Faisal Gill has really struck a raw nerve with veterans.
I’ve been hearing from several folks who have contacted Navy JAG offices regarding Faisal Gill’s wearing of his uniform while conducting campaign activities because they take a dim view of someone prostituting their uniform as a means of advancing (or trying to salvage) their political campaign. Those who have earned the right to wear the uniform, and who have scrupulously followed the rules during their service, don’t take kindly to someone who decides to flaunt them. As a result, various JAG offices have been getting calls and emails. And boy, do they seem interested in this story.
One veteran forwarded this response they received from a JAG officer, in response to a generic question about whether it’s permissible or not for anyone to use their uniform in campaign materials:
Under DODD 1344.10 (Aug 2004) a reserve or retired person may be a candidate for political office but is not allowed to be the sole or primary figure in uniform in a photograph, video tape, web sites, or any type of ad or commercial.
The JAG was fascinated about why someone would be asking questions like this, and I’ve heard that a BVBL reader helpfully provided them with all of the information they need in order to start an investigation. They’re looking into this immediately.
Needless to say, Faisal Gill is going to get another opportunity to demonstrate his skills at weaseling out of the consequences for his behavior. He’s managed to evade consequences for inconsistently disclosing his association with known terrorists on official government disclosure forms, dodged professional misconduct complaints filed with the Virginia State Bar, and seems to be ducking any consequences for what is clearly a gross failure to meet Navy standards for Height, Weight and Physical Fitness. Now it looks like he’s going to have a chance to take on the Standards of Conduct and Government Ethics Branch of the Office of the Adjutant General. It should be interesting to watch this unfold, and get a demonstration of just how vigilant the Navy can be about protecting it’s honor.
Will he plead ignorance of the regulation despite being a JAG officer? Will he try to make the claim that his behavior was not a violation by making some claim about what the definition of “is” actually is? Will he be subjected to a Court-Martial under Article 133 of the UCMJ for conduct unbecoming an officer? Will he leave a giant smoking crater in the center of Prince William County as his campaign stumbles, trips, falls, and does a thoroughly spectacular crash-and-burn?
Stay tuned. This is going to be very interesting.
UPDATE: “Virginia Bar Association” was corrected to “Virgnia State Bar” above. Thanks to “Fact Checker” for alerting me that I had the wrong organization referenced in relation to the ethics complaint filed in regard to Jad Sarsour’s infamous Cease & Desist letter.
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