Certain media outlets have given a great deal of airtime (and have been making a great deal of political hay out of it) to the story that, upon leaving Sana’a, Yemen, the MSG (Marine Security Guard) detachment surrendered their weapons to the Houthi militia. This was supposedly because they could not take the weapons on the commercial aircraft that provided the last flight out of Sana’a for the remaining embassy personnel.
The story is false. According to a source (a former MSG Marine himself) who was in contact with one of the Sana’a Embassy Marines, all of the crew-served weapons at the embassy compound were disabled at the embassy. The personal weapons (which would have been a few M-16s, M-9s, and probably M-1014 shotguns), were retained for security reasons on the way to the airport. At the airport, according to procedure, all of the personal weapons were rendered inoperative before being left. So, while they may have left the weapons behind, they were not in any condition for the Houthis to use them.
While the Marine Corps may have had some rocky periods lately, there is no way that the embassy Marines would fall to such levels of unprofessionalism as to surrender functional weapons to a group considered hostile to the United States. The people spreading this narrative have a vested interest in spinning every story to make it appear that the current administration is forcing the military to bend a knee to our adversaries.
This story is a particularly egregious case, spreading the tale of weapons being handed over intact to the same people whose supporters were, at that moment, marching through the streets of Sana’a chanting, “Death to America.” In this case, the story is demonstrably untrue (at least the part about surrendering weapons; the Houthi supporters were in fact chanting “Death to America”). Say what you will about leaving in the face of the Houthi coup and Yemeni instability, the Marines would not hand over their weapons.
Special thanks to The Warfighter Foundation for the sourcing.
(Featured Image Courtesy: foxnews.com)
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