Former President Donald Trump renewed his attacks on retired U.S. Army General Mark Milley after the exiting chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff seemingly suggested that Trump is a “wannabe dictator.”
Milley, who is stepping down from his Trump-appointed role as the nation’s highest-ranking military officer on October 1, made the apparent reference to the former president as an aspiring tyrant while delivering his retirement speech at Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Virginia on Friday.
“We don’t take an oath to a king or a queen or to a tyrant or a dictator. And we don’t take an oath to a wannabe dictator,” Milley said, according to the Associated Press. “We don’t take an oath to an individual. We take an oath to the Constitution, and we take an oath to the idea that is America, and we’re willing to die to protect it.”
Trump offered an indirect response to Milley’s speech in a post to Truth Social a short time later, once again referring to reports claiming that Milley called his Chinese counterpart and promised to warn China of any potential impending attack in 2020.
Last week, Trump suggested that the purported communication meant that Milley would have been executed for “treason” in “times gone by.”
In addition to Milley, the former president also took shots at former Secretary of Defense Mark Esper, calling him a “woke fool.” Esper is another in a long list of former Trump appointees who have since been denounced by the former president.
“Slow moving and thinking Mark Milley should never have made those calls to China’s Military Leadership,” Trump wrote. “Does this moron, together with WOKE FOOL Mark Yesper (Esper!), who said “yes” to everything, have any idea how dangerous a situation he put our Country in? Look at his words – STUPID & VERY DANGEROUS!”
Newsweek reached out for additional comment to Trump’s office via email on Friday night.
Trump said in a Truth Social post one week earlier that Milley’s exit from military service would “be a time for all citizens of the USA to celebrate,” before slamming the general as a “woke train wreck” who committed “an act so egregious” that it warranted death.
“This guy turned out to be a Woke train wreck who, if the Fake News reporting is correct, was actually dealing with China to give them a heads up on the thinking of the President of the United States,” Trump wrote. “This is an act so egregious that, in times gone by, the punishment would have been DEATH!”
The general said that Trump’s comment was “also directed at the institution of the military” before announcing that he had taken “safety precautions” to protect himself and his family.
“I’ve got adequate safety precautions,” Milley said. “I wish those comments had not been made, but they were. And we’ll take appropriate measures to ensure my safety and the safety of my family.”