Connect with us

Foreign

Roundup: Former United States defense secretary says Trump deliberately sows division among Americans

Published

on

Former United States Defense Secretary Jim Mattis broke silence on Wednesday amid the ongoing turbulent unrest across the United States, saying that President Donald Trump “tries to divide” the American people.

Donald Trump is the first president in my lifetime who does not try to unite the American people — does not even pretend to try. Instead, he tries to divide us,” said the revered Marine general, who resigned as the Pentagon chief in December 2018 in protest against Trump’s Syria policy.

“We are witnessing the consequences of three years of this deliberate effort. We are witnessing the consequences of three years without mature leadership,” Mattis continued in an article carried by the Atlantic magazine.

“We can unite without him, drawing on the strengths inherent in our civil society. This will not be easy, as the past few days have shown, but we owe it to our fellow citizens; to past generations that bled to defend our promise; and to our children,” he said.

Mattis’s excoriation came as Trump threatened to send in active-duty military forces to quell the ongoing protests against police brutality and racial discrimination that have spread to over 300 U.S. cities and towns following the killing of George Floyd, an unarmed black man in Minneapolis, by white police.

“We should use our military only when requested to do so, on very rare occasions, by state governors. Militarizing our response, as we witnessed in Washington, D.C., sets up a conflict — a false conflict — between the military and civilian society,” Mattis said.

Noting that the protesters were “rightly demanding” equal justice under law, Mattis said he has “watched this week’s unfolding events, angry and appalled.”

“It is a wholesome and unifying demand — one that all of us should be able to get behind. We must not be distracted by a small number of lawbreakers,” he continued. “The protests are defined by tens of thousands of people of conscience who are insisting that we live up to our values — our values as people and our values as a nation.”

“We must reject and hold accountable those in office who would make a mockery of our Constitution,” said the former defense secretary.

Mattis also bluntly berated Trump’s posing for a photo op in front of a fire-damaged church near the White House. The president, flanked by senior administration officials including Defense Secretary Mark Esper and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley, visited on Monday the St. John’s Church minutes after police used non-lethal weapons to disperse peaceful protesters nearby.

When I joined the military, some 50 years ago, I swore an oath to support and defend the Constitution,” Mattis wrote. “Never did I dream that troops taking that same oath would be ordered under any circumstance to violate the Constitutional rights of their fellow citizens — much less to provide a bizarre photo op for the elected commander-in-chief, with military leadership standing alongside.”

Apparently outraged by Mattis’s remarks, Trump took to Twitter to fight back, saying he “had the honor of firing Jim Mattis, the world‘s most overrated General.”

“His primary strength was not military, but rather personal public relations,” Trump said. “I didn’t like his ‘leadership’ style or much else about him, and many others agree. Glad he is gone!”

On May 25, 46-year-old Floyd died after a white police officer knelt on his neck for almost nine minutes until he stopped breathing.

In a video posted online, the victim is heard saying “I can’t breathe,” while three other police officers stand close by.

Referring to the death of Floyd and the ensuing nationwide unrest, former President Barack Obama — himself an African American — said Wednesday that “as tragic as these past few weeks have been, as difficult and scary and uncertain as they’ve been, they’ve also been an incredible opportunity for people to be awakened to some of these underlying trends.”

(XINHUA)

Nnn: :is a Nigerian online news portal that publishes breaking news in Nigeria, and across the world. Our journalists are honest, fair, accurate, thorough and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting news in the best interest of the public, because truth is the cornerstone of journalism and they strive diligently to ascertain the truth in every news report. Contact: editor[at]nnn.com.ng

Contact US: editor @nnn.com.ng, nnnnews247 @gmail.com

Bureau tasks MDAs on financial discipline, accountability in Nasarawa Accident claims 2 lives on Lagos-Ibadan expressway  Commission donates relief materials to IDPs, vulnerable persons in Plateau NGO distributes food items, stoves to vulnerable households in Kaduna Adamawa Sexual Referral Centre urges parents to report cases of GBV Steer clear of Ogun LG elections, Students warn corrupt politicians Supreme Court strikes out suit against Virtual hearing Third Mainland Bridge closure: LASWA partners LASEMA, LSSC to ensure safe waterways NCWS celebrates Shoda at 70 Bayelsa govt. inaugurates committee on LG minimum wage Bauchi govt. upgrades child birth units, renovates health centres Police arrest another couple for causing grievous harm to daughter in Enugu Major shake-up in Nigerian Army as 37 Generals redeployed Ondo 2020: PDP constitutes LG Congress Committee for primaries   Nigeria inaugurates 2nd Voluntary Review Report on SDGs Oyo State records highest daily figure of Coronavirus infections Lagos Govt urges striking doctors to return to work Osun records 17 new Coronavirus cases CBN moves to ban importation of maize Nigeria records 595 new cases of Coronavirus, total jumps to 33,153 Coronavirus: Osun govt. eases lockdown in 4 LGAs Merkel criticizes Chinese involvement in Hong Kong – but wants to keep talking Soaring Florida coronavirus cases cast shadow over tourism, Disney Private sector investment, key to reducing govt’s financial burden – Adebayo Coronavirus: ThisDay Dome Treatment Centre now testing centre Coronavirus: Edo expresses happiness over remarkable success in patients’ management Indoor airborne spread of Coronavirus possible – NCDC warns UNGA president blames rising hunger on flawed food systems Lagos NAWOJ organises free virtual skill acquisition trainings for female journalists Coronavirus: PTF conducts mid-term review of national response strategy Buhari approves new boards for NLNG, BGT Nigeria, Saudi Arabia restate commitment to OPEC+ Kano Emirate plans legal action against indiscriminate horse riders DPR warns public against fake recruitment notices Coronavirus: PTF discourages physical meetings, prefers virtual meetings Responsible journalism is key to success of democracy-Pantami UN expert accuses White House of ‘onslaught’ against media Domestic passengers to arrive 90 minutes before takeoff – Minister Coronavirus: Oyo State Govt donates ventilator, oxygen concentrator to UCH Yobe Govt. acquires 103 tractors, 7,500 metric tonnes of fertiliser 16 ships arrive Lagos ports with food items, other goods More people going hungry – UN Gov. Bello mourns former Niger health commissioner Lagos Speaker, other lawmakers pay condolence visit to late Tunde Braimoh’s family I-G says video in circulation of maltreatment of man not Nigerian France arrests globally wanted darknet child porn suspect Coronavirus response: NCD Alliance launches new civil society solidarity fund Police hunt Black Forest for homeless man who threatened officers Lawmaker urges Chinese company to address water channelisation problem in Nasarawa Pandemic caused postponement of 50,000 cancer operations in Germany