Democrats apologize for Russian ships in U.S. veterans tribute
September 12th, 2012
05:22 PM ET
2 years ago

Democrats apologize for Russian ships in U.S. veterans tribute

(CNN) - Democratic convention officials issued an apology Wednesday for showing an image of Russian warships during a presentation that honored U.S. veterans at the Democratic National Convention.

The photo came on screen during a tribute on the final night of the gathering last week, as Adm. John Nathman and other veterans spoke on stage. The Navy Times first reported the apology.

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After a former sailor at the event identified the warships, which appear to belong to the Russian Black Sea Fleet, the veteran asked for an apology, the Navy Times reported.

In its formal apology, the Democratic National Convention Committee attributed the mistake to a "vendor error."

"Due to vendor error, incorrect images appeared briefly on screen behind fifty-one veterans during the convention and the DNCC apologizes for this mistake," a convention official said in a statement. "This error should not distract from the words of Admiral Nathman and others who spoke to President Obama's strong record on issues that impact those who have served our nation."

A naval expert, a former editor of "Combat Fleets of the World," interviewed by the Navy Times said he believes the photo was taken "at least six years ago at a Navy Day parade near Sevastopol, Ukraine."

Furthermore, several planes flying over the ships were also spotted in the photo and believed to belong to another country. A separate expert, a former Air Force pilot, told the Navy Times the planes likely belonged to the Turkish Air Force.

In the statement, however, the Democratic official did not hesitate to pivot and criticize Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and his omission of the military from his acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention.

"We're proud of the service and sacrifice of our veterans and military families, and while they were an important and active part of our convention, Mitt Romney failed to even mention them in his speech in Tampa."

– CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

Also see:

– With attacks in Middle East, campaign turns to foreign policy

– Romney's political pretzel over Libya

– Democrats outraged with Romney foreign policy attacks

– Ryan ramps up foreign policy attack on Obama


Filed under: 2012 • Democratic National Convention • Military • Russia
soundoff (32 Responses)
  1. ja

    kinda like the olimypic uniforms, everything else made in china

    September 12, 2012 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  2. Sniffit

    Haha...kinda like that "vendor error" when the RNC's hispanic outreach website used a photo of a group of asian kids. Mistakes happen.

    September 12, 2012 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  3. myviewis

    This is terrible, almost as bad as leave God,Jerusalem out, no put God, Jerusalem back in, no leave God, Jerusalem out. And Democrats claim to be the experts in Foreign policy, foreign affairs.

    But wait, "Democratic official did not hesitate to pivot and criticize Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney".

    Perhaps Democrats should spend more time getting things done correctly than be criticizing others.

    September 12, 2012 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  4. myviewis

    Sniffit

    Haha...kinda like that "vendor error" when the RNC's hispanic outreach website used a photo of a group of asian kids. Mistakes happen.
    ------------------------

    I know you've never been out of the United States but there are Hispanic/Asians and they do look Asian and not Hispanic. Try traveling once in awhile.

    September 12, 2012 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  5. Sniffit

    "I know you've never been out of the United States but there are Hispanic/Asians and they do look Asian and not Hispanic. Try traveling once in awhile."

    I know you don't know me or where I've been, but the picture was of plain old asian kids, not "hispanic/asians" and they didn't look hispanic at all. Please don't tell me your need to find excuses for the GOP/Teatrolls has you uttering the oldy-but-goody "they all look the same to me."

    September 12, 2012 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  6. Sniffit

    In fact, myviewis, I would say that if you took your average everyday person and stuck them in front of pictures of Russian warships and US warships, they'd have no freekin clue which was which, but a very high percentage of people could point out which picture was of hispanic kids and which one was of asian kids. Again, however, mistakes happen. We always like to pretend that whoever was in control needs to be punished and that heads should roll, etc. etc., but sometimes funny or embarassing slip-ups just happen. You can't micromanage everything.

    September 12, 2012 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  7. Namejkane sfl a vote for the gop will cut your moms medicare and soc sec .can you afford to pay for them???

    That was stupid if true???? I like Russiand and some are my friends ,their just like you and me .

