Concerns over the announced domestic military exercise known as Jade Helm 15 have been a steady buzz recently. Fueled by a lack of detailed information and a plethora of conspiracy theories. Depending on who you ask, this military exercise is either just an exercise for special forces personnel like Green Berets and Navy SEALs or a prelude to martial law and the internment of political dissidents. The interest in this exercise has made its way into politics as well. The concerns of many have become so great that Texas Governor Greg Abbott announced that the Texas State Guard will monitor the exercise in order to keep Texans informed and “safeguard Texans’ constitutional rights, private property [and] civil liberties.”
Sen. Ted Cruz who spoke at the South Carolina Republican Party’s annual convention Saturday was asked about the Governor’s announcement. Senator Cruz told Bloomberg’s David Weigel, “I have a great deal of faith and confidence in Governor Abbott,” and that “he is a long-time friend and mentor of mine.” Cruz also acknowledged that his office had contacted the Pentagon regarding the conspiratorial concerns surrounding the Jade Helm exercise.
“My office has reached out to the Pentagon to inquire about this exercise,” he said. “We are assured it is a military training exercise. I have no reason to doubt those assurances, but I understand the reason for concern and uncertainty, because when the federal government has not demonstrated itself to be trustworthy in this administration, the natural consequence is that many citizens don’t trust what it is saying.”
Senator Cruz stated that he understands the concern that’s been raised about Jade Helm and that he sees part of the problem being “we have seen for six years, a federal government disrespecting the liberty of the citizens,” an obvious indictment of President Obama leadership. According to RealClearPolitics President Obama has not had a positive approval rating since May 30th of 2013 (48.4 approve/48.1 disapprove) and in Nov. 2014 his disapproval rating peaked at 55.5% vs. 40.1% who approved, making him an easy target for Presidential candidates and fueling the distrust of conspiracy theorists. Whatever Jade Helm 15 may have been intended to be, with all of this attention it is likely to be nothing more than the military exercise that Sen. Cruz was assured it was when it actually takes place this summer.