Analysis by WorldTribune Staff, October 5, 2021
Gen. Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, routinely acted beyond his authority and undercut the orders of President Donald Trump, according to a former assistant secretary of the Army.
E. Casey Wardynski, a former assistant secretary of the Army for Manpower and Reserve Affairs under the Trump administration, said in an interview with Fox News Digital that there were “stunning” instances in which he saw, firsthand, high-ranking military officials, including Milley and Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army Gen. James McConville, exceed their authority.
The Washington, D.C. establishment and its media view such revelations as justified by their opinion that the duly-elected President Donald J Trump was unfit for office. Insubordination by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff against a Democrat Commander in Chief would be regarded as the ultimate crime.
Bob Woodward and Robert Costa revealed in their book “Peril” that Milley called Gen. Li Zuocheng of the People’s Liberation Army, twice — on Oct. 30 and again on Jan 8, to instruct the Chinese general that he would forewarn him about any attack Trump might plan against China.
“After the call, he then gave a full briefing to four people. Gina Haspel, the CIA director. Said to her, ‘Watch everything, 360.’ Talked to Paul Nakasone, who heads the National Security Agency, which does worldwide eavesdropping, and said ’needles up,’ which is an expression: Listen everywhere,” Woodward said during an interview on ABC’s “Good Morning America.”
Woodward said Milley also talked to the heads of the armed forces and told them to “watch everything.”
Wardynski, who was assistant secretary of the Army for Manpower and Reserve Affairs under the Trump administration, told Fox News: “These kind of behaviors and this willingness for military leaders to exceed their authorities and ignore authorities of the civilian officials appointed over them … positions under the Constitution and laws of the country was not something that came to them on Jan. 8. It was something that they had done for a while.”
Woodward and Costa dismissed claims that Milley bypassed Trump to talk to Li because, they claim, the conversations didn’t occur in a vacuum.
Related — Analysts: Why Gen. Milley should have already been fired, September 16, 2021
Wardynski cited moves made by Milley amid the riots in Washington, D.C. in the summer of 2020.
“Gen. Milley, as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff – first thing to know, is he is a staff officer, he is an adviser, he’s not a commander – he ordered elements of the 82nd Airborne and the 10th Mountain Division to fly overnight to D.C. to Fort Belvoir and Andrews without consulting the Army chain of command and reaching around the chain of command to do that. I know that for a fact.”
“My impression is, for some time, these people had no intention of supporting the president,” Wardynski noted. “Milley, in staff meetings, was routinely a bully. He would sit at the head of the table with the secretary, the secretary would say we’re going to do the following, and Milley would look at the gathered staff and tell them, ‘Let me tell you what the secretary just said’ and it was pretty much something different.”
Wardynski also detailed two occasions when McConville told him that he “would not be obeying any illegal orders” from Trump amid the BLM/Antifa riots, particularly in D.C.
“That’s not something in 30 years of service in that uniform I thought I’d ever hear,” Wardynski said. “My interpretation of that was he was talking about any use of the Insurrection Act by the president.”
Wardynski also said he expressed concern over potential “unrest around the election” and military leaders in the Army who may “refuse to obey an order from the president if he directs the Army to implement the Insurrection Act.”
Wardynski also stated that McConville, who served as Milley’s deputy during his time as chief of staff of the Army, seemingly “expected the cadets to demonstrate against the president” during the 2020 West Point graduation.
The Woodward-Costa book detailed a phone conversation Milley had with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi following the events on Jan. 6 at the U.S. Capitol. According to a transcript obtained by the authors, Milley vowed to Pelosi that “the nuclear triggers are secure” amid Trump’s exit from the White House.
According to the book, Milley “summoned senior officers to review the procedures for launching nuclear weapons, saying the president alone could give the order — but, crucially, that he, Milley, also had to be involved.”
Wardynski said Milley’s “business with the nuclear weapons and the nuclear command and control is part of a pattern of behavior.”
“I believe it reached, at least, across the top of the Army in military leadership,” Wardynski said, arguing that high-ranking officials, in his view, have only been “promoting themselves.”
Based on what he has experienced firsthand with Gens. Milley and McConville, Wardynski told Fox News that he believes both should resign.