Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley had planned to resign after he became concerned about Trump’s reported plan to carry out a military coup after last year’s Presidential election, calling it a “Reichstag moment.”
A forthcoming book by two Washington Post reporters titled I Alone Can Fix It, according to Breitbart on Monday, is expected to center around Trump‘s final year as President and issues within his inner circle. Excerpts reported from the book reported on by Breitbart suggest that Gen. Milley had become so concerned with the possibility of a coup, that he had planned to resign along with other service chiefs rather than carry it out.
“This is a Reichstag moment… The gospel of the Führer,” Milley told aides according to CNN, adding that they “could try” to do whatever it was they were planning, but that “they’re not going to f[—]ing succeed.” Milley also told aides that Trump couldn’t carry out his alleged coup “without the CIA and the FBI” because they, along with the military, were “the guys with the guns.”
Milley reportedly became concerned following the 2020 election, according to CNN, after Defense Secretary Mark Esper was fired and Attorney General William Barr resigned. He reportedly told friends and colleagues, as well as unnamed lawmakers to be “on guard” for what may happen. He also suggested that Trump was trying to stoke “unrest, possibly in the hopes of an excuse to invoke the insurrection act” leading up to the events on January 6.
Milley also reportedly told aides that the “Million MAGA March” in November of 2020 regarding questionable election results, he had suggested the protest could become “the modern American equivalent of ‘brownshirts in the streets,'” referring to Mussolini’s secret force in Italy during his reign in the 1930s and 40s.
Trump recently criticized Milley for his accusations regarding the planned coup, stating that he “never threatened, or spoke about, to anyone, a coup of our Government,” before calling the accusations “So ridiculous!”
“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,” Trump wrote in his statement before accusing the General of being “politically correct” regarding military bases, rather than focusing on adversaries.
General Milley wouldn’t publicly address the contents of the book or whether the information was true, according to Breitbart and CNN, however a defense official that is reportedly close to Milley said that the General did engage “in activities and communications that are not part of the traditional portfolio of a chairman” during the last months of the Trump presidency.
“[Milley’s] not going to sit in silence while people try to use the military against Americans,” the official said to CNN, adding that the General “tried his hardest to actively stay out of politics,” but if the events had brought him into the political arena temporarily, then “so be it.”
In January, then-Defense Secretary nominee Lloyd Austin said that the military would be rid of “racists and extremists” under his watch to protect the integrity of the military. General Mark Milley has also faced repeated criticism from right-wing pundits and organizations for his comments that have been seen as “politically correct” to appease certain groups.