Sunday, June 27, 2021

Are AR-15 LARPS Wondering About General Milley's Intentions Toward Them?

greenwald |  Within that domestic War on Terror framework, Gen. Milley, by pontificating on race, is not providing cultural commentary but military dogma. Just as it was central to the job of a top Cold War general to embrace theories depicting Communism as a grave threat, and an equally central part of the job of a top general during the first War on Terror to do the same for Muslim extremists, embracing theories of systemic racism and the perils posed to domestic order by “white rage” is absolutely necessary to justify the U.S. Government's current posture about what war it is fighting and why that war is so imperative.

None of this means that Gen. Milley's defense of critical race theory and woke ideology is purely cynical and disingenuous. The U.S. military is a racially diverse institution and — just as is true for the CIA and FBI — endorsing modern-day theories of racial and gender diversity can be important for workplace cohesion and inspiring confidence in leadership. And many people in various sectors of American life have undergone radical changes in their speech if not their belief system over the last year — that is, after all, the purpose of the sustained nationwide protest movement that erupted in the wake of the killing of George Floyd — due either to conviction, fear of loss of position, or both. One cannot reflexively discount the possibility that Gen. Milley is among those whose views have changed as the cultural climate shifted around him.

But it is preposterously naive and deceitful to divorce Gen. Milley's steadfast advocacy of racial theories from the current war strategy of the U.S. military that he leads. The Pentagon's prime targets, by their own statements, are sectors of the U.S. population that they regard as major threats to the national security of the United States. Embracing theories that depict “white rage” and white supremacy as the source of domestic instability and violence is not just consistent with but necessary for the advancement of that mission. Put another way, the doctrine of the U.S. intelligence and military community is based on race and ideology, and it should therefore be unsurprising that the worldview promoted by top generals is racialist in nature as well.

Whatever else is true, it is creepy and tyrannical to try to place military leaders and their pronouncements about war off-limits from critique, dissent and mockery. No healthy democracy allows military officials to be venerated to the point of residing above critique. That is especially true when their public decrees are central to the dangerous attempt to turn the war posture of the U.S. military inward to its own citizens.

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