Army Commandant Sergeant Major John Wayne Troxell, the military’s top enlisted leader, made threats in a Facebook post on Tuesday evening toward remaining Islamic State (ISIS) fighters.
According to his post, ISIS fighters must surrender, or face violent death at the hands of US troops.
“ISIS needs to understand that the Joint Force is on orders to annihilate them. So, they have two options should they decide to come up against the United States, our allies and partners: surrender or die!” Troxell wrote on Facebook. “If they surrender, we will safeguard them to their detainee facility cell, provide them chow, a cot and due process.”
Troxell continued, “If they choose not to surrender, then we will kill them with extreme prejudice, whether that be through security force assistance, by dropping bombs on them, shooting them in the face, or beating them to death with our entrenching tools.”
When a comment was made regarding the “E-Tool,” Troxell wrote: “ENTRENCHING TOOL – Almost all soldiers carry the entrenching tool. It is a versatile and formidable weapon when used by a soldier with some training. It can be used in its straight position-locked out and fully extended—or with its blade bent in a 90-degree configuration.”
In response to the post, some users, such as Jonathan Scott, felt that the post was an inappropriate and childish “sort of chest-thumping” that is unnecessary, as the “world understands that our might is preeminent,” so that Americans “don’t need to go around acting like insecure macho men.”
Others, like Enrique De La Mora, felt that informative messages, such as Troxell’s, were necessary, as “there are a bunch of clowns who got their hands on some AKs” that aren’t inhibited by America’s might. He suggested the message would serve as “a friendly reminder” of the seriousness of US troops.
Another user, Brian Beasley, explained Troxell’s post, writing, “He wasn’t speaking to the public, this was a speech meant to motivate soldiers going into combat. This article is covering that speech. The people who are offended (Jonathan Scott) are not the target audience so get your panties out of your crack and take a seat snowflakes because there are no safe spaces in combat and if you hesitate you die. This speech is going to save one of their lives when they look back on it in the heat of combat.”
Sergeant Troxell is adviser to General Joe Dunford, the Joint Chiefs chairman, and is the most senior, noncommissioned officer.
According to the Washington Examiner, the military has “virtually defeated the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria under President Trump, who delegated more authority to commanders to wage the fight.”