The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Mark Milley, is distancing himself from the Commander-in-Chief and has issued an apology for the role he played in President Donald Trump’s Bible photo-op last week. Protestors, who were not violent, were tear-gassed in an effort to clear the area so the president could walk to St. John’s Church, where Trump stood for a few seconds holding up a Bible before leaving.
“I should not have been there,” General Milley said in a pre-recorded video (below) address to the National Defense University class of 2020 graduates. “It was a mistake.”
Milley’s break from Trump follows several other top military and civilian officials distancing them from the President.
Secretary of Defense Mark Esper in a press conference last week stated he disagreed with the President’s desire to flood the nation’s cities with armed, active-duty military troops to police protests.
News reports say Gen. Milley fought with Trump over sending active-duty troops to the nation’s streets. In his address Thursday he noted that ultimately, that did not happen (although it did in Washington, D.C.).
“We in the military will continue to protect the rights and freedoms of all the American people,” he said, stressing the word “all.”
Speaking of his role in the President’s photo-op, Milley admitted his “presence in that environment, and in that environment, created a perception of the military involved in domestic politics.”
General Mark Milley apologizes for taking part in Trump’s Bible photo op outside the White House: “I should not have been there…It was a mistake.” pic.twitter.com/h8PIunEOCP
— Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) June 11, 2020
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