Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley stressed the idea that the military must be apolitical during a speech at Princeton University and in a subsequent interview with Fox News on Friday, glossing over criticism that he has been anything but during his tenure in the cabinets of President Joe Biden and former president Donald Trump.
“You’re not taking an oath to a dictator or wannabe dictator, or tyrant… you’re taking an oath to the Constitution of the United States of America,” Milley said at Princeton University’s ROTC Class of 2022 ceremony.
Repeatedly stressing that American servicemembers take an oath to “an idea” and “a document,” Milley assured the newly-minted cadets at his alma mater that their duty was only to the principles on which the US was founded.
While he acknowledged in his interview with Fox News’ Brett Baier that he had considered resignation during his tenure under the former president, with whom his relationship was “rocky,” he doubled down on his previous insistence that his loyalty was to the Constitution – his “north star,” the “basic core essence of who [he is] as a soldier.”
“We have to be apolitical. We stay out of the politics of the day and we maintain our oath to the Constitution no matter what party is in power,” Milley said.