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US troops warn ‘extremely woke’ culture hurting military; standards ignored for fear of being ‘labeled racist, sexist’

President Joe Biden and Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III at the Pentagon, Washington, D.C., Feb. 10, 2021. (DoD photo by Lisa Ferdinando)
October 12, 2022

Current and former U.S. troops, including those who served in special operations units, are sounding the alarm that the U.S. military is prioritizing “wokeness” over warfighting. They say this “woke” culture is wreaking havoc on military preparedness, the troops warned, and contributing to the service’s recruitment challenges.  

The service members, who remained anonymous to speak freely, told Fox News Digital that troops who question the military’s “woke” culture are met with “swift, harsh, and public” punishment.

“I do perceive the Army leadership as woke, and probably the lower enlisted (they have been indoctrinated in school),” one service member said. “Equity-diversity is another way to divide and control the masses. It does nothing for the warfighter.”

Another service member confirmed that “the military is extremely woke.”  

“I 100% believe the military is woke. I see daily minorities, overweight people and women not adhering to military standards,” another said. “Nobody corrects them due to the fear of being fired and labeled a racist or a sexist.”

One service member noted many troops joined the military because they come from military families, but “patriotism and American values are no longer appreciated or expected.”

“Troops themselves are largely treated as expendable and they don’t even pretend otherwise,” that service member said. “Spending 15+ years in the military during wartime with multiple deployments risking their lives only to be tossed out like garbage. Losing the retirement they have worked years to earn because they didn’t want to take an experimental vaccine for an illness that was mild for fit and healthy people.”

The service members’ warnings come amid alarming recruiting challenges that led the U.S. Army to miss its 2022 recruiting goal by 15,000 troops, marking a 25 percent miss from the 60,000 new soldiers it sought to recruit before the fiscal year ended on Sept. 30. It’s the worst miss on record for the service since the U.S. military became an all-volunteer force nearly 50 years ago.

Military leadership doesn’t seem concerned about the service’s culture despite the Army’s worst-ever recruitment miss. On Monday, U.S. Army Secretary Christine Wormuth said she doesn’t understand criticism the service has received about being “woke” and stands by its diversity efforts. At the same time, Wormuth advised the service’s leaders to keep “out of the culture wars” online.