Senator Aggressively Challenges Biden Defense Secretary Over ‘Woke’ Pentagon Policies

Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III briefs the press from the Pentagon Briefing Room, Washington, D.C., Feb. 19, 2021. (DoD Photo by U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Jack Sanders).

PENTAGON WATCH – At a Thursday Senate hearing Senator Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) challenged Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin over the Pentagon’s latest woke diversity and race policies. I have been critical of these policies, which include Critical Race Theory (CRT) concepts rooted in neo-Marxist ideology. I’ve written about this issue hereherehere, and here.

Austin refused to give Cotton a yes or no answer, when asked whether he thought the military is a “fundamentally racist organization.” Instead, according to The Hill, Austin replied:

I won’t give you a yes-or-no answer on that, senator, because it deserves more than a yes or no. The military, like any organization, will have its challenges, but I do not believe it is a fundamentally racist organization.

The terse exchange, with Cotton interjecting Austin’s comments frequently, followed Cotton and Representative Dan Crenshaw’s (R-Texas) launching  a web portal for “whistleblowers” to report examples of “woke ideology” in the military. Both Cotton and Crenshaw are combat veterans.

Cotton, a Ranger qualified Army officer, served in Iraq with the 101st Airborne and in Afghanistan. Crenshaw, a former Navy SEAL officer, lost an eye to an EID in Afghanistan in 2012.

While leftist Twitter users mocked the effort, with jokes about plotlines from “A Few Good Men,” “M.A.S.H.” and other war movies and TV shows, Cotton said that he and Crenshaw have received “several hundred whistleblower complaints,” reading some of those complaints at the Senate Armed Services Committee hearing where Austin was testifying.

Mr. Secretary, we’re hearing reports of plummeting morale, growing mistrust between the races and sexes, where none existed just six months ago, and unexpected retirements and separations based on these trainings alone. And again, these are not my words. These are the words of your own troops.

“Mr. Secretary, I’m sorry to cut you off; our time is limited. It is a very simple question. Should a member of the organization you lead be treated differently, in violation of the Constitution, I would add, based on their sex or the color of their skin?” Cotton interjected.

“Again, this question deserves more than a yes-or-no answer,” Austin replied. But he added: “I do not believe that, and that is why we have diversity, equity, and inclusion focus in the military.”

Cotton then said that “the military for decades has been one of the institutions in this society where you are most likely to get ahead based on your own performance, on your own merit, irrespective of the color of your skin or where you came from or who your parents were.”

“I absolutely agree with that, and I am an example of that. But I would also — I would also say that—” Austin said, trying to speak over Cotton before being cut off. ADN

Paul Crespo is the Managing Editor of American Defense News. A defense and national security expert, he served as a Marine Corps officer and as a military attaché with the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) at US embassies worldwide. Paul holds degrees from Georgetown, London, and Cambridge Universities. He is also CEO of SPECTRE Global Risk, a security advisory firm, and President of the Center for American Defense Studies, a national security think tank.

Subscribe
Notify of
guest
16 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
John Kociuba
John Kociuba
3 months ago

Soviet Negro Republic Lloyd Austin knows exactly what “critical race theory” “white fragility” “dialectical materialism” “1619 project” “toxic masculinity” are and who created it!

COMMUNISTS!

Moe
Moe
3 months ago

General Lloyd Austin III, achieved the rank of General, long before he met his hero Globalist comrade Obama. His military career is filled with achievements and was given honorable recognition for them. Why he told 60 minutes he suffered so much discrimination after holding the highest ranks in the army outside of the few 5 star generals who organized the world wars is troubling. He openness to hunt down conservatives as extremest, to the illegal dictatorship does not shock me if he is another unthankful success due to America like Obama. He needs to stick his critical race theory where the sun does not shine. Otherwise, No one can deny he was a loyal faithful soldier and an over achiever due to intelligence.

Sara DeCapua
Sara DeCapua
3 months ago
Reply to  Moe

If he follows the dictates of this corrupt administration, he will be complicit in the destruction of the United States of America and he will no longer be considered a faithful soldier as far as I’m concerned. There is no place for woke ideology in the military.

Roy
Roy
3 months ago

Thanks Republican senators for approving all of Biden’s appointments. Cowering under your desks to avoid media criticism is becoming to your lack of character.

Medd
3 months ago
Reply to  Roy

The Republicans need to grow a backbone and then step up for America.

