Path of Destruction

President Donald Trump walks with Attorney General William Barr, Secretary of Defense Mark T. Esper, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark A. Milley, and others from the White House to visit St. John's Church on... President Donald Trump walks with Attorney General William Barr, Secretary of Defense Mark T. Esper, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark A. Milley, and others from the White House to visit St. John's Church on June 1, 2020 in Washington, DC. MORE LESS
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June 11, 2020 12:34 p.m.

You should take a few moments today to read this report in the Times about the photo op stunt in Lafayette Park going on two weeks ago. It’s consistent with other recent reports about the background maneuvering between the Pentagon and the White House. But it adds significant new layers and nuance to the story.

The gist is that Pentagon leaders pushed harsh and aggressive tactics, damaging the Guard and the military generally, in an effort to head off a direct order from the President to unleash combat troops against US civilians. In other words, they pushed aggressive and violent tactics to show that regular army combat troops weren’t necessary. The National Guard could knock heads fine on their own.

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