Acting SecNav Takes A Special Moment…

| April 6, 2020

CAPT. Crozier (insert) and SecNav Modly

…To Beclown Himself.

Acting Navy Secretary Thomas Modly made an unfortunate speech to the crew members of the USS Theodore Roosevelt. He blasted their former Captain, Brett E. Crozier, and told the Sailors to stop whining and do their jobs. Listening to the sound track, the Sailors make colorful remarks concerning the Secretary’s pedigree, sexual habits, probable future as Acting SecNav, and suggestions of where he should go, and what to do when he arrives there. This is an unforced error, and not a good look for him.

In a TAH first, both LC and Poetrooper send.

Navy Secretary Slams Captain Of COVID-19 Stricken Carrier, Media In Surprise Visit To Ship

The Navy’s top civilian also chastised the crew for its display of support for Captain Crozier as he left the ship after he was fired.


Acting Secretary of the Navy Thomas Modly made a surprise visit to the Nimitz class aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt, which is presently docked in Guam amid a major outbreak of the COVID-19 novel coronavirus on board, this weekend and gave a terse speech regarding the firing of the ship’s former commanding officer Captain Brett Crozier. Last week, a letter from Crozier, in which he pleaded with his superiors to allow the bulk of the crew to leave the ship to stem the spread of the virus, leaked to the press, which subsequently led to Modly relieving him of his command. Videos emerged afterward of the carrier’s crew giving the captain, who has now reportedly contracted the virus himself, a hero’s sendoff.

Reuters was first to report that Modly had flown out to Guam to visit the carrier and make the speech, in which Modly reportedly suggested Crozier’s actions had been “stupid.”  Vice Adm. Bill Merz, the commanding officer of the U.S. 7th Fleet, a top Navy headquarters in Japan that oversees operations in the Western Pacific, also visited the ship.

The Navy’s top civilian official said that the captain may have been either “too naive or too stupid” to run the ship because of his decision to send the letter in an unclassified format to a large number of recipients, which made it easier to leak to the press, according to the transcript now circulating online.

The Navy’s official justification for relieving Crozier was a loss of confidence in his ability to command as a result of the letter, which Modly has said was unnecessarily alarmist, and over how it was disseminated, allowing granular details about Theodore Roosevelt‘s readiness to become publicly known, including to America’s adversaries. The service has not directly accused the captain of publicly releasing the letter himself.

“If he didn’t think, in my opinion, that this information wasn’t going to get out into the public, in this day and information age that we live in, then he was either too naive or too stupid to be a commanding officer of a ship like this,” Modly said, according to the transcript, that a member of Theodore Roosevelt‘s crew reportedly made from a recording of the speech, which was carried over the ship’s intercom system. “The alternative is that he did this on purpose. And that’s a serious violation of the UCMJ [Uniform Code of Military Justice], which you are all familiar with.”

The entire article may be viewed here, including a transcript of the speech and a link to the audio file: The Drive

Thanks, LC and Poe.

Ousted USS Theodore Roosvelt captain tests positive for coronavirus, defense official says

By Robert Gearty, Lucas Tomlinson
Fox News

Category: "The Floggings Will Continue Until Morale Improves", Big Pentagon, Guest Link, Navy

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Hearts and Minds baby, Hearts and Minds….


In a TAH first, both LC and Poetrooper send.

Poe sent it in, too? Then I retract my submission! 😉

My thoughts are with all the sailors – may they recover soon, both from the virus, and from SECNAV’s idiocy.

outside looking in

The Captain was wrong in his lax message delivery system. The SecNav is also wrong and compounds the problem with his own stupid behavior.

Only the “best” and “brightest”……scary

5th/77th FA

Not sure who cut in on who’s dance there. And not sure which one I need to tell to watch where the other’s hands are. Reminder to all, the comment that Ol’ Poe made the other day on he didn’t mean to interrupt a dance between myself and LC. 😆 😆 😆 Are they both cheating on me? With each other? 😆 😆 Don’t appear as if SecNav thought this thing out very well. From… Read more »


Bad move here by SECNAV. Really bad move. Getting emotional (angry) in public in front of the troops and berating them. Not good. He needs to stay in Washington DC and let the Admirals do their jobs out there in 7th Fleet. Speaking of the Admirals, where the hell are they, and why aren’t they out in front of this? That’s what SECNAV should be focusing on. SECNAV is a USNA grad and a former… Read more »


More importantly, why is HE reliving Captain Crozier? What he SHOULD have done is call the Strike Force Admiral and tell him to handle it.

