A bunch of retired four-star generals and admirals from the U.S. armed forces condemned Donald Trump in a joint article concerning the former president’s “dereliction of duty” before and through the U.S. Capitol riot.
The Jan. 6 House select committee produced “many startling findings,” but none were more alarming than the undeniable fact that Trump “abdicated his duty to preserve, protect and defend the Structure” while rioters were ransacking the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, seven former military leaders wrote in an editorial published in The Recent York Times.
The authors highlighted how, within the weeks leading as much as the rebellion, Trump’s allies urged him to carry on to power by ordering the military to seize voting machines and supervise a do-over of the 2020 election.
“Such an illegal order would have imperiled a foundational precept of American democracy: civilian control of the military,” the military leaders wrote. “Americans may take it with no consideration, however the strength of our democracy rests upon the soundness of this arrangement, which requires each civilian and military leaders to trust that they’ve the identical goal of supporting and defending the Structure.”
Testimony at Thursday’s hearing revealed that Trump ignored language from aides to induce his supporters to stop the violence, and as an alternative ad-libbed a press release that again repeated his lies about having the election “stolen” from him.
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“The president’s dereliction of duty on Jan. 6 tested the integrity of this historic principle as never before, endangering American lives and our democracy,” the military leaders added. “The lesson of that day is obvious. Our democracy is just not a given. To preserve it, Americans must demand nothing less from their leaders than an unassailable commitment to country over party — and to their oaths above all.”
The article was published before Thursday’s primetime select committee hearing, which detailed what Trump did for greater than three hours as a mob of his supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol to attempt to stop Congress from certifying the outcomes of the 2020 election.
Multiple aides testified that Trump remained in a non-public dining room off the Oval Office watching TV through the violence. His former deputy press secretary, Sarah Matthews, said he could have walked to the press briefing room in lower than 60 seconds to make an announcement but selected to not.
She also said that Trump had not desired to mention “peace” in a tweet to supporters through the riot. He eventually agreed to say “stay peaceful” after his daughter Ivanka Trump proposed the phrase.
The editorial was signed by Admirals Steve Abbot, James Loy, John Nathman and William Owens; and Generals Peter Chiarelli, John Jumper and Johnnie Wilson.
Read it in The Recent York Times.