The Pentagon has been concerned about prohibiting and addressing extremist activities in the services since 1969. In the wake of the Capital riots of Jan 6, 2021, Secretary of Defense (SecDef) Austin directed a department-wide stand down to educate Department of Defense (DoD) personnel on the threat posed by extremist activity.
In April, he directed the establishment of the Countering Extremist Activity Working Group (CEAWG) to implement urgent steps identified during the stand-down and develop additional recommendations.
The report linked below describes the status of the SecDef’s four directed actions and the working group’s six additional actions. Other articles analyze the DoD’s directives resulting from the work of the CEAWG.
Report on Countering Extremist Activity Within the Department of Defense (DOD, December 2021)
On page 8, the report says that there were less than 100 actionable incidents of extremism in the military. Considering the size of the active force at 2.4 million and the total force of 3.4 million a logical conclusion is that extremism within the ranks is rare! Thus, the question: Why is the SecDef placing such an apparently skewed emphasis on extremism?
One inference reasonably drawn might be that the CAEWG is pursuing an agenda not connected to actual extremism. An online search produces virtually no reporting on the alleged “less than 100 incidents of extremism,” further evidence that DOD leadership is focusing on a virtually nonexistent problem.
A related concern is that the current administration and its Departments have unreasonably focused on those involved in January 6th’s pro-Trump rallies in D.C., investigating anyone who attended and labeling them as “extremists”, regardless of whether they entered the Capitol, or whether they actually assaulted anyone or damaged property.
Meanwhile, the administration is ignoring other extremist activities. These include activities of groups like the neo-Marxist group BLM and the anarchists of ANTIFA, as well as radical-Islamic extremist activities. Apparently, these are being downplayed out of fear of being labeled as racist and/or non-inclusive.
As we have described in previous newsletters when discussing anti-extremist training and the focus of on-going investigations, it can be argued that the administration arguably seems more interested in labeling and investigating political opposition in the name of extremism than opposing actual extremism in whatever form.
Pentagon has new definition for extremism in the ranks (ABC News, 20 Dec 2021)
The Pentagon on Monday issued a new definition of prohibited extremist activities providing military commanders with specific information that will help them determine whether service members are actively participating in extremist activities.
Commanders will also receive specific guidance for what to look for in past social media activity to help them identify whether a service member is participating actively in such activities.
The Pentagon’s new specific definition of prohibited extremist activities was prompted by the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol that led Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin to order an unprecedented one-day stand down for service members to discuss extremism in their ranks and what to do about it.
The Pentagon’s new definition goes beyond the previous definition of prohibited extremist activities that was considered too vague. But it maintains the focus on active participation in a prohibited activity as opposed to membership in a group, support for an ideology, or opposition to a political leader which are protected under the First Amendment’s right of expression. . . . (read the rest)
The Purge Continues: Pentagon Issues Guidelines to Crack Down on Domestic and Patriotic “Extremism” Within Military Ranks – Simply “Liking or Reposting” Certain Views Can Trigger Discipline (Gateway Pundit, 21 Dec 2021)
As our nation’s greatest enemies build their military might and actively threaten to launch attacks, US Military and Defense leaders are focusing on the important things – mainly, purging the ranks of all dissenters and pushing the Left’s radical ideology.
On Monday, as over 28,000 world-class men and women await their dishonorable discharge for refusing to take the experimental vaccine, the Pentagon issued detailed new guidelines that prohibit service members from engaging in a wide range of activities, citing concerns of increased “domestic violent extremism” within the military over the past few months.
The new policy focuses heavily on service members’ social media activities and even clarifies that “posting, liking, reposting, or otherwise distributing” certain views that have been deemed “extremist” is a direct violation that could result in disciplinary action.
In the name of transparency and to make things crystal clear, the document describes ‘extremist activities’ AS ‘extremist activities.’ . . . . (read the rest)