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General Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said on Friday “Overtime Overtime” that he supported the acting secretary of the navy, Thomas Modly, to relieve the commander USS Theodore Roosevelt aircraft.
“I trust Secretary Modly in his judgment and I will support him,” said Milley, reacting to Thursday’s announcement.
Navy captain Brett Crozier, the commander of the aircraft carrier, was sacked after being charged with leaking a letter to the media that came “out of the chain of command” to seek help after more than 100 sailors on board have tested positive for the coronavirus, and nearly 100 others are suspected of contracting the virus.
“It was his estimate that he lost confidence in the captain of the ship,” said Milley. “Secretary Modly is a responsible and accountable public servant to the American people and he had reason to believe that the captain was operating outside the chain of command and he relieved him. “
Modly said he didn’t mind Crozier raising concerns, but “it was the way he did it.” He said it “caused panic on the ship” and “distorted the facts,” adding that the Americans were “panicked.”
The ship, with a crew of nearly 5,000 people, is docked in Guam, and the Navy has announced that 3,000 people will be removed from the ship and quarantined on Friday. More than 100 sailors on the ship tested positive for the virus.
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Milley told host Harris Faulkner that Modly “thought he [Crozier] operated with poor judgment in times of crisis and he operated outside the chain of command, so he relieved him and we will continue and make sure that the sailors on this ship are taken care of and that the state The ship’s preparation team is back. to accelerate and we will continue to meet the needs of the American people for COVID-19. “
When Faulkner asked Milley, who was speaking from the FEMA command post, if the military could handle COVID-19 and its contagion, he replied, “Absolutely.”
He explained the measures currently in place, citing the hospital ship USNS Comfort, docked in New York, and the USNS Mercy, which is docked in Los Angeles, to help ease some of the burden on hospitals in those regions. Currently, the two Navy ships, which were deployed late last month, are accepting patients who are not suffering from COVID-19.
Milley said the ships, which each have 1,000 beds, are “fully operational”.
“They have a small number of patients at the moment,” he said. “The intention was originally to get the trauma patient overflow out of local hospitals so that local hospitals can focus on COVID patients. We are reassessing this now and the Secretary of Defense is conducting a risk assessment to determine whether or not we should treat all COVID patients to relieve some of the local hospitals. “
He added that in addition to the hospital ships, “We have also deployed four field hospitals in New York, Seattle, Dallas, New Orleans. “
Milley also noted that there were two Expeditionary Medical Facilities (EMF) in place, and an additional 15 US Army field hospitals were built.
“We have obtained approximately 450 physicians and well over 1,000 nurses nationally engaged in the US military to support various civilian communities,” said Milley.
He added that the military also provides supplies.
“We have already supplied 5 million masks. We have 5 million more masks on the way. We have set aside 2,000 fans, ”said Milley.
He added that more than 18,000 national Gaurdsmen “contribute to the fight”.
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“We will continue to huddle together until we have spent all of our resources protecting the American people,” said Milley.