Gen. Mark Milley, the outgoing Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, spoke against any “wannabe dictator” during a retirement speech that he delivered on Friday.
In that portion of his remarks, he did not name former President Donald Trump, but the implication was obvious. Milley was in that high-ranking military role as Trump desperately sought to cling to power after the 2020 presidential election, and Trump has singled out Milley for antagonism time and again. Recently, Trump even argued there was a historical precedent for executing Milley — an outrageous statement.
“We don’t take an oath to a tribe,” Milley said in his retirement speech. “We don’t take an oath to a religion. We don’t take an oath to a king or a queen or to a tyrant or a dictator. And we don’t take an oath to a wannabe dictator. We don’t take an oath to an individual. We take an oath to the Constitution. And we take an oath to the idea that is America. And we’re willing to die to protect it.”
Milley also recently responded in an interview with “60 Minutes” to Trump suggesting his execution. Milley tied Trump’s animosity to fury on the former president’s part with “the institution of the military.” The longtime member of the U.S. military also insisted on that institution’s continuing commitment to defending the U.S. Constitution. Trump, meanwhile, continues to insist despite the evidence proving him wrong that there was systematic fraud in the 2020 presidential race, and he’s clamored at times for extreme measures — like the suspension of provisions from the Constitution — to help secure him power.
When Republicans claim going forward that they’re the party of law and order, respect for the military, or any related impetus, Americans should ask them whether they also stood with the guy (Donald Trump) suggesting the execution of a top political opponent of his within military leadership.
Gen. Milley warning about Trump, without using his name: “We don’t take an oath to a king, or queen, or a tyrant or a dictator. And we don’t take an oath to a wannabe dictator” pic.twitter.com/CILewmoNNB
— Frida Ghitis (@FridaGhitis) September 29, 2023
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Gen. Mark Milley is responding to comments by former President Donald Trump suggesting that Milley deserves to be executed for communications the general had with China. https://t.co/gOlcC0rE41 pic.twitter.com/pSgO9mNcEY
— 60 Minutes (@60Minutes) September 27, 2023