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World Biden asserts ‘confidence’ in embattled top US General Milley

00:21  16 september  2021
00:21  16 september  2021 Source:   aljazeera.com

What Is Happening to Our Apolitical Military?

  What Is Happening to Our Apolitical Military? Remarks by America’s most senior military officer mark the latest step in the continued erosion of relations between the armed forces and their civilian leaders.As CNN reports, “Milley spoke to friends, lawmakers and colleagues about the threat of a coup,” and although journalists have largely recounted either private conversations or actions that Milley was planning—that is, giving him credit for things he might have done but hadn’t—the comments cast him in a flattering light, a soldier stalwart in defense of democracy.

US President Joe Biden has said he backs top US general Mark Milley , who faces mounting pressure to account for reports that he may have overstepped his authority during Donald Trump’s presidency. Biden has “complete confidence ” in Milley , who serves as the chairman of the joint chiefs, White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters on Wednesday. A day earlier reports stemming from an upcoming book by Washington Post journalists Bob Woodward and Robert Costa claimed that Milley – thinking that then-President Donald Trump was suffering a mental decline

U . S . Joint Chiefs Chairman General Mark Milley discusses the end of the military mission in Afghanistan during a news conference at the Pentagon in Washington, U . S ., September 1, 2021. Sept 15 (Reuters) - President Joe Biden has "complete confidence " in top U . S . General Mark Milley , the White House said on Wednesday, after a report that he secretly twice placed a call to his Chinese counterpart over concerns then-President Donald Trump could spark a war with China.

US President Joe Biden has said he backs top US general Mark Milley, who faces mounting pressure to account for reports that he may have overstepped his authority during Donald Trump’s presidency.

Mark A. Milley wearing a suit and tie: Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley's office says he regularly contacts foreign military leaders [File: Susan Walsh/AP photo] © Provided by Al Jazeera Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley's office says he regularly contacts foreign military leaders [File: Susan Walsh/AP photo]

Biden has “complete confidence” in Milley, who serves as the chairman of the joint chiefs, White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters on Wednesday.

A day earlier reports stemming from an upcoming book by Washington Post journalists Bob Woodward and Robert Costa claimed that Milley – thinking that then-President Donald Trump was suffering a mental decline – called his Chinese counterpart twice, late in 2020 and early in 2021, to avert possible military conflict with China.

Rubio calls on Biden to fire Milley after book claims general sought to undermine Trump

  Rubio calls on Biden to fire Milley after book claims general sought to undermine Trump Rubio called on President Biden to fire Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley"I write with grave concern regarding recent reporting that General Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, worked to actively undermine the sitting Commander in Chief of the United States Armed Forces and contemplated a treasonous leak of classified information to the Chinese Communist Party in advance of a potential armed conflict with the People’s Republic of China (PRC)," Rubio said in a statement Tuesday. "These actions by General Milley demonstrate a clear lack of sound judgement, and I urge you to dismiss him immediately.

President Joe Biden said he has 'great confidence ' in Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman General Mark Milley after the embattled military man admitted on Wednesday he spoke to his Chinese counterpart in coordination with defense officials - but the acting Pentagon chief at the time said he 'did not' He was asked about whether the general did the 'right thing' after a meeting with business leaders and CEOs to discuss the US COVID-19 response. But former Acting Defense Secretary Chris Miller, who would have led the Pentagon when Milley made the January call, said he 'did not and would not ever authorize'

President Biden has "complete confidence " in Gen. Mark Milley to carry on as chairman of the joint chiefs of staff after a forthcoming book reported extraordinary measures Milley took at the end of the Trump administration to guard against a potential missile launch.

Excerpts from the book titled Peril, first revealed by the Washington Post, said Milley assured Li Zuocheng, the top Chinese general, that the US would not attack China and that he would inform him of an attack if it were to happen.

“If we’re going to attack, I’m going to call you ahead of time. It’s not going to be a surprise,” the book, based on hundreds of interviews, quotes Milley as telling Li.

Tuesday’s reports prompted Republican calls for Milley to step down, with Trump accusing the top general of treason.

But the White House signalled that Biden is standing by Milley. “The president has complete confidence in his leadership, his patriotism and his fidelity to our Constitution,” Psaki said.

Later in the day, Biden himself told reporters outside the White House,  “I have great confidence in General Milley.”

Retired Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman says Gen. Milley 'must resign' if his secret calls with China occurred

  Retired Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman says Gen. Milley 'must resign' if his secret calls with China occurred Retired Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, the star witness in the first impeachment trial of President Trump, is calling for the resignation of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley if the reporting of his secret phone calls with China under the previous administration occurred. New reporting from the upcoming book "Peril" alleges that Milley reached out to his Chinese counterpart in the final months of the Trump presidency, vowing that he would warn the CCP if the commander in chief launched an attack.

