Tag Archive for: The Military

Biden’s Military Extremism Review Overlooked the Real Extremists in the Military

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) arrested a U.S. Marine on Friday who wanted to “bring the pain” to “a rich white area” and had studied racist mass shooters. The Marine boasted in disturbing social media posts about killing cats with a crossbow and hoping to become a serial killer, declaring, “the only way out is bloodshed.”

The arrest comes three months after an active-duty U.S. airman set himself on fire outside the Israeli embassy in Washington, D.C. The airman’s social media revealed connections to Antifa and the “Stop Cop City” movement, a dismissive attitude toward the death of fellow U.S. servicemembers, and praise for intimidating graffiti on the house of an elected official who sponsored Utah’s law to protect minors from gender transition procedures.

These incidents suggest that the Biden administration’s military-wide “stand-down to address extremism in the ranks” was a failure.

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin ordered the “stand-down” on February 5, 2021, less than three weeks into Biden’s term. He ordered all supervisors “within the next 60 days to conduct a one-day ‘stand-down,’” where service personnel would halt their other duties and focus solely on rooting out extremism.

The stand-down was only “just the first initiative” of “a concerted effort” at combatting extremism. On April 9, 2021, Austin commissioned an independent study on extremism, convened a Countering Extremist Activity Working Group (CEAWG), and ordered reviews of the military’s extremism definition, screening questionnaires, and retirement transition checklists. In December 2021, the CEAWG released a 21-page report containing six more recommendations. On May 10, 2022, the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) for the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) released a 56-page report with two additional recommendations.

Why, despite these considerable efforts, did multiple extremists manage to slip through the cracks?

The answer is unsurprising. Like nearly everything the Biden administration does, this search for extremists in the military was politically one-sided. The stand-down opportunistically seized on the then-recent January 6 incident to fearmonger about a supposedly imminent national takeover by militarized white nationalists (and, of course, those radicals who refused to take the COVID jab). There is no evidence that the stand-down ever addressed left-wing forms of extremism, such as Antifa, the anti-cop BLM riots (2020), or the violent attacks on churches and pregnancy resource centers (2022).

In fact, the 262-page independent review published by the Institute for Defense Analyses (IDA) in December 2023 rebuked the Biden administration’s misleading narrative about a dangerous white supremacist under-culture lurking in the military. One the one hand, their review “found no evidence that the number of violent extremists in the military is disproportionate to the number of violent extremists in the United States as a whole.” Among other evidence, a review of court-martial records dating back to 2012 found no more than “on case per year” of non-gang-related “prohibited extremist activities.”

On the other hand, the IDA rebuked the Biden administration for touting a false narrative of right-wing extremism because it “could lead to a significant division in the force along political and ideological lines, with some members of the military believing that they are being targeted for their views.” They even argued that “the risk to the military from widespread polarization and division in the ranks may be a greater risk than the radicalization of a few service members.”

Within weeks, President Joe Biden was fearmongering about right-wing extremism in yet another major speech.

Over the past four weeks, pro-terrorist occupations of college campuses (and even buildings) have served Americans with yet another warning of left-wing radicalism and its tendency to undermine civil society by targeting even non-political institutions.

In two recent examples, active members of the U.S. armed services with a history of left-leaning, extremist rhetoric reached a crisis point. One committed the ultimate act of self-harm by burning himself to death on a public sidewalk (as an act of anti-Semitism). The other was arrested for plotting a racially-motivated mass shooting — fortunately, before he executed his plan.

But don’t count on the DOD to mount a “coordinated effort” to respond to this trend anytime soon. From the favoritism of its FACE Act prosecutions, to targeting parents at school board meetings, to its retaliation against whistleblowers, to its biased prosecutions of political celebrities and their families, the Biden administration has routinely committed the very same error the IDA’s independent review warned against: creating “significant division … along political and ideological lines,” giving some Americans good reason to believe “they are being targeted for their views.”

This is why, when conducting a grandiose military extremism review that wasn’t really all that necessary, the DOD failed to discover some actual extremists lurking in the military.

AUTHOR

Joshua Arnold

Joshua Arnold is a senior writer at The Washington Stand.

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2024 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

House Launches Broad Probe into China’s Infiltration of U.S.

On Thursday, the House Oversight Committee announced the launch of a wide-ranging investigation into the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) efforts to infiltrate “every sector and community” in the U.S.

The probe, which has the stated objective to “thwart the CCP’s political and economic warfare campaign,” is being initiated with letters sent to nine different federal agencies requesting reports on what the agencies are doing to counter the communist regime’s efforts, along with how the agencies are coordinating their efforts with each other.

“Without firing a single bullet, the Chinese Communist Party is waging war against the U.S. by targeting, influencing, and infiltrating every economic sector and community in America,” Committee Chairman James Comer (R-Ky.) stated. “The lives and security of all Americans are affected. The Oversight Committee has a responsibility to ensure the federal government is taking every action necessary to protect Americans from the CCP’s ongoing political warfare.”

The sectors that the investigation will focus on include education, agriculture, critical infrastructure, research, energy, business, space, and technology. Examples of the CCP’s incursion into these sectors have been making headlines for decades. Here are some recent examples in each sector.

Education: Almost 150 U.S. K-12 schools have been linked to “Confucius Classrooms” which attempt to spread communist propaganda. In higher education, “Confucius Institutes” (which have now been rebranded but have the same communist goal) have popped up in dozens of American universities. In addition, the regime has given over $426 million to U.S. universities since 2011, which experts say has led to increasing influence behind closed doors.

