Tuesday, September 14, 2021


I'm sure you think this was a perfectly reasonable judgment call:
Two days after the January 6 attack on the US Capitol, President Donald Trump's top military adviser, Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Mark Milley, single-handedly took top-secret action to limit Trump from potentially ordering a dangerous military strike or launching nuclear weapons, according to "Peril," a new book by legendary journalist Bob Woodward and veteran Washington Post reporter Robert Costa.

Woodward and Costa write that Milley, deeply shaken by the assault, 'was certain that Trump had gone into a serious mental decline in the aftermath of the election, with Trump now all but manic, screaming at officials and constructing his own alternate reality about endless election conspiracies.'

... Speaking to senior military officials in charge of the National Military Command Center, the Pentagon's war room, Milley instructed them not to take orders from anyone unless he was involved.

"No matter what you are told, you do the procedure. You do the process. And I'm part of that procedure," Milley told the officers, according to the book. He then went around the room, looked each officer in the eye, and asked them to verbally confirm they understood.
Milley was worried about an attack on China -- so much so that he reassured the Chinese twice that no attack was imminent:
In a pair of secret phone calls, Gen. Mark A. Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, assured his Chinese counterpart, Gen. Li Zuocheng of the People’s Liberation Army, that the United States would not strike, according to a new book by Washington Post associate editor Bob Woodward and national political reporter Robert Costa.

One call took place on Oct. 30, 2020, four days before the election that unseated President Donald Trump, and the other on Jan. 8, 2021, two days after the Capitol siege carried out by his supporters in a quest to cancel the vote.

The first call was prompted by Milley’s review of intelligence suggesting the Chinese believed the United States was preparing to attack. That belief, the authors write, was based on tensions over military exercises in the South China Sea, and deepened by Trump’s belligerent rhetoric toward China....

In the book’s account, Milley went so far as to pledge he would alert his counterpart in the event of a U.S. attack, stressing the rapport they’d established through a backchannel.
The president is the commander in chief of the armed forces, although the Constitution is not a suicide pact -- Milley was right to want to prevent a war with a nuclear power.

But I think he misjudged Trump. Trump didn't seem crazier after the election than he was before the polls closed -- he's always seemed like a rage-driven narcissist with no human feelings for anyone except his daughter and a small group of people (mostly fellow evildoers) who exist at the alpha level where he imagines himself to reside. I don't believe he would have bombed China because, for all his nasty talk, he wants to be liked by dictators such as Xi Jinping. Also, he seemed oddly averse to war throughout his presidency. Did he just not want to share the spotlight with the troops? Did he fear that it would be too hard for him to fake an understanding of whatever war he started?

Whatever his motives, I think he was unlikely to drop a bomb on a foreign enemy under the circumstances -- one important reason being that the people he truly hates are his domestic enemies. (This is something he has in common with most American rank-and-file right-wingers: They hate everyone in America who's not a white conservative, and they also hate black and brown people globally. American non-conservatives -- white liberals as well as most of the country's black and brown people -- are their top enemies.)

General Milley's efforts to prevent the president from doing something rash and irreversible seem understandable (and reminiscent of the last days of Nixon) -- but to your right-wing relatives, what Woodward and Costa are reporting just confirms everything they've suspected throughout Trump's time in politics: that a globalist Deep State exists, that it spent the years of Trump's presidency seeking to thwart everything he tried to do, and that this cabal cares more about China than it does about America.

Marco Rubio has already called on President Biden to fire General Milley, but that's mild compare to what's coming: Within the next 48 hours, I guarantee that at least one or two high-profile Republican will suggest that the general should be tried on treason charges, and possibly executed. (In Ohio, the question is which Republican Senate candidate will say something like this first, Josh Mandel or J.D. Vance.)

The right already blames what it calls the "woke military" for the triumph of the Taliban -- and now we learn this. I don't know where this is going to lead, but I fear the critics of the generals, not the generals. Thry won't take this lightly.

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