Former US Secretary of Defense Mark Esper reaches out to former President Donald Trump in a sensational CNN interview.
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In the CNN program “Anderson Cooper 360 °”, Esper says that he fears for the future of the Republican Party as a result of Trump’s way of governing the country.
– He is a person without principles who given his self-interest should not have been in public service, thunders Esper in The CNN interview.
He calls for integrity and principles in Trump, as well as the ability and willingness to work for a national agenda rather than his own.
The former Secretary of Defense – who hails from the acclaimed West Point Military Academy and describes himself as a “Ronald Reagan Republican” – is currently in the news with “A Sacred Oath: Memoirs of a Secretary of Defense During the Extraordinary Times.”
The 58-year-old, who was fired by Trumphighlights in the interview, among other things, a meeting where the then president allegedly proposed shooting Black Lives Matter protesters in the legs.
– I was obviously absolutely stunned. He said, “Can’t you just shoot them, shoot them in the legs or something?” I was shocked by that: So here sits the country’s president and proposes to shoot the inhabitants in the legs in the capital, Esper claims.
In a statement to the CBS program “60 Minutes”, Trump calls the allegations a “lie”, and claims that there are “ten witnesses who can confirm it” – see the answer further down in the case.
– Was put out completely
Furthermore, Esper condemns Trump’s desire to place 10,000 soldiers outside the White House to crack down on the protests in January 2021. Together with others in the government apparatus, Esper is said to have spoken to the president about the harsh methods.
– People who protested peacefully were not allowed to do so. The answer is not a heavy hand or to face the protesters with violence. I think we were all completely put out, says Esper about Trump’s proposal.
Esper’s critics point out that he has the benefit of criticizing Trump now. He himself states that even when he worked with Trump, he countered, which eventually led to him losing his job.
In the interview, host Anderson Cooper points out that Trump has previously criticized Esper and called him “weak and ineffective.” Trump is also said to have claimed that he personally had to “run the military” under Esper’s leadership, which Esper dismisses in cash when confronted with the allegation.
He goes on to report how he registered “a big change” in Trump during the 18 months he served as Secretary of Defense.
– I saw how more and more loyal to him came into the administration, people who took the beyond ideas to a new level.
The “ideas” he is referring to include Trump’s proposal that US troops could “surround oil fields in Iraq, steal oil and then withdraw.”
At the same time, Esper emphasizes that good results were also achieved under Trump, seen through Republican eyes.
– Are you a Republican, do you like lower taxes, do you like deregulation, do you like border control, conservative Supreme Court justices. There were results, but much of it was undermined by the rough language of the president and the division he created, Esper believes.
– What we need are leaders who bring us together. Especially in a time like now where the big problem is the division between the parties.
In connection with the review of the book by the former Minister of Defense, the CBS program “60 Minutes” has received statements from Trump, where he strikes back strongly at his former minister. Regarding the allegation that he proposed to shoot Black Lives Matter protesters in the legs, he writes:
– This is a lie, and there are ten witnesses who can confirm it. Mark Esper was weak and totally inefficient, and because of this I had to run the military.
He defends the desire to place 10,000 soldiers outside the White House in January last year because he “knew many would come to Washington to protest the corrupt presidential election.”
– Nancy Pelosi and the mayor of DC rejected this. 60 Minutes should ask them why they did not want proper security, which would have changed that day completely, Trump claims.