in chief who appointed me, in regards to the key principle of good order and discipline,” Spencer said in a statement following his firing. “I cannot in good conscience obey an order that I believe violates the sacred oath I took.”

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