Elizabeth Estrada aka CHIAKIA

LISTEN UP….AMERICA is CHANGING and NOT for the BETTER. WE were ALL CREATED to PLEASE GOD and NOT Ourselves. WHEN PEOPLE Do THINGS Against the WAYS of the LORD…GOD Will CURSE Them and NOT BLESS Them. From SamuraiQueen. 😄😄😄

nemo
nemo
3 months ago

Making problems where there were none????? Poor youngsters, they will never know the America we “old folk” grew up in … Today, it appears to me the Democrats want to separate us on the basis of skin color, sexual preference, and will not be happy until there is hatred demonstrated … then they can “come in” as some entity to “unify” … there must be some sort of sickness running amok….. What happened to the Roman Empire??? The country is lost…..

Pgb
Pgb
3 months ago

It is sad indeed what these sick wokesters are doing to destroy the world’s finest military!

oldedude
oldedude
3 months ago

During Vietnam, racial issues in the Military reached a crisis stage but much of that reflected what was happening in the society at large – the Civil Rights movement, the Black Panthers and race riots, etc. As the nation calmed, so did the Military and, as Sen. Cotton observed, in short order the Military probably became the least racist organization in the country for the very simple reason that, when people are trying to kill you, the only color that matters is that of the uniform on the guy next to you. Now that ethos is being destroyed by ideologues with no understanding or appreciation of Military culture or life. Integration of females into the military has been a bit rougher “go” but that is largely the consequence of the determination of the civilian world to dictate the ways and means of integrating them, with policies and procedures utterly divorced from Military realities. It is time for this insanity to stop and for the brass to stand up and say “NO”..

Lee
Lee
3 months ago

I served 33 years in the Air Force. I served as a direct report to five 4-star general, AF and Army, including George Brown (CJCS) and Al Haig (SACEUR). I never, not once, ever had the feeling that my boss felt a political allegiance to the currently reigning party. Their allegiance was always to the troops and the military mission. Everything that SECDEF Austin has done in the past six months has appeared to me to be political! Nuff said!

JDAVIS951
JDAVIS951
3 months ago

WE THE PEOPLE NEED TO DEMAND CONGRESS IMPEACH BIDEN AND HARRIS!

WE THE PEOPLE (aka SILENT MAJORITY) had countless opportunities to have stopped this nightmare, but we chose to give the DEMOCRATS what they expected of us, to REMAIN SILENT! Thus, making us equally complicit in the fraud perpetrated against United States Americans!

Isn’t it time you actually did something, took action? How much more damage needs to be done?

I urge everyone who reads this to PICK UP THE PHONE and call your REP AND SENATORS in DC and DEMAND IMMEDIATE IMPEACHMENT OF BIDEN AND HARRIS.

BIDEN is completely UNFIT FOR OFFICE! Biden is guilty of 18 U.S. Code §2381 TREASON, 18 U.S. Code §2382 SEDITION, 18 U.S. Code §2384 Seditious Conspiracy Crimes against Humanity and Subversive Activities.

HARRIS is guilty of violating 18 US Code §2381 Treason, 18 US Code §2382 Misprision of Treason, 18US Code §2383 Rebellion or Insurrection, 18 US Code §2384 Seditious Conspiracy and 18 US CODE §2385 Advocating Overthrow of Government!

Democrats want to legalize anarchy and ban law and order.

Then copy and paste this information into an E-Mail and send to friends and family asking them to make the calls, then forward on to their friends asking them to make the calls and forward on! WE NEED TO MAKE THIS GO VIRAL!

Members of the House
202-224-3841

Members of the Senate
202-224-3121

TOLL FREE:
866-272-6622

Keep in mind:  SILENCE = ACCEPTANCE

Omega 2
Omega 2
3 months ago

TIME FOR THIS ” YES OR NO ” IDIOT TO BE REPLACED! HE IS SCREWING UP THE MORAL OF THE WHOLE MILITARY COMPLEX INCLUDING THE MILITARY ACADEMY’S!

trackback

[…] Senator Aggressively Challenges Biden Defense Secretary Over ‘Woke’ Pentagon Policies […]

Jawad
Jawad
3 months ago

Lloyd Austin was obviously not in the same Army as I was. Blacks were treated with respect and some were routinely given more benefit of the doubt than I was, no questions asked. Commanders had to beware of them, for certain black operators were like loose cannons ready to launch mobs at the least excuse.

Pawn
Pawn
2 months ago

I would have stoped that liar austin when he said it requires mire than a yes or no answer to direct questions. I would have also asked why he wasn’t teaching about the harm and how bad the riots were that blm/antifa used. I would have told austin he doesn’t deserve to direct a school crossing much less the armed forces/

trackback

[…] WATCH – Tied to a contentious hearing with Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin that I reported on last week, Senator Tom Cotton (R-Ark) released a list of 28 written complaints from troops about woke […]


People, Places & Things