Marine Corps Commandant: ‘This Is Not an Attempt to Erase History’

By Melanie Arter | July 6, 2020 | 10:12am EDT
U.S. Marine Corps instructors stand while recruits receive their issued gear at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot (MCRD) on April 13, 2020 in San Diego, California. New COVID-19 distancing practices have gone into effect for new recruits such as standing six feet apart while in formation, a health screening, and a 14-day quarantine period at an off-site hotel before boot camp begins. (Photo by Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images)
U.S. Marine Corps instructors stand while recruits receive their issued gear at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot (MCRD) on April 13, 2020 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images)

(CNSNews.com) – Marine Corps Commandant Gen. David Berger told ABC’s “This Week with George Stephanopolous” on Sunday that his decision to remove all Confederate paraphernalia from Marine bases and ban the public display of the Confederate flag was “not an attempt to erase history.”

“This is not an attempt to erase history, but the bigger symbol is the things that draw the team together so we can operate with that kind of implicit trust. We have a flag, it's the American flag. We have the Marine Corps colors. We have things that unify us. Anything that gets in the way of that is a problem,” he said.


Berger said that “it was pretty clear from -- actually from 2016 to 2017” that some symbols were being hijacked by organizations and used in a very bad, negative way.”

When asked what his approach is to equality in the Marine Corps, Berger said, “If we're actually honest with ourselves, first step, we all have unconscious biases. Admit it or not, we do.”

Berger admitted that the politicization of the military is a concern.

“This is part of the reason why America trusts its military. We understand the chain of command, but we can't become a political tool either,” he said.

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