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Milley told Pelosi that Trump's nuke authority had safeguards: 'He doesn’t launch them alone'

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Mark Milley assured House Speaker Nancy Pelosi that former President Donald Trump could not launch an off-the-cuff nuclear strike when she called for his authorities to be limited after the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, the Joint Chiefs chairman revealed Tuesday.

Milley, whom Trump recently suggested is a "dumba**," detailed a call he had with Pelosi on Jan. 8, two days after the Capitol riot. During the call, he told her only the president has the ability to authorize a nuclear launch but that he "doesn't launch them alone."

A memo Milley provided to the Senate Armed Services Committee said Pelosi's office requested the call with him citing "urgent matters," during which Pelosi broached the question of the president's ability to launch nuclear weapons.

MILLEY SAYS TRUMP OFFICIALS KNEW OF SCRUTINIZED CALLS TO CHINA

“I sought to assure her that nuclear launch is governed by a very specific and deliberate process. She was concerned and made various personal references characterizing the president,” Milley told the committee on Tuesday.

“I explained to her that the president is the sole nuclear launch authority, and he doesn’t launch them alone and that I am not qualified to determine the mental health of the president of the United States,” Milley said. “There are processes, protocols, and procedures in place, and I repeatedly assured her there is no chance of an illegal, unauthorized, or accidental launch.”

Pelosi wrote a letter to her Democratic colleagues in the House that same day after the meeting, saying she spoke to Milley about "available precautions for preventing an unstable president from initiating military hostilities or accessing the launch codes and ordering a nuclear strike."

Milley also said Tuesday that he met military officials to “refresh” the procedures around launching nuclear weapons but denied stepping out of bounds.

“At no time was I attempting to change or influence the process, usurp authority, or insert myself in the chain of command, but I am expected, I am required, to give my advice and ensure that the president is fully informed on military matters,” Milley said.

Milley and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin's testimony in front of the armed services committee included questioning about the Biden administration's Afghanistan withdrawal and a call Milley made during the Trump administration. The latter dealt with a conversation in which he told his Chinese counterpart he would "call [him] ahead of time" if the United States were going to attack.

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A host of Republicans and Trump himself slammed Milley in recent weeks over the exchange, arguing it undermined Trump's authority as commander in chief. Still, Milley has maintained the calls were "routine" and said the Trump administration knew about them.

“I was communicating to my Chinese counterpart on instructions, by the way, to de-escalate the situation, and I told him that we are not going to attack,” Milley said. “President Trump has no intent to attack, and I told him that repeatedly — and I told them if there was going to be an attack, there will be plenty of communications going back and forth.”

“Of course I wouldn’t” tip off the Chinese to an impending attack, Milley also said.

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Tags: News, Mark Milley, Joint Chiefs, Congress, Military, Donald Trump

Original Author: Jeremy Beaman

Original Location: Milley told Pelosi that Trump's nuke authority had safeguards: 'He doesn’t launch them alone'

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