Navy Commander In Connection With 10 Sailors Captured by Iran Is Fired

Justin Holcomb
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Posted: May 13, 2016 11:20 AM
Navy Commander In Connection With 10 Sailors Captured by Iran Is Fired

Cmdr. Eric Rasch, the commanding officer of Coastal Riverine Squadron 3, was relieved today by Capt. Gary Leigh, the commander of Coastal Riverine Group 1 due to a “loss of confidence in his ability to command,” according to a Navy release.

The firing comes from fallout after an investigation into the incident where 10 sailors were captured from their gunboats by Iranian forces earlier this year. 

A Navy official said Rasch failed to provide effective leadership, leading to a lack of oversight, complacency and failure to maintain standards in the unit.

The Iranian government has leveraged the events for propaganda. One of the released videos shows a sailor appearing to apologize and other sailors on their knees in a position of surrender.  The government even threw a celebration parade for symbolic feat.