I’ve already written about Gen. Mark Milley’s despicable behavior in undermining the president’s authority, but now a retired major general has risen up to give a piece of his mind to Milley. (Question: Where are the other military voices raised in defense of the Constitution? Hardly a one!)
Maj. Gen. Paul Vallely of Bigfork, Montana, doesn’t have any problem being counted on the side of the Constitution. He’s the chairman of Stand Up America US Foundation and a founding member of the Citizens Commission on National Security.
On Friday, Vallely re-posted an op-ed by Jeffrey Lord that challenges Milley’s decision to upbraid President Trump for walking in the company of Milley and other US officials to St. John’s Church the day after the church was burned by rioters. Vallely titled his post “General Milley should resign.”
Milley earned the wrath of both Vallely and Lord when he apologized for accompanying the president and said, “I should not have been there. My presence in that moment, and in that environment, created the perception of the military involved in domestic politics.”
I have already pointed out that Milley’s statement did more than anything to become “involved in domestic politics.” He emboldened the rioters and looters and betrayed the president.
“Burning a church is an attempt to prohibit the free exercise of religious liberty. It is the most fundamental of a president’s responsibilities to defend religious liberty — as the Constitution says. There is nothing — nothing — either wrong or unusual about a president traveling to a church or defending religious liberty. In fact, it is a president’s constitutional duty to defend religious liberty, as he is sworn to defend the Constitution in his oath of office.”
Moreover, Lord correctly compares Milley’s insubordination with that of Gen. Douglas MacArthur during the Korean War.
Make no mistake, Gen. Milley’s statement is itself the very epitome of politics. The politics of Inside the Beltway insiders who cannot abide the elected president of the United States.
Gen. Milley’s words summon in turn the words of former President Harry Truman in his memoirs when he recounted his famous decision to fire Gen. Douglas MacArthur in the middle of the Korean War. Truman wrote that MacArthur, in issuing a Milley-style statement on his own that challenged the president, had made a”
“… most extraordinary statement for a military commander … on his own responsibility.… It was in open defiance of my orders as President and as Commander in Chief. This was a challenge to the authority of the President under the Constitution.”
As Lord points out, MacArthur was relieved of duty for his breach of the public trust.
To be clear, Gen. Milley is perfectly within his rights to disagree with the president — behind closed doors. But the moment he takes his disagreement and goes public on his own authority, as Truman said of MacArthur, this is “open defiance” of a president’s orders.
Lord doesn’t mince words in his final assessment of Milley: “If the general can’t obey the Constitution — he should resign.”
Bravo. And thanks to Maj. Gen. Vallely for being on the right side — as he so often is!
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