Dana Perino asks Pentagon spox John Kirby about ‘wokeness in the military,’ only to get canned reply

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(Source: Fox News)

The pro-diversity principal spokesman for the Pentagon has denied that the U.S. military has gone woke at the expense of military readiness.

In an interview on Fox News Sunday, during which he claimed that diplomacy could still avert conflict between Russia and Ukraine, retired Navy Admiral John Kirby fielded  a question about the wokeness issue with an boiler-plate answer that critics, including many GOP elected officials, probably won’t find particularly reassuring.

“[There’s] some criticism in the U.S. military that perhaps there’s too much of a leftward tilt, or a wokeness, in our military, when we face really determined adversaries, committed adversaries in China, Russia, Iran, who maybe don’t have those same kind of pressures,” Dana Perino said.

Perino — one of a rotating series of hosts for the show once anchored by Chris Wallace — inquired of the Defense Department press secretary: “How do you respond to those criticisms?”

“It depends on what they are, but I think a lot of it, quite frankly, is driving a stake through a straw man here, this argument of wokeness in the military,” Kirby responded.

“I was in the military for 30 years, and I can tell you things like diversity and inclusion, that makes us a better military, because it brings to the fore, in the decision-making, operational decision-making, that we conduct, better ideas, more unique perspectives, somebody else’s lived experiences, which might actually make a smarter on the battlefield. So we know those kind of arguments, I think, are ridiculous, because we are a stronger military because of our diversity and because we represent all Americans, just like we defend all Americans.”

Conservative influencer Jesse Kelly, a Marine Corps veteran, has warned that under the Biden administration, the U.S. could lose a major war if it continues to get sidetracked by diversity, equity, and inclusion instead of focusing on preparedness.

BPR has reported on numerous examples of go-along-to-get-along military leadership —  perhaps such as those generals who botched the disastrous troop withdrawal from Afghanistan — pushing the identity politics agenda.

Recall that Gen. Mark Milley, the Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman, in Capitol Hill testimony last year, sounded like a fan of critical race theory and someone who immersed himself in the writings of Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin, and Mao Zedong. Upon taking office, SecDef Lloyd Austin ordered a 60-day stand down to address extremism in the military.

Separately, the military has begun discharging service members who have declined to get the COVID jab in the midst of sweeping denials of religious exemption requests.

Back in March 2021, around the time when Admiral Kirby rebuked Fox News host Tucker Carlson for finding fault with the woke military, historian and frequent FNC guest Victor Davis Hanson offered various reasons for the leftward tilt, to use Perino’s terminology, in the U.S. Armed Forces:

One, the left now dotes on what it envisions will soon be a woke military. It believes the chain of command can green-light progressive social changes — from women in combat units to timely displays of massive force on the streets of Washington — without bureaucratic red tape or opposition from Congress.

Two, federal agencies in therapeutic fashion now often dilute their traditional missions to accommodate social-awareness agendas…

Three, there grows a new class rift between the rank-and-file military and the Pentagon’s top current and retired brass.

Increasingly, some brass spend extended tenures inside the Pentagon or within the Beltway, attached to the White House or Congress. They master the contours of the military-industrial complex and profit from them upon retirement. Many acquiesce to now-orthodox progressive ideology, which is omnipresent among federal bureaucracies and much of Congress.

Whereas all administrations used to prioritize traditional military preparedness, leftist administrations now see the military as a tool for accelerating their progressive domestic changes. The elite members of the military adjust, given that careers and promotions are either enhanced or sidetracked accordingly.

As a result, many of our top brass are far more politicized than in the past, and can grow more ideologically distant from lower-ranking officers and enlisted personnel.


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