A Marine jailed for criticizing military leaders over the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan has quickly become a MAGA folk hero despite recently slamming Donald Trump for "dividing our country" — and ripping into the former president's son, Donald Trump Jr., on Twitter.
Vice News reported Friday that an online fundraiser for Lt. Col. Stuart Scheller has brought in nearly $2 million, and he's received expressions of support from MAGA-loving Republican U.S. Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene, Lauren Boebert, Madison Cawthorn and Louie Gohmert. Scheller's parents have also appeared repeatedly this week on Fox News.
Scheller, who became famous for his viral Facebook videos in August, is being held in a brig at Camp LeJeune after he refused to stop publicly attacking his superiors.
"In the videos, Scheller criticized U.S. military leadership's handling of the withdrawal from Afghanistan and said they should be held accountable for the deaths of 13 Marines—one of whom Scheller said he was close to," Vice reports. "While the initial video was focused on criticism of the Biden administration's handling of the Afghanistan withdrawal, a second video posted a few days later on Scheller's LinkedIn account took a darker turn, when the Marine echoed rhetoric used by pro-Trump insurrectionists on Jan. 6."
"Follow me, and we will bring the whole f*cking system down," Scheller said in the video.
In addition to criticizing Biden administration officials, including Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Joint Chiefs Chairman Mark Milley, Scheller has expressed "obvious disdain" for Trump, Vice reports.
"I was told by everyone to kiss the ring because of your following and power," Scheller wrote in a Facebook post last Saturday. "I refuse. While I respect your foreign policy positions, I hate how you divided the country. I don't need or want your help. You do not have the ability to pull US together. You may even win the next election. But your generation's time is running out."
Scheller later added of Trump, "Is he honest, accountable, and full of integrity… no. Would I want to work for a leader like that… no. I want a leader that will bring US together. Someone who has the courage to defend our country when called."
Scheller also addressed the former president after Donald Trump Jr. tweeted support for the Marine.
"Tell your son to stop tweeting about me," Scheller wrote. "Your whole family knows nothing about US or our sacrifices. I could never work with you. I'd rather sit in jail and be released with a dishonorable than make compromises in my beliefs."
The jailed Marine has also slammed former Trump national security advisor Michael Flynn: "You gave interviews about me. Pretending to understand me. You are the same as the rest. You were caught in a lie. My generation is sick of your lies. We are not the same. Stop speaking my name as if you understand me."
Vice reports that while most MAGA lovers appear to be conveniently ignoring Scheller's anti-Trump views, a few have taken notice.
"Scheller is anti-(Michael) Flynn and anti-Trump," one Telegram user wrote in a major QAnon channel. "I think he's a Judas goat."