The current head of the Special Operations Command just gave a frank assessment of the state of the American government, and it’s not pretty.
Speaking at a military conference in Maryland, Gen. Raymond Thomas told attendees, “our government continues to be in unbelievable turmoil. I hope they sort it out soon because we’re a nation at war.”
Thomas didn’t mention any specific issues with the government less than a month into the Trump administration. But his remarks came less than a day after Michael Flynn abruptly resigned his post as national security adviser for discussing sanctions with the Russian ambassador before Trump took office.
There are also further allegations that Trump campaign officials spoke with Russian intelligence during the campaign, and a New York Times investigation into Trump’s national security council revealed a chaotic decision-making process.
From The Times:
“Three weeks into the Trump administration, council staff members get up in the morning, read President Trump’s Twitter posts and struggle to make policy to fit them. Most are kept in the dark about what Mr. Trump tells foreign leaders in his phone calls. Some staff members have turned to encrypted communications to talk with their colleagues, after hearing that Mr. Trump’s top advisers are considering an ‘insider threat’ program that could result in monitoring mobile phones and emails for leaks.”
When asked later about his comments, the general told The New York Times: “As a commander, I’m concerned our government be as stable as possible.”
It’s rather uncharacteristic for a top military officer to offer public critiques like these while serving on active-duty, but it’s not the first time: A military judge said earlier this week that Trump’s campaign rhetoric about Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl on the campaign trail was “disturbing.”
Still, Thomas concluded that the Special Operations forces that he commands — Navy SEALs, Army Special Forces, Marine Raiders, and others — are “staying focused” despite the dysfunction in Washington.