U.S. General Stanley McChrystal wouldn't work for 'immoral' Trump

“I don’t think he tells the truth,” McChrystal said to ABC.

By Nicole Karlis

Senior Writer

Published December 30, 2018 4:18PM (EST)

Stanley McChrystal   (Reuters/Joshua Roberts)
Stanley McChrystal (Reuters/Joshua Roberts)

During an interview with Martha Raddatz on ABC’s “This Week,” retired Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal set the record straight when it comes to the Trump administration: he won't be part of it.

The former commander said that if he ever received an offer to work for Trump, he would reject it.

“It’s important for me to work for people who I think are basically honest, who tell the truth as best they know it,” McChrystal said.

“The military talks about ... if you’re put into a difficult military situation would that leader sacrifice himself, put himself and others at risk to come for you,” he said. “I have to believe that the people I’m working for would do that, whether we disagree on a lot of other things. I’m not convinced from the behavior that I’ve seen that that’s the case here.”

When asked if he believes Trump is "immoral," he replied “I think he is."

“I don’t think he tells the truth,” he said. “What I would ask every American to do is ... stand in front of that mirror and say, ‘What are we about? Am I really willing to throw away or ignore some of the things that people do that are pretty unacceptable normally just because they accomplish certain other things that we might like?’”

He also sent a message to anybody who is considering filling Defense Secretary James Mattis’ shoes.

"I think maybe it causes the American people to take pause and say, wait a minute, if we have someone who is as selfless and as committed as Jim Mattis resign his position, walking away from all the responsibility he feels for every service member in our forces and he does so in a public way like that, we ought to stop and say, 'OK, why did he do it?,'" McChrystal said.

“I would ask [potential candidates] to look in the mirror and ask them if they can get comfortable enough with President Trump's approach to governance, how he conducts himself with his values and with his worldview to be truly loyal to him as a commander in chief and going forward,” McChrystal added. “If there's too much of a disconnect then I would tell him I think it’s -- it would be a bad foundation upon which to try to build a successful partnership at that job.”

McChrystal was the leader of the Joint Special Operations Command under President George W. Bush. He briefly worked as commander of the International Security Assistance force under President Barack Obama. He resigned after an article was published in Rolling Stone in which McChrystal criticized Obama’s leadership.

By Nicole Karlis

Nicole Karlis is a senior writer at Salon, specializing in health and science. Tweet her @nicolekarlis.

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