Republicans Rep. Jim Banks, Senator Tom Cotton, Rep. Dan Crenshaw, and Rep. Mike Gallagher commissioned a report after, “a series of high–profile and damaging operational failures in the Navy’s Surface Warfare community.” The report was done by retired military officers, Lt. Gen. Robert Schmidle, USMC, and Rear Admiral Mark Montgomery, USN and it featured interviews with 77 members of the Navy.
The report revealed that it’s almost universally believed within the Navy that there are serious leadership problems:
Concern within the Navy runs so high that, when asked whether incidents such as the two destroyer collisions in the Pacific, the surrender of a small craft to the IRGC in the Arabian Gulf, the burning of the Bonhomme Richard and other incidents were part of a broader cultural or leadership problem in the Navy, 94% of interviewees responded “yes,”…..
The report also noted a number of issues that are impacting the performance of the Navy. One of those problems is that the Navy seems more obsessed with diversity issues than being prepared to fight a war,
Interviewers found this to be a common refrain. One recent destroyer captain lamented that, “where someone puts their time shows what their priorities are. And we’ve got so many messages about X, Y, Z appreciation month, or sexual assault prevention, or you name it. We don’t even have close to that same level of emphasis on actual warfighting.”
Frustration with nonessential training was found to be overwhelming and not limited to the surface warfare community. Navy leaders have contributed to morass of requirements, but so have senior civilian defense leadership and Congress. While programs to encourage diversity, human sex trafficking prevention, suicide prevention, sexual assault prevention, and others are appropriate, they come with a cost. The non-combat curricula consume Navy resources, clog inboxes, create administrative quagmires, and monopolize precious training time. By weighing down sailors with non-combat related training and administrative burdens, both Congress and Navy leaders risk sending them into battle less prepared and less focused than their opponents.
Sailors increasingly see administrative and non-combat related training as the mission, rather than the mission itself. “Sometimes I think we care more about whether we have enough diversity officers than if we’ll survive a fight with the Chinese navy,” lamented one lieutenant currently on active duty. “It’s criminal. They think my only value is as a blackwoman. But you cut our ship open with a missile and we’ll all bleed the same color.”
The report concludes by saying:
Former Secretary of Defense James Mattis said in testimony that “the United States does not have a preordained right to victory on the battlefield.” Unless changes are made, the Navy risks losing the next major conflict.
In all fairness, the report does talk at length about serious problems other than this woke nonsense that naval officers are forcing on the troops. However, it is clear that this has become a serious problem. The reality is that whether you are talking about individuals or organizations, nothing woke functions very well. The more politically minded officers in the military embrace this nonsense, the less capable our military will become.
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