A Marine who was arrested at a pro-Confederate rally and allegedly helped display a white nationalist banner is being kicked out of the Corps.
Staff Sgt. Joseph Manning, a Purple Heart recipient who joined the Corps in 2002, was arrested for his participation in a May 20 rally in Almanace County, North Carolina. According to the Times News, Manning and Michael Chesney drove hours to participate in the white nationalist event during which they were arrested for trespassing.
The men are accused of scaling a building to unfurl a banner that said “He who controls the past controls the future,” a quote from “1984,” and also carried the slogan “YWNRU,” a white nationalist abbreviation for “You will not replace us.” They were charged with misdemeanor first-degree trespassing, which carries a maximum sentence of 60 days in jail.
According to the Marine Times, the Marine Corps conducted an investigation into the behavior of the two men, and substantiated the allegations of Manning’s participation in the rally and placement of the banner. Capt. Joshua Pena, a spokesman for Training and Education Command, told the Marine Times Manning “is in the process of being administratively separated from the Corps,” but said the results of the investigation cannot be released publicly.
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Manning was stationed at Camp Lejune in North Carolina, and had also earned awards for service in Iraq and Afghanistan.
According to the Times-News, it wasn’t clear immediately after the rally whether the two Marines were affiliated with a particular group at the event. “YWNRU” is the slogan of a white nationalist group started by another Marine.
“Of course we condemn this type of behavior,” Maj. Clark Carpenter said after the incident. “We condemn any type of behavior that is not congruent with our values or that is illegal.”
Cheney has received “administrative punishment” but is still an active member of the Marines. Both men will appear in court on Oct. 10, and neither has yet to enter a plea in the case.