Anyone watching the occupation of Washington, DC by a force of nearly 30,000 troops this past week must have noticed that this did not look like a peaceful transition of power. It looked more like an inauguration in a Latin American country, when the Generalissimo-for-Life announces that he won reelection with 100-percent of the vote once again. It was terrifying to watch.
DC had established Red Zones and Green Zones as if it were Baghdad under occupation by the US. Armed checkpoints in our nation’s Capital during peacetime? Really? Which begs the question: Who was in charge of the US military during the final days of Trump’s first term?
It obviously wasn’t the Commander in Chief. It couldn’t have been.
The National Guard is supposed to be under the control of the President of the United States. That went doubly so for the thousands of National Guard soldiers who were temporarily sworn in as US Marshals. (The Marshals Service is under the command of the Executive branch.) Who ordered all of those troops to descend on Washington, DC – from all 50 states and Puerto Rico?
Video surfaced of the commander of the Puerto Rican guardsmen as they were receiving their deployment orders. The commander told them they were being sent to Washington, DC to protect against “white supremacists” and the Proud Boys.
With those orders, we know for certain that the duly elected President of the United States was not in charge of the military during his final days in office. No one seems very interested in asking the question: Who mobilized almost 30,000 troops and sent them to Washington, DC?
We know it wasn’t Donald Trump. He knows his supporters weren’t going to stage a surprise coup, even though 97% of us know beyond any shadow of a doubt what really happened with the 2020 election (wink, wink).
Joe Biden couldn’t have sent the troops in. He didn’t have the authority to do that yet, and besides, the Democrats didn’t trust the troops to not assassinate their fraudulent “winner.”
Rep. Steven Cohen of Tennessee was vying to win the Dumbest Member of Congress trophy this past week by vilifying the white National Guard troops as untrustworthy and treasonous. (Don’t worry, Hank Johnson! The trophy is still yours!) Rep. Cohen went on MSNBC to declare that he was worried that an armed white soldier would “do something” at the inauguration.
The FBI sprang into action as if a garage door rope pull had been spotted in Bubba Wallace’s garage again. They immediately started vetting tens of thousands of the white National Guard soldiers to root out anyone with a Confederate flag on their Facebook page, or whose last name starts with the letter ‘Q’. More than a dozen Guard members were identified as possible white nationalists, relieved of duty and sent back home. It’s always amazing to see how fast the FBI can move when it has the chance to sniff out a white nationalist!
Democrats pitched a fit last summer when Sen. Tom Cotton suggested sending in troops to quell the Black Lives Matter riots. Remember that? People lost their jobs at the New York Times when Cotton’s op-ed ran with that suggestion.
But today we have more armed soldiers patrolling Washington, DC than we have in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria combined. (I would have included Somalia in that list, but the good news is that the real president finally brought all our troops home from that country. Good grief, Bill Clinton’s “Black Hawk Down” debacle happened in 1993 and we’ve had troops there ever since!)
Canada’s entire active-duty Army consists of 23,000 soldiers. And we needed more troops than that in DC, just for Joe Biden’s swearing-in ceremony?
It sure doesn’t seem like the victors are confident that they won the election if they need that kind of show-of-force for the inauguration. But it also doesn’t look like we still have a civilian Commander in Chief who is in charge of the military. If Trump didn’t send those troops in, and Biden certainly didn’t send them… then who did? Sure would be nice to know who is actually in charge of the US military, wouldn’t it?