Senator Wicker deems Defense Chief’s lack of answers ‘Unacceptable’

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin’s hospitalization this month raised concerns and questions, says Sen. Roger Wicker, the top-ranking Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee.

Wicker finds the answers from Austin to be “completely unacceptable” as they failed to explain his decisions and actions, as reported by The Hill. Wicker also expressed his disappointment over how the Department of Defense handled the situation and stressed that something like this should not happen again.

According to Wicker, Austin underwent surgery for prostate cancer at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Maryland on Dec. 22 and returned for complications on Jan. 1, which were not revealed until four days later. Wicker is seeking more information about the nature and timeline of Austin’s illness and about who was notified about the situation. He also wants an explanation of why an ambulance, rather than Austin’s security detail, took him to the intensive care unit, as reported by Newsmax.

Austin assures Wicker that there were no gaps in authorities or risk to command-and-control during his hospitalization. His response, given in a letter last Thursday, explains that Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen Hicks was fully prepared to support the president as commander-in-chief while he was under general anesthesia for the surgery.

Austin explains that he decided to return to the hospital via ambulance on Jan. 1 due to unexpected complications from the surgery. He emphasizes that his deputy assumed his duties during his hospitalization and that he never went under anesthesia or became unconscious.

Austin acknowledges that he should have kept President Joe Biden and the White House fully informed about the situation. He has also committed to transparency and improving processes moving forward.

The content from the Newsmax article writer, Sandy Fitzgerald, indicates that Wicker expressed concerns over the Secretary of Defense’s hospitalization. Fitzgerald has more than three decades of journalism experience and is serving as a general assignment writer for Newsmax, covering news, media, and politics.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

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