PENTAGON WATCH – As I wrote previously – “Despite serious constitutional concerns, lack of evidence to justify the effort, and even top commanders’ stating that they have ‘zero extremists’ in their ranks, the Biden Pentagon continues its dangerous, shamelessly politicized, McCarthy-like witch hunt against conservatives in the U.S. military.” Leading this controversial effort is Bishop Garrison, a polarizing former army officer and West Point graduate.
Despite his honorable military service, including two tours in Iraq where he earned two Bronze Stars, and a Combat Action Badge, his ideologically biased and highly partisan political views and statements leave much to be desired. His radical views have been lambasted by critics due to his influential new Pentagon role.
As the Daily Caller reported, “Garrison said in no uncertain terms just two years ago, prior to his appointment by Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin to lead the Pentagon’s countering extremism working group, that supporters of Trump support extremism and racism.”
He’s dragging a lot of bad actors (misogynist, extremists, other racists) out into the light, normalizing their actions. If you support the President, you support that. There is no room for nuance with this. There is no more “but I’m not like that” talk.
— Bishop Garrison (@BishopGarrison) July 28, 2019
Support for him, a racist, is support for ALL his beliefs. He’s dragging a lot of bad actors (misogynist, extremists, other racists) out into the light, normalizing their actions. If you support the President, you support that. There is no room for nuance with this. There is no more ‘but I’m not like that’ talk. — Bishop Garrison (@BishopGarrison) July 28, 2019
Some would argue, as I have, that his comments identify Garrison as a left-wing racialist extremist.
Last month, soon after Garrison’s tweets surfaced, Fox News host, and army veteran, Pete Hegseth described Garrison as the Pentagon’s “MAGA purge man” while discussing the Pentagon’s highly politicized anti-extremism efforts.
While his defenders try to justify Garrison’s comments because he was responding to President Trump’s criticism of the late Democrat Congressman Elijah Cummings, for ineffectively representing crime-ridden Baltimore, Maryland, which Trump called “a disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess,” there is no defense for Garrison’s comments.
Comments like those he made against all Trump supporters should bar Garrison from any policy position in the federal government, but especially from a position where he will be the arbiter of what is or is not defined as ‘extremism’ at the Pentagon. Yet, despite Garrison’s publicly stated belief that all Trump supporters are racist extremists, Biden’s Defense Department has doubled down on supporting him.
“The Department has full confidence Mr. Garrison can lead the Counter Extremism Working Group as it carries out its mission,” a spokesperson for the Department, reported the Daily Caller. “The Department is focused on addressing the corrosive and potentially dangerous behavior that can be inspired by extremist ideology – behavior that harms good order and discipline and our readiness.”
However, disturbingly, the Pentagon has yet to provide any data or statistics to show where this so-called extremist threat exists in our military, or how it is currently harming ‘good order and discipline and … readiness.’
Reinforcing the ‘witch hunt,’ or ‘fishing expedition’ nature of this politicized effort, Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby said during a May 18 press conference that:
Mr. Garrison is leading the extremist working group on a number of efforts to try to help us come to grips with learning how — what the scope and scale of the problem of extremist activity in the ranks really is, and helping us divine some potential solutions, going forward.
How can the Pentagon insist there is a huge extremist problem that needs addressing, while simultaneously admitting they need to ‘come to grips’ with ‘what the scope and scale of the problem of extremist activity in the ranks really is’?
Garrison is also a vocal advocate for the radical 1619 project, having defended it against criticisms from historians in a 2019 essay calling extremism and white supremacy existential threats to the nation.
In response to the growing concerns about Garrison and the extremism effort, on May 26, 30 Republican members of the House signed a letter complaining of “creeping left-wing extremism” in the military. The letter, which was led by Rep. Matt Rosendale and co-signed by Paul Gosar (R-AZ), Greg Steube (R-FL), and others, called on Sec. Austin to “fight back” against extremism from the left.
Despite partisan and ideological attempts to exaggerate the ‘extremist threat,’ a recent study from George Washington University and the U.S. Military Academy at West Point found that only about 12% (43 out of 357) of the people charged with rioting at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 had ‘some form of military experience.’
This is almost in line with the percentage of veterans across the entire adult US population – 10%. There are 19 million veterans in the US. ADN