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Army officer ‘socialist organizer’ Spenser Rapone gets other than honorable discharge

Spenser Rapone (Photos from Social Media, Compiled by American Military News)
June 08, 2018

West Point graduate and now former Army infantry officer Spenser Rapone has been processed out of the U.S. Army and received an other than honorable discharge from the military after a photo he posted with his West Point cap and the words “Communism will win” went viral.

Rapone came under fire last year for his social media posts of socialist and communist content. He went viral after posting a photo to Twitter of himself in support of professional football player Colin Kaepernick, where Rapone is seen in his West Point uniform at graduation holding his cap that contains a piece of paper that says “Communism will win.”

After posting the photo, Rapone was discovered to be a vehement communist propagandist and “official socialist organizer” of the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA). Rapone’s social media was filled with up to hundreds of posts, messages and photos that were being circulated around the military and civilian communities.

Rapone had also posted a second photo of himself in uniform, and he is seen wearing a Che Guevara T-shirt underneath his uniform jacket. Guevara was an Argentine Marxist revolutionary who believed the poor people of Latin America would be saved by communism.

Spenser Rapone (Twitter)

Rapone was an infantry officer in the 10th Mountain Division at Fort Drum, N.Y. He has deployed to Afghanistan and received a combat infantryman badge (CIB).

An other than honorable discharge means Rapone will not be entitled to VA benefits or the GI Bill.

His social media accounts were at one point set to private after his photos went viral. His Twitter account was set to protected, and his Instagram account had been taken down. His Facebook, where he goes under Giuseppe Impastato, was private.

Today, his Twitter account is again public. Rapone, whose Twitter handle is “punkproletarian,” recently retweeted posts from Rory Fanning, an ex-Army Ranger who says he will be interviewing Rapone at the conference “Socialism 2018.”

Rapone is listed as one of the speakers for Socialism 2018, which is slated for early July in Chicago.

According to his bio on the website, Rapone “could no longer stomach the immorality of U.S. imperialism, he spoke out against the reprehensible actions of the military in September 2017. He ultimately resigned his commission, and was separated from the Army in June 2018 with an Other Than Honorable discharge.”

Spenser Rapone’s bio on Socialism 2018 (Socialism 2018 Website)

Fanning wrote that their conversation will be called “Resisting Within the Ranks.”

“Spenser is being discharged from the military with an Other Than Honorable discharge this June, in part, because [Marco] Rubio penned a panic-stricken letter to acting Secretary of the Army Ryan McCarthy demanding … the branch nullify Rapone’s military commission after seeing this photo,” he wrote.

Florida Senator Marco Rubio called on the U.S. Army to remove Rapone and make him pay back his tuition for “advocating for communism.”

U.S. Army spokesperson Valerie Mongello had told American Military News that while the Department of Defense and Army encourage soldiers to “participate in the democratic process,” the Army “has strict rules regarding the wear and appearance of Army uniforms.”

West Point Military Academy had also responded to the situation, and released a statement saying Rapone’s actions “in no way reflect the values of the U.S. Military Academy or the U.S. Army.”