Former Defense Secretary Mattis slams Trump

James Mattis blasted President Donald Trump’s handling of the protests, saying "enough is enough." ABC News' Kenneth Moton reports.
3:26 | 06/04/20

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Transcript for Former Defense Secretary Mattis slams Trump
Return out of former Defense Secretary James Mattis accusing president comp of pain threat to the constitution. In a remarkable and rare statement Mattis accuses trump of actively dividing the nation. This morning former secretary of defense James Mattis tearing into president trump. Writing we are witnessing the consequences of three years without mature leadership. We can unite without him. In an essay published in the Atlantic magazine Mattis blast the president for threatening to deploy the military to crackdown on protests in US cities. I am your president of law and order. General Mattis writing Donald Trump is the first president in my lifetime who does not try to unite the American people does not even pretend to try at. The former Defense Secretary took aim at the administration's decision to disperse peaceful protesters near the White House Monday. Clearing the way for a prompt photo op outside a church vandalized the previous night. The general saying he took an oath to defend the constitution. And never did I dream that troops taking that same oath would be ordered under any circumstance to violate the constitutional rights of their fellow citizens. Much less to provide a bizarre photo op for the elect a commander in chief with military leadership standing alongside. In a new interview the president defended that photo op. Went there because somebody suggested it was a good idea and I said it was a great idea and it was a great idea. I didn't know there were people around there are not somebody said no there was so peaceful while they tried to burn down the church today before it almost succeeded. The church was badly. Hurt overnight trump also fired back and Mattis calling him the world's most overrated general adding I didn't like you've leadership style or much else about him and many others agree. Glad he is gone. And the white house Press Secretary called Madison statement I sell promotional stunt to appease the DC a lead. President trump of the law and order president that has restored peace to our nation's streets but back in 2016 then president elect trump call Madison. One of the Greek generals. I. Did general George Patton that we have an. Well I. General Mattis resigned as Defense Secretary and 2018 over Trump's plans to pull troops out of Syria. ABC's Martha Raddatz spoke to Mattis last night shortly after his criticism of the president was published. He said enough is enough that he really had tried to stay out of it that he really didn't. Want to directly attack Donald Trump for all this time I have known him for so many years I have known him in a rocket and other. Real battle space says and he is the most a political person you've ever wanted to meet so this is it's really quite remarkable. And now an abrupt reversal from current Defense Secretary Marc Casper the Pentagon had ordered 200 active duty military troops in the DC area to go home. But after experts meeting with the president the Pentagon announced Wednesday night the troops will remain in place. Earlier Kasper told reporters he opposes deploying active duty troops. In response to the protests the option to use active duty forces and a law enforcement role should only be used as a matter of last resort. And only in the most urgent and dire of situations. We are not in one of those situations now. A former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is also condemning the use of tear gas on peaceful protesters. Mark Mullen says the incident outside the White House Monday risk further politicizing our armed forces.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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