Three US Secret Service officers who were supposed to ensure the safety of the visit of the President of the United States of America Barack Obama to Europe were suspended from their duties and "sent home in connection with a violation of discipline." According to the newspaper The Washington Post, the violation consisted of alcohol abuse.
According to the newspaper, on Sunday night - on the eve of Obama's arrival in the Netherlands at the nuclear security summit - the Secret Service officers returned to their hotel in The Hague drunk. One of them could not reach the room and fell asleep right in the corridor, where the next morning the employees found him. The hotel management notified representatives of the US Embassy in Holland about the unworthy behavior of the staff. Those, in turn, handed over the information to the leaders of the Secret Service, including its head, Julia Pearson, who was in The Hague. The Americans, who were sent "on administrative leave" before the investigation, had to return to the United States.
According to the service statute, employees do not have the right to drink alcohol for 10 hours before the start of the assignment. At the same time, violators were supposed to be involved on Sunday in work related to Obama's arrival in Holland (before arriving in The Hague, the president was in Amsterdam, where he participated in a briefing at the State Museum - Rijksmuseum - together with the country's Prime Minister Mark Rutte). Thus, their gatherings at the bar on Saturday were breaking the rules.
According to sources, all three were part of the elite division of CAT (counter-assault team - "assault group"). Moreover, the perpetrators were agents of the 13 level (of the possible 15). One of them was the leader of the assault team, although he did not legally hold a management position.
The responsibilities of CAT employees include protecting the president "under special circumstances" - for example, if there is a threat of a terrorist attack. All employees of this unit undergo serious physical and psychological training, as well as receive the most modern samples. weapons. However, as the former CAT staff told The Washington Post, the work there is very stressful and exhausting - so, during business trips, a working day can last 12 hours.
In the 2012 year, resembles a newspaper, there was a similar история: Before Obama arrived in Colombia to attend the Summit of the Americas in April, several Secret Service officials organized a party with alcohol and prostitutes in Cartagena. And the scandal broke out after one of the Americans refused to pay for the services of his "girlfriend."
Then Obama called the actions of special services unacceptable. "We represent the people of the United States, and when we go abroad, I expect that we will adhere to the highest standards of behavior," he said. After what happened in Cartagena, 10 people lost their jobs, the rules for employees were tightened, and the head of the Secret Service, Mark Sullivan, apologizing for the violators, resigned after 30 years of service.
The American media also reported earlier incidents: for example, according to KIRO-TV, during the President’s visit to El Salvador, in March 2011 visited strip clubs, met with prostitutes and consumed alcohol in large numbers, bragging about what they were protecting Obama The Wall Street Journal reported that agents had fun with strippers in Moscow in 2000 during the period when the United States was headed by President Bill Clinton.
Recall that last year after a business trip to Moscow, Major General Michael Kerry, commanding strategic missile units, lost his post. Between meetings with Russian colleagues on nuclear security issues, the American unexpectedly indulged in violent libations of spirits and communication with unfamiliar women, which, according to other members of the delegation, "put everyone at risk."
However, some American soldiers indulge in such entertainment, not only abroad. In 2013, an employee of the Secret Service was fired for having forgotten a cartridge from an accidental acquaintance in his home country and tried to get into her room using an official ID.
President of the United States began a tour with Amsterdam, will complete it in Riyadh
The unpleasant incident in The Hague did not affect the plans of the American president. Obama's trip to Europe began with talks with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte. From Amsterdam, he went to an international summit on nuclear safety. Speaking on there with a speech, Obama once again expressed his position on the events in the Crimea and commented on Russia's actions towards Ukraine, calling the Russian Federation a "regional power", and the invasion of Ukraine was a "weakness."
Obama also held bilateral talks with President Xi Jinping of China, with Crown Prince Abu Dhabi Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan and a trilateral meeting with President of the Republic of Korea Pak Geun-hye and Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe, and also attended the G7 leaders meeting.
According to Deputy Assistant to the President of the United States for National Security Ben Rhodes, on Wednesday Obama will be in Brussels. A key part of his visit to the Belgian capital will be the US-EU summit, which will discuss the situation in Ukraine, the prospects for creating a transatlantic free trade zone, the resolution of the Iranian nuclear problem and a number of other important issues. In addition, in Brussels, Obama will meet with NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, King of the Belgians Philip and Belgian Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo, and will also deliver a keynote speech in Brussels, in which he will present his "vision of transatlantic relations, European security."
The head of the Washington administration will meet Thursday in Rome, starting the day with an audience with Pope Francis. After his visit to the Vatican, Obama will meet with Italian President Giorgio Napolitano. Then the US President will hold talks with the new Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi. Obama’s overseas trip will end with a visit to Riyadh, which is expected to take place on March 28-29. With the King of Saudi Arabia, Abdullah ibn Abdul Aziz Al Saud, Obama will discuss efforts to support the Syrian opposition, the state of the Palestinian-Israeli peace process, efforts to solve the problem of Tehran's nuclear development.