Late on Monday, United States President Donald Trump ordered active-duty military troops to be dispatched to Washington, DC from Fort Bragg, California.
The Defense Department has also requested 600 to 800 National Guard troops from Delaware, New Jersey, New York, Ohio and Utah to join the 1,200 troops already in Washington, DC.
Trump’s order comes after he announced through a teleprompter that “if a city or state refuses to take the actions that are necessary to defend the life and property of their residents then I will deploy the United States military and quickly solve the problem for them.
“As we speak I am dispatching thousands and thousands of heavily armed soldiers, military personnel and law enforcement officers to stop the rioting, looting, vandalism, assaults and the wanton destruction of property.”
In an hourlong private conference call obtained by The New York Times that took place on Monday morning, the president told various state governors, “you have to dominate,” adding that the governors would look like a “bunch of jerks” if they didn’t deploy the National Guard.
“You have to do retribution,” he further said in the audio recording, “you can’t do the deal where they get one week in jail. These are terrorists and they are looking to do bad things to our country.”
However, many governors, including Governor Tim Walz of Minnesota has disagreed with Trump’s retaliatory response, declining the use of military police as a means of intervention.
After the phone call with Trump, Walz told reporters, “a posture of force on the ground is both unsustainable militarily, it’s also unsustainable socially.”
This outlook was shared by Massachusetts Governor Charles Baker.
“At so many times during the past week when the country needed compassion and leadership the most, it was simply nowhere to be found. Instead we got bitterness, combativeness and self-interest.”
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