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GOP Senator Corners Biden's Joint Chiefs Chairman Pick with Piercing 'White Officers' Question

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The leadership of the American military was on the line, but it was the culture wars that were front and center.

When Air Force Gen. Charles Q. Brown, President Joe Biden’s choice as the next chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, appeared before the Senate Armed Services Committee on Tuesday, GOP members zeroed in on the “diversity” ideology and leftist agenda that’s seeping into the military’s internal affairs.

But it was one question that really nailed the point.

Missouri Republican Sen. Eric Schmitt drilled down on Brown’s clear commitment — some might read it as obsession — to “diversity” in the military.

Schmitt cited a memo Brown signed on Aug. 9 last year outlining goals for the Air Force’s pool of applicants for commissioned officer positions.

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The memo used strikingly specific percentages of racial and sexual breakdowns for the officer applicant pool — 24.5 percent white female, say, or 8.5 percent black male. Only a niggling 0.5 percent is allotted for each sex of “Native Hawaiian / Other Pacific Islander.” The numbers are based on the U.S. population as a whole, but that’s a strange way to want to build anything, much less a military.

More to the point, as the Air Force Times noted in an Aug. 30, 2022, report, the memo’s target of 67.5 percent is far lower than the 76.8 percent whites who made up the officer corps at the time.

And Schmitt came down hard.

“General,” he began his questioning. “Do we have too many white officers? In the Air Force?”

Check out a portion of the exchange here:

(The full video of the hearing can be seen here. Schmitt’s questioning begins about the 2:16:20 mark.)

And while the memo specifically stated that the goals are “aspirational” and “will not be used in any manner that undermines our merit-based processes,” the rest of the wording had a different tone entirely.

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“You are directed to develop a diversity and inclusion outreach plan aimed at achieving these goals no later than 30 September 2022,” Brown wrote to the Air Force Academy and the branch’s Air Education and Training Command.

So, the Air Force chief of staff issued a directive on “diversity” that orders subordinates to come up with a plan inside of seven weeks — and that’s supposed to be just “aspirational”? It’s a rock-solid bet that any career officer getting that note from a superior, much less the branch’s chief of staff, would take it as bone-dead serious.

Schmitt also slammed the Biden administration’s overall push to “infuse” the military with the progressive agenda.

“This administration has infused abortion politics into our military, COVID politics into our military, DEI politics into our military, and it is a cancer on the best military in the history of the world. Those men and women deserve better than this,” he said.

“DEI is an ideology based in cultural Marxism. And somehow, some way, we ended up in a place where a general of the Air Force is advocating for racial quotas, whether it be by applicants or the number of officers, or maybe the total unit. And I just think that’s wrong.”

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Most Americans agree, judging by the polling that followed the Supreme Court’s decision on June 29 to end affirmative action in higher education. A majority of Americans supported the high court’s decision, according to ABC News.

To be clear, Brown didn’t just end up in the Senate hearing on Tuesday because he wandered in from a Democratic Party-approved Black Lives Matter rally.

He’s had a distinguished military career, serving the country with apparently unquestionable valor. For his accomplishments so far, he’s earned his country’s gratitude and respect.

He was confirmed as Air Force Chief of Staff in June 2020 on a 98-0 vote after being nominated by then-President Donald Trump. In a Twitter post, marked by Trump’s penchant for enthusiastic uppercase letters, the then-president called Brown “a Patriot and a Great Leader.”

Earlier in his career, according to The Washington Post, Brown “helped engineer and direct the air campaign credited with dislodging the Islamic State group from its self-declared caliphate in Syria and Iraq.”

And before taking command of the Air Force, he commanded the branch in the Pacific, with a first-hand view of China’s growing aggressiveness.

So, he’s not a piker and would likely win overall Senate approval — though Sen. Tommy Tuberville of Alabama has put a blanket hold on military promotions over the Biden administration’s abortion-in-the-military policies.

But the country has seen enough of politized leadership in the Joints Chiefs of Staff. And if there’s any doubt that Brown’s nomination is political, the fact that Biden chose May 25 of all days — the third anniversary of the death of the drug-abusing, career criminal George Floyd in Minneapolis — to announce Brown’s nomination should put that to rest.

Army Gen. Mark Milley, the current Joint Chiefs chairman, is term-limited out at the end of September.

His peculiar blend of demonstrable incompetence in the job, hostility toward Trump and near-servile spinelessness under the Biden administration’s progressive agenda and its calamitous withdrawal from Afghanistan have infuriated millions of Americans and helped create the current crisis in military recruitment.

The questions Schmitt was asking deserve better answers than Brown was giving.

And the country would be better served if he concentrated on fighting foreign wars — and left the culture wars to politics.

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Joe has spent more than 30 years as a reporter, copy editor and metro desk editor in newsrooms in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Florida. He's been with Liftable Media since 2015.
Joe has spent more than 30 years as a reporter, copy editor and metro editor in newsrooms in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Florida. He's been with Liftable Media since 2015. Largely a product of Catholic schools, who discovered Ayn Rand in college, Joe is a lifelong newspaperman who learned enough about the trade to be skeptical of every word ever written. He was also lucky enough to have a job that didn't need a printing press to do it.
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