U.S. generals use Washington Post pages to warn of potential military insurrection
The message is absolutely stark and direct: “With the country still as divided as ever, we must take steps to prepare for the worst.”
This is not a warning about COVID-19, or climate change. No, this is three former high-ranking generals telling the American people that their military can no longer be trusted to respect civilian authority if the circumstances surrounding Trump’s last days in the White House were ever to be repeated.
“We are chilled to our bones at the thought of a coup succeeding next time,” they wrote in the Washington Post on December 17, 2021.
Paul D. Eaton is a retired U.S. Army major general and a senior adviser to VoteVets. Antonio M. Taguba is a retired Army major general, with 34 years of active duty service. Steven M. Anderson is a retired brigadier general who served in the U.S. Army for 31 years.
“One of our military’s strengths is that it draws from our diverse population. It is a collection of individuals, all with different beliefs and backgrounds. But without constant maintenance, the potential for a military breakdown mirroring societal or political breakdown is very real,” they said.
The generals go on to list several alarming events: “Trump’s acting defense secretary, Christopher C. Miller, testified that he deliberately withheld military protection of the Capitol before Jan. 6…. a disturbing number of veterans and active-duty members of the military took part in the attack on the Capitol…. the commanding general of the Oklahoma National Guard, refused an order from President Biden mandating that all National Guard members be vaccinated against the coronavirus….”
The warning signs are all there, said the generals. “The potential for a total breakdown of the chain of command along partisan lines — from the top of the chain to squad level — is significant should another insurrection occur. The idea of rogue units organizing among themselves to support the ‘rightful’” commander in chief cannot be dismissed.”
To avoid such a crisis, the authors urge the Biden Administration to take action against those to supported the January 6, 2021 assault on the Capitol. The military should set-up new intelligence-gathering capabilities, they say, “to identify, isolate and remove potential mutineers.”
“Everything must be done to prevent another insurrection,” the generals conclude.
- Read “3 retired generals: The military must prepare now for a 2024 insurrection,” in the Washington Post, December 17, 2021