Congressman Louie Gohmert, of the 1st Texas Congressional District, has weighed in on the upcoming military training exercise, Jade Helm 15. In a statement sent to Breitbart Texas, the six-term Republican says that his office “has been inundated with calls” from constituents who are “concerned that the U.S. Army is preparing for modern-day martial law.”
“Certainly, I can understand these concerns,” said Gohmert in a statement obtained by Breitbart Texas. “When leaders within the current Administration believe that major threats to the country include those who support the Constitution, are military veterans, or even ‘cling to guns or religion,’ patriotic Americans have reason to be concerned.”
“We have seen people working in this Administration use their government positions to persecute people with conservative beliefs in God, country, and notions such as honor and self-reliance,” Gohmert continued. “Because of the contempt and antipathy for the true patriots, or even Christian saints persecuted for their Christian beliefs, it is no surprise that those who have experienced or noticed such persecution are legitimately suspicious.”
Gohmert, a graduate of Texas A&M (’77), was the Brigade Commander of the Corps of Cadets in his senior year, as well as class president. Following law school at Baylor, he spent four years in the Army JAG Corps, serving as a defense attorney at Fort Benning, Georgia.
He invoked his military experience in his statement on Jade Helm: “Having served in the U.S. Army, I can understand why military officials have a goal to see if groups of Special Forces can move around a civilian population without being noticed, and can handle various threat scenarios. In military science classes or in my years on active duty, I have participated in or observed military exercises; however, we never named an existing city or state as a ‘hostile.’ We would use fictitious names before we would do such a thing.”
Gohmert is troubled by the attitude toward American citizens displayed in the Jade Helm scenario. “Once I observed the map depicting ‘hostile,’ ‘permissive,’ and ‘uncertain’ states and locations, I was rather appalled that the hostile areas amazingly have a Republican majority, ‘cling to their guns and religion,’ and believe in the sanctity of the United States Constitution,” he said. “When the federal government begins, even in practice, games or exercises, to consider any U.S. city or state in ‘hostile’ control and trying to retake it, the message becomes extremely calloused and suspicious.”
His statement concludes: “Such labeling tends to make people who have grown leery of federal government overreach become suspicious of whether their big brother government anticipates certain states may start another civil war, or be overtaken by foreign radical Islamist elements which have been reported to be just across our border. Such labeling by a government that is normally not allowed to use military force against its own citizens is an affront to the residents of that particular state considered as ‘hostile,’ as if the government is trying to provoke a fight with them”.
Gohmert proposed a resolution to the controversy: “The map of the exercise needs to change, the names on the map need to change, and the tone of the exercise needs to be completely revamped so the federal government is not intentionally practicing war against its own states.”
Jade Helm 15 is scheduled to start on July 15, and conclude on September 15th. Governor Greg Abbott has assigned the Texas State Guard to monitor the operation.
Both Senator Ted Cruz and Conservative actor Chuck Norris have backed the Governor and expressed their concern as well.
Rob Milford is a news contributor for Breitbart Texas. Follow him on Facebook.