Joint Chiefs condemn attacks on Capitol Hill and remind military of duty to support and defend Constitution

Washington – The Joint Chiefs of Staff, the highest ranking in every branch of the military, on Tuesday sent a remarkable note to all members of the armed forces reminding them of their duty to uphold the Constitution and reaffirming that President-elect Joe Biden will be inaugurated on January 20.

“The American people have trusted the armed forces of the United States to protect them and our Constitution for nearly 250 years. As we have done throughout our history, the United States military will obey the legitimate orders of civilian leaders, support civilian authorities to protect lives and property, ensure public safety in accordance with the law, and remain fully committed to protecting and to defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic, ”the generals and admiral said in their memo.

The note denounces the attacks on the Capitol on January 6, in which supporters of President Trump invaded the building in a violent assault that left five people dead.

“We have seen actions inside the Capitol that were incompatible with the rule of law. The rights to freedom of expression and assembly do not give anyone the right to resort to violence, sedition and to the insurgency, ”the leaders said. “As the military, we must embody the values ​​and ideals of the nation. We uphold and defend the Constitution. Any act aimed at disrupting the constitutional process is not only contrary to our traditions, our values ​​and our oath, it is against the law. “

Joint Chiefs of Staff are the president’s main military advisers and generally remain apolitical. While the memo does not make a political statement, it should be noted that department heads felt they needed to reaffirm the military’s duty before the inauguration.

“On January 20, 2021, in accordance with the Constitution, confirmed by states and the courts, and certified by Congress, President-elect Biden will be invested and will become our 46th Commander-in-Chief,” the memo continued.

The message was signed by General Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs; General John Hyten, the vice-president; General James McConville, Army Chief of Staff; General David Berger, Commander of the Marine Corps; Admiral Michael Gilday, chief of naval operations; General Charles Brown, Jr., Air Force Chief of Staff; General John Raymond, chief of space operations; and General Daniel Hokanson, head of the National Guard office.

President Trump refused to concede the election until last week and urged Republican members of Congress to attempt to overturn the election. The riots on Capitol Hill on January 6 came as Congress counted Electoral College ballots certifying Mr. Biden as the winner.

The president’s supporters continued to threaten violence in the days leading up to the inauguration. At least 10,000 National Guard troops will be on hand in the nation’s capital to provide event security in the aftermath of the attack.

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