In remarks reported in a forthcoming book, Army General Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, compared President Donald Trump to the Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler and his supporters to Nazi brownshirts. Milley said he feared a military coup from Trump, who had decided to contest the results of the 2020 election. Trump responded to the accusation in a blistering statement on Thursday.
“Despite massive Voter Fraud and Irregularities during the 2020 Presidential Election Scam, that we are now seeing play out in very big and important States, I never threatened, or spoke about, to anyone, a coup of our Government. So ridiculous!” the former president wrote.
Trump insisted that the only way he would want to gain or hold on to power would be through an election. He also went on the offensive against Milley.
“Sorry to inform you, but an Election is my form of ‘coup,’ and if I was going to do a coup, one of the last people I would want to do it with is General Mark Milley. He got his job only because the world’s most overrated general, James Mattis, could not stand him, had no respect for him, and would not recommend him,” Trump argued. “To me the fact that Mattis didn’t like him, just like Obama didn’t like him and actually fired Milley, was a good thing, not a bad thing. I often act counter to people’s advice who I don’t respect.”
Trump said he lost respect for Milley after the general joined him in the infamous walk to St. John’s Church across from the White House. Amid the protests and riots after the death of George Floyd, arsonists had set St. John’s Church on fire, and Trump had gone to the church to show solidarity. The legacy media attacked him for supposedly having nearby Lafayette Square cleared solely for this photo op, but Trump did not order the square cleared for this purpose.
Trump said he “lost respect for Milley when we walked together to St. John’s Church (which was still smoldering from a Radical Left fire set the day before), side by side, a walk that has now been proven to be totally appropriate—and the following day Milley choked like a dog in front of the Fake News when they told him they thought he should not have been walking with the President, which turned out to be incorrect.”
“He apologized profusely, making it a big story, instead of saying, ‘I am proud to walk with and protect the President of the United States.’ Had he said that, it would have all been over, no big deal, but I saw at that moment he had no courage or skill, certainly not the type of person I would be talking ‘coup’ with,” Trump said.
He then repeated, “I’m not into coups!”
The former president also recalled Milley’s support for “changing all of the names of our Military Forts and Bases,” a reference to the push to strike the names of Confederates from military bases.
“I realized then, also, he was a much different person than I had hoped. I said to him, ‘spend more time thinking about China and Russia, and less time on being politically correct,'” Trump recalled.
While the former president faulted some of Milley’s words and actions during the Trump presidency, he insisted that the Joint Chiefs chairman did not go “woke” until Joe Biden became president.
“But never during my Administration did Milley display what he is showing now. He was not ‘woke,'” Trump recalled. “Actually, I don’t believe he ever was, but the way I look at Milley, he’s just a better politician than a general, trying to curry favor with the Radical Left and the absolute crazy people espousing a philosophy which will destroy our Country!”
Trump had responded to Milley’s suggestion that the then-president had planned a military coup in the last days of his administration after the 2020 election.
“Milley told his staff that he believed Trump was stoking unrest, possibly in hopes of an excuse to invoke the Insurrection Act and call out the military,” Washington Post reporters Carol Leonnig and Philip Rucker wrote in their forthcoming book I Alone Can Fix It, CNN reported.
Milley reportedly viewed Trump as “the classic authoritarian leader with nothing to lose.” He drew parallels between Hitler’s rhetoric and Trump’s worries about the 2020 election.
“This is a Reichstag moment,” Milley told aides, referring to the 1933 episode when the German parliament caught fire. Historians disagree on the ultimate cause of the fire (many claim the Nazis themselves set it), but Hitler blamed the communists and used the fire as an excuse to suspend the civil liberties of Germans.
Milley said Trump was following “the gospel of the Führer.”
In the lead-up to a pro-Trump “Million MAGA March” protest in November, Milley compared the protesters to the Nazi “brownshirts,” the militia that fueled Hitler’s rise to power. The Joint Chiefs chairman told staff that he feared the protest “could be the modern American equivalent of ‘brownshirts in the streets.’”
As Trump alluded in his statement, Milley recently defended Marxist critical race theory, use CRT talking points to trash the Constitution’s Three-Fifths Compromise.
While Trump arguably should not have claimed that he won the 2020 election in a landslide, he did rightly raise concerns about the election irregularities that plagued the 2020 election. Election officials loosened election integrity protections during the 2020 election, in the name of allowing voting amid a pandemic. In a shameless sleight-of-hand, Democrats have now condemned efforts to return to the status quo as “Jim Crow on steroids.”
Trump also had good reasons to be suspicious. Not only did Big Tech and the legacy media team up to bury news that reflected poorly on Joe Biden, but Time magazine published an astonishing story about a “cabal” and a “shadow campaign” that pulled the levers behind the scenes in the 2020 election. While the article claims these efforts were aimed at preserving a free and fair election, organizations like the Center for Tech and Civic Life funneled money into blue areas of the country, boosting turnout that helped Biden prevail.
While Trump may have gone too far in claiming that he won the election, he did not encourage a violent insurrection, much less a coup. Even on January 6, Trump told his supporters to remain peaceful for the protest at the Capitol. The president ultimately condemned the Capitol riot and he did leave the White House peacefully, allowing for the transition of power.
The president’s response to Milley’s accusation should put to rest the notion that Trump ever plotted a military coup. Unfortunately, some on the Left appear to have seized on the fact that Trump said he would not work with Milley if he had planned a coup. Clearly, the former president used the hypothetical to attack Milley, not to suggest that he would launch a coup.
The Joint Chiefs chairman’s remarks about Trump supporters are chilling. President Joe Biden has launched an effort to root “extremism” out of the military, based partially on the fact that some veterans took part in the Capitol riot. While the Department of Defense has not issued a definition of “extremism,” military whistleblowers have raised concerns about CRT materials in trainings and a provisional Army definition gives conservatives reasons to fear ideological targeting.
Recommended: An Ominous Portent for Conservatives in the Military
Trump was right to shoot down Milley’s accusation, but the Joint Chiefs chairman’s remarks suggest something ominous for conservatives in the military.