Agriculture: Chinese companies have purchased hundreds of thousands of acres of American farmland, some of which are near U.S. military installations.

Infrastructure: The Chinese government is attempting to “covertly plant offensive malware inside U.S. critical infrastructure networks,” which is currently at “a scale greater than we’d seen before,” according to a report from FBI Director Christopher Wray in February.

Research and Technology: The CCP’s efforts to steal American scientific research and technology are well documented. Comer wrote to the National Science Foundation noting that the regime’s efforts to steal and influence research “takes a holistic approach and includes covert and legal means” and that it is attempting to weaponize “U.S.-backed research and technology for uses that are contrary to U.S. national security and competitiveness.”

Energy: In a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Comer writes that the CCP has “successfully pressured U.S. environmental players and industries into adopting initiatives that plainly benefit China at great costs to American businesses and consumers.”

Business: China’s influence over corporate America was illustrated quite clearly recently when a room full of U.S. corporate executives gave Chinese President Xi Jinping multiple standing ovations in his visit to the U.S. last November. Comer also noted the CCP’s efforts to launder money through America’s real estate and casino industries. “These activities allow the CCP to engage in corporate espionage, feed the fentanyl crisis in the U.S., influence our nation’s schools and culture, and otherwise advance destructive goals on American soil,” he wrote in a letter to the Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network.

Space: As previously reported, the regime is currently pursuing “a ‘space coercion’ strategy that includes the use of both ground-based missiles ‘capable of hitting satellites orbiting at all altitudes,’ as well as orbital missiles — including nuclear warheads.” Comer argued in a letter to NASA that China’s space program should be “properly understood for what it is: an arm of its military, the People’s Liberation Army.”

Many other threats to the U.S. posed by the CCP abound, such as a massive influx of Chinese nationals of military age being apprehended at the southern border, balloon surveillance, the discovery of CCP “police stations” in U.S. cities, and the discovery of a suspicious biolab with ties to China in California. In a letter to the Drug Enforcement Administration, Comer also voiced concern over the CCP engaging in “chemical warfare seeking to poison America with fentanyl, and how the Drug Enforcement Agency is responding.” Reports indicate that “nearly all the precursor chemicals that are needed to make fentanyl come from China.”

In a press release announcing the House investigation, Comer concluded, “Actions taken by the Committee today are just the beginning and I look forward to full cooperation from agencies as we work to thwart China’s efforts to influence and infiltrate the United States of America.”

In comments to The Washington Stand, ChinaAid Founder and President of Bob Fu stated, “It is indeed way overdue for the American people and government across the political spectrum to pay close attention and take an all of society approach to address the serious threat of the CCP’s well designed, decades in the making, comprehensive infiltration effort with unlimited warfare strategy.”

AUTHOR

Dan Hart

Dan Hart is senior editor at The Washington Stand.

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2024 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

More Money for a Woke Pentagon? ‘No Sir, Not This Time. We’re Not Falling for That’: Senator

Hill leaders may have escaped another shutdown showdown, but there’ll be plenty of heavy-lifting when Congress comes back into session next week. It hasn’t been easy, Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) said, “trying to turn the aircraft carrier back to real budgeting and spending reform.” His analogy for getting back to real appropriations work was an interesting one, since Republicans seem to swing an ax at every budget but one: Defense. And maybe, one senator says, it’s time to rethink that.

The party of frugality has always had one big exception. No matter how deep America’s debt, Republicans have never minded funneling money to the military — and, in most cases, argued for more. With Gaza in flames, Russia on the move, and China ready to take over the world, beefing up our national security seems reasonable. But is that what this money is actually doing? Or are Republicans making billions of dollars sacrosanct without proof that our military is actually becoming stronger and more prepared because of it?

Right now, the U.S. Army is at its smallest size since 1940 — and getting smaller. Just this week, leaders announced a 24,000-person cut, because too many jobs remain empty. They’ve tried dropping standards — letting soldiers enlist without a high school degree in some branches, allowing retired officers to return, even telling men and women they can show up to boot camp with marijuana in their system. And still, the military is 41,000 recruits short — with no end to the struggles in sight.

Worse, the Pentagon we do have is falling woefully short of expectations. In last month’s edition of the Index of U.S. Military Strength, The Heritage Foundation rated America’s military as “weak” and “at significant risk of not being able to meet the demands of a single major regional conflict.” It was the second year in a row they’d earned such a dismal ranking. More specifically, they categorized the branches this way: Army: marginal; Navy: weak; Air Force: very weak; Marine Corps: strong; Space Force: marginal; and nuclear capabilities: marginal.

We’re spending more, but not smarter, Heritage’s Wilson Beaver warns. China, on the other hand, has become such a sophisticated force that their “increased capabilities” have put the U.S. on notice, raising questions about whether we could even counter a challenge from the communist regime.

Now, in this race to pass appropriations bills (one of which is Defense), Republicans have been fighting to protect their golden calf from cuts, which is a scenario Congress faces if it doesn’t pass all of its bills by April 30. But as Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah) pointed out, would slashing part of the Pentagon’s budget be such a horrible thing? We’re throwing billions of dollars at the military, he pointed out, “and how’s that working out for us?” We can’t recruit, our readiness is negligible, and our leadership is more focused on pronouns than warfare.

