Ex-Joint Chiefs Chairman Mike Mullen: ‘Extremely disturbing’ that navy management reportedly feared Trump coup
Retired Adm. Mike Mullen, a former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Workers, mentioned Sunday that it was “extremely disturbing” that stories detailed a prime U.S. normal’s fears that Donald Trump, within the waning days of his presidency, would try to make use of the navy to stage a coup or take motion in opposition to Iran.
“I believe the reporting, from what I perceive, has been fairly correct,” Mullen mentioned on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” in response to the present transcript.
“Significantly after the election and the 2 threats that you simply talked about,” he informed host John Dickerson when requested concerning the stories. “The exterior one, and whether or not or not we might begin some type of fight or battle with Iran. After which the interior one by way of the place it’d go, significantly with respect to how the navy can be utilized by President Trump to by some means validate that the election truly was a fraud and preserve the president in energy. I believe that’s all very correct and clearly extremely disturbing, actually in each respect.”
The present chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Workers, Gen. Mark Milley, had bluntly described his concern that Trump would use America’s armed forces to overturn the 2020 election, in response to excerpts launched of an upcoming e book, “I Alone Can Repair It: Donald J. Trump’s Catastrophic Closing Yr,” by Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington Publish reporters Carol Leonnig and Philip Rucker.
“They might attempt, however they’re not going to f***ing succeed,” Milley informed his deputies of a doable coup, in response to CNN’s account of the e book, which can be launched Tuesday. “You possibly can’t do that with out the navy. You possibly can’t do that with out the CIA and the FBI. We’re the blokes with the weapons.”
The New Yorker’s Susan Glasser additionally reported final week that Milley informed associates that he was readying for 2 “nightmare situations” as Trump continued to disclaim the outcomes of the election: “to make use of the navy on the streets of America to forestall the reliable, peaceable switch of energy” and to make use of the navy to escalate a battle with Iran.
Milley had informed his workers that Trump was stoking unrest after dropping the November contest, Leonnig and Rucker reported, with the U.S.’s prime normal describing Trump as “the basic authoritarian chief with nothing to lose.” He was reportedly preparing for a showdown with the president. (Milley’s workplace has declined to touch upon the e book’s claims.)
“It is a Reichstag second,” Milley informed aides, in response to the e book, referring to the 1933 burning of the German parliament constructing that preceded Adolf Hitler’s suspension of many civil liberties within the nation.
Trump issued a press release final week denying he had ever contemplated a coup, although he mentioned “quite a few individuals” urged him to “carry within the Army.”
He disparaged Milley at size throughout a number of statements, saying the Joint Chiefs chairman had “no braveness or ability” and was “definitely not the kind of particular person I might be speaking ‘coup’ with. I’m not into coups!”
Trump additional recommended that Milley, who he appointed, “ought to be impeached, or court-martialed and tried” if the e book’s claims about what he mentioned are true. Trump’s statements additionally continued to unfold baseless conspiracies about widespread voter fraud within the 2020 election.
Mullen has been at instances a vocal critic of Trump. In June 2020, he publicly denounced then-President Trump’s use of the navy to clear Lafayette Sq. of nonviolent protesters forward of a photograph op with a Bible at close by St. John’s Church. Trump, Mullen wrote within the Atlantic, “laid naked his disdain for the rights of peaceable protest on this nation, gave succor to the leaders of different international locations who take consolation in our home strife, and risked additional politicizing the women and men of our armed forces.”
In his Sunday interview, Mullen famous that Milley “readily admitted he made an enormous mistake” by participating in Trump’s stroll throughout Lafayette Sq. however was prepared for the tumultuous occasions afterward, notably the lethal Jan. 6 riot on the U.S. Capitol by Trump supporters.
“His antenna was up,” Mullen mentioned of Milley. “He knew the correct factor to do. He knew the best way to do it, as finest you possibly can work out, in what’s a really, very fluid scenario. After which he executed accordingly. So, I believe he greater than made up for that mistake that he made surrounding Lafayette Sq..”
Mullen additionally informed CBS that he nonetheless has worries concerning the politicization of the navy.
“I proceed to have them, even now, as a result of the political setting is so intense and so divided. And we have to work onerous to ensure the navy doesn’t turn into half of what’s politicized on this nation.”
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