Biden Had No Idea His Defense Secretary Was In The Hospital

Biden Had No Idea His Defense Secretary Was In The Hospital

Not a week goes by in which the “adults” running the Biden administration don’t thoroughly humiliate themselves for the world to see. The latest fiasco involving multiple White House brass knowing nothing about the hospitalization of Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin for days is no different. But no worries: The White House says it’s not going to sack Austin over the incident.

Following a week of secrecy, Americans and members of Congress were informed over the weekend that the country’s second-highest-ranking military official has been hospitalized since Jan. 1. According to The Guardian, the defense secretary was admitted to Walter Reed’s intensive care unit after “experiencing severe pain,” with the Pentagon confirming the admission came as a result of “complications following a recent elective medical procedure.”

The agency has not revealed what specific medical problems Austin is facing. It also wasn’t just the American public who was kept in the dark about Austin’s hospitalization.

In the days since he went MIA, it’s been reported that leading administration figures, including President Joe Biden, were unaware that Austin had been admitted to intensive care until Thursday. That’s the same day Austin’s second-in-command, Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen Hicks — who was vacationing in Puerto Rico at the time — was informed of the situation.

Unbeknownst to Hicks, Austin had transferred her “certain operational responsibilities that require constant secure communications capabilities” on Tuesday. By the time she began preparing to return to Washington, D.C. on Friday, the Pentagon informed Hicks that Austin “was preparing to resume full communications capability and the associated operational responsibilities, which informed her decision to stay on vacation.”

It’s worth mentioning Hicks was notified of Austin’s hospitalization on the same day the U.S. military carried out drone strikes in Baghdad that resulted in the death of an “Iranian-backed militia leader.” The strikes came following weeks of attacks on U.S. troops in Iraq and Syria by Iranian-backed groups in the wake of Hamas’ Oct. 7, 2023 attack on Israel.

Who’s Running the Country?

Austin’s undisclosed medical problems and the Pentagon’s attempt to keep the matter “hush-hush” should cause concern for Americans worried about U.S. military readiness.

It’s no secret that Biden’s deteriorating mental faculties appear to have worsened during his presidency and that America’s commander-in-chief isn’t the one running the country. Whether it’s making quips about getting “in trouble” with his staff for taking press questions, falling asleep during interviews, or befuddling his administration’s foreign policy positions, Biden has regularly demonstrated little ability to carry out the presidency’s most basic functions, let alone articulate a coherent sentence.

While not as mentally decrepit as Biden, Austin is similarly incompetent at executing his role as the military’s second-in-command. One needs only to take a look at America’s disastrous 2021 Afghanistan withdrawal and inability to effectively confront Iranian-backed terrorists to acquire a grasp of Austin’s fecklessness. That doesn’t even include the defense secretary’s intentional, left-wing “reimagining” of the U.S. military that’s undoubtedly contributing to the Pentagon’s recruiting crisis.

The military is tasked with protecting U.S. interests at home and abroad. What would have happened if Red China or another adversary took military action against the United States during last week’s Pentagon debacle? With Biden’s mental decline, Austin’s hospitalization, and Hicks unaware, who would’ve stepped up to the plate to lead the United States through a time of crisis? It’s obvious the bureaucrats running the show couldn’t do it.

With China becoming more aggressive towards its neighbors, Russia fighting Ukraine, North Korea firing off ballistic missiles, and Iran-backed proxies attacking Israel and U.S. assets, the world is more unstable than it’s been in years. Unfortunately, Americans are stuck with Biden and his incompetent band of weak-kneed oligarchs to lead them through it.


Shawn Fleetwood is a staff writer for The Federalist and a graduate of the University of Mary Washington. He previously served as a state content writer for Convention of States Action and his work has been featured in numerous outlets, including RealClearPolitics, RealClearHealth, and Conservative Review. Follow him on Twitter @ShawnFleetwood

Originally Posted on: https://thefederalist.com/2024/01/08/for-three-days-top-u-s-officials-had-no-idea-the-defense-secretary-was-hospitalized/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=for-three-days-top-u-s-officials-had-no-idea-the-defense-secretary-was-hospitalized
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