Republicans have been “saluting the military industrial complex at every turn and saying year after year, ‘Well, I don’t want to spend this much, and we ought to be able to have some sort of policy win here. We’re not getting that. But, gosh, the troops and the Pentagon demand it. They’ve got more weapons to buy. We’ve got to give them whatever they want.’ And they rope-a-dope us into giving them whatever we want,” Lee vented to Family Research Council President Tony Perkins on “Washington Watch” Wednesday. “That is why we’re $34 trillion in debt.”

“That,” Lee went on, “is giving money to a Pentagon that is woke. It’s more focused on being politically correct than it is on actually protecting American national security. That, Tony, is giving hard-earned American taxpayer dollars to America’s enemies or those determined to assist America’s enemies,” he said with intensity. “We shouldn’t be facilitating any of that. Not with this administration, not with this Department of Defense, not with Secretary Lloyd Austin, who has betrayed the American people in so many ways. No, sir. Not this time. We’re not following. We’re not falling for that, and neither should any Republican.”

This is a problem, Lt. Colonel (Ret.) Robert Maginnis reminds people, that didn’t happen overnight. This “radical social engineering tainting the Pentagon,” he told The Washington Stand, “arguably began with Bill Clinton, continued under Barack Obama, and now is accelerated under Joe Biden.” Ultimately, the FRC senior fellow for National Defense, said, “This robs our ranks of readiness, wastes funding, and creates a recruiting shortfall by stiff-arming the traditional conservatives that would otherwise fill our ranks.”

Lee is right about the waste, fraud, and abuse, Maginnis agrees. The DOD “doesn’t know how it spends the taxpayer dollars.” And unfortunately, “the problem is … complicated because we face a phalanx of real adversaries equipped with very sophisticated weapons and platforms. We are trying to keep pace, which is incredibly expensive: space race, hypersonics, quantum computer, AI, drones and much, much more.”

The only way to fix this “is to divorce our Defense establishment from the radical political agendas and then focus like a laser on true national security.” That will be expensive, he conceded, “however, it can be done more efficiently, and we ought to cut out the nonsense like DEI training, wasteful investments, and much more.”

Until the president and his team gets “serious enough about our challenges and finding savings for the taxpayer,” Maginnis said, nothing will change. This spending debate is the Republican Party’s opportunity, Perkins insisted. “This is the moment to force them to choose between their woke DEI policies and actually doing what their mission calls for.”

AUTHOR

Suzanne Bowdey

Suzanne Bowdey serves as editorial director and senior writer at The Washington Stand.

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2024 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

‘Significant Escalation’: Iranian Proxies Target U.S. Military Bases in Middle East

U.S. forces in the Middle East have come under attack 13 times in the past week, a Pentagon spokesman confirmed Tuesday, and the attacks have injured at least two dozen military personnel. U.S. Air Force Brigadier General Pat Ryder said the Pentagon held Iran responsible for the attacks and warned of “the prospect for more significant escalation against U.S. forces and personnel across the region in the very near-term.”

“Between October 17th and the 24th, U.S. and coalition forces have been attacked at least 10 separate times in Iraq and three separate times in Syria via a mix of one-way attack drones and rockets,” Ryder explained at a Pentagon press briefing Tuesday.

At least 24 American military personnel were wounded in the attacks, U.S. Central Command told NBC News, and a civilian contractor died of cardiac arrest during a shelter-in-place order, which turned out to be a false alarm. On October 18, two drones targeted al-Tanf military base in southern Syria, injuring 20 military personnel and destroying a hangar housing small aircraft. The same day, two separate drone attacks at al-Asad base in western Iraq wounded four military personnel.

The U.S. military maintains a small presence on the ground in Syria and Iraq to deter a resurgence of the Islamic State. There are approximately 900 U.S. troops in Syria and approximately 2,500 U.S. troops in Iraq.

The Islamic Resistance in Iraq, a loose confederacy of Iran-backed militias, claimed responsibility for the attack on al-Tanf base.

On October 19, a U.S. Navy ship in the Red Sea intercepted and shot down four cruise missiles and 14 drones launched by the Iran-backed Houthi militia, based in Yemen. “We cannot say for certain what these missiles and drones were targeting but they were launched from Yemen heading north along the Red Sea potentially to targets in Israel,” Ryder reported last week.

“We know that the groups conducting these attacks are supported by the IRGC [Iran Revolutionary Guard Corps] and the Iranian regime,” Ryder said Tuesday. “What we are seeing is the prospect for more significant escalation against U.S. forces and personnel across the region in the very near-term coming from Iranian proxy forces and ultimately from Iran.”

“We’ve already deployed a significant number of additional U.S. military capabilities into the region to bolster our regional deterrence efforts, strengthen our capabilities there and enhance our ability to respond to a range of contingencies,” Ryder told the press.

Since Hamas terrorists invaded Israel and slaughtered more than 1,400 Israelis on October 7, the U.S. military has sent two aircraft carrier groups and extra fighter squadrons to the eastern Mediterranean Sea, near the zone of conflict. Other units stationed at U.S. military bases have received orders to prepare to deploy.

However, Ryder declined to say whether the U.S. military was planning any counterstrikes on Iran-allied targets. “We will do everything necessary to protect and defend our forces,” he stated. “If and when we would decide to respond, we will do so at a time and place of our choosing.”

