‘Uniform Code of Military Whatever’: America’s enemies know Gen. Milley violated chain of command

by WorldTribune Staff, October 18, 2021

The U.S. military currently has “three times the number of four-star admirals and generals than we had during World War II — when the country was in an existential war for survival and when, by 1945, our active military personnel was almost nine times larger than the current armed forces,” a prominent Hoover Institution scholar said.

The Pentagon is in disarray, its won-lost record is not good, a top general openly rebelled against his Commander in Chief last year and nobody is more aware of all these shocking facts than America’s enemies, author and historian Victor Davis Hanson wrote for American Greatness on Oct. 17.

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, left, and Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley

“Since the Korean War, and with the exception of the first Gulf War, the military’s record has not been especially stellar, given a chronic inability to achieve a military victory in a cost-benefit sense acceptable to the American people: optional interventions in Lebanon, Somalia, and Libya, the defeat in and retreat from the Afghanistan war, and strategic stalemate and withdrawal from Iraq,” Hanson noted.

Despite political failures of will in Washington, the Pentagon bore responsibility as well. That appraisal, Hanson noted, “is not mine” nor that of conservatives. “It is now likely the consensus of our enemies from Afghanistan to Russia to Iran and other parts of the Middle East to North Korea.”

Hanson noted that, over the last four years, “the nation’s most decorated retired officers have consistently attacked their commander-in-chief in the most personal and venomous invectives that make General Douglas MacArthur’s ridicule of the unpopular Truman Administration look tame in comparison. The only precedent after the adoption of the UCMJ for such slurs is the checkered career of General Edwin Walker (he had earlier called President Truman ‘pink’). Under pressure, Walker was the only general to have resigned his commission, left the army, and reentered civilian life in the 20th century.”

The legacy of America’s top retired military brass, Hanson wrote, “is that now military officers feel they can appeal to their own sense of justice rather than fealty to the law to consider either removing an elected president or to so damage him by slurs and smears they render him ineffective.”

Front and center is Gen. Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) and the nation’s highest ranking military officer, whose actions late last year were known by communist China’s military leaders before the American public were made aware months later by media reports on the latest book by Bob Woodward, Peril.

The JCS, Hanson noted, “is an advisory body. Members are made up of four-star officers of their respective branches of the military. But by statute they are not responsible for carrying out orders from the president as relayed through the Secretary of Defense.”

Milley’s “actual operational control over the military is carefully delineated by law and quite limited by design,” Hanson added. Yet, Milley has “apparently violated both the spirit and letter of the law. He reportedly called together top officers of the military services and ordered them to reroute long-held protocols in reference to the nuclear defense of the United States in times of peril — and to channel such operational decision-making through himself.”

Milley’s “clear and dangerous usurpation of power is certainly contrary to the law — no matter what his fellow officer corps defenders plead,” Hanson wrote. “It is entirely irrelevant whether Milley acted in good faith, or was swayed by the emotions of the time, political and media pressures, or his own outsized ego. His job is to stay cool and offer calm advice strictly within the letter of the law. And he failed on that critical account.”

Hanson continued: “The civilian-military tradition of U.S. national security cannot survive a Joint Chiefs chairman who informs Washington journalists that he believes his commander-in-chief exhibits Hitlerian characteristics, appropriates power from the elected president, violates the chain of command, freelances in foreign policy with a foreign and hostile military, and communicates directly to take such action with the opposition leader speaker of the House—after circumventing an elected president. Whether he knows it or not, Milley’s resignation is not a matter of if, but only of when. If Milley were not to resign, then we essentially have no civilian control over the military, and his dereliction will be a green light to other would-be usurpers of rights denied the Joint Chiefs of Staff by law.”

Hanson continued: “Somehow a gradual drift in the agendas of our military leadership has resulted in too many various emphases on domestic cultural, social, and political issues. And naturally, as a result, there is less attention given to winning wars and leveraging such victories to our nation’s strategic advantage.”

Any one of the numerous crises the Pentagon is steeped in “would be dangerous to our national security,” Hanson noted. “Together they imperil our very freedoms and security.”

Hanson noted that “the once hallowed Uniform Code of Military Justice is now a mere construct. It is widely ignored to the point of parody — at least for officers above the rank of colonel who violate Article 88’s prohibition of using ‘contemptuous words against the President.’ Remember the statute was aimed at forestalling military officers condemning unpopular or controversial presidents, not beloved leaders — in the manner that the First Amendment protects heterodox, not orthodox, expression. That obvious fact was totally lost in the mob-like rush to vilify the president by an entire cadre of four-star retired generals and admirals in 2020-21.”

Big Media led the leftist mob in assailing Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz in May after he had the audacity to tweet: “Perhaps a woke, emasculated military is not the best idea.”

The Left doesn’t see an American fighting force of pansies as such a bad thing — and neither do the top military minds calling the shots in communist China or at the Kremlin.

INFORMATION WORLD WAR: How We Win . . . . Executive Intelligence Brief

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