(CNSNews.com) - If the new book "Peril" contains accurate information, it's clear that Joint Chiefs Chairman General Mark Milley has gone outside the chain of command, Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) told Fox News's Laura Ingraham Tuesday night.
"He has threatened the constitutional principle of civilian control of the military. He doesn't have the right, he doesn't have the authority to contact our opponents in Beijing and tell them that he will inform them about any action we might take before we take it.
"I mean, I can't believe I'm reading this," Hawley said. "I hope these reports are inaccurate. But he does need to resign. He needs to resign, and if he won't resign, he needs to be fired. I mean, he has broken the trust of the American people."
"Peril," by Washington Post reporters Bob Woodward and Robert Costa, says Milley was so concerned about President Trump's state of mind following the election that Milley twice called Chinese leaders through a backchannel to reassure them that the U.S. would not attack China.
The book says Milley also met with top U.S. military commanders to remind them that he, Milley, must be involved in any decision to launch nuclear weapons. Milley reportedly assured House Speaker Nancy Pelosi that he would "prevent" Trump from doing anything "illegal or crazy."
According to an excerpt printed in The New York Times, Milley told Pelosi:
“The one thing I can guarantee is that as the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, I want you to know that — I want you to know this in your heart of hearts, I can guarantee you 110 percent that the military, use of military power, whether it’s nuclear or a strike in a foreign country of any kind, we’re not going to do anything illegal or crazy,” he said.
“Well,” Ms. Pelosi said, “what do you mean, illegal or crazy?”
“I can give you my word,” General Milley said. “The best I can do is give you my word and I’m going to prevent anything like that in the United States military.”
Hawley told Ingraham:
I think what we're seeing here, these reports that we're seeing, Laura, I can't underscore enough how dangerous this is. How dangerous it is for a general, especially the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, to take into his own hands, the conduct of American foreign policy, to undermine elected representatives, including, most importantly, the President of the United States, the elected president.
I mean, this is this is dangerous, dangerous territory that we're in. And we're going to have to get to the bottom of it. There needs to be a full congressional inquiry. And I'm again, I'm sorry to say, but it is it is vital now that general Milley, he needs to resign. If he doesn't resign, he needs to be fired. This is dangerous territory that we're in and there's got to be accountability.
“Peril,” is scheduled for release next Tuesday. According to the blurb on Amazon.com:
Woodward and Costa interviewed more than 200 people at the center of the turmoil, resulting in more than 6,000 pages of transcripts—and a spellbinding and definitive portrait of a nation on the brink.
This classic study of Washington takes readers deep inside the Trump White House, the Biden White House, the 2020 campaign, and the Pentagon and Congress, with vivid, eyewitness accounts of what really happened.
Peril is supplemented throughout with never-before-seen material from secret orders, transcripts of confidential calls, diaries, emails, meeting notes and other personal and government records, making for an unparalleled history.