“Since that Hamas terrorist attack, we’ve also been crystal clear that we do not want to see the situation in Israel widen into a broader regional conflict,” Ryder explained.

“That conflict has started,” Family Research Council President Tony Perkins insisted on “Washington Watch.” “We’ve seen our own troops in Syria and Iraq being attacked by those that are funded and supported by Iran.”

In the meantime, Israeli forces have clashed with Iran-backed militants near the northern border with Lebanon, at sea near the Gaza Strip, and in the West Bank, where The Wall Street Journal reported that the Islamic Jihad has strengthened its position, armed by weapons smuggled from Iran. Israel on Wednesday conducted airstrikes on enemy positions in Gaza, the West Bank, Lebanon, and Syria.

Perkins lamented the Biden administration’s “schizophrenic foreign policy, stating, “we fund Palestinian Authority, Hamas, who attacks Israel. … We release money to Iran. They then attack our allies. This makes absolutely no sense.”

On “Washington Watch,” Rep. Greg Steube (R-Fla.) responded that the Biden administration has been pursuing an “appeasement” policy toward Iran. “You can’t have an appeasement position … against a terrorist regime. You have to stand strong like the Trump administration did.”

“The increasing tempo of attacks on U.S. positions and the vital assets of its regional partners is reminiscent of a similar campaign Iran embarked upon in 2019,” noted National Review Senior Writer Noah Rothman. “Then as now, the president was reluctant to respond directly to those attacks for fear that such a response would provoke a wider regional war.”

But, Rothman added, “the provocations did not end until the United States responded disproportionately with the strike that neutralized Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps commander Qasem Soleimani.”

President Biden’s term in office has been punctuated by foreign policy crises, including America’s controversial 2021 withdrawal from Afghanistan, Russia’s 2022 invasion of Ukraine, and Hamas’s 2023 terror attack on Israel. “You didn’t see any of these wars, any of these type of attacks when [Trump] was president because he was strong on foreign policy,” Steube pointed out. “We have a weak Joe Biden in the White House that doesn’t stand for anything but appeasing our enemies.”

AUTHOR

Joshua Arnold

Joshua Arnold is a senior writer at The Washington Stand.

RELATED ARTICLE: Senator to Biden: ‘You Can’t Be Pro-Israel and Pro-Iran. You Have to Choose.’

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RELATED VIDEO: Video: Inside Hamas’s underground city: Footage shows how the terrorists excavate tunnels, use them to move weapons, carry out attacks on Israel and smuggle prisoners back to Gaza

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2023 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

Anguished Families Cling to Hope that Hamas Hostages Will Be Found

“I can’t describe such a moment in words where you watch your whole family get taken away from you,” Yoni Asher tried to explain. Summoning the courage to keep talking, he looked around the room of diplomats, U.N. officials, and other suffering families, and put himself back in the moment where his world changed forever.

“My wife was visiting her mother at one of the kibbutzim, and I stayed home,” Yoni stopped, as he probably had a million times in the last week, to let his decision sink in. “I got a phone call from my wife,” who was, “scared — scared,” he repeated, “whispering, terrif[ied], saying that she’s hearing gunshots and people are entering the house.” It wasn’t until later that he saw the video of his wife and two daughters on one of Hamas’s cars or trucks. “I recognized them,” Yoni said quietly of his two little girls, Raz and Aviv, and his wife, Doron.

As the tears fell freely down his face, Yoni finally got out the words that thousands of tortured families have said since October 7: “I woke up to the worst nightmare of my life.”

Others, like Yakov Argamani, pace around their houses, clutching a book of psalms. Surrounded by memories, he mourns that his beautiful teenage daughter’s smell is gone from the room. “Noa was here, there, everywhere,” he told The New York Times’s Jeffrey Gettleman. “All of a sudden, it’s gone. And I’m lost,” the broken father laments.

Other dads, like Hen Avigdori, try to comfort the one child who’s left — while slipping away to cry for his son’s missing sister and mom. “I’m in this endless loop of hope and despair, hope and despair,” he said. “I need some proof of life. I need to know where my wife and daughter are.”

From Thailand to France and America, the families of the 199 missing hostages are in an aching form of limbo. Between television interviews and underground meetings with government officials in Tel Aviv, they live hour to hour, haunted by their last conversations and the knowledge of what Hamas is capable of. To so many, captivity is a fate worse than death. As one heartbroken father told reporters, realizing his eight-year-old little girl had been killed was better than thinking of her in the terrorists’ hands. “It’s a blessing,” an emotional Thomas Hend told CNN the moment he learned Emily’s fate. “She was either dead or in Gaza,” he said after the 48-hour search. “And if you know anything about what they do in Gaza, that is worse than death.”

The number held by Hamas, which Israeli officials increased to almost 200 over the weekend, is complicating things for the soldiers on the ground. While teams of military teams search the 30-mile Gaza strip, terrorist Abu Obeida warned that his men have scattered the hostages — babies, grandmothers, young women, newly orphaned children, and soldiers — in “safe places and the tunnels of resistance” all throughout the area.

Brigadier General Daniel Hagari, a top Israeli military spokesman, insisted they have information on the location of the captives and sought to reassure families that the troops “will not carry out an attack that would endanger our people.” In the meantime, Cardinal Pierbattista Pizzaballa, the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, issued a stunning declaration, offering himself to Hamas if the terrorists would let the child hostages go. “I am ready for an exchange, anything, if this can lead to freedom, to bring the children home.”

