Ex-Pentagon chief Mattis warns US cannot survive without allies
WASHINGTON, Aug 28, 2019 (BSS/AFP) – Former US Defense Secretary Warned
Wednesday that the United States cannot survive without its allies, days
after the G7 summit showed President Donald Trump out of step with America’s
“An oft-spoken admonition in the Marines is this: When you’re going to a
gunfight, bring all your friends with guns,” Mattis wrote in the Wall Street
Journal, in his first public comments since quitting in a policy dispute with
Trump last December.
“A leader must display strategic acumen that incorporates respect for
those nations that have stood with us when trouble loomed,” Mattis wrote.
“Nations with allies thrive, and those without them wither. Alone,
America cannot protect our people and our economy.”
Mattis’s opinion column was published just hours before his successor,
Mark Esper, gives his first on-camera press briefing since being confirmed as
Pentagon chief last month.
Esper has the responsibility of implementing Trump’s demands for a
withdrawal of most US troops in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria, the policies
Mattis fell out with the president over.
Mattis, a retired Marine Corps general, said he had to step down after
his “concrete solutions and strategic advice, especially keeping faith with
our allies, no longer resonated,” with the US leadership.
Mattis also blasted the hyper-partisan political atmosphere in
Washington as contributing to the erosion of US leadership in the world,
saying he had little taste for “the political fratricide practiced in
“What concerns me most as a military man is not our external
adversaries; it is our internal divisiveness,” he said.
“Unlike in the past, where we were unified and drew in allies, currently
our own commons seems to be breaking apart.”
“To preserve our leadership role, we needed to get our own country’s act
together first, especially if we were to help others.”