Military leaders are reportedly conducting high-level talks about what to do should President Trump invoke martial law during his remaining days in office.
President-elect Joe Biden is set to be sworn into office on January 20, but Trump is still challenging the results of the election and some say he could use the military in a last-minute bid to overthrow the results.
On Thursday, six retired military members spoke with Newsweek, confirming that the discussions are currently being conducted behind closed doors.
The officials claim that ‘while there is zero chance that uniformed leadership would involve itself in any scheme to create an election-related reversal, they worry that the military could get sucked into a crisis of Trump’s making, particularly if he tries to rally private militias and pro-Trump paramilitaries in an effort to disrupt the transition and bring violence to the capital.’
‘I’ve been associated with the military for over 40 years and I’ve never seen the discussions that are being had right now, the need for such discussions,’ one retired flag officer told Newsweek.
Military leaders are reportedly conducting high-level talks about what to do should President Trump invoke martial law during his remaining days in office
The military figures are reportedly concerned ‘Trump may try to ‘rally private militias and pro-Trump paramilitaries in an effort to disrupt the transition and bring violence to the capital’. Pictured: Members of the far-right Proud Boys attending a Stop The Steal protest in DC earlier this month
A retired judge advocate general told the publication that ‘because of the coronavirus, the president actually has unprecedented emergency powers’
Back in March, Trump declared a COVID-19 national emergency – a state specified in three distinct laws: the Public Health Service Act, the Stafford Act, and the National Emergencies Act.
While there is nothing in any of those three acts that could lead Trump to invoke martial law to serve his own ends, the retired judge says they may ‘might lead him to think that he is ‘above the law’.
Another official concurred with that sentiment during an interview with Newsweek.
‘The president is not a lawyer and he doesn’t pay attention to details, but he is also fascinated with the secret levers of the presidency that are available to him,’ a former national security council staffer stated.
Trump is pictured earlier this month at the United States Military Academy. All of Newsweek’s sources assert that Trump would not have the backing of top military generals should he decide to make a drastic move to upend the election results
However, all the sources all assert that Trump would not have the backing of top military generals should he decide to make a drastic move to upend the election results.
The sources also insists that there would not be a significant number of lower-ranking rogue soldiers who would support the President.
‘At this point there’s no telling what the president might do in the next month,’ a former Northern Command (NORTHCOM) commander told Newsweek.
‘Though I’m confident that the uniformed military leadership has their heads screwed on right, the craziness is unprecedented and the possibilities are endless.’
Members of The Pentagon (pictured) have reportedly been involved in the high-level talks, according to Newsweek
The Newsweek exclusive comes after a slew of publications reported last week that the President conducted a White House meeting to discuss new ways to resist or overturn Biden’s victory — with the idea of deploying the military to assist in his fight raised, before being shot down.
Present at the fractious Oval Office meeting – conducted last Friday – was retired General Michael Flynn, who was briefly the national security advisor before resigning under pressure, admitting to lying to the FBI, and then, in November, being pardoned by Trump.
Flynn recently told a Newsmax television interviewer that Trump could ‘take military capabilities and place them in those (battleground) states and basically rerun our election.’
Trump denied reports about the Friday meeting in a tweet shortly after midnight Saturday, saying, ‘Martial law = Fake News. Just more knowingly bad reporting!’
Despite Trump’s denials, several prominent public figures blasted the alleged discussions.
John Bolton, a former Trump national security advisor who has been a frequent critic since leaving the administration in September, called the meeting’s reported contents ‘appalling.’
‘There’s no other way to describe it,’ he told CNN late Saturday. ‘It’s unbelievable — almost certainly completely without precedent.’
‘He is unfit for the job.’
Several senior military officers have made clear they would take no part in any effort to overturn the results of an election that has been certified by every state and confirmed by the Electoral College.
‘There is no role for the U.S. military in determining the outcome of an American election,’ Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy and Army Chief of Staff James McConville said in a statement.
An armed ‘Boogaloo Boy’ attends the ‘Stop The Steal Caravan’ rally in front of the Virginia State Capitol last month
An armed supporter is seen during a demonstration in Washington state earlier this month