Countless parents at the makeshift headquarters of the Families of Hostages and Missing Persons Forum would almost certainly do the same. “All we have been told is that her phone is in Gaza,” Meirav Gonen said helplessly. Romi, who was kidnapped from the music festival, stayed on the line with her mom for almost 45 minutes until her phone went dead.

“I know she was shot,” Meirav explained. “She called me at 10:15 and I was on with her until 10:58, she was fading away and I heard shooting around her coming closer to the car and then people shouting in Arabic … shouting she was alive and that they need her.”

Romi’s face is one of many lining the wall of Tel Aviv’s HaKirya government building, a horrifying reminder of the dozens of missing. “It’s so, so lonely,” Meirav chokes up. “All the thoughts and feelings that you have once you stop for a minute to listen to them.”

Lt. General (Ret.) Jerry Boykin understands the pain of hostage crises more than most. As commander of the Army’s elite Delta Force, he was one of the leaders on the failed mission to rescue Iran’s hostages in 1980. Like so many veterans, he knows the incredible lengths America will go to bring its people home. “I think most of what you see, other than the bombing and the shelling by the Israelis … is reconnaissance to try to locate the hostages,” he explained to guest host and former Congressman Jody Hice on “Washington Watch.” “This is a big issue for the Israelis because there are Americans being held. And I can assure that those people on the ground in [Gaza] include some Americans, our special operations that are experts at hostage rescue.”

But, Boykin warned, “the key thing to hostage rescue is good intelligence, and I think that’s what they’re doing [in Gaza right now]. … They’re in there looking for the hostages. And I pray that they will find them before the end of this campaign … because ultimately,” he said soberly, “these people will be killed if we can’t find them in time.”

White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby was cagey on Sunday about the involvement of U.S. special ops, saying only that the military “won’t rule anything in or out” about the hostage effort on the ground.

For now, Boykin insisted, the world needs to keep its eye on the ball. All of this, he argued, “is on the backs of Hamas.” “Hamas is responsible for everything that has happened up to this point. There is nothing, no one killed, nothing that Hamas is not responsible for. And we have to remember that. … What has happened here is a terrible, brutal, even demonic attack on the Israelis. … And we stand with the Jews.”

More than that, we pray for the Jews — and everyone affected by this unspeakable tragedy. For a partial list of hostages to remember in prayer, visit Pray for Israel by Name and join us in asking for God’s continued blanket of peace and protection on the innocents in the grip of Hamas.

AUTHOR

Suzanne Bowdey

Suzanne Bowdey serves as editorial director and senior writer at The Washington Stand.

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2023 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

7 Lies, Distortions, or Abominations in Joe Biden’s 9/11 Speech

On the 22nd anniversary of 9/11, Joe Biden once again made history for all the wrong reasons — ignoring grieving families, lying to U.S. soldiers, and attempting to cut a plea bargain with terrorist masterminds while sending billions of dollars to the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism. Here are seven examples:

1. Location

Joe Biden became the first president not to take part in ceremonies in one of the three cities associated with the 9/11 attacks: New York City; Washington, D.C.; or Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Instead, he spoke at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, a location his remarks attempted to tie to the attacks. Add Biden — whom NBC News dubbed the “consoler-in-chief” — skipping this 9/11 memorial to his historic firsts of admitting the most illegal immigrants into the United States ever and the highest number of Americans to die of drug overdoses (problems which are correlated), and it paints the picture of a president who does not care about U.S. citizens or their losses.

His handlers blamed a scheduling conflict for Biden’s whereabouts — but who sets the president’s schedule? In any previous administration, the question would be rhetorical. Biden, or his handlers, felt it more important for the president to attend the G-20 Summit in India (or “the G7,” as Biden called it), followed by a trip to Vietnam — conveniently putting a younger, more “diverse” Democrat center stage during the event. (Biden’s disastrous performance at his Vietnam press conference may explain why.) Still, the president’s absence seemed anomalous enough that Biden felt required to explain the trip constituted “an essential part of how we’re going to assure the United States is flanked by the broadest array of partners and allies who will stand with us and deter any threat to our security.” If Biden thinks Vietnam will send troops to defend the United States, much less join a future U.S.-led nation-building exercise, he’s delusional — which may explain…

2. Joe Biden Lied about His Location on September 12, 2001

During his speech, Biden shared vividly invented memories of “Ground Zero in New York — I remember standing there the next day and looking at the building. I felt like I was looking through the gates of Hell, it looked so devastated.” In reality, video footage proves that Joe Biden attended a session of the Senate in Washington, D.C., on September 12, 2001. But self-aggrandizing fables hardly surprise coming from Joe Biden, who has embellished his past more than anyone since Walter Mitty. He also falsely “remembered” being “shot at” during a trip to Iraq (a shot landed outside his hotel) and searching for Osama bin Laden over “the superhighway of terror between Pakistan and Afghanistan where my helicopter was forced down” (due to a snowstorm), as well as being arrested in the 1980s while trying to meet future South African President Nelson Mandela (they met in 1990 in the Senate Foreign Relations executive committee room), taking part in sit-ins in the 1960s, meeting with members of the Tree of Life Synagogue after a mass shooting, and presiding over an America thriving due to Bidenomics.

