General David H. Berger, Commandant of the United States Marine Corps., refused House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s request to use the Corps. to safeguard Biden’s Jan. 20 inauguration from Trump supporters and insurrectionists.
A Pentagon source speaking under promise of anonymity revealed that Pelosi contacted Gen. Berger late Monday night, and she beseeched him to commit 5,000 troops to help ensure a peaceful transition of power and to prevent a repeat of the Jan 6 siege of the Capitol.
Gen. Berger, our source said, didn’t understand why Pelosi needed additional soldiers to augment an already impressive force assembled by federal and state officials. That force includes 15,000 National Guard from D.C., Delaware, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island, and an undisclosed number of FBI and DHS agents who arrived in D.C. Sunday night.
Pelosi said she wanted “battle ready” reinforcements because “radicalized Trump supporters and kooky Qanon conspiracy people” were about to converge on D.C. She implored him to reconsider, arguing that it was the general’s patriotic duty to quell uprisings and guarantee Biden’s ascension to the Oval Office.
Her statement made the general explode, our source said.
“Don’t lecture me on patriotism, Madam Speaker. I’ve served this country with distinction for 40 years. I’ve spilled blood for our nation. What have you, a self-serving elected official, done for your country?” Gen. Berger said.
Pelosi further enraged him by saying he was answerable to Congress.
“I answer only to the president, and as I understand it, Donald J. Trump is still president and commander-in-chief. I abide in the Constitution as it was written, not your interpretation of it,” Gen. Berger admonished Pelosi.
Quoting the source, “When her intimidation tactic failed to sway Gen. Berger, Pelosi tried a different tactic: Begging and flattery.”
Pelosi claimed that the National Guard’s “weekend warriors” were ill-prepared to repel an army of “mad Trumpists.” Battle-hardened marines, however, were more capable of defeating “rabble rousers,” she said. “You have the best trained soldiers in the world, and America needs them.”
Gen. Berger was unmoved. The only way Marines would be deployed, he told her, was if President Trump himself issued that order.
“If you want us to help combat his supporters, I suggest you get him on the phone and tell him that. If he orders me to, I will. Otherwise, I suggest you listen really hard to the words escaping your cracked, poisonous lips; they’re tantamount to treason,” Gen. Berger allegedly told her.