General Milley Accused of Serious Misdeed

General Milley Accused of Serious Misdeed

Perhaps the most controversial issue related to the United States military in history has erupted. Reports indicate that the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Mark Milley intended to subvert the chain of command by promising to telegraph his Chinese counterparts then-President Trumps’ potential military actions.

In doing so, he both ran afoul of the Constitutional prerogatives of the elected president, as well as giving aid to the enemy, a treasonable offense.

Milley become the 20th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on October 1, 2019. He is the nation’s highest-ranking military officer, and the principal military advisor to the President, Secretary of Defense, and National Security Council.

In response,Trump has stated that Milley should immediately resign and “be replaced with someone who is actually willing to defend our military from the leftist radicals who hate our country and flag”.

The outrage isn’t confined to the former Commander-in-Chief.

In a letter to President Biden, Senator Marco Rubio wrote “I write with grave concern regarding recent reporting that General Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, worked to actively undermine the sitting Commander in Chief of the United States Armed Forces and contemplated a treasonous leak of classified information to the Chinese Communist Party in advance of a potential armed conflict with the People’s Republic of China (PRC). These actions by General Milley demonstrate a clear lack of sound judgement, and I urge you to dismiss him immediately. It has been reported that General Milley spoke with his counterpart in the People’s Liberation Army after learning the PRC was worried about escalating tensions as a result of military exercises conducted in the South China Sea. Reportedly, General Milley told his counterpart: “[y]ou and I have known each other for now five years. If we’re going to attack, I’m going to call you ahead of time. It’s not going to be a surprise… A senior military officer interfering with that civilian-controlled process is simply unacceptable at best, and at worst, would cause ambiguity which could lead to war. General Milley has attempted to rationalize his reckless behavior by arguing that what he perceived as the military’s judgement was more stable than its civilian commander. It is a dangerous precedent that could be asserted at any point in the future by General Milley or others. It threatens to tear apart our nation’s longstanding principle of civilian control of the military.”

General Milley has also attracted vehement criticism for his role in the Afghanistan withdrawal debacle. The operation was clearly bungled by the White House. According to some reports, Milley and his staff did not engage in sufficient action to persuade Biden away from his erroneous course. Military personel I have spoken to have said that the moral thing to do would be to threaten resignation if the plans were not altered.

Apparently, however, there is a significant meeting of the minds between Biden and his top officer.  The President has stated “I have great confidence in General Milley.”  White House spokesperson Jen Psaki added to that later, telling reporters that Biden admires Milley’s “leadership, his patriotism, and his fidelity to our constitution.”

Under Milley’s leadership, criticism of the Pentagon has dramatically increased, as observers have noted that there appears to be more emphasis on political activities rather than actual defense. reported this summer that Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-Tx) “…launched a webpage … inviting service members to anonymously blow the whistle on ‘woke ideology’ in the military. ‘Enough is enough,’ he wrote on Twitter when announcing the website. ‘We won’t let our military fall to woke ideology… For too long, progressive Pentagon staffers have been calling the shots for our warfighters, and spineless military commanders have let it happen.”

Frank Vernuccio serves as editor-in-chief of the New York Analysis of Policy and government. 

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