Then to top it off with his YFG speech? Real fucking bright.

MI Ranger

Well, that is what he did. The Strike Group Commander is the one that actually relieved him. But yeah, that speech…probably why he is only the Acting Secretary…will there be a loss of confidence in him as well?

Toxic Deplorable Racist SAH B Woodman

I heard a brief excerpt of that dressing down. The SecNav said to the effect that Cpt Crozier was either too naive or to stupid to command a ship like this.
All I could do was wince, and think, “ouch, that’s gonna leave a mark. and there goes Cpt Crozier’s career, he might as well turn in his resignation now”.


Really think he still had one after being relieved from command? Not without a major war.

The Other Whitey

I figure we probably don’t have the whole story, but based on what’s out there for public consumption, it looks to me like CAPT Crozier chose to sacrifice his career for his crew’s sake when Big Navy couldn’t be bothered. For what it’s worth, this also appears to be the crew’s take. If that’s the case, God bless him.

This demonstrates why integrity always seems so rare at the top.


Sorry about the report…

Concuring with TOW.
I REALLY would like to see the msg traffic prior to the dustup.
Were they giving him a plan.
Or, platitudes….

Bill R.

There are some missing components to this story. ONE, did the Captain attempt to get help within the chain of command for his crew BEFORE writing that letter? TWO, who did he write that letter to, and lastly, WHO leaked it to the media? I get it, he broke OPSEC and that is a huge no no, but was there a reason an O-6 with decades of training for a premier position committed what he… Read more »


He must have, since the Sec. himself refers to prior communications between his office and the Captain.

“I get it, he broke OPSEC ”

Right. The old “national security” excuse for covering up all kinds of things. Sorry, not buying it any more.


OPSEC has become a sad joke only used as a cudgel to beat people back in line. No shit, there I was,(true story) before we were even wheels up on my last deployment ( June 2017) Division PAO published a picture on Facebook caption “1SG Soldier’s name, of Smalltown TX says goodbye to his wife and 3 kids as he leaves for a 9 month deployment to Iraq” (fill actual soldier’s name, name of town)… Read more »


“In this information age that we live in Acting SecNav might be either too naive or too stupid to be in command of our Navy making speeches over the 1MC like this”


Yeah, nothing like tying up the bitch box for that amount of time. I can’t speak for carrier IC priority, but thank God there wasn’t a casualty or anything. That would have sucked, even if something similar to a submarine 4MC would have overridden the 1MC, but only in a select few spots.


So Acting SecNav decides that throwing a hissy fit is acceptable? Well, all right then. Close your door, send those in adjoining office space home and throw yourself a great hissy fit. If you want to remain on the public dole here are a few suggestions: 1. Don’t throw a hissy fit. 2. Don’t throw a hiss fit in front of others. 3. If you must throw a hissy fit, don’t do it in public.… Read more »


So, SecNav publicy calls the Captain “stupid”. Isn’t that exactly the kind of stupid we don’t want in our military? This is definitely a pot calling the kettle black moment. Acting SecNav should be fired immediately.


ACTING Secretary of the Navy. He got out of the Navy after 7 years as a helicopter pilot. Then moved around to various financial jobs, in and outside of the government, including teaching Political Science at the Air Force Academy. Captain Crozier apparently wanted the message to be heard, which would explain the number of CC on the email. I guess it was a case of out of sight (in Guam)=not a priority. The following… Read more »


“but there is no, no situation where you go to the media”.

They are called whistleblowers, and political hacks like the Sec. hate them worse than hemorrhoids. Sometimes things need to be publicized, and so far I agree with Capt. Crozier that this was one of those times.

That’s as far as I got in the transcript, I may read more when I cool down. In the meantime, fuck that s.o.b.


The Navy does have a peculiar mindset, as compared to the Army: The Navy mans the ships. The Army equips the man. And so it is that the SHIP carries the priority. When one of only a few nuclear aircraft carriers goes “C-4” Not Combat Ready, it’s a big deal. A very big deal. When I was the operations officer of a Special Forces company, the readiness posture of our A Teams was classified SECRET.… Read more »


The first kid emailing mom that his shipmate had the Rona breached that secret. Then it was just a race to not sea worthy. And, it didn’t sound like the good Captain was getting any meaningful feedback from the COC. CV’s are petri dishes on a great day. With an aggresive viral airborne virus. A fuse quick time bomb. Clear the ship, screen the crew, DECON and replenish. Yesterday. Not, “we’ll get back to you”… Read more »

