In Defying the Odds, we discuss Trump's dishonesty and his record of disregarding the rule of law. Our next book, Divided We Stand, looks at the 2020 election and the January 6 insurrection. Some Republican leaders -- and a measurable number of rank-and-file voters -- are open to violent rebellion, coups, and secession.
Greg Jaffe at WP:
Two decades before he was Republican nominee for Pennsylvania governor, Doug Mastriano warned in a master’s thesis that the United States was vulnerable to a left-wing “Hitlerian Putsch” that would begin with the dismantling of the U.S. military and end with the destruction of the country’s democracy.
The thesis, written in 2001 when Mastriano was a major at the Air Force’s Air Command and Staff College, is highly unusual for its doomsaying and often fearful point of view, and its prediction that only the U.S. military could save the country from the depredations of the country’s morally debauched civilian leaders. The paper is posted on an official Defense Department website and lists Mastriano as the author at a time when he said he received a master’s degree from the school.
In it, Mastriano adopts the point of view of a colonel who is living in 2018 — some 17 years in the future — and has taken refuge in an “isolated cavern” in the George Washington National Forest. The military’s collapse, in his telling, allowed a left-wing leader obsessed with “political correctness” and backed militarily by the United Nations and the European Union to rise to power in a struggle that led to the deaths of millions of Americans.
“Domestically, life was bleak with a rampant drug culture, hedonism and a plethora of ‘alternate’ religions dominating the American youth,” wrote Mastriano in the voice of his fictional colonel. “We were a people without vision or direction.”
Ultimately, Mastriano concluded that the U.S. military was the “only institution to prevent the destruction of the republic.”
The document displays a disgust for anyone who doesn’t hold his view that homosexuality is a form of “aberrant sexual conduct” and presages the worldview that has led Mastriano to blame rampant fraud for Donald Trump’s 2020 defeat and to join a crowd headed toward the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.
“This thesis proves that Mastriano’s embrace of activity that undermines the U.S. Constitution is no recent corruption,” said Peter Feaver, a former senior White House official in the George W. Bush administration who was written extensively about civil-military relations. “It stems from poisonous views and misunderstandings that he has held for a very long time.”