I disagree with Kevin Cullen’s excusing John Kelly, a retired US Marine general and President Trump’s former chief of staff, from confirming (or denying) The Atlantic’s reporting about Trump’s disparagement of war veterans as “suckers” and “losers” (“The job of a general,” Metro, Sept. 11).
The role of our military leadership, active or retired, is to protect our democracy, period. James Mattis, Trump’s former defense secretary, and Colin Powell, secretary of state under George W. Bush — both retired generals — have had the courage to denounce Trump as unfit to lead this country. The least Kelly could do is confirm or deny the truthfulness of The Atlantic’s reporting, which cited anonymous sources. To do less is to shirk the duty of protecting our democracy or, worse, it is cowardice by a different name.
I read with interest Brian MacQuarrie’s article “Military leaders say criticism isn’t their role” (Page A, Sept. 17). What these military leaders don’t get is that by being silent, they are being political. They are enabling Donald Trump and fascism. Supporting the Constitution requires that they speak out. Now.