5th/77th FA

Hmmm, thought the same thing my own self H1. If there was maybe a point back in the day, when the former Navy Chopper Jockey mighta bumped heads with a former fast mover zoomie? Now the former is the SecNav wanna be and the other is “just” a lowly CV Captain. Most of my Navyspeak came from either Tom Clancy or here. Imma like some of the others up thread; (a) where were the Flags… Read more »


Perhaps Capt. Crozier notified his superior he was C-4 and the superior told him to make ready for sea anyway. I doubt Capt. Crozier suddenly had a mental breakdown and decided to terminate his career is such a spectacular manner. Classified readiness? I doubt Crozier informed the Chinese of anything they didn’t already know. They are not stupid. They are probably having the same problems in their fleet. And we are probably having the same… Read more »

MSG Eric

I’ve had to do more Unit Status Reports (USRs) than I care to admit. Even doing one is more than anyone deserves. USRs have to be done on the SIPRNET and are classified between Confidential and Secret depending on your current status. (Deployments up it, among other things.) At the same time, you can login to DTMS and see the “readiness” of a unit based on their training status. That is literally on the internet.… Read more »


The whole CUSR process is canned right now. I’m a BN level training officer and the USR I did last week was reject by BDE because I wrote true COVID-19 training impacts. The. BDE S3 told me exactly what he wanted to write. Now I’m AGR in the guard so things might be different throughout COMPO 1.

MSG Eric

NETUSR on the Reserve side is no different. We actually had a brigade commander a few years ago who wanted us to write what reality was. After he left, it went right back to “write what you want, as long as it’s what we want you to write!” I was actually called once by the USR department at the pentagon and asked to do a survey. I told them, “this USR system was created in… Read more »


I completely agree. O-6’s in command of critical weapons systems don’t get to complain to the media. Also, officers get relieved of command all the time because of things they didn’t do and because of the failures or misdeeds of their subordinates. After Firebase Maryann was overrun in the RVN by the NVA, the division commander, my brigade commander (O-6), and the battalion commander were all relieved. Only the LTC and company commander were at… Read more »


Sometimes making some SoB look bad is the greatest sin. I’m sure everyone could have handled this better, but according to the data I have on my failed marriage: when your already in a hole, stop digging. Oh, and chocolates smooth just about anything over. Now, can these boys stop having a pissing contest and get the f**k back to work. There’s a situation ah’goins on. And wait until those assholes on the Hill decide… Read more »


Fuck this guy.

I am glad Trump will scapegoat him in 3…2…1…

5th/77th FA

Are bacon seeds sprouting wings? Is there a nip in the air around Lucifer’s AO? If a check is in the mailbox tomorrow, Imma buying a lotto ticket.


According to Dante, some parts of Hell are always, well, cold as hell. I think Jonn would have probably reminded us of that. (smile)

RIP, amigo.


I think most commenters here who agree here are predominantly enlisted and don’t understand what can get a commander relieved of his command. Command positions are not an entitlement. Buck up girls, the Captain knew when his letter got to the hate-America media he was going to get canned.


If relieving him of command was to be expected under the circumstances it would have been done by the fleet admiral or the PACOM commander.

The fact that it was done by a appointed political toadie means it was a political decision made by the president or made to please the president.


Using your psychic powers to determine who in the command chain first decided and recommended he be relieved? We are sick of your made up bs. Go back to DU where you belong, commie cuttlefish.


Dear Dipshit,

Trump can’t scapegoat him when he already tapdanced on his own fucking dick with golf shoes.

Sorry to ruin your game of fuck-fuck, but he did it all by himself.


He was following Trump’s order. It was a political decision made by a toadie trying to please Trump.

If this was truly about violating national security or genuine poor judgement he would have been relieved by someone in the direct military command, Most likely the Fleet admiral. If not then the PACOM commander.


At a time like this, you have to ask yourself one question:

What would Lex do?


What happened to all the folks who were here the other day saying Crozier definitely violated OPSEC and deserved to be relieved, a position with which I readily concur? I’ve done a good bit of reading on this and I haven’t found any officers who have had command responsibility and understand all its ramifications that support Crozier. They ALL say he needed to be relieved. Just because SECNAV steps on his crank doesn’t change the… Read more »


It’s not clear yet how the letter leaked – RADM Kirby, over at CNN, has an article here where he says: “If information comes to light that Crozier encouraged or caused the public disclosure of what should have been a confidential exchange of information to his leadership, then Modly’s lack of trust and confidence in Crozier’s command ability would certainly be justified.” Source: So it’s definitely possible Modly had cause, as he’d presumably know… Read more »


I haven’t seen the video but my understanding is that the big send-off was from a small portion of the crew–a couple of hundred at the most–but enough to give the mainstream media something to hang their story of “Virtuous Captain-Bad Navy” on.

