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Retired Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher. Photo: Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images

Retired Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher, who was acquitted of war crimes and had a minor charge cleared by President Trump last year, launched a scathing social media attack on members of his platoon who testified against him at his San Diego court-martial last June.

Why it matters: Gallagher referred to some of his former platoon members as "cowards" in a three-minute video posted Monday, which included clips from Navy investigators' interviews of his SEAL teammates. The video highlights the names, photos, duty status and current units for some members of his former platoon, a move that "former SEALs say places those men — and the Navy’s mission — in jeopardy," writes the San Diego Union-Tribune, which first reported on it.

What he's saying:

"On September 11, 2018, I was arrested and charged with war crimes which I did not commit. My family and I then had to fight for my freedom. Even though I went to trial, exposed all the lies that were said about me by certain cowards in my platoon, and found not guilty, there are those to this day who refuse to accept that fact. I wanted to put this all behind me and move on with my life. Unfortunately, the fight to clear my name is not over. ... For those who have and continue to slander my name, the truth is coming."

Flashback: Gallagher was accused of war crimes by some of his platoon subordinates, with allegations including stabbing a sedated teenage ISIS fighter to death for no apparent reason, then ordering platoon members to gather around the corpse for a photo.

  • He was acquitted of most of the charges, but convicted for the photo, and his rank was reduced until Trump intervened last year.
  • In video testimonies obtained by the New York Times last year, platoon members described Gallagher as "evil" and "toxic."

Go deeper...

Go deeper

4 hours ago - World

Maximum pressure campaign escalates with Fakhrizadeh killing

Photo: Fars News Agency via AP

The assassination of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, the architect of Iran’s military nuclear program, is a new height in the maximum pressure campaign led by the Trump administration and the Netanyahu government against Iran.

Why it matters: It exceeds the capture of the Iranian nuclear archives by the Mossad, and the sabotage in the advanced centrifuge facility in Natanz.

Scoop: Biden weighs retired General Lloyd Austin for Pentagon chief

Lloyd Austin testifying before Congress in 2015. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Joe Biden is considering retired four-star General Lloyd Austin as his nominee for defense secretary, adding him to a shortlist that includes Jeh Johnson, Tammy Duckworth and Michele Flournoy, two sources with direct knowledge of the decision-making tell Axios.

Why it matters: A nominee for Pentagon chief was noticeably absent when the president-elect rolled out his national security team Tuesday. Flournoy had been widely seen as the likely pick, but Axios is told other factors — race, experience, Biden's comfort level — have come into play.

Updated 6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: WHO: AstraZeneca vaccine must be evaluated on "more than a press release."
  2. Politics: Supreme Court backs religious groups on New York COVID restrictions.
  3. World: Thailand, Philippines sign deal with AstraZeneca for vaccine.
  4. Economy: Safety nets to disappear in December Black Friday shopping across the U.S., in photosAmazon hires 1,400 workers a day throughout pandemic.
  5. Education: National standardized tests delayed until 2022.