    September 12, 2012 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  8. myviewis

    Sniffit

    In fact, myviewis, I would say that if you took your average everyday person and stuck them in front of pictures of Russian warships and US warships, they'd have no freekin clue which was which, but a very high percentage of people could point out which picture was of hispanic kids and which one was of asian kids.
    -----------------------

    Again, you need to get out of your house, not everybody that looks Asian is Asian, Asians are Hispanic also. You've never met a Chinese who is Spanish born, speaks Spanish and has never been to China????? You need to travel or venture into other neighborhoods.

    September 12, 2012 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  9. myviewis

    And this are the people that want to continue running our country 4 more years, they didn't bother to check??? typical

    September 12, 2012 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  10. rrd

    Joe Biden must have been in charge of the presentation.

    September 12, 2012 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  11. Pa Voter

    lol, need to look at those images on google a litter harder next time !

    September 12, 2012 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  12. Pa Voter

    But then again, to some progressives, those ships represent their Navy !!!

    September 12, 2012 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  13. CryBabies

    Just a hint of where we are headed under this administration....The United Socialist States of America.

    September 12, 2012 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  14. Ross

    Of course this isn't on the front page of CNN.com, it portrays Dems in a negative light. Stop pushing your liberal agenda CNN and maybe you'll get some credibility back.

    September 12, 2012 06:38 pm at 6:38 pm |
  15. hicksticks2001

    @Sniffit
    US Warships have US flags on them.

    September 12, 2012 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  16. Hammerer

    Sniffit is on staff of the Obama regime. Post only Obama talking points.

    September 12, 2012 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  17. T'sah From Virginia

    I didn't even see the ships? No real story here – NEXT!

    Obama/Biden 2012 – The Only Trusted Way Forward!

    September 12, 2012 07:27 pm at 7:27 pm |
  18. Rick McDaniel

    The Democrats are totally inept. It is no wonder the country went from bad to horrendous!

    September 12, 2012 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  19. ike

    Hmmm Russian ships....Russian troops were being brought in or country this last month by the thousands, and now in the last 24 hrs they have cut radio communications with American overseers. ( that's unconfirmed) maybe this is a little secret they are showing us in plain view. Russian troops creating havoc, then they stop elections,,,, after our government got away with 911 anythings possible,,, God help us

    September 12, 2012 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  20. Tim

    This just proves that Democrats don't know anything about our Military!!

    September 12, 2012 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  21. Natasha

    America has a weak President , weak economy and is very weak on security , at home and abroad.
    Obama to tell Putin to wait until after his re-election .., doesn't that tell you anything.
    To avoid meeting with the Israeli Prime Minister , actually for the second time as the last time he had a date with his wife.
    When are you all going to wake up that you have an empty suit running your country.

    September 12, 2012 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  22. w l jones

    That sound like two brothers same parent living on different side of railroad track.

    September 12, 2012 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  23. mike

    It just goes to show how out of touch americans are with there own military. When I was a kid 30 years ago two in five little boys could identify a sherman tank or a P51 Mustang. Now days less than .5 percent thats right a half of a percent of Americans serve, To the national political parties, both are guilty, the military is just another piece of the election puzzle to be exploited during the election cycle.
    Sadly I've personally heard in some political circles our men and woman in uniform referred to as "poor suckers who aren't smart enough to get a real job". This embarrassment simply shows that the that these political lackeys are neither smart enough or brave enough to serve.

    I'm a proud veteran!

    September 12, 2012 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  24. Tony in Maine

    Yet another reason to return to the draft, we have an entire generation so far removed from the military that they haven't a clue about the daily life of those who protect us.

    Add to that the great leveling out – the elimination of those who are less than and those who are more than and have much more equal to. Sleeping in the rack next to a man who comes from a totally different neighborhood helps us to understand that neighborhood.

    September 12, 2012 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  25. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    The problem is when you don't do the work yourself... At this point, the video doesn't matter. It should be what the candidate say and what they have done. The pretty pictures around them shouldn't matter for anything.

    September 12, 2012 10:38 pm at 10:38 pm |
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