An Air Force general has been fired after an investigation into comments he made to lower-ranking officers about how talking to members of Congress about the capabilities about the A-10 “Warthog” attack jet was tantamount to treason, the Air Force confirmed Friday.
The comments by Maj. Gen. James Post, the number 2 commander at the Air Combat Command, had a “chilling effect on some of the attendees and caused them to feel constrained from communicating with members of Congress,” according to a report by the Air Force inspector general.
Post spoke to a group of over 300 Air Force officers at a weapons and tactics conference in Nevada on January 10. In response to a question about the status of the A-10, Post was reported to have said that it was their duty to support the service’s budget priorities by not offering opinions inconsistent with those aims.
Post “discussed the importance of loyalty to senior leader decisions and used the word 'treason' in describing his thoughts on communication by Airmen counter to those decisions,” the Air Force said in a statement.
The report concluded that Post's "choice of words had the effect of attempting to prevent some members from lawfully communicating with Congress.”
Post released a statement late Friday in which he apologized for what he described as his “poor choice of words.”
The objective of my comment was simply meant to focus the attention of the audience on working within the command's constraints,” Post said.
“It was sincerely never my intention to discourage anyone's access to their elected officials. I now understand how my poor choice of words may have led a few attendees to draw this conclusion and I offer my humble apology for causing any undue strain on the command and its mission," Post said.
The Associated Press and Fox News' Jennifer Griffin contributed to this report.