In the article “Trumps Former Generals, From James Mattis to Joseph Votel, Sound an Unprecedented Warning,” author Jake Jacobs a military analyst for NBC/MSNBC, argues that the national security of our country is under jeopardy under the command of our current Commander in Chief. Throughout the article Jacobs uses the actions and direct quotes from at least four retired four-star generals and one admiral to support his argument. Jacobs’ overall theme for the article comes to light in the seventh paragraph when he states, “when warriors of the caliber of Mattis and McRaven or Votel and Allen publicly reprove the President, citizens may properly conclude that our national security decision-making is truly dysfunctional and that the nation is dangerously at risk” (Jacobs). This paragraph helps emphasize Jacobs’ argument that if these four men who have held positions like Secretary of Defense, Commander of the U.S. Central Command and Commander of American Forces in Afghanistan do not trust and/or disagree with the opinions and decisions of our current Commander in Chief, then something must be extremely wrong and leds the citizens to question the effectiveness of our national security. Jacobs continues to make his argument, stating that “very early on, service members are taught that the success of our national defense rests on the strength of the chain of command. Yes, one can argue and even disagree with the boss. Indeed, commanders routinely insist on critical input from their subordinates. But once the decision is made, unless the order is immoral or illegal, it must be obeyed” (Jacobs). He further justifies his point by stating that “even in these cases, criticism of the national command authority by members of the military was, at most, muted. Four-star generals were certainly not directing criticism specifically at the commander in chief” (Jacobs). Jacobs uses these statements to further express to the reader how bizarre and unprecedented it is for these four-star generals to be speaking out against the current Commander in Chief.
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