President Donald Trump tweeted Thursday that he would overturn a recent change to the Navy SEAL ethos that was undertaken to reflect the fact that women can now serve in the elite force.
“I will be overturning this ridiculous order immediately!” Trump tweeted at about 6 p.m. East Coast time Thursday.
I will be overturning this ridiculous order immediately! https://t.co/sFIX5Y667v
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 1, 2020
He was quote-tweeting a tweet from “The Columbia Bugle,” an account whose bio proclaims “Our hearts are in the trim!”
“Drain the Pentagon Swamp!” the Bugle tweeted about half an hour before the president, as it quote-tweeted a tweet from “Breaking 911.”
“Navy SEALs change official ethos to be gender neutral, remove ‘brotherhood’ and ‘man,’” “Breaking 911” tweeted, tagging the “American Military News” account in the process.
It remains unclear whether the president has officially ordered the overturning of the ethos change, or whether he was just quote-tweeting.
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Officials with Naval Special Warfare Command did not immediately respond to requests for comment, but officials told Task and Purpose this week that modifications to the SEAL ethos and SWCC creed removed references to “man” and “brotherhood’ in favor of gender-neutral words.
“The previous versions of the SEAL Ethos and SWCC Creed were written prior to the law allowing women to serve as operators in Naval Special Warfare,” command spokesman Lt. Cmdr. Matthew Stroup told Task and Purpose.
“Updates were overdue,” said Stroup, who added that such changes were “favorably endorsed” by unit major commanders and command master chiefs, Task and Purpose reported.
The changes amount to a handful of words, according to Task and Purpose.
The SWCC creed now mentions an “elite group of maritime warriors” instead of the original “elite brotherhood of sailors,” Task and Purpose reports, while the ethos change includes a reference to “common man” tweaked to “common citizens.”
A line proclaiming “I am that man” was changed to “I am that warrior,” while the ethos’ final line referencing “brave men” has now been changed to “brave SEALs.”
Surprising no one, the online responses to Trump’s tweet hewed along partisan lines.
“Good work, President Trump! We are SO LUCKY to have you! I wish you could be President forever, not just another 4 years!” a user with the handle @JeffTutorials, whose bio promises “Premium gaming news based on facts, not speculation,” replied.
Good work, President Trump!
We are SO LUCKY to have you! I wish you could be President forever, not just another 4 years! 🇺🇸
— Jeff (@JeffTutorials) October 1, 2020
Other Twitter users weren’t so pleased.
“225K Americans dead from #TrumpPandemicFailure and he’s online tweeting about culture war crap,” @GinaSpadafori, a user whose profile proclaims an affinities for dogs, feminism and science, among others.
— Gina Spadafori (@GinaSpadafori) October 1, 2020
About Geoff Ziezulewicz
Geoff is a senior staff reporter for Military Times, focusing on the Navy. He covered Iraq and Afghanistan extensively and was most recently a reporter at the Chicago Tribune. He welcomes any and all kinds of tips at firstname.lastname@example.org.