In a Sept. 29 letter to USMC Gen. David Berger and Gen. David Bligh, 35 members of Congress called for Scheller’s release.
“In fact, this confinement appears to be simply for messaging, retribution, and convenience in flagrant violation of R.C.M. [Rule for Court Martial]: ‘a person should not be confined as a mere matter of convenience,’” says the letter, who’s signers include Reps Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.), Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), Louie Gohmert (R-Texas), and Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.).
“Furthermore, R.C.M. 305(h)(2)(B) also states that LTC Scheller should be accommodated in the ‘less serious forms of restraint.’ For the above reasons, we urge you to use your considerable authority to correct this misapplication of law and immediately remove LTC Scheller from his confinement.”
In a separate letter, Senator Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) questioned Gen. Berger about why Scheller is being detained.
“Requirements for pretrial confinement are very specific. Restraint is not every case and should be no more rigorous than required to ensure the person’s trial or to prevent foreseeable serious criminal misconduct,” Wicker said. “Please provide the rationale, including any associated administrative or judicial records, used by Lt. Col. Scheller’s chain of command to justify and document the decision to place him in pretrial confinement.
“Regardless of the accusations, he deserves the same rights as any other service member.”
According to Task and Purpose, the pretrial confinement hearing was initially scheduled for Sept. 30, but was delayed until Tuesday so the defense and prosecution can “seek a joint resolution of the matter.” Scheller has agreed to stay in the brig in the meantime as a show of solidarity with fellow Marines in far worse conditions around the world, according to the person familiar with the matter.
During a Sept. 29 hearing on the Afghanistan withdrawal—the same hearing where McKenzie provided false information about the Aug. 29 drone attack that killed Afghan citizens—Gaetz lamented the fact that senior military officials are still in positions of power while Scheller sits in a brig. 😡 (our American Stasi)
“When people in the military like Lt. Col. Scheller stand up and demand accountability, when they say you all screwed up, when they point out General Milley’s statement that Afghanistan’s not going to be defeated by the Taliban—well he ends up in a brig, and you all end up in front of us,” Gaetz said.
“And your [Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin’s] former employer Raytheon ends up with a lot of money, and we have poured cash and blood and credibility into a Ghani government that was a mirage.”