Tuesday, the Pentagon suspended more than 850 Saudi students from flight training in response to the deadly shooting by a Saudi student last Friday at Naval Air Station Pensacola that killed three.
FoxNews reports the Saudi national who killed three people during last week’s shooting spree at Naval Air Station Pensacola filed a complaint against one of his instructors earlier this year alleging that he had called him “Porn Stash” — a nickname that “infuriated” him, a report says.
Mohammed Alshamrani, who prepared the document with the help of two American classmates, according to The New York Times, claimed teacher James Day labeled him with the term at the end of a meteorology class in April.
In the complaint, Alshamrani wrote that Day was asking about 10 students around the room if they had any questions before dismissal. When he turned to Alshamrani, Day allegedly addressed him as “Porn Stash.”
“Laughing, he continued to ask, ‘What? Have you not seen a porn star before?’” Alshamrani reportedly wrote in the complaint. “After I did not respond, he just let go of the subject.”
ABC reports Defense Secretary Mark Esper has directed a strengthening of the vetting procedures for foreign military students studying in the United States and ordered a review of current vetting procedures in the wake of the Pensacola shooting that killed three Navy sailors and wounded eight others.
Earlier on Tuesday, the Navy confirmed the suspension of flight training for more than 300 Saudi military flight students, but it was part of a larger safety stand-down and operational pause that the Pentagon announced later in the day and that limits all 852 Saudi military students in the U.S. to receive only classroom instruction.
In a memorandum to Pentagon leadership on Tuesday, Esper directed that immediate steps to strengthen the current vetting process for international military students who train on U.S. bases and ordered a formal review of the process to be completed in 10 days. The review will look at current policies and procedures for screening foreign students and granting access to bases.
“I direct the Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence (USD(I)) to take immediate steps to strengthen personnel vetting for International Military Students (IMS), and to complete a review within 10 days of policies and procedures for screening foreign students and granting access to our bases,” Esper said in the memo.
“These efforts will seek to more closely align IMS vetting procedures with those we apply to U.S. personnel,” he added. “With respect to specific training programs and personnel under their cognizance, the Secretaries of the Military Departments may take additional security measures as they see fit.”
In the meantime, the 852 Saudi military students at U.S. military installations will not receive any operational training and will be limited to classroom instruction as part of a security and safety stand-down by the U.S. military services.
Esper said that the Pentagon is working closely with the Saudi government in its response to Friday’s deadly shooting incident that was carried out by a young Saudi air force officer.
“The secretary has placed a very high priority on this,” a senior defense official said of the review.