Not Their Plane to Land: Generals Thwarting the Chain of Command?


Chris, Melanie, and Zack discuss Doyle Hodges’ recent article scrutinizing Gen. Mark Milley’s behavior in the waning months of the Trump administration. Journalists have rendered a relatively favorable treatment of Milley’s insubordination, but Hodges questions the long-term implications for civil-military relations. Should senior military officers be expected to follow lawful orders, even if they are morally objectionable? Or is resignation the only proper response when those in uniform cannot faithfully execute an order? And is the problem of civil-military relations unique to the Trump administration or does the Milley case portend a future in which the military’s standing is filtered through the same partisan lenses that inflict our politics across the board? Grievances for two former Pennsylvania judges who sentenced juveniles to for-profit prisons (and got rich), toward India for joining Russia’s military exercises, and to President Joe Biden abusing his authority to relieve student debt. Atta-people to the Ukrainian military for its first major counter-offensive of the war with Russia, to Clayton Forrester and all others behind the decision to re-introduce wolves to Yellowstone National Park, and to all those behind an important essay series exploring the future of airpower.

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Image: Pentagon