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What happens when military leadership doesn’t match the troops’ values?

Written By | Jul 21, 2021
troops, military, leadership, race, critical race theory,

SAN DIEGO, Nov. 7, 2019. Staff Sgt. Peter Santiago, a drill instructor with Echo Company, 2nd Recruit Training Battalion, inspects his platoon prior to participating in their family day ceremony at Marine Corps Recruit Depot. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Zachary T. Beatty

SAN DIEGO. Those who have served for years are seeing the values they risked their lives for slipping away in today’s military. For generations, America’s warriors were taught traditions of ‘duty, honor, commitment, and country.’ Our troops worked with heroes and legends and benefitted from their wisdom. Legacy military families offered up decades of freedom fighters for this nation. Yet, they now stop and rethink what to tell their kids about joining up.

The ‘FREE’ America they defended is under attack by those actively seeking to replace her.

“What would our military be like if Marines were taught to assess their fellow Marines’ trustworthiness or capability based on the color of their skin?” asks the Heritage Foundation.

There’s no racism in a Taliban or ISIS ambush. No ‘color coding’ in a foxhole bombarded by enemy tanks and mortars. The subject of race matters not when cheating death delivered by adversaries of the U.S.

To one military officer, the core of service equals moral courage and integrity. Thousands devoted their lives to building that within the ranks that fight for this Republic nation. Yet today’s troops are taught America is a bad country as…

Un-American ideas invade military academia.

General Mark Milley, America’s top military officer defends teaching Critical Race Theory (CRT) to Army cadets at West Point, reports the Heritage Foundation.

Our troops face tremendous hardships. Differences are set aside and steel-clad bonding occurs for the good of the mission. Top leaders fall short when they break these bonds with divisive racism.

“The United States Military Academy is a university, and it is important that we train and we understand, and I want to understand white rage, and I’m white,” says Milley

Yet, white, yellow, black, or brown matters not when someone steps on an IED. And they bleed out of stumps that were once legs. Or struggle to breathe when peppered with bullets. Ask any Corpsman, doctor, nurse or anyone administering battlefield medicine if skin color matters when saving lives.

Admiral Michael Gilday placed Ibram X Kendi’s book, “How to Be an Antiracist,” on the Navy’s 2021 reading list. Shouldn’t the focus be on how to fight aggression from China, Russia, North Korea, and Iran on the open seas? Shouldn’t our armed forces be reading “Sun Tzu’s The Art of War“? Or lessons gained from those before them?

Leaders like Gilday promote an equitable, rather than exceptional mindset.

Troops of the past excelled, conquered with lessons on critical thinking. Not CRT.

Senator Jim Banks (R-Indiana) blasted Gilday, saying he is “flabbergasted by the Navy’s decision to officially endorse such a harmful and subversive book” and called on Gilday to provide him “with a written response explaining  ‘How to be an Antiracist’ cultivates a culture of warfighting excellence,’ or remove ‘How to be an Antiracist’ from the CNO-PRP Reading List,” reports Fox News, adding,

“As a former service member, the claim that ‘How to Be an Antiracist’ is consistent with the Navy’s core values is troubling,” the congressman wrote. “In Kendi’s own words, the defining idea behind the book is that: ‘there is no such thing a not-racist idea,’ there are only, ‘racist ideas and antiracist ideas.'”

Racism breaks down the military unit and purpose; it strips individuality.

No two warriors are the same. They rely on combined personal strengths to accomplish the mission. Cohesion is vital to survival. CRT injects doubt negating ‘who can I trust’ based on color differences. You can’t have that in combat confrontations.

Think of the psychological impact on young men and women sent to war musing on left-wing ideology. ‘America is a sham used by whites to oppress’ is a dialogue that threatens their abilities to destroy those who would subjugate.

Are today’s military leaders focused on winning battles and troop loyalties? Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin’s first order of business was to purge the ranks for extremism kicking in the wall of trust. Remember the 20-year Army recruiting slogan, “Be All You Can Be?” For thousands who earned the right to wear the uniform, things have changed.

Woke extremism hurts our military.

And because of that, some great people are opting out.

Sgt. Major of the Army Michael Grinston “opened the floodgates” when he recently asked why soldiers are leaving the Army.

One military member said, “I stopped feeling like I mattered. Like what I was doing was insignificant.”

Another man said on Facebook, “it got stupid.”

Task and Purpose reported a list of other reasons.

Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas) revealed reports of whistleblowers in the armed forces.

Members said that combatting “extremism” has replaced traditional military training. Resulting in morale plummeting and mistrust growing between races and sexes where it didn’t exist 6 months ago, says Cotton as he pressed Austin, stated in a report by PJ Media. Whistleblowers Explain How Biden’s Woke ‘Extremism’ Training Is Tearing the Military Apart

“One Marine told us that military history training session was replaced with mandatory training on police brutality, white privilege, and systemic racism. He reported that several officers are now leaving his unit citing that training,” the senator reported.” 

“One African-American officer disparagingly said, and I quote, ‘the Navy thinks my only value is as a Black woman’ and not the fact that she is a highly trained military specialist.”

“Soldiers have come forward to tell us that they have been forced to watch videos about systemic racism and documentaries that rewrite America’s history as a fundamentally racist and evil nation,” says Cotton.

“A midshipman at the Naval Academy said that classmates are calling America a fundamentally racist place and that this sentiment is not contested by school administrators.”

An airman told us their unit was forced into a racist exercise called a ‘privilege walk’ where members of the wing were ordered to separate themselves by race and gender in order to stratify people based on their perceived privilege.”

Leadership is accountable to the ranks. As much as ranks are accountable to leadership.

