A US general, suspicious of Trump’s sanity, secretly called China: Book.
According to a new book, the top US general was so concerned that Donald Trump was out of control in early January that he took secret steps to prevent the outgoing president from starting a war with China.
According to presidential chronicler Bob Woodward and co-author Robert Costa’s soon-to-be-released book, Joint Chiefs Chair General Mark Milley urged aides not to act quickly on any decision by Trump to use US nuclear forces, and he called a Chinese general to reassure Beijing.
The Washington Post, which employs Woodward and Costa, and other news outlets published excerpts from Milley’s book “Peril” on Tuesday, depicting Milley as organizing the Pentagon and intelligence community to oppose any move by Trump to escalate tensions with China or Iran after he loses the November 2020 presidential election.
Milley spoke with his Chinese counterpart General Li Zuocheng twice, once shortly before Trump’s election loss and again two days after Trump supporters invaded the US Capitol, to convince him that the Republican president’s anti-China rhetoric could not be translated into military action.
According to Woodward and Costa, Milley assured Li in the October call, “I want to assure you that the American government is stable and everything is going to be okay.”
Milley stated, “We are not going to attack you or conduct any kinetic activities against you.”
Milley utilized the secret back-channel with Li again after the US Capitol riot two months later, amid fears that Trump was unstable in both Beijing and Washington.
“We are completely stable. Everything is in order. According to the book, Milley warned Li, “Democracy may be clumsy at times.”
Milley went so far as to have the Pentagon’s Indo-Pacific Command postpone military drills that Beijing would have considered as a potential threat to reassure the Chinese.
Milley also reminded his top staff that if Trump wanted to use his ability to launch a nuclear strike, they had to notify him first.
Milley also emphasized the need for vigilance with other top officials, including CIA Director Gina Haspel and National Security Agency Director Paul Nakasone, amid concerns that Trump would act erratically.
They were in a “very perilous scenario,” according to Haspel.
The writers said, “Some could argue that Milley had overstepped his authority and taken enormous power for himself.”
They claimed he believed he was behaving right in order to avoid a “historic rupture in the international order,” an inadvertent war with China or others, and the use of nuclear weapons.
Brief News from Washington Newsday.