“ General Milley continues to act and advise within his authority in the lawful tradition of civilian control of the military and his oath to the Constitution,” Butler added. Meanwhile, the White House said President Joe Biden considers Milley “a patriot who has fidelity in the US Constitution,” and has “complete confidence ” in his leadership, according to Reuters. According to ‘Peril,’ a book by Bob Woodward and Robert Costa due to be published next week and previewed by multiple corporate news outlets on Tuesday, Milley reached out to his Chinese counterpart, General Li Zuocheng of the

Milley ’s statement confirms the phone calls to China, but does not provide the substance. His comments on the nuclear launch command meeting confirms most of the book but does not deny any of the reporting. General Milley continues to act and advise within his authority in the lawful tradition of civilian control of the military and his oath to the Constitution.” Milley responds to reaction to statements attributed him in new book via spox.

Milley’s office released its own statement denying any wrongdoing by the general and stressing that he regularly contacts foreign counterparts.

“His calls with the Chinese and others in October and January were in keeping with these duties and responsibilities conveying reassurance in order to maintain strategic stability,” Dave Butler, a spokesperson for Milley, said.

“All calls from the Chairman to his counterparts, including those reported, are staffed, coordinated and communicated with the Department of Defense and the interagency.”

Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby also said that Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin has “full trust and confidence” in Milley.

Kirby refused to discuss the details of the purported revelations in the book, but he said it is “not atypical” for the top US general to communicate with foreign military leaders, including those of Russia and China.

Gregg Jarrett: Gen. Milley's alleged treachery and betrayal merit a court-martial

  Gregg Jarrett: Gen. Milley's alleged treachery and betrayal merit a court-martial Revelations about the conduct of Gen. Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, contained in a new book are beyond alarming.  If accurate, they constitute court-martial offenses. If proven at trial, they merit conviction and imprisonment. In a new book titled "Peril," Washington Post associate editor Bob Woodward and national political reporter Robert Costa describe in intimate detail conversations that Milley had with senior Pentagon officials, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and a top general in the Chinese military toward the end of Trump’s presidency.

The US treasury department released a report today that said the country’s childcare system fails to serve families because of market failures that make it too expensive for families and force providers to keep costs low, leaving workers barely able to make ends meet. The bill includes much of Biden ’s economic agenda, so his administration is heavily invested in ensuring the legislation makes it to the president’s desk. The blog will have more details on the meeting once they become available. Stay tuned.

President Joe Biden will meet separately with moderate Democratic U . S . senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema on Wednesday to discuss Democratic-backed domestic spending legislation, sources familiar with the meetings said.

“It is not only common, it is expected that the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff would continue to have counterpart conversations,” Kirby said.

But many Republicans are already coming after Milley, accusing him of violating the elected civilian leadership’s command over the military.

Senator Marco Rubio called on Biden to “immediately fire” Milley, who was appointed by Trump in 2018. He called Milley’s conduct a “dangerous precedent”.

“It threatens to tear apart our nation’s longstanding principle of civilian control of the military,” Rubio wrote in a letter to Biden.

Senator Rand Paul, a Trump ally, called for a prompt investigation against the general.

“Milley wasn’t elected to be president. I can’t even tell you how incredibly dangerous this is,” Paul told conservative show host Glenn Beck on Wednesday.

Donald Trump wearing a suit and tie smiling at the camera: Former President Donald Trump, who appointed Mark Milley, called the general’s reported conduct a ‘disgrace’ [File: Shannon Stapleton/Reuters] © Provided by Al Jazeera Former President Donald Trump, who appointed Mark Milley, called the general’s reported conduct a ‘disgrace’ [File: Shannon Stapleton/Reuters]

In an interview with Newsmax on Tuesday, Trump berated Milley and dismissed the notion that he considered ordering an attack against China.

“That is a treasonous statement and I cannot tell you how many people called up about it,” Trump said of Milley’s reported call to Li. “That is a disgrace.”

For its part, the White House confirmed that it will not take action against Milley based on the information revealed in the Post journalists’ book. Psaki said Biden thinks Milley is a “man of honour”.

“He knows General Milley, and he’s worked beside him for the last nearly eight months, and that’s what gives the president confidence in him,” Psaki said. “We’ll leave it to Congress and others to ask questions they want to ask.”

Milley, Army chief displayed 'pattern of behavior' defying authority: former senior military official .
A former assistant secretary of the Army under President Trump has accused top military officials, specifically Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley and Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army Gen. James McConville, of engaging in a "pattern of behavior" that overstepped their authority and undermined potential commands from Trump. In an interview with Fox News Digital, E. Casey Wardynski, a former assistant secretary of the Army for Manpower and Reserve Affairs under the Trump administration, accused high-ranking military officials Milley and McConville of making statements that insinuated they were calling the shots.

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This is interesting!