As America pulls out of Afghanistan, some are claiming to be victim to the lies by our country’s military leaders. Military members put faith-filled trust in their leaders as they engage in the most dangerous situations imaginable. Political sway overshadows the battle at hand –

“The promise that victory was just around the corner proved intoxicating to presidents and politicians, not to mention everyday Americans,” writes veteran Timothy Kudo.

He deployed as a captain with 1st Battalion, 8th Marines in Afghanistan in 2010, 2011. Kudo struggles with guilt associated with moral injury. He offers his own ‘I was there’ perspective in Blame the Generals for Our Defeat in Afghanistan. 

Officers argue that “an unwinnable war could be won.” Yet a winning strategy eludes both governments’ hands when it comes to Afghanistan.

Ex: at the end of 2009, Obama put an 18-month deadline on the surge of 30,000 troops.

“The timeline was just sprung on us.… And we were then asked, are you all OK with that? [Obama] went around the room and everyone said yes. And it was take it or leave it,” said Gen. David H. Petraeus.

Petraeus admitting 40,000 additional troops were the minimum needed. As well as the mission would take much longer. But he didn’t say it. Instead he and other generals in charge, according to Kudo, gave misleading assessments of the war. Rather than being “straight with the American people.”

In 2011, Petraeus testified to the Senate Armed Services Committee alongside Michele Flournoy, the Undersecretary of Defense for policy. “Key insurgent safe havens have been taken away from the Taliban, numerous insurgent leaders have been killed or captured. Hundreds of reconcilable midlevel leaders and fighters have been reintegrated into Afghan society.”

Flournoy added, “Our strategy is working.”

Petraeus’ report reflects a one-sided misleading picture that leaves out failure and loss. Which, ultimately led to untold successes, but at great cost. Causing burdens to carry. Can’t imagine if CRT was a focus then.

Command shoulders both victory and failure.

It takes strong leadership and fortitude to send men to battle when lives are on the line each day. They witness the best and worst outcomes of warfighting. It’s important to recognize why leaders want to spare families of loss or perceived failures. Although, those in the fray want the truth to be told.

Ultimately, embracing failure helps build resilience and moral courage.

No doubt, leaders carry the brunt of the loss of their troops. Yet loss need not equate to failure or fear of failure. There’s a saying that ‘one must fail to ultimately succeed.’ Failure and loss lead to prioritizing, minimizing risk, and ramping up for a new and better fight. Sometimes failure is not an option. Ultimately, war is a violent affair.

Yet military leaders today are teaching troops to think they have failed their fellow man right out of the gate. Defending CRT over traditional talk of battlefield bonding they need during and after the fight.

The war in Afghanistan was always “unwinnable,” is what we hear today. But not to countless heroes giving all to win. Their efforts to take out the Taliban covered a wide swath of geographical areas. Merciless Taliban fighters found death at their door so the local population could flourish. Check out past battles in troubled areas like Helmand Province, Kandahar, Farah, and Kunduz.

The Battle for Sangin in Helmand Province is forthcoming. Sangin Darkhorse Marines reunite to honor fallen brother in upcoming documentary.

The Taliban met their match and more with U.S. fighters.

These storied fighters relied on training, on storied leadership who loved and believed in them. All stoked to defend a nation they hold dear. What passions, training will tomorrow’s fighters take to the next battle? Will CRT and mistrust save them from harm or bring them victory? Or soothe their post-combat burdens?

Taliban resilience endures. They claim they now hold 80% of Afghanistan. As U.S. troops withdraw, ghost bases speak volumes of once thriving operational centers. Bagram Airfield, once the largest U.S. hub in America’s longest war, is a deserted relic. The sounds of brave patriotic men and women are fleeting whispers in the wind.

America’s military did not fight for a socialist or Marxist country in any war.

Conversely, they fought against it.

Yesterday, Col. Oliver North released his new book We Didn’t Fight for Socialism: America’s Veterans Speak Up. Appearing on Hannity North describes the worst day of his life as when the first soldier died in his arms. He never forgets. Many veterans relate with similar experiences seared into their psyche.

Moral courage and integrity keep our military the finest fighting force ever created. Leading to opportunities for our future sons and daughters to work with military heroes and legends, too.


Read more from Patriot Profiles by Jeanne McKinney


About the Author:

Senior Staff Writer for CommDigiNews, Jeanne McKinney is an award-winning writer whose focus and passion is our United States active-duty military members and military news. Her Patriot Profiles offer an inside look at the amazing active-duty men and women in all Armed Services, including U.S. Marine Corps, Navy, Army, Air Force, Coast Guard, and National Guard.

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Jeanne McKinney

Senior Staff Writer for CommDigiNews, Jeanne McKinney is an award-winning writer whose focus and passion is our United States active-duty military members and military news. Her Patriot Profiles offer an inside look at the amazing active-duty men and women in all Armed Services, including U.S. Marine Corps, Navy, Army, Air Force, Coast Guard, and National Guard. Reporting includes first-hand accounts of combat missions in Iraq and Afghanistan, the fight against violent terror groups, global defense, tactical training and readiness, humanitarian and disaster relief assistance, next-generation defense technology, family survival at home, U.S. port and border protection and illegal immigration, women in combat, honoring the Fallen, Wounded Warriors, Military Working Dogs, Crisis Response, and much more. Starting in 2012, McKinney has won multiple San Diego Press Club “Excellence in Journalism Awards,” including eight “First Place” honors, as well as multiple second and third place recognition for her Patriot Profiles published printed articles. Including awards for Patriot Profiles military films. During the year 2020, McKinney has written and had published dozens of investigative articles in her ongoing fight to preserve America the Republic, the Constitution, and its laws. One such story selected for use in a legal brief in the national fight for 2020 election integrity.