3. Biden Praises the Mission to Kill Osama bin Laden — Which He Opposed

During his remarks, Biden tied himself to “heroes like the 9/11 generation … who followed Osama bin Laden to the ends of the earth and ultimately send him to the gates of Hell 12 years ago. And then last year, I made the decision to take out [Ayman al-]Zawahiri, the number two, who met the same fate.”

But Joe Biden opposed the mission that killed Osama bin Laden, as he boasted to an audience in 2012. Once again, video footage captures Biden telling a different audience a different tale:

“The president, he went around the table with all the senior people, including the Chiefs of Staff. And he said, ‘I have to make this decision. What is your opinion?’ He started with the National Security adviser, the Secretary of State, and he ended with me. Every single person in that room hedged their bet, except Leon Panetta; Leon said, ‘Go!’ Everyone else said ‘49/51,’ this …

“It got to me. He said, “Joe what do you think?” And I said, ‘Ya know, I didn’t know we have so many economists around the table. We owe the man a direct answer. Mr. President, my suggestion is don’t go. We have to do two more things to see if he’s there.’ He walked out, and he said, ‘I’ll give you my decision.’” (Emphasis added.)

Barack Obama dithered for 16 hours while the military waited for his decision. The Navy’s SEAL Team 6 succeeded in raiding bin Laden’s compound on May 2, 2011. Then-Vice President Biden blurted out that Navy SEALs killed the terrorist mastermind at a Washington dinner one day later. That August 6, a Taliban RPG blew up a Chinook helicopter in Afghanistan, killing 38 U.S. soldiers, including 17 members of SEAL Team 6. “In releasing their identity, [the Obama-Biden administration] put a target on their backs,” said the father of one of the soldiers killed that day.

4. Biden Seeks a Plea Bargain to Spare 9/11 Masterminds the Death Penalty

Just weeks before the speech, the Biden administration quietly initiated proceedings to cut a deal that would spare the death penalty for the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, and four other co-conspirators currently held at Guantanamo Bay. The families of 9/11 victims expressed outrage that they learned of the impending plea deal in “a form letter.” Sparing the terrorists a trial would suppress “information that no doubt would shed light on the identity of the 9/11 conspirators — secret and hidden — not only from the 9/11 families but from the American public.” Even now, as U.S. officials have just identified two more of the victims at the Twin Towers, the Biden administration seeks to conceal the identity of its perpetrators.

5. Biden Gave $6 Billion to Iran on 9/11

As Biden rhetorically crusaded against terrorism from a military base, his administration released billions of dollars to the leading state sponsor of terrorism. Under the terms of an agreement announced last month, Biden transferred $6 billion and five imprisoned Iranian assets in exchange for five American prisoners. Biden’s Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, notified Congress he had authorized the payment on 9/11.

“We used to call funding a terror state an act of treason,” said Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.). No one denies Iran remains the global leader in terror sponsorship — including the Biden administration. “Designated as a State Sponsor of Terrorism in 1984, Iran continued its support for terrorist-related activity in 2021, including support for Hizballah, Palestinian terrorist groups in Gaza, and various terrorist and militant groups in Iraq, Syria, Bahrain, and elsewhere throughout the Middle East,” according to the most recent terrorist report from Biden’s State Department.

Iran’s terrorism barely outdates Joe Biden’s desire to send the Ayatollah U.S. taxpayers’ dollars. Biden also wanted to send Iran a check for $200 million with “no strings attached” immediately after 9/11/2001 to prove America’s goodwill. The New Republic reported in October 2001:

America needs to show the Arab world that we’re not bent on its destruction. “Seems to me this would be a good time to send, no strings attached, a check for $200 million to Iran,” Biden declares. He surveys the table with raised eyebrows, a How do ya like that? look on his face.

The Obama-Biden administration went on to give Iran $1.7 billion in 2016.

6. Biden Boasts of Protecting the Troops

During his remarks, Biden reassured the troops, “I will never hesitate to do what is necessary to defend the American people, just as I will never forget our sacred duty to those of you who serve.” Can anyone believe Joe Biden will protect Americans from another Taliban attack when his precipitous withdrawal abandoned possibly thousands of U.S. citizens to the Taliban’s tender mercies, and left soldiers so vulnerable that a suicide bomber killed 13 U.S. servicemembers? The Taliban incorporated numerous terrorists into its newly minted government — much as the Obama-Biden administration’s unconstitutional war put al-Qaeda affiliates in charge of Libya and its machinations installed a regime favorable to the Muslim Brotherhood, the fundamentalist group where Osama bin Laden met Ayman al-Zawahiri, in Egypt.

Yet the Biden administration seemed more interested in firing the Marine who criticized the collapse of Kabul, Lt. Col. Stuart Scheller, than the political advisers who engineered it.

To the extent Biden intends to keep a “sacred duty,” he certainly defines it differently than any of his predecessors: Pentagon spokesman John Kirby called funding abortion-related travel the “foundational, sacred obligation of military leaders.”

7. Praising ‘National Unity’ while Sowing Division

As the bipolar Biden administration frequently does, Biden mouthed the right words about “national unity” — fluffy phrases that belie his dedication to Balkanization, division, and enacting a racial spoils system for his supporters while demonizing, surveilling, and imprisoning his political opponents. Biden waxed nostalgic that after 9/11, “American flags sold out in every store and were placed in front of seemingly every home. … This day reminds us we must never lose that sense of national unity, so let that be the common cause of our time.” Americans must resist being “pulled apart by petty, manufactured grievances” inflamed by “the poisonous politics of difference and division.”

