On Tuesday, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, along with others of the nation’s highest military leaders, condemned last week’s Capitol violence, calling the attempted coup “sedition and insurrection,” and reminded their troops of their oath to protect and defend the constitution “against all enemies, foreign and domestic.”
In a memo to all active duty and reserve troops, the top military officials left no doubt that they considered last Wednesday’s attack on the Capitol by an armed, pro-Trump mob to be a criminal act that runs counter to values and their oaths of the U.S. Military.
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Army General Mark Milley, signed the memo along with seven other senior officials.
In the statement, the chiefs wrote:
“We witnessed actions inside the Capitol building that were inconsistent with the rule of law. The rights of freedom of speech and assembly do not give anyone the right to resort to violence, sedition and insurrection. As Service Members, we must embody the values and ideals of the Nation. We support and defend the Constitution. Any act to disrupt the Constitutional process is not only against our traditions, values, and oath; it is against the law.”
Pentagon officials are investigating how many troops may have taken part in the riot. The Army has found that an Army Special Forces captain was involved in the events and is being investigated for her role in the violent uprising.
The attack left two Capitol Police Officers and three other people dead as Congress met in joint session to certify Joe Biden’s election win over Trump.
The statement continued:
“The violent riot in Washington, D.C. on January 6, 2021 was a direct assault on the U.S. Congress, the Capitol building, and our Constitutional process. We mourn the deaths of two Capitol policemen and others connected to these unprecedented events.”
The chiefs closed the statement by affirming that Joe Biden will be inaugurated on January 20 and admonished service members to remain focused on their mission.
This is hardly the first time that military members have spoken out in recent weeks. Retired Four star Army General Barry McCaffrey sent a dire warning about reports that acting Secretary of Defense Chris Miller has banned Pentagon officials from holding meetings with Biden transition team officials. The move has left career military staff “stunned.”
“Pentagon abruptly halts Biden transition—- MAKES NO SENSE. CLAIM THEY ARE OVERWHELMED. DOD GOES OPAQUE. TRUMP-MILLER UP TO NO GOOD. DANGER. —-” tweeted McCaffrey.
McCaffrey expressed serious concern over President Trump’s ousting of senior Pentagon officials – including the Secretary of Defense – and replacing them with top Trump loyalists.
McCaffrey was “alarmed” with the shakeup.
McCaffrey later retweeted a Tweet about Army officials, implying that Trump has brought America to the point where the Secretary of the Army and the Army Chief of Staff had to say that the military has no role in determining the outcome of the election.
The implication being that if they said it, Trump has at least considered trying to use the military in his attempts to overturn the election.
After acting Secretary of Defense Chris Miller made the move barring cooperation with the Biden team, one senior Pentagon official said Defense Dept. staff have been “overwhelmed by the number of meetings…and were being consumed by transition activities.”