Marines will lose their pensions, tuition assistance, and access to the G.I. bill, along with other military benefits, if they refuse the COVID-19 vaccination, according to internal emails reviewed by the Washington Free Beacon.
An Aug. 18 email from Col. Teague Pastel, a commanding officer at the Marine Barracks in Washington, D.C., told colleagues that although “vaccines are still voluntary,” the military believes “they will become mandatory in the near future.” The penalties for refusing the coronavirus vaccination, Pastel wrote, should be in line with others for insubordination. Those penalties include “administration separation,” a demerit in the Marine’s personal file, as well as the forfeiture of various retirement and financial benefits.
“Please continue engaging with our troops on the importance of vaccinating, and stress that it is still voluntary at this time. However, once the vaccine becomes mandatory they need to be prepared to separate and potentially lose benefits,” Pastel’s email reads. “If the Marines are not willing to lose the benefits then they should just get the vaccine now.”
Pastel sent the email prior to the Food and Drug Administration’s Monday move to approve the Pfizer vaccine, which opened the door for the military to mandate it for its members. The Pentagon announced the vaccine mandate within hours of FDA approval. – READ MORE