Who Is Mark Esper?
Mark Thomas Esper (born April 26, 1964) is a former US Secretary of Defense who governed from 2019 to 2020. He was the 23rd Secretary of the Army of the United States from November 2017 until July 2019. He is a Republican.
Esper, a West Point student, served the US Army and deployed as an infantry soldier with the 101st Airborne Division during the Gulf War. Esper later served in the Military National Guard and the 82nd Airborne Division. He worked as a legislative staffer, a deputy assistant secretary of defense, and a senior executive for the Aerospace Industries Association, the Global Intellectual Property Center, and the United States Chamber of Commerce after leaving the military. Prior to entering the Trump administration, Esper served as the vice president of government relations for defense contractor Raytheon.
He became the 23rd Secretary of the Army in the Trump regime in 2017. Esper was appointed interim defense secretary in 2019, and the United States Senate affirmed him as the 27th defense secretary with a vote of 90–8. On November 9, 2020, President Donald Trump dismissed him via tweet.
What Is The Issue About?
The former officer on June 1, 2020, a week after George Floyd’s death, then-President Donald Trump ordered Defense Secretary Mark Esper to send 10,000 active-duty soldiers to the streets of the country’s capital and instruct them to begin shooting demonstrators. In his memoir, Mark Esper mentioned that Trump asked him to shoot George Floyd Protesters.
Mark Esper, who hesitated nearly two years to admit that an American president had asked him to unleash a Tiananmen Square-style crackdown on dissent, understands Trump’s proposal is both unlawful and immoral. That’s evident since his story of this “bizarre” plea comes not only in the preface but also on the back cover of his memoir, “A Sacred Oath,” which will be released next week.
Rather than resigning and informing the American people that their president was a threat to the nation, Esper did the following that day: After federal agents used chemical agents and violence to aggressively clear peaceful demonstrators from Lafayette Square, he tried to appease Trump and then accompanied him in posing for pictures outside St. John’s Church, opposite Lafayette Square from the White House.
When Esper was called before the House Armed Services Committee a couple of months later to clarify how the soldiers had been used to silence opposition that day — and that night, when Black Hawk and Lakota helicopters sneaked low over protesters in Washington, D.C., using the rotor wash to terrorize them — the defense secretary made no reference of Trump’s suggestion to use highly dangerous force.
Rep. Adam Smith, the Democratic chair of the House Armed Services Committee, questioned Esper and Gen. Mark Milley, the chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, to define “exactly what sort discussions went on between the Department of Defense and the president and others in the White House” regarding Trump’s threat to the community to use active-duty soldiers to clean up the streets during that trial.
Rather than replying to that issue, Esper provided vague guarantees that the army, which included 43,000 Army and Air National Guard dedicated to protecting 33 states and the District of Columbia going to follow Floyd’s death, was dedicated to “remaining apolitical” and guaranteeing that “our fellow Americans have the ability to peacefully exercise their First Amendment rights.”
Mark Esper told the New York Times last week that he had decided that Trump “is an unprincipled person who, given his self-interest, should not be in a position of public service,” as he stated last year.
Considering that Esper’s direct knowledge of Trump guided him to this conclusion, it’s worth considering why he didn’t disclose that the president he provided chose to turn the army against the individuals when it could have made a significant difference — or before the 2020 election, because it could have affected Trump’s possibility of success, or just after that, when Trump fired him and put loyalists in the custody of the Pentagon before pressuring his own supporters to interrupt the certification of harmed people.
And now, it must be stated, there seems to be anything more alarming at work than the notion that Esper, like former Trump aides John Bolton and Stephanie Grisham before him, would expect to sell more copies of his memoir by awaiting to expose the most negative information about Trump’s.
I’m referring to a worrisome reverence for presidential power that appears to be deeply established in Washington. Something else Smith said to Esper and Milley at the start of July 9, 2020, hearing about the events of June 1 that year was clear evidence of it.
Smith recognized the tough situation that any defense secretary and any chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is in before asking top Pentagon officials to clarify what role the military had been asked to perform in the abusive policing of racial justice protests. You are hired by the president. He’s the supreme commander.
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Given the severity of what Esper knew about Trump’s intention for American forces to take fire on peaceful protestors, what he decided to keep hidden from Congress and the public is much more severe than the sort of political disagreement Smith described as regular.
Whereas other senior government officials, such as Trump’s first secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, his first secretary of defense, Jim Mattis, and his former chief of staff, John Kelly, let their negative opinions of the former president’s personality and intelligence leak to reporters like Bob Woodward, Esper sat on explosive evidence about Trump’s willingness to impose martial law even after he refused to accept the 2020 election results.
When we consider Esper’s quiet until Trump was no longer in power, we are left with just a bizarre idea about what it takes to be a public servant: one who cannot be trusted to inform the public that the president would have them killed.