Such inspiring words make one wonder if the president remembers his “Dark Brandon” speech, flanked by soldiers, in which he denounced his political opponents as an existential threat to American survival in front of a black-and-red colored Constitution Hall. That speech flowed more naturally from the Biden administration, which has placed intersectionality and “equity” at “the center” of a “whole-of-government” plan to redistribute wealth and respect toward solidly Democratic-leaning voting blocs.

One need look no further than actions taken by Biden’s Department of Homeland Security last week — again, on the eve of 9/11. The DHS doled out Targeted Violence and Terrorism Prevention grants, which are intended “to prevent targeted violence and terrorism,” to:

  • The Sexual Minority Youth Assistance League ($530,000) to provide “in-school” indoctrination “for LGBTQ+ youth ages 6-24” in D.C.-area schools. (You can read the details here.);
  • American University’s Polarization and Extremism Research and Innovation Lab, or PERIL ($784,276), for “teaching children in grades K-5 how to recognize harmful online content.” PERIL (get it?) partners with the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation, the pro-gun control Everytown for Gun Safety, and the Anti-Defamation League. To “prevent radicalization,” PERIL encourages teachers to have “classroom conversations” about “the Movement for Black Lives and protests against systemic police brutality, to the far-right insurrection at the Capitol on January 6th.” PERIL’s leader, MSNBC columnist Cynthia Miller-Idriss, also claims that young people who “are more committed to a kind of gun culture also have higher scores on racial resentment and male supremacist ideas” and worries that Americans might be “easily persuaded by false information … about why they need a gun”;
  • Boston Children’s Hospital ($820,990), which carries out transgender surgeries on children as young as 13, to train mental health practitioners how to identify and deal with people allegedly at “risk for targeted violence and terrorism”;
  • University of North Dakota ($386,682.78) for an “educational module [that] expands understanding of Indigenous culture”;
  • Columbia University ($820,332) to develop “an interactive program focused on storytelling”; and
  • Michigan State Police Michigan Intelligence Operations Center ($425,485) to “raise awareness of how the community can identify and properly refer individuals who may demonstrate behaviors that suggest they may be going down a path toward violence.” This comes after investigators exposed an alleged kidnapping plot targeting Governor Gretchen Whitmer (D), creeping with allegations of entrapment involving more than a dozen FBI agents or informants.

Such “anti-terrorism” grants seem more intended to target the soldiers Biden addressed than Osama bin Laden’s spiritual progeny.

Taken together, the picture of Joe Biden that emerges is one of an exhausted vessel shafted by his handlers, whose decades of foreign policy experience have created a more dangerous world — and whose victims will receive either his animus or indifference.

AUTHOR

Ben Johnson is senior reporter and editor at The Washington Stand.

RELATED ARTICLE: Biden Admin Violated Americans’ Free Speech Rights during Pandemic, 5th Circuit Rules

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2023 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

13 Fallen Soldiers ‘Have More Integrity in Their Little Toes’ than This Administration: Parents

At a forum hosted by Representative Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) on Monday, Gold Star families of the fallen servicemen in Afghanistan had a public platform to testify. Since the suicide bombing at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, killing 13 U.S. servicemembers, the families have sought accountability and clarity regarding the disorderly withdrawal of American troops from the Taliban-infested country.

“To say it’s time to move on and there’s nothing more to be said as to the planning and the execution of how our country wrapped a two-decade war, is an insult to all of us,” said Alicia Lopez, mother of fallen Marine Hunter Lopez.

Sensing that the families of the fallen had not been provided an opportunity to speak publicly, Issa devoted time at the Escondido City Hall for loved ones to seek answers regarding the catastrophic events that occurred nearly two years ago.

Before the emotional testimonies began, Issa assured families that this was “their day” and that they would be heard. Although he noted a particular order that “people believe we should go in,” he decided to open the floor to family members to speak whenever they felt comfortable.

After the father of fallen Marine Corps Staff Sergeant Darin T. Hoover thanked Issa and those in attendance for listening to “the hurt, the anger, and the anguish that we feel for our children,” he expressed his frustration with the Biden administration regarding the bombing as a whole. He called for Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, General Mark Milley, General Kenneth McKenzie, Lieutenant Colonel Whitehead, and President Joe Biden to “do what our son did: Be a grown a– man.”

Hoover also attacked the administration’s character in the whole fiasco. “You all need to resign immediately,” he urged. “Our sons and daughters have more integrity in their little toes than every one of them combined.”

Hoover’s comments were made shortly after Biden “insisted he made no mistakes” regarding the withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan last Friday. U.S. Army experts disagree.

“The withdrawal of U.S. Forces and the evacuation of non-combatants from Afghanistan in 2021 is one of the greatest foreign policy failures in U.S. history,” Lt. Gen. (Ret.) William G. Boykin told The Washington Stand. “President Biden ignored the advice of several of his advisors who warned against letting a timeline drive the activities of the operation on the ground. That is incompetence and demands accountability starting at the White House.”

According to the mother of 20-year-old fallen Marine Dylan R. Merola, Cheryl Rex, there’s been no accountability in this White House. The grieving mother briefed the room about her encounter with President Biden nearly 24 hours after the tragedy.

Rex first shared that the president’s words of comfort included a comparison of his own feelings when he lost his son to cancer.

