Former US President Donald Trump proposed bombing cartel positions and "drug labs" in Mexico, former Defense Secretary Mark Esper reportedly says in a forthcoming memoir.
Trump maintained that any US strikes could be kept secret through a policy of public denial, leaving Esper speechless, the former defense secretary writes in his book A Sacred Oath, according to the New York Times.
Esper further wrote that he was concerned Trump might use the military to have them seize ballot boxes on Election Day, and warned subordinates to "be on alert for unusual calls from the White House in the lead-up to the election," the times reported.
The ex-defense chief's book is slated to be published on Tuesday, and recounting his personal appraisal of the US's 45th president, Esper said Trump “is an unprincipled person who, given his self-interest, should not be in the position of public service.”
Esper further corroborates reporting that Trump sought to deploy active duty military personnel en masse in the US capital during mass racial justice protests in summer 2020.
“Can’t you just shoot them?” Trump asked Esper of the demonstrators.
Trump was increasingly erratic after his first impeachment trial, which concluded in February 2020, and sought to tighten his grip on the executive branch by surrounding himself with people who pledged their personal loyalty.
Chief among them was Stephen Miller, a top aide throughout Trump's four-year term who Esper said was an erratic and dangerous influence.
In addition to requesting the US deploy 250,000 troops to the southern border to block migrant flows, which Esper rebuffed flatly, saying the US does not have the forces "to send to the border for such nonsense," Miller proposed an exceedingly gruesome act in the Situation Room when the US killed former Daesh/ISIS chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
That entailed getting al-Baghdadi's head after he blew himself up, dipping it in pig's blood and parading it around as a warning, according to the book.
Esper retorted that would be a "war crime." Miller denied making the suggestion.