Inside the Woke Air Force

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by Josh Culper, American Thinker:

Nearly two decades ago, I left my hometown for Lackland Air Force Base.  Every enlisted airman since 1968 has completed Basic Military Training at this historic base in the Alamo City.  First, trainees work to graduate from being a “rainbow,” referring to the mixed colors of their civilian clothing, which involves getting a free haircut, getting new uniforms, and learning how to move in a formation.  Trainees are further unified by reminders from military training instructors that they are no longer “back on the block,” and from here on out, they “all bleed blue!”

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Trainees from across America are honed into a team of airmen.  The military has always excelled at forming our diverse citizenry into a unified force — it embraced “E pluribus unum.”  However, the U.S. Air Force is currently indoctrinating airmen in neo-Marxist ideology and creating activists thorough its Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity (DIE) programs.

Some will push back and claim that DIE is simply about being inclusive of diverse viewpoints, and if this were the case, there would be little controversy.  Yet when senior leaders discuss diversity, as in DIE, the word has a neo-Marxist meaning.  Herbert Marcuse in his 1969 “Essay on Liberation“ stated the following: “the familiar (used and abused) vocabulary of freedom, justice, and equality could thus obtain not only new meaning but also new reality,” with a “methodical subversion of the linguistic of the Establishment.”  Today, diversity as part of DIE is in line with Marcuse’s subversive definition, which is used in Critical Theory and its offspring, intersectionality.

Critical Theory and intersectionality spawned out of Marxist scholarship and have grown into legal studies, history, education, social sciences, and military studies.  It undergirds identity politics, which has been institutionalized into the Air Force through Barrier Analysis Working Groups, or BAWGs.  The Air Force has established seven BAWGs:

  • BEST – Black Employment Strategy Team
  • DAT – Disability Action Team
  • HEAT – Hispanic Empowerment Action Team
  • INET – Indigenous Nations Equality Team
  • LIT – LGBTQ+ Initiative Team
  • PACT – Pacific Islander Asian-American Community Team
  • WIT – Women’s Initiatives Team

Through BAWGs, the Air Force has established political advocacy groups to advise the chain of command and make recommendations regarding equity and inclusion.  Examples are optional pronouns in an airman’s official signature block or that males who identify as female can now complete the women’s Physical Fitness Assessment (ref. attachment 5).  The force is also subjected to regular stand-downs and “bridge-chats.”

The 2021 extremism stand-down day is a good example of these sessions.  Not once did they mention Islamic extremism or how support for the Marxist movement Black Lives Matter is incompatible with military service.  Nor did the stand-down facilitators mention the airman in Utah who was caught in his military-issued gas mask throwing Molotov cocktails at a police car during a BLM riot.

During bridge-chats, airmen are organized into small groups to “lean in” and discuss “hard topics” such as racesexualityunconscious biasmicroaggressions, and social-emotional learning.  These groups, however well intentioned by some, are not talks meant to foster inclusion, but are “consciousness-raising” sessions.

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