“[I wondered] how someone could honestly be so heartless to say he knew how I felt a little over 24 hours after learning of my son’s death,” Rex shared. “After this encounter, I have never had any personal correspondence nor has my son been honored or his name spoken by this commander-in-chief or his administration on what I feel is because of their failure and poor planning to exit our troops from Afghanistan.”

Rex continued by stating she believed the media — along with the Biden administration — had been covering up vital facts regarding the bombing. In January, she realized, “everything, even the way my son died, is being covered up.”

From her conversations with other Marines, she learned that the incident at Abbey Gate “was a complex attack, not just a single suicide bombing.” After her social media accounts were silenced and her son’s name hardly mentioned, Rex knew she “was being targeted and shut down publicly by media outlets.”

“The lies that were told to most of those grieving families violate every standard of conduct and leadership and should trigger the resignation of those who were responsible,” said Boykin. But then, as the general told “Washington Watch” guest host and former Congressman Jody Hice, “This president has a very long history of lying to people — especially to the American people — that he was sworn to support and defend. I find that to be one of the most disgusting things. And I will tell you … [this] administration does not care about their soldiers. And the administration does not understand how critical they are to our security.”

“[W]hat we’re seeing right now,” Boykin continued, “is the demise of our military. When you see stuff like that, and you reflect on it for just a moment, you realize we need a commander-in-chief that not only cares about our soldiers, our sailors, our airmen, and our Coast Guardsmen, but will do what is right by them to make sure that when the time comes to go to war, they’re ready to go to war and win. And all of this woke nonsense that we’re getting out of this administration is doing nothing but bringing us down. Keeping us from being ready to go to war.”

Although not all of the family’s questions have been answered, Issa vowed that progress would be made.

“It is not new for there to be military mistakes,” the congressman conceded. “But it is in fact a tradition that investigations don’t end until every question has been answered,” he said. “There are many, many questions … that have been asked that we will get to the bottom of.”

Until then, Freedom Alliance’s Tom Kilgannon reminded viewers, these families are dealing with tremendous emotional trauma “inflicted by this administration.” “It is unforgiveable. So we need to pray that they have the strength to carry this cross, to bear this burden, to be able to forgive, and to be able to honor their loved ones as time goes on.”

AUTHOR

Abigail Olsson

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2023 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

Coast Guard Chief Who Supervised Trans Recruit: It ‘100%’ Hurts Readiness

For all the talk that America “is stronger when it’s inclusive,” the real-world consequences of Joe Biden’s transgender military policy have been deeply and painfully felt. In a force already ravaged by wokeness, overextension, and cratering recruitment, men and women on the ground are also being asked to do the impossible: function with deeply dysfunctional members — which, as one Coast Guard Chief explains, has never endangered America more.

Like most people in uniform, Rocky Rogers, a 25-year veteran of the Coast Guard, watched President Biden sign the executive order that lets trans-identifying troops back into the military and wondered how it would affect him. He didn’t have to wait long to find out. In a sobering interview with Family Research Council President Tony Perkins, he set the record straight on just how disruptive and perilous it was.

As a direct supervisor to one of nine trans-identifying Coast Guardsmen in the military from 2018-2020, Rogers had a front-row seat to the decision that’s created a huge mess for unit commanders and, more broadly, national security.

“Before that member reported to my unit, my workspace,” Chief Rogers explained, “the command briefed me what was going on and just said to look out for this person.” Almost immediately, things started to unravel. “[The problems started with] an unimaginable amount of medical appointments to where this member was rarely at work for a personal choice procedure to be done. Because of these choices, my workforce was significantly hindered in what we could respond to,” he said. It was especially frustrating, Rogers pointed out, because he was “billeted six personnel, but we only had five that were able to work any given time of the day. So that was a huge, huge impact.”

From there, it just got worse. The coast guardsman started “asking for extended lunches or for nourishment, which is always acceptable, but [on top of that, this person wanted] another hour and a half for personal medical care. And I asked the member to get the command approval, because if you give it to one, you have to give it to all. And if we were to give everyone a two-hour lunch, nothing would be completed during the normal workday. So [we’re talking about] a lot of challenges.”

But, of course, when Rogers tried to get help from his own chain of command, he got nowhere. These special accommodations were made because this individual was transitioning to another body.

Chief Rogers expected — wrongly, it turned out — that his supervisors would have his back. “During my briefing with the command before this member even reported [to me], the command asked me if I ever needed any guidance [or] any support to let them know.” When that time came, “I can count three times I reached out to the command and medical administrators directly asking for advice for … challenges with, again, an unimaginable amount of medical appointments and so forth.” In emails back, he was told, “‘Chief, figure it out. Handle it appropriately.’ And that was a sign to me that no one in a leadership role wanted their hands to be tied.”

Eventually, Rogers said, this all led to a great deal of friction with his team. “There was a lot of frustration. There was just a lot of animosity, if you will, because they knew [that] this person could not be depended on to help out with our day-to-day tasks. So it wore the morale in our workspace down very quickly.”

If a single trans-identifying guardsman is this detrimental to a unit, Perkins wondered aloud, “What if you had two individuals like that in your group?”

Rogers did the math. “I’d have 65% of a crew to do 100% of the work — [that’s] what it would come down to.”

“That seems like that has an impact on military readiness,” Perkins replied.

“Absolutely, 100%,” Rogers agrees.

His story comes days after an 18-year-old military recruit broke her silence about what it was like showering with biological men as a result of Biden’s controversial policy, putting her in an “extremely uncomfortