My opinion is that they are sending a message to your son.
Only he and they (and perhaps a few higher-ups nearby) know
what the message is.
In boot camp, they used to throw a blanket over a guy so he
couldn't identify who was hitting him. They would do this to
someone who was not getting with the program. If the guy
didn't clean himself, they threw a shower party where they
scrubbed him with toilet brushes in the shower from head to
toe. To boldly do it when they could be identified means they
sent a strong message, or they were too drunk to think about it.
The answer to sending a message is not to get your mother involved.
It is to answer the message yourself. He can be a man by handling
it his own way.
I don't agree with the method used here. It's just an opinion of what
they may have done. If he were to use this as a way to get out of the
military, so be it. If he gets stronger because of it, great. These men
are going to put their lives on the line and need to count on others.
They want to count on your son as much as he wants to count on them.
Let him do what he thinks is best and stay out of it.