Lieutenant Colonel Stuart Scheller says that he was relieved of duty over his viral video calling for military leadership to be held accountable for the deadly attack in Kabul that left 13 service members dead, 11 of whom were his fellow Marines.
Scheller says that he knew one of the Marines who died in the attack by ISIS-K.
In the viral video, Lt. Col. Scheller said that “people are upset because senior leaders let them down, and none of them are raising their hands and accepting accountability or saying ‘we messed this up.'”
“Did any of you throw your rank on the table and say ‘hey, it’s a bad idea to evacuate Bagram Airfield, a strategic airbase, before we evacuate everyone.’ Did anyone do that? And when you didn’t think to do that did anyone raise their hand and say ‘we completely messed this up?'” he asked. “Potentially all those people did die in vain if we don’t have senior leaders that own up and raise their hand and say ‘we did not do this well in the end.'”
Scheller, battalion commander for the Advanced Infantry Training Battalion, went on to say that “without that the … higher military ranks are not holding up their end of the bargain. I wanna say this very strongly. I have been fighting for 17 years. I am willing to throw it all away to say to my senior leaders: I demand accountability.”
Remarkable video from Marine Lt. Col. Stuart Scheller calling out senior leaders on Afghanistan. “People are upset because senior leaders let them down, and none of them are raising their hands and accepting accountability or saying ‘we messed this up.'” pic.twitter.com/rgtp8OncCX
— Dave Brown (@dave_brown24) August 27, 2021
On Friday, the officer announced that he had been relieved of duty because of the video, but stated that he understood and respected the decision.
“To all my friends across the social networks. I have been relieved for cause based on a lack of trust and confidence as of 14:30 today,” Scheller wrote on Facebook.
“My chain of command is doing exactly what I would do … if I were in their shoes,” Scheller continued . “I appreciate the opportunities AITB command provided. To all the news agencies asking for interviews … I will not be making any statements other than what’s on my social platforms until I exit the Marine Corps.”
Scheller says that he has served for 17 years and is looking forward to what will come next for him.
“America has many issues … but it’s my home … It’s where my three sons will become men. America is still the light shining in a fog of chaos,” Scheller said at the end of his post. “When my Marine Corps career comes to an end, I look forward to a new beginning. My life’s purpose is to make America the most lethal and effective foreign diplomacy instrument. While my days of hand to hand violence may be ending … I see a new light on the horizon.”