Max Braegher was the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
General Braegher was responsible for briefing President Garrett Walker when Chinese destroyers entered the Yaeyama Islands (Chapters 23-, 24). He was present at Camp David during Walker’s resignation, and was ready to immediately serve the new president, Frank Underwood (Chapter 26). Braegher was present during the drone strike on a Yemeni terrorist named Abdullah, as well as the Jordan Valley fiasco (Chapters 27, 35). When Igor Milkin requested asylum in the United States, Braegher helped arrange his escape to Estonia, and was completely taken aback when Acting President Donald Blythe ordered that Milkin land in China instead (Chapters 41, 43).
As the political landscape changed, a new threat became apparent: ICO . Braegher joined his old friend and fellow general Ted Brockhart in trying to persuade Underwood to take action; Underwood’s refusal, and Brockhart’s subsequent resignation, would result in Braegher’s loyalty to the President being shaken (Chapter 46). Braegher and the other members of the National Security Council urged Underwood to strike at ICO-controlled oilfields, but the President refused, partially due to his own feud with Cathy Durant (Chapter 49). Ultimately, Underwood agreed to the airstrikes, but also wanted to land Special Forces, a step Braegher was very hesitant to take (Chapter 50). He was present during the operations against Joshua Masterson and Zachary Hawthorne , and witnessed James Miller's beheading (Chapters 51, 52).
Attempted Coup and Resignation
General Braegher disagreed with Director of National Intelligence Vanessa Morrison over the apprehension of Ahmed al-Ahmadi : Braegher believed that al-Ahmadi should be followed so his contacts could be discovered, while Morrison advocated for taking the terrorist out while they had the chance. Acting President Claire Underwood sided with Morrison. When a container of radioactive Caesium went missing, Braegher advocated for immediate evacuation of the Capitol, claiming that ICO was behind the missing container and that Underwood was to blame for not stopping the terrorist group earlier. Underwood began to suspect that Braegher was up to something, and his suspicion was deepened when he discovered that the General was an old friend of Brockhart’s. These suspicions were backed up by Morrison, and confirmed when the Caesium was found safe and sound. Claire called General Braegher to the White House and gave him two options: resign, or name the other parties (namely Brockhart) involved in what Frank deemed an “attempted coup.” Braegher chose to resign (Chapter 59).
General Braegher is a career military officer, and displayed the characteristic manner of one, rarely speaking unless spoken to. It thus came as a surprise to Underwood when Braegher began openly arguing with him in the Situation Room.
- (To Claire Underwood ) "You don't deserve to be in the White House, neither you nor your husband." (Chapter 59)
Behind the Scenes
General Max Braegher is portrayed by actor Julian Gamble.