Defense Secretary under Donald Trump, Mark Esper claims in his new memoir that Trump wanted to shoot protesters who stood up after the death of George Floyd. His upcoming memoir, A Sacred Oath: Memoirs of a Secretary of Defense During Extraordinary Times, was excerpted by Axios, and will be released May 10.
In the book, Esper reveals Trump asked, “Can’t you just shoot them? Just shoot them in the legs or something?” The book underwent an intense security review by more than thirty 4-star generals, senior civilians, and some Cabinet members. Its redactions by the Pentagon led Esper to file suit against the Department of Defense, claiming his work was censored.
Trump threatened to fire Esper for contradicting the president’s wishes to invoke the Insurrection Act, which would have allowed Trump to use active-duty military troops to control protests when Americans took to the streets in various cities after George Floyd’s murder by former Minneapolis policeman Derek Chauvin.
Esper’s memoir backs up the reporting of political correspondent Michael Bender, whose book, Frankly, We Did Win This Election, explains that Trump was out for blood for Black Lives Matter and George Floyd protestors. Bender’s book claims General Mark Milley stood up to Trump when the then president wanted the military to “crack skulls” and “beat the f*** out” of protesters who were demonstrating. And that Trump wanted to “Just shoot them.”