Esper’s request was made through his staff, who informed Modly that he should apologize for his comments, according to CNN.
A defense official, meanwhile, told Foreign Policy magazine that Modly hadn’t discussed the speech with Pentagon or White House leaders before making the now viral remarks.
Esper’s message came just hours after Modly defended his remarks on Monday, saying in a statement, “I stand by every word I said.”
Pressure began to mount after House Armed Services Committee Chair Adam Smith (D-Wash.) Called for Modly’s resignation, calling her actions “a deaf approach more focused on personal ego” that one of the calm and stable leaders that we desperately so desperately. need in this crisis. “
President Trump also fueled controversy when he said Monday afternoon at the daily coronavirus briefing that he “could look into” the issue.
“I can only look at the matter from the point of view that something should be resolved because I hear good things about the two people,” the commander-in-chief told reporters.
A few hours later, the besieged secretary of the navy issued a second statement officially apologizing for his actions.
“I believe, precisely because he is not naive and stupid, that he sent his alarming e-mail with the intention of putting it in the public domain in order to draw public attention to the situation on his ship. I apologize for any confusion this choice of words may have caused, “read his new statement.
Modz ransacked Crozier to his former crew aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt in an email the captain sent to sound the alarm about an epidemic of the deadly virus on board the ship. The email was eventually released to the press.
“If he did not think, in my opinion, that this information was not going to be made public, at that time and in the information age in which we live, then he was either A, too naive or too stupid for being a captain of a ship like this, “Modly told the Crozier actions crew.
According to the Washington Post, Esper and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Mark A. Milley, both approved the dismissal of Crozier. The newspaper reports that the two trusted Modly’s decision to withdraw it.
Since Crozier raised awareness of the epidemic on the ship, 230 sailors on board have tested positive for the virus. The carrier’s entire crew includes nearly 5,000 people.