Excerpts from the new book “Peril,” by Washington Post associate editor Bob Woodward and national political correspondent Robert Costa, revealed Tuesday that Gen. Mark A. Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, secretly called his Chinese counterpart Gen. Li Zuocheng to assure him the United States would not initiate an armed conflict. The authors did not disclose the source of the phone calls, but if true, this is an egregious case of dereliction of duty and in line with the modern military’s turn from a machine of war to an institution infatuated with its elitism and filled with disdain for the Americans who make up its ranks.
The last institution Americans regarded with respect, the last haven beyond rank political division, has finally revealed the last betrayal of American trust. And we shouldn’t be surprised.
Today we encounter a military consumed not with real threats from our real enemies in China, but, as Milley stated in his testimony before the House Armed Services Committee in June, too interested in understanding “white rage.” His desire to assure Congress of his commitment to delve into the politics of critical race theory undermines the long-held and crucial doctrine of military cohesion without regard to race, class, or religion.
This is the natural end of what has been a steady march toward a politicized woke-force that covers for the ineptitude of leaders obsessed with their own power. It’s a dangerous turn away from what has been the mission of our military since its inception: to fight and win wars. Now it is a vessel for an elite class to rise through the ranks of power and influence in Washington, D.C., without having to be accountable for the feckless behavior that leads to endless wars, disgraceful exits, and disregard for an institution that should project power, not fold under it.
Politicization of the Military
The more vehemently they deny any political interests in a supposedly apolitical institution, the more entangled in their own lies and ideology these elites become. Back in 2015, in remarks to the U.S. Coast Guard graduating class, then-President Obama declared climate change to be a serious threat to national security. It was a move to subsume the political debate into one of military and national security concern.
If Obama couldn’t convince the American people to sign on to drastic climate change policies, he could convince the next generation of war fighters that the next front was an “enemy” without definition. If ever there was a breeding ground for mission creep, this was it. If the American people weren’t smart enough to understand the climate change threat, using the institution that still held respect in the hearts of most Americans was the last means to a political end.
Picking up where Obama left off, Milley undermined President Trump, then sought fame under the security blanket of the Biden administration and a sympathetic, sycophantic press. Milley is part of an unserious ruling class whose contempt for the people they are supposed to serve can hardly be concealed. As noted in his congressional testimony, he looks at the soldiers within his ranks and sees young men and women who need to spend more time understanding their white privilege, at the expense of military training.
In a June 23 Budget Request hearing, Milley, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, and the ruling class in Congress spent more time discussing supposed white supremacist threats within the military than the tragically unprepared Afghanistan exit strategy. This comes on the heels of U.S. Navy Admiral Michael Gilday, chief of naval operations, defending the practice of sailors being advised to read Ibram X. Kendi’s “How to Be an Antiracist.”
Milley is embarrassed by his own actions and cowers before House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her tribe of corporate media bootlickers when it appears he hasn’t paid his due to the leftist narrative against President Trump. When he apologized for making an appearance alongside President Trump walking to St. John’s Church in June of last year, he emphasized the importance of a military perceived as non-political. In a taped address aired at the graduation of the National Defense University he said, “We who wear the cloth of our nation come from the people of our nation and we must hold dear the principle of an apolitical military that is so deeply rooted in the essence of our republic.”
But as is the rule of the elites, they are never held to the same standards as those to which they incessantly preach. His actions to join the political fray as a one-man envoy between the United States and China prove it. The alleged calls to the Chinese reveal he thinks his own freelance diplomacy better serves American interests than the civilian leadership elected through democratic means.
Milley and the rest of his above-reproach allies in the military have too long abused the trust of the last institution that was seen as truly representative of the American spirit: an apolitical entity united in one mission to defend America and her allies. They see themselves as heroes of their own story, saving the American people from themselves and offering their own pompous self-importance as an example of why they should never be questioned or held to any standard of accountability. In reality, they’re subverting the very democracy they’re purporting to save, and destroying the military along with it.