Early on in the deadly Summer of Rage, which resulted in dozens of murders, billions of dollars of damage, and the destruction of many American cities, the top military officer in the United States apologized for merely walking through an area in front of the White House that had been ravaged by violence, arson, and attacks on police officers in the days prior.
Rioters who claimed to support the “Black Lives Matter” movement had besieged the White House, according to the Associated Press, forcing the president of the United States, the commander in chief of the U.S. armed forces, into a bunker designed for terrorist attacks. The national security threat was repeatedly characterized by media figures as a “peaceful” or “mostly peaceful” protest, despite the arson and attacks that led to injuries of more than five dozen law enforcement figures in front of the White House attempting to protect the executive branch of the United States government from the coordinated attack.
Fueled in part by false, misleading, and inaccurate media accounts of police interactions with black men, rioters descended on many American cities, laying waste to retail establishments. In Washington, D.C., the BLM rioters set fire to historic St. John’s church and an outbuilding on White House grounds.
Religious liberty is a natural right and a highly sensitive issue for Americans, many of whose forefathers frequently came to the country to practice it. Large movements that attempt to take over the White House and burn churches are widely considered to be threatening to the very foundations of the republic.
A few days later, with destabilizing and violent protests continuing nightly across the country, law enforcement cleared the street in front of the White House using smoke canisters and pepper balls to secure the perimeter. Protesters included people not actively hitting police officers in the heads with bricks or otherwise engaged in violence, and those who were. The presence of the peaceful group helped the work of the violent actors wherever the protests and riots coincided.
After the clearing of the area, President Donald Trump and a few other top government officials walked over from the White House to the church that had been set ablaze, an attempt to visually demonstrate that law and order would triumph and the riots that so alarmed peaceful Americans would be quelled.
The move was on the front end of a summer of deadly riots that would lead to dozens of deaths, the violent destruction of hundreds of family-owned businesses, and billions of dollars in property damage. In some cities, lawless “autonomous zones” continue to flourish. But even early on, thousands of people had been arrested, and people were beginning to be murdered in the riots. Americans outside of the newsrooms and other Democrat strongholds that encouraged the riots were desperately looking for a restoration of the law.
The walk from the White House to St. John’s provoked an immediate and furious backlash from the media, who were largely supportive of the riots. It even led to the apology from Army Gen. Mark Milley, the top military officer in the country, who had been present for the walk.
“My presence in that moment and in that environment created a perception of the military involved in domestic politics,” Milley said, apologizing profusely. “As a commissioned uniformed officer, it was a mistake that I have learned from, and I sincerely hope we all can learn from it.”
It was a profoundly weird and unsettling moment for Americans outside of liberal enclaves. Apologizing for restoring law and order at a time when the White House and the president had been threatened?
The media pushed further, suggesting that any pushback on Milley for his bizarre apology would be further evidence of the evil of their nemesis, President Trump.
Other events showed that the military had absolutely no problem getting political at that time — in the opposite direction. Even as BLM riots damaged the country, a top Air Force general strongly supported the protests in what was described as a “speech that at times seemed to barely contain his rage.”
And now we see all the more how fine the military are with not just a “perception” of involvement in domestic politics, but the reality.
For the past several days, the order went out to attack Fox News host Tucker Carlson for his critique that the U.S. military was too focused on identity politics at the expense of warfighting. There is no doubt that this is a valid political debate, regardless of whether you agree with him or strenuously disagree with him.
But the Pentagon put out a story with the defamatory and false headline “Press Secretary Smites Fox Host That Dissed Diversity In Military.”
Many, many top military brass followed suit, tweeting out their faux-outrage at Carlson’s comments critiquing Biden, usually mischaracterizing them.
Seeming to support law and order when it threatens the commander in chief or houses of worship? That’s too political. Defending Biden from critiques of his policy? That’s not political, according to our military.
The top officials at the Pentagon clearly thought that they would harm Carlson by attacking him. Instead, they have only devastated their own credibility as a trustworthy institution.