Navy’s Knee Jerk
Capt. Gary Hakanson, commander of the Miramar Naval Air Station, and his colleagues have been charged, convicted and punished without having those charges thoroughly reviewed--a right that is reserved for the rest of us. I have no way of knowing all the facts surrounding the recent situation in which Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger relieved Capt. Hakanson from duty. It is not fair to ask a man or woman to make a career of serving our country and then deprive him or her of the standards of fair play and due process that are enjoyed by other citizens.
I do not know what sort of administrator Capt. Hakanson is, but I do know that he is an outstanding representative of the U.S. Navy, as he reaches out into the community for contact with the public. He has spent hours of his time meeting with local citizens, working with them, helping all of us better understand the importance of the armed services in general and specifically the important role that Miramar NAS plays in the community. He has always been receptive to requests from the public to help solve local community problems.
I hope the decision to relieve him of his responsibility is immediately rescinded until such time that a thorough investigation is completed. If it is found that he is not to be held responsible, Capt. Hakanson is certainly due an apology.