The Defense Department would be more effective if it turned its efforts away from radical leftist indoctrination and to improving its military strategy and capability, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) told Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin at a House budget hearing on Tuesday.
“The Obama administration tried to destroy our military by starving it of resources. It seems, the Biden Administration is trying to destroy our military by force-feeding it wokeism,” Rep. Gaetz told Sec. Austin during a fiery exchange.
Citing Defense Department miscalculations regarding Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the Taliban takeover in Afghanistan, Rep. Gaetz told Sec. Austin the U.S. should be focusing on military strategy, instead of “wokeism”:
“You blew those calls and, maybe, we would be better at them if the National Defense University actually worked a little more on strategy and a little less on wokeism."
In particular, Gaetz cited a recent lecture at the National Defense University in Washington, DC, titled, “Responding to China: The Case For Global Justice and Democratic Socialism,” which recommended that the U.S. reject capitalism and embrace socialism.
While other countries are upgrading their military training, the U.S. Defense Department is advocating socialism, teaching Critical Race Theory and mandating gender pronoun usage, Rep. Gaetz told Austin.
“While everyone else in the world seems to be developing capabilities and being more strategic, we’ve got time to embrace Critical Race Theory at West Point, to embrace socialism at the National Defense University, to do mandatory pronoun training," Gaetz said. Austin, then, interrupted him.
The Defense Department’s budget would be better spent developing its military capacity, such as hypersonic weapons, an area in which the U.S. is falling behind China, Gaetz said.
When Sec. Austin challenged Rep. Gaetz’s claim that the U.S. is lagging behind in hypersonics, Gaetz said that Austin’s own people told that in the regular briefings he receives.
The National Defense University, located at Fort Lesley J. McNair, is funded by the U.S. Department of Defense.