Democrats apologize for Russian ships in U.S. veterans tribute
September 12th, 2012
05:22 PM ET
11 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. PointLoma1

    When you want to cut the U.S. Defense by 50% you tend to disrespect and distance yourself from those in the military. There is a danger for not knowing what a US ship looks like.

    September 12, 2012 11:18 pm at 11:18 pm |
  2. Emerson

    Not only a non-issue, but it's trivial nonsense.. Move on to something relevant.

    September 12, 2012 11:24 pm at 11:24 pm |
  3. connieb

    I love it when Sniffit participates. She is right on every time and explains the way I feel much better than I can. Great posts, always.

    September 12, 2012 11:44 pm at 11:44 pm |
  4. John Oboho

    Mistakes,really do happen.One could say it is a case of "making a mountain out of mole hill",but I would say,it making a mountain from plain ground.Mistakes do happen folks.

    September 12, 2012 11:50 pm at 11:50 pm |
  5. NameDave

    Leave it to the Dems to screw this up too! Can't even pay tribute to the vets properly!!

    September 13, 2012 12:30 am at 12:30 am |
  6. chris

    Micromanage? Making sure you have a u.s. Navy picture while veterans are being honored and speaking as a back drop. And russian ships after obama's microphone mishap? Are high school kids running this campaign? They couldn't do worse prob be better. Not obama's fault obviously. Just more incompetence by people around him

    September 13, 2012 12:35 am at 12:35 am |
  7. obama is Out Of Touch with reality

    Its the Godless Party and the Communist Party all in one, the demoncrats are as bad as extremist muslims.

    September 13, 2012 07:27 am at 7:27 am |
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