Spicer Responds After Slain Navy SEAL's Father Calls for Probe of Yemen Raid
White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer responded today to the father of Navy SEAL William Ryan Owens calling for an investigation into the special ops raid in Yemen that killed his son.
Owens was the first military service member killed during President Donald Trump's administration. His father, Bill, revealed that he declined to meet with Trump during his son's transferring ceremony.
Spicer said Owens' efforts in the special operations raid were crucial to the safety of the country.
"I can tell him (Bill), on behalf of the president, his son died a hero and the information that he was able to help obtain through that raid...is going to save American lives; it's going to protect our country more," Spicer said.
He said the mission, which also left several civilians dead, was successful in helping to prevent future attacks on the nation. Since there was a loss of life, Spicer said three Department of Defense reviews will be carried out as standard operating procedure.
"You can't ever say when there's most importantly loss of life and people injured that it's 100 percent successful, but I think when you look at what the stated goal of that mission was -- it was an information and intelligence gathering mission, and it achieved its objectives," Spicer said.
Some reports after the raid characterized the mission as "failed," with one senior military official saying "almost everything went wrong."
Bill Owens, also a veteran, said in the interview he was troubled by Trump's attacks on a Gold Star family last summer. He also questioned the timing of the raid.
"Why at this time did there have to be this stupid mission when it wasn’t even barely a week into his administration? Why? For two years prior, there were no boots on the ground in Yemen — everything was missiles and drones — because there was not a target worth one American life. Now, all of a sudden we had to make this grand display?" Owens asked.
Watch Spicer's response to the question in the above video.