Smith Calls on Secretary of Defense and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs to Explain Military Activity in Washington, D.C.
June 3, 2020
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Representative Adam Smith (D-Wash.), Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, today sent a letter to Secretary of Defense Mark Esper and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley, expressing his concern regarding the use of military forces in response to peaceful protestors in the District of Columbia.
“I write you today to express my continued, grave concern about the use of military forces in response to peaceful protestors in the District of Columbia, the movement of active duty troops to staging areas around the country’s capital, and plans to deploy active duty troops around the United States should the President invoke the Insurrection Act,” Chairman Smith wrote.
“As you are well aware, the role of the United States military in support of domestic law enforcement is strictly limited by law. It must not be used in violation of those limits. I remain unconvinced that this fundamental premise is fully understood by the Administration in light of the events in Lafayette Square, the movement of active duty troops to staging areas just outside Washington, D.C., and the apparent use of military aviation to disperse protestors on the night of June 1, 2020.”
The full text of the letter can be found here.