Trump acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller said that Gen. Mark Milley had no authority to make “secret” calls to his counterpart in communist China and needs to resign “immediately,” a new report from Fox News suggests.
Milley reportedly called Gen. Li Zuocheng of the People’s Liberation Army twice while former President Donald Trump was still in office to reassure the communist military authority that the United States did not have plans to attack China.
“The authors of the book also claim Milley contacted Li a second time to reassure him that the U.S. would not make any type of advances or attack China in any form, as Milley promised, ‘We are 100% steady. Everything’s fine. But democracy can be sloppy sometimes,'” Fox News reported.
Miller called the alleged phone calls “disgraceful and unprecedented act of insubordination.” The former DOD official also testified that he “did not and would not ever authorize” the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to make those calls because it caused Milley to break the chain of command.
“The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is the highest-ranking military officer whose sole role is providing military-specific advice to the president, and by law is prohibited from exercising executive authority to command forces,” Miller told Fox News. “The chain of command runs from the President to the Secretary of Defense, not through the Chairman.”
Miller denied any allegations that he knew of the two calls before they were made and subsequently reported out in “Peril,” a book by Washington Post reporters Bob Woodward and Robert Costa.
If Milley’s “histrionic outbursts and unsanctioned, anti-Constitutional involvement in foreign policy prove true, he must resign immediately or be fired by the Secretary of Defense to guarantee the sanctity of the officer corps,” Miller said.
Pentagon spokesman John Kirby tried to blow off Milley’s reported calls as a “function of the job,” but Miller said a full investigation is necessary to ensure the military’s integrity moving forward.
“I look forward to a full, non-partisan investigation of the accusations made by Woodward to guarantee that the genius of our Founders and following generations that established a system and culture of the subservience of our military – the most powerful force in our Nation – to civilian control endures.”
Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby says “Oh my goodness” after a reporter references a call for Gen. Milley to be tried for treason, then says interacting with counterparts is a “function of the job.” pic.twitter.com/GspVWyDHpO
— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) September 15, 2021