Some special operations officers say the activist veterans are breaking a sacred military creed: respect for the commander in chief.WASHINGTON (AP) — A group of retired special operations and CIA officers who claim President Barack Obama revealed secret missions and turned the killing of Osama bin Laden into a campaign centerpiece are coming under criticism from some of their own.
"This is an unprofessional, shameful action on the part of the operators that appear in the video, period," U.S. Army Special Forces Maj. Fernando Lujan wrote on his Facebook page, to a chorus of approval from colleagues.
A Green Beret who returned last year from Afghanistan, Lujan says that attaching the title of special operator with any political campaign is "in violation of everything we've been taught, and the opposite of what we should be doing, which is being quiet professionals."
On its website, the group called Special Ops OPSEC, short for operational security, says that Obama has taken too much personal credit for the Navy SEAL raid that killed bin Laden and hasn't recognized sufficiently the SEALs who actually carried out the raid. The group also claims that the Obama White House released classified details of the raid for the making of a Hollywood film, a claim that has not been proven.
"This is not to criticize the president personally, and the president himself," the group's founder, former Navy SEAL Scott Taylor, said in an interview Tuesday. "But at the same time, we feel he is ultimately responsible for cracking down on these leaks."
Known officially as a Special Operations OPSEC Education Fund, the group is listed as a social welfare organization, which allows it to receive unlimited financial contributions without disclosing the donors. Its identified members have Republican ties.
The group is one of a handful of groups of special operations veterans formed in the past few months that criticize the president.
Special Ops OPSEC's 20-minute video selectively edits the speech Obama delivered after the bin Laden raid, deleting the times he thanked the intelligence and military teams for the operation, and ending on reverberating repetition of his phrase "I directed."