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Military Has Turned Into ‘Vast DEI Bureaucracy’ Under Biden, Study Finds

The U.S. military and Pentagon have turned into a “vast DEI bureaucracy” under the Biden administration, according to a study released on Tuesday.

The Biden administration has spent hundreds of millions of dollars on diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) initiatives, which first started to be implemented roughly four decades ago, in the military since President Joe Biden took office in January 2021. A year-long study by the Arizona State University Center for American Institutions, examining online and published materials, alleges that current DEI policies and programs are creating a “race and sex-based scapegoating and stereotyping” environment in the military and hampering defense effectiveness.

“It’s no surprise that young people are turning away from military service in record numbers. As this comprehensive report illuminates, DEI indoctrination has become a core component of military training that begins for officers even at the service academies,” Matt Lohmeier, former Space Force commander, said in a statement on Tuesday. “How can we be prepared to confront our adversaries if our warfighters aren’t laser-focused on the mission but instead are divided and distracted by ideology?”

“Just as private companies have abandoned the toxic advice of DEI consultants and programs, military leaders should end social engineering based on critical race theory and restore approaches that promote character and merit,” Prof. Donald Critchlow, director of the CAI at Arizona State, said in a statement.

Each of the military branches and services follows federal DEI policies and regulations that are implemented by an “extensive” level of staff at designated diversity and inclusion offices, according to the study. The DOD requested a $114.7 million budget for DEI projects in fiscal year 2024, up from $86.5 million in fiscal year 2023 and $68 million in fiscal year 2022.

The study lists examples of DEI policies and initiatives among different branches; an Air Force Combat Command “toolkit” for training and holding “courageous conversations” about white privilege and unexamined bias. An Air Force article on retention advocates for servicemembers to “add personal pronouns to email signature blocks” because “it can influence whether someone will stay in their organization.”

The Navy’s training for anti-extremism considers Black Lives Matter (BLM) a non-political topic, despite the BLM organization advocating for defunding the police, according to the study. The study also points to two high-level officers in the Marine Corps who advocated against racial “colorblindness” because it promoted racism and promoted white supremacy.

DEI policies also extend to service academies, which have diversity and equity offices that perform training and support racial and gender-based “affinity groups,” according to the study. “Eyes and ears” programs are implemented to encourage individuals to report anything they overhear that challenges DEI norms.

The study points to examples of DEI initiatives being implemented in service academies; a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) filed by the watchdog group Justice Watch compelled the Air Force Academy to release coursework material advocating for critical race theory through the 1619 Project, a controversial project that claims America’s “true founding” was when slaves first arrived in 1619. The Naval Academy’s “peer education” program aims to recruit midshipmen to host mandatory conversations about DEI with their colleagues.

“Knowledge of the nation that cadets defend is elective. DEI is the core,” the study reads.

The study says that DEI’s focus on addressing “white supremism” as a core problem plaguing the military and country undermines servicemembers’ mission because it asks them “to defend a nation that is an alleged cesspit of racism and discrimination.” There is “little or no evidence” that white supremacy is a problem in the military, pointing to the Department of Defense only being able to identify 100 white supremacists among 2.1 million servicemembers in 2021.

The notion of dividing servicemembers into different racial and gender categories is “Orwellian” and “sows distrust and undermines unit cohesion and teamwork,” the study claims, because it undermines the goal of having a united military dedicated to protecting the country.

The study urges that the military return to the “outstanding tradition” of merit-based selections and promotions and enforcement of non-discrimination among races and genders. The study also calls for all training and coursework taught in social science and humanities at service academies to be made publicly available.

But “the surest way to eliminate the concerning trends we have identified, and the growth of race and sex-based scapegoating and stereotyping in the U.S. military, is to altogether end the DEI bureaucracy there,” the study reads.

The Pentagon didn’t immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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