The military’s top leaders have issued a memo to forces decrying last week’s Capitol Hill violence and reminding service members that freedom of speech does not give anyone the right to resort to violence.
“We witnessed actions inside the Capitol building that were inconsistent with the rule of law. The rights of freedom of speech and assembly do not give anyone the right to resort to violence, sedition and insurrection,” the statement reads, according to multiple reports.
Tuesday’s memo was signed by all members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. It also reminded military members that Joe Biden was duly elected and will be sworn in as the next president on Jan. 20.
“As Service Members, we must embody the values and ideals of the Nation. We support and defend the Constitution. Any act to disrupt the Constitutional process is not only against our traditions, values, and oath; it is against the law,” the statement said.
NEW: The Joint Chiefs of Staff have sent this letter to the U.S. military about the attack on the U.S. Capitol, and the forthcoming transition of power to President-elect Biden as "our 46th Commander in Chief." pic.twitter.com/cbUFJ2Xgqi— NBC News (@NBCNews) January 12, 2021
The memo made no direct mention of military members having participated in last week’s insurrection.