Last Saturday, Military.com broke a major story: “Space Force CO Who Got Holiday Call from Trump Fired Over Comments Decrying Marxism in the Military.” A boilerplate statement released by Space Force Public Affairs, attributed to “a Space Force spokesman,” announced, “Lt. Gen. Stephen Whiting, Space Operations Command commander, relieved Lt. Col. Matthew Lohmeier of command of the 11th Space Warning Squadron, Buckley Air Force Base, Colorado, May 14, due to loss of trust and confidence in his ability to lead. This decision was based on public comments made by Lt. Col. Lohmeier in a recent podcast. Lt. Gen. Whiting has initiated a Command Directed Investigation (CDI) on whether these comments constituted prohibited partisan political activity.” The boilerplate added, “Due to the ongoing investigation, it would be inappropriate to comment further.”
Who is Lt. Gen. Stephen Whiting? He was promoted to lieutenant general and given command of the newly created Space Operations Command (SpOC) in October 2020, under President Donald Trump. One would have thought that Whiting supported President Trump’s directive to abolish divisive, anti-American propaganda training that focuses on critical race theory and white privilege. But four months into the Biden–Harris regime, Whiting directed subordinate commanders to hold “Extremism Down Days” to indoctrinate service members in critical race theory.
And who is Lt. Col. Lohmeier? He’s a 14-year veteran of the United States Air Force who transferred to the Space Force last year. As commander of the 11th Space Warning Squadron, Lohmeier took President Trump’s Thanksgiving Day Salute phone call in November of last year. “All of you are pioneers in the newest branch of our armed forces,” said Trump. “You keep watch around the world to detect missile launches, space launches, and nuclear detonations while providing critical intelligence.” Pretty heady stuff.
Now Lohmeier has been relieved of command, disgraced, his career ruined, and his retirement jeopardized. Why? Because he dared criticize CRT and link it with cultural Marxism, first in a self-published book, and then — apparently even more damning — on a podcast promoting it. And in President Biden’s woke military, this could not be tolerated.
Lohmeier’s book, titled Irresistible Revolution: Marxism’s Goal of Conquest & the Unmaking of the American Military, begins discussing the greatness of the American ideal, under the premise that you “can’t appreciate how ugly something is, like cultural Marxism or CRT, unless you have something to contrast it with.” The book then traces the proliferation of anti-American ideology from the Critical Theory of the 1930s, through the Critical Legal Theory of the 1960s and 1970s, and finally to CRT — all Marxist doctrines, and all ones that advance incessant criticism of Western culture. For a relatively compact book (230 pages) it covers an impressive range of topical issues with implications for our national security, ranging from woke ideology, cancel culture, identity politics, and the Black Lives Matter movement to postmodernism, political correctness, and critical and cynical theories like CRT.
Is Lohmeier correct that cultural Marxism, by way of the diversity, inclusion, and equity industry, has really “permeated the Department of Defense”?
Well, Lt. Gen. Whiting didn’t invent “Extremism Down Days.” He was simply (and slavishly) enforcing the directives of “first Black Secretary of Defense” Lloyd Austin. In the wake of January’s “Capitol Insurrection,” Austin ordered commanding officers and supervisors at all levels to conduct “one-day stand-downs” on extremism to have “discussions” with DoD’s 2.3 million active and reserve troops. The discussions were to address not the last 12 months of lawless and violent riots that destroyed urban centers from Chicago to Seattle but instead the threats of “white supremacism” and “white nationalism,” as exemplified by the Capitol riot.
While Austin indicated there would be no set lesson plans or scripted content for the “discussions,” Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby was less reticent. “We owe these leaders some, some, training materials, some deeper, more-specific guidance about how to conduct, or what the expectations are about,” Kirby said at a press conference earlier this year. “Not how to conduct, but what the expectations are for the stand-down, and — and some thoughts about how feedback can be provided.”
According to Lohmeier, “recommended reading” included Ijeoma Oluo’s So You Want to Talk About Race, in which Oluo provides helpful tips on how to donate money, which politicians should be supported, and which social justice initiatives are most worthy — and in which she consistently refers to the United States of America as a white supremacist state. As Lohmeier described it, “For the last ten months the videos being sent out to every base service member that we were asked to watch in preparation for our Extremist Down Days discussion on race taught that whites are evil, that America was founded in 1619 not 1776 and that all whites are inherently evil.”
This author’s repeated requests to the SpOC Public Affairs Office for additional information and comment went unanswered, except for the boilerplate response cited at the beginning of this article. Put another way, SpOC essentially said, “We destroyed Lohmeier’s career because he dared challenge and even discredit Critical Race Theory and we don’t have to discuss it further because his case is under investigation.”
This travesty of justice would never have happened if President Trump had been reelected. The laws haven’t changed. The Uniform Code of Military Justice hasn’t changed. Only the politics have changed — and politics have absolutely no place in limiting the legitimate exercise of free speech or in destroying careers of American soldiers, airmen, seamen, or serving members of the United States Space Force. The Biden–Harris administration is politicizing the military and attempting to purge conservative voices under the guise of eradicating “extremism.”
In his confirmation hearing, Austin promised to rid our ranks of those same racists and extremists. “The job of the Department of Defense is to keep America safe from our enemies,” said Austin. “But we can’t do that if some of those enemies lie within our ranks.” Presumably, he wasn’t talking about Marxist-inspired grievance collectors, proponents of divisive identity politics, or promoters of victimhood. But Lohmeier’s case suggests that perhaps he should look into it.