USS Enterprise Video Scandal: Navy Commander Revealed As Mastermind Behind Raunchy Videos
UPDATED: This story has been updated to include the full statement released by the U.S. Navy on matters addressed in the story below.
Owen Honors, Captain of the Norfolk-based USS Enterprise, was revealed as the producer of a series of "raunchy" videos made aboard the Navy carrier several years ago in a report released by the Virginian-Pilot on Saturday.
Filmed in 2006 and 2007 when Honors was the Enterprises's executive officer, the clips were reportedly shown to 6,000 sailors and U.S. Marines on the ship as part of what was called "XO Movie Night."
The Pilot reports:
In one scene, two female Navy sailors stand in a shower stall aboard the aircraft carrier, pretending to wash each other. They joke about how they should get six minutes under the water instead of the mandated three.
In other skits, sailors parade in drag, use anti-gay slurs, and simulate masturbation and a rectal exam. Another scene implies that an officer is having sex in his stateroom with a donkey.
According to the Virginia-based outlet, the videos were made with government equipment. Some were reportedly produced at times when the ship was actively deployed to help the country's war efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan. Sailors, who declined to be identified by name, indicated to the Pilot that the footage in question was broadcast on a weekly basis aboard the ship.
Honors, who is expected to deploy in upcoming weeks, suggests in the videos that his intent in generating the content was for entertainment purposes. The Pilot reports that the clips drew complaints from female sailors aboard the carrier who found the material offensive.
The Navy issued a statement (full text below) on the matter appearing to downplay any hint of controversy.
"The videos were intended to be humorous skits focusing the crew's attention on specific issues such as port visits, traffic safety, water conservation, ship cleanliness, etc," said a written statement, according to the Pilot.
Honors himself acknowledges in one clip the controversial nature of the videos. "Over the years I've gotten several complaints about inappropriate materials in these videos," he says. "Never to me personally but, gutlessly, through other channels."
Here's full text of the statement released by the Navy in response to the initial story published by the Virginian-Pilot:
The videos created onboard USS Enterprise in 2006-2007 and written about in The Virginian-Pilot article on Saturday, January 1, 2011, are clearly inappropriate. Production of videos, like the ones produced four to five years ago on USS Enterprise and now being written about in The Virginian-Pilot, were not acceptable then and are not acceptable in today's Navy. The Navy does not endorse or condone these kinds of actions. Those in command, Commanding Officers, Executive Officers, and Command Master Chiefs (the command triad) are charged to lead by example and are held accountable for setting the proper tone and upholding the standards of honor, courage and commitment that we expect Sailors to exemplify. U.S. Fleet Forces Command has initiated an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the production of these videos.