The armed forces are not above reproach

Journalists used to see it as their jobs to hold accountable the national defense apparatus that grows fat in Washington, D.C. These days, reporters have become fierce defenders of the military-industrial complex, pouncing on anyone who dares speak against it.

This is a uniquely dangerous development. Placing blind trust in intelligence agencies and military brass gave us the Iraq War, lest we forget.

Tucker Carlson, an unorthodox candidate for the role, has taken up the mantle of military skepticism.

Imagine telling a 2008 liberal that his or her 2020 counterparts would be fighting tooth and nail to defend the military-industrial complex from a Fox News anchor.

When a military enlists commissars to enforce radical doctrines within its ranks while taking on measures to purge people it deems ideologically incompatible, everyone should be concerned. Unfortunately, as these very things transpire within the United States armed forces, few have bothered to cover it critically.

Perhaps it's because people who attempt to do so get dogpiled by the political establishment.

Last week, Carlson ran a segment criticizing Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, for defending the teaching of critical race theory to members of the armed forces. Teaching service members that the country they defend is inherently racist and those in arms who differ in race have interests innately opposed to their own might not be conducive to improving morale and unit cohesion. Advancing the political agenda of the ruling political party by indoctrinating soldiers sounds like something only a dictatorship would do.

For daring to speak truth to power, washed up neoconservatives and self-proclaimed progressives lambasted Carlson. “Disgusting,” “cowardly,” and a liar, they called him — insults more aptly applied to the people hurling them.

Few chose to attack Carlson on the merits of his arguments. Instead, they took offense to his apparent disrespect toward the military. Respecting the armed forces and being critical of particular actions taken by them are not mutually exclusive. By insinuating that any criticism of the military is tantamount to heresy, liberals play a role in creating a hazardous intellectual environment in which any action undertaken by the armed forces, regardless of how morally dubious, is beyond questioning.

Sometimes endorsements of military cronyism occur through omission. Consider Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin. During his confirmation hearing, he stated that the armed forces must “rid [its] ranks of racists and extremists.” These are nebulous terms that could suppress free thought in the military if applied politically. Austin received almost no negative coverage despite clear parallels to Josef Stalin's purge of the Red Army.

Austin also has ties to Raytheon, a defense contractor that receives billions in government contracts annually — a conflict of interest that the allegedly anti-corporate Left should have been keen to jump on. Rather, it chose to muse about how great it is that he happens to be black.

Liberals have abdicated their position as arbiters of military affairs. Conservatives ought to follow Carlson’s lead and replace them, for the good of the republic.

Washington Examiner Videos

Tags: Tucker Carlson, Critical Race Theory, Defense, Lloyd Austin, Mark Milley

Original Author: Robert Schmad

Original Location: The armed forces are not above reproach