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Military leaders’ embrace of woke diversity and transgender policies and ideology is corroding the effectiveness of the U.S. military, according to a new report by GOP lawmakers.
Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida and Rep. Chip Roy of Texas, both Republicans, put out a report on the impact of DEI and LGBT initiatives on the U.S. military on Monday. The 18-page report takes shots at some of the top leaders in the U.S. military, such as Gen. Mark Milley, and says that poor leadership is distorting the military’s purpose.
“The United States military is the greatest fighting force in the world. It is also one of the most humble and sacrificial the world has ever known,” the report begins. “Unfortunately, President Joe Biden and his administration are weakening America’s warfighters through a sustained assault fueled by woke virtue signaling.”
“Our military’s singular purpose is to ‘provide for the common defense’ of our nation. It cannot be turned into a left-wing social experiment. It cannot be used as a cudgel against America itself. And it cannot be paralyzed by fear of offending the sensibilities of Ivy League faculty lounges or progressive pundits,” the report’s summary says.
The Department of Defense (DOD) stood by its policies in answer to the report.
“Diversity, inclusion, and equality at its core is about leveraging the strengths of all our people, advancing opportunity, addressing potential barriers or discrepancies, and – fundamentally – ensuring people are treated with dignity and respect. We always talk about weapons systems, yet every one of us will agree that our greatest weapons system are our people. So that’s why our policies to better leverage our people and increase unit cohesion are important here,” a spokesman with the DOD told The Daily Wire in a statement.
The report singles out several top military officials for criticism: Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Milley, who is Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The report also notes the partisan pasts of two top Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) staffers: Bishop Garrison, senior advisor to the U.S. Secretary of Defense on Human Capital and DEI issues, and Kelisa Wing, the DEI head of the Department of Defense Education Activity.
Weeks into President Joe Biden’s term, Austin issued a one-day stand-down order to all service members and civilian employees. The purpose of the stand-down order was to “discuss extremism in the ranks with their personnel.” A follow-up report by the Senate Armed Services committee assessed that, because of the dearth of extremism among U.S. service members, further investment on countering extremism in the military would be an “inappropriate use of taxpayer funds.”
Milley supports “teaching [Critical Race Theory] at U.S. Service Academies” and testified in front of Congress that he is interested in understanding “white rage,” according to the report.
“The Biden Administration is choosing to focus on and fund the study of racial extremism even when … it is a virtual non-issue in the military,” the report says.
DEI has become a top priority for the Biden administration across departments, not just in the Pentagon. The Department of Homeland Security has identified white supremacy as one of the preeminent threats to the United States. In September, the Department of Energy released its first-ever “Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) Strategic Plan to underscore the Department’s commitment to creating a workplace that celebrates Americans of all backgrounds.”
The commitment to DEI has bled into the U.S. Special Forces. The United States Special Operations Command’s 2021 Diversity and Inclusion Strategic Plan states that “diversity and inclusion are operational imperatives.”
“The only goal of our Special Forces should be effectiveness. Every other consideration must be subordinate to and in service of that end,” the report says. “[F]orcing our military to engage in DEI trainings encourages supporting and advancing people on criteria other than competence and ability to carry out a mission.”
According to Rubio and Roy, the military has lowered its standards for health and fitness to allow transgender people and those diagnosed with gender dysphoria into the ranks of the military. The process began under former President Barack Obama, was reversed under former President Donald Trump, and reinstated under Biden.
“People cannot even enlist with Invisalign or braces until they are removed. And yet, today’s woke military is now proudly promoting and celebrating sex reassignment procedures, which can have months-long recovery periods, with complete recovery taking ‘up to one year’ for some procedures,” the report says.
The highest levels of the U.S. military lack accountability for mistakes, the report says. One glaring example of this is the disastrous U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, in which 13 U.S. service members were killed and hundreds of Afghans in a terror attack on Kabul’s Hamid Karzai International Airport. A retaliatory strike against a target believed to be a terrorist accidently killed 10 civilians, including seven children.
“The only service member who received a reprimand from the Afghanistan debacle was a lieutenant colonel who criticized the way the withdrawal was executed. What this officer did was concerning. Despite a gag order, while in uniform he used government property to harshly criticize superiors while there were still boots on the ground in Kabul. This is certainly improper behavior,” the report states.
“Nevertheless, the hypocrisy is glaring. It is outrageous that the woke Biden Administration held him to account while leaders whose decisions resulted in the deaths of service members and billions of dollars’ worth of equipment falling into enemies’ hands went unpunished,” it concludes.