Former Pentagon Secretary appeals to include material in memoirs


Washington (AP) — Former Secretary of Defense Mark Esper uses materials in a proceeding against the Pentagon as he seeks to publish an “innocent and candid memoir” of his time in President Donald Trump’s cabinet. Claims to be improperly withheld.

The proceedings filed in the US District Court in Washington on Sunday explain Esper’s term as Secretary of the Army from 2017 to 2019 and his 18 months as Secretary of Defense, which ended when Trump was dismissed. He explains the memoir “The Holy Oath” in a tweet a few days after the president lost his re-election proceedings.

The time when Esper was the Pentagon’s chief was “an unprecedented time when citizens’ anxiety, public health crises, rising threats abroad, Pentagon transformation, and the White House seemingly devoted to avoiding the Constitution.” The lawsuit said it was.

Esper and Trump were largely divided over military use during civil unrest in June 2020 after the killing of George Floyd. Other issues have led the president to believe that Esper is not loyal enough while he believes that Esper is trying to keep the sector non-political. It was unprecedented to dismiss the Secretary of Defense after an election defeat, but with this opening, Trump continued to challenge the election defeat, placing supporters at the top of the Pentagon. Was completed.

The proceedings allege that the “significant text” of the memoir, due out by William Morrow in May, was improperly held under the guise of confidentiality, and Esper did not contain sensitive information. doing. The proceedings state that Esper is restricted by his secret agreement to allow publication without the approval of the Pentagon, or faces the possibility of civil and criminal liability.

The proceedings are quoted from a letter sent by Esper to Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, who criticizes the review process. He wrote that he was asked not to quote Trump or others at meetings, explain conversations with Trump, or use specific verbs or nouns to describe historical events. increase.

The letter explains other problematic subjects and states that about 60 pages of the manuscript contained temporary edits. Agreeing to all these edits, Esper writes, “a serious injustice arises at important historical moments that Americans need to know and understand.”

The proceedings themselves were leaked to some mainstream media that “potentially undermines the impact” that would have been in his book, with some stories involving Esper in the manuscript under consideration. It states that it looked like.

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said the Pentagon is aware of Esper’s concerns. “Like all such reviews, the department takes the obligation to balance national security with the desires of the author’s story seriously. Given that this case is currently in proceedings, no more. I refrain from commenting. “

Westpoint graduate and Gulf War veteran Esper, 57, said in a statement that he had been waiting six months for the review process to complete, saying, “My uncategorized manuscript is unclear why. It was edited arbitrarily. “

“I’m disappointed that the current administration violates the rights of my First Amendment, and I’m the only one currently available to tell the American people my whole story. It’s a shame that the road is a legal means, “he said.