I ain’t frickin’ buyin’ it…


Oh for crying out loud, LC, you cite a CNN analyst as an authoritative source on a matter like this?



He served in the Navy for 30 years, then as a spokesperson for DOD, then State, then became an analyst for CNN… but your take-away from that long career and experience is simply that he’s an CNN analyst, and thus can’t possibly be an authoritative source? Really?

I’m hoping I’m missing some sarcasm on your part here.


LC, the money quote from your thirty year admiral: “It was an unwarranted firing, reckless in its timing and petty in appearances. And Modly’s decision to dismiss Crozier could have a chilling effect on other commanding officers in similar circumstances, making them fearful of speaking up and thereby negatively impacting the Navy’s ability to combat the deadly disease.” As I said previously, Modly’s speech to the crew was assuredly unwise but his screw-up in no… Read more »

MSG Eric

I don’t think anyone is right in this one. But we also don’t know everything to be able to make the determination one way or another.

Tough call, but secnav is definitely a goober.


He did violate OPSEC, probably a couple of orders and deserved to be relieved, but did he do it for a good reason? I’m just playing devil’s advocate on that.
This just makes everyone look like an asshole and no good has or will will come from this mess.


Reason didn’t matter. What he did does.


Different issues, PT. CAPT Crozier doing something foolish (putting classified concerns relating his ship’s readiness in an unmarked letter distributed on unclassified systems, thus damn near guaranteeing that the letter would make its way to the media) was IMO at best an act of serious negligence, justifying relief for cause. But the SECNAV acting like a jilted girlfriend, traveling to Guam to call him out publicly and then berating the crew? Tone-deaf doesn’t even begin… Read more »


Ed, Hondo–I am in no way disagreeing with the consensus that the SECNAV screwed the pooch, unfortunately to the point that the media are using his bad behavior to excuse Crozier’s truly egregious lack of command wisdom. They are now gleefully engaged in adding Crozier to their liberal pantheon of military heroes: John Kerry Dickie Blumenthal Bo Bergdahl Bradley Manning Alexander Vindman But what I am protesting in this string is that some here seem… Read more »


The Skipper screwed up… now the Acting SECNAV.

When the Navy dorks the squeakhole, they really DORK THE SQUEAKHOLE.


Ring Knocker on Ring Knocker beat down. Hope ProPublica is working the Big Stick chain of events.

Comm Center Rat

As a “90 day wonder” I take perverse pleasure in watching incestuous “ring knockers” ruin their careers.

If warranted, after thorough investigation, Captain Crozier should be retired as a O-5 for his intentional public screwing of the pooch.


Now, it is entirely possible that the Capt was a bonehead and CC’d CNN, but we need to remember that an Admiral’s office is a hotbed of gossip and RUMINT. The possibility that it leaked out the side door is real. However, the acting secretary’s error is unforced. Oh, how many times I told my GO, “sir, you have the right to remain silent–that is my best advice here”. Better to be thought a dick,… Read more »

Veritas Omnia Vincit

A case of two wrongs definitely not making things right. Crozier may yet be able to show that he sent several requests that were ignored, which changes him from bad guy leaking shit to whistleblower who was trying to get the right thing done to save lives. If he can’t show that his relief from command makes good sense. If he can show that he was ignored and the sailors were considered expendable to a… Read more »


I concur. Unless Capt. Crozier can show that he tried to seek help through the correct channels his blatant OPSEC violation more than justifies relief. OTOH, for the acting SECNAV to publicly call him out is boorish and unprofessional. It also makes him look like a bully for using his superior position to publicly humiliate a subordinate. Whatever happened to “praise in public, reprimand in private?” What’s worse, a public bitch-fight like this just makes… Read more »

DUTCH in Atlanta

As a non-military US Citizen, my take on this is that Cpt Crozier is a hero; and the NAVSEC is a naive and stupid dick!


You explained the reason for your comment/opinion in the first clause, disclosing your background.


Well isn’t that just precious?

And yeah–your take sucks.


Well, the SecNav has submitted his letter of resignation in response to the FakeNews media furor. So, now we have two senior Navy leaders who have dick-stepped their way out of their positions.



Crozier will be reinstated,


Oh, you are now claiming you you are a psychic.