A “top Marine general” leaked Pentagon memos “to bring attention to service families living among hurricane-ravaged military installations as the Trump administration tries to bankroll the southwest border with defense funds at the expense of combat readiness.”
In the past two weeks, General Robert Neller has leaked memos to The Los Angeles Times and NBC News according to other leakers. So why the leak?
The letters underscore the fiscal challenges the service is facing as it struggles to support security operations at the southwest border while “unplanned/unbudgeted” line items plague the general’s fiscal agenda, a burden Neller asserts is an “unacceptable risk to Marine Corps combat readiness and solvency.”
In other words, the General doesn’t like the border deployment of troops so he took it upon himself to leak Pentagon memos to make the president look bad. Let’s hope Trump has finally gotten over his “thing” for the generals.
In Neller’s letters, unexpected service spending bills, including for President Donald Trump’s southwest border operations, left the Marine general no choice but to cancel or significantly drawback planned military training exercises. The Marine commandant canceled the Integrated Training Exercise, known to Marines as ITX, for II Marine Expeditionary Force. ITX is a large-scale, combined-arms training exercise in the Mojave Desert at the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center in Twentynine Palms, California.
Exercises Northern Edge, the Marines joint exercise with allied partners aimed at preparing combat forces for operations in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region were significantly reduced, among other canceled or scaled-back training drills.
The president has declared a national emergency so not everyone gets to follow their dreams for the time being. Our enemies thank you, General Neller:
“The combat readiness of II Marine Expeditionary Force—1/3 the combat power of the Marine Corps—is degraded and will continue to degrade given current conditions,” Neller wrote in the letters obtained by Newsweek and first reported by The Los Angeles Times.
Yesterday, the Department of Homeland Security tried to lock down their own future leakers by issuing a directive to staffers instructing them not to leak “nonpublic information” to journalists. Was that memo leaked too?
Buzzfeed has that DHS memo, presumably yet another unauthorized, “nonpublic” disclosure.
Department of Homeland Security employees were warned Thursday not to disclose “nonpublic information” or potentially face criminal, civil, or administrative consequences, a senior agency official said in a department-wide email to staff and obtained by BuzzFeed News.
“As federal employees, we serve the public, and our loyalties must prioritize that purpose above all others. A violation of the public trust might arise, for example, if DHS personnel disclose nonpublic information or use it for their own personal benefit, such as for monetary gain, or for the private gain of others,” wrote Chip Fulghum, deputy under secretary for management.
“[S]uch unauthorized use or disclosure would be considered a misuse of position and, depending on the nature of the information disclosed, could expose the DHS employee to personal criminal, civil, or administrative consequences,” he warned.
I’d say civil service reform is long overdue, wouldn’t you? Is anyone even looking into all the leaking that has taken place over the last two years?