A Space Force commander was fired last week after public comments made while promoting his book criticizing Marxist ideals in the military.
Military.com first reported that 11th Space Warning Squadron commander Lt Col. Matthew Lohmeier was fired over “a loss of confidence in his ability to lead” after he joined L. Todd Wood’s “Information Operation” podcast to promote his self-published book, “Irresistible Revolution: Marxism’s Goal of Conquest & the Unmaking of the American Military.”
A Space Force spokesperson told Military.com that Lohmeier’s firing was “based on public comments made by Lt. Col. Lohmeier in a recent podcast,” adding that “Lt. Gen. Whiting has initiated a Command Directed Investigation on whether these comments constituted prohibited partisan political activity.”
On the podcast, Lohmeier – a former fighter pilot and instructor – criticized the military’s expanded diversity and inclusion training and focused mission to root out extremism in the ranks – efforts spearheaded by Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin.
He said the policies are “rooted in critical race theory, which is rooted in Marxism” and impacting the culture of the military. Those changes “will divide us, it will not unify us,” Lohmeier said.
Lohmeier said he was given a 70-page booklet on extremism training “talking points” with which to train his squadron. Among those talking points were examples including the Jan. 6 storming of the U.S. Capitol as an act of extremism.
The Hatch Act and DoD Directive 1344.10 prohibit service members from demonstrating support or opposition to a political group or party while in uniform, on duty, or in or on federal property.
Service members are permitted to express personal political opinions in public while off duty, however, so long as those opinions don’t negatively reflect on the Army.
A description of Lohmeier’s book says it examines “the history and overarching narrative of Marxist ideology” including its impact on military culture and policy, and future implications “if we choose not to make an immediate course correction.”
Lohmeier told Military.com that he discussed his book with public affairs and lawyers, but the book did not require a Department of Defense security review.
“My intent never has been to engage in partisan politics. I have written a book about a particular political ideology (Marxism) in the hope that our Defense Department might return to being politically nonpartisan in the future as it has honorably done throughout history,” Lohmeier told Military.com
Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz tweeted in support of Lohmeier on Sunday, saying the firing was “clearly retaliatory” and adding, “I will be seeking action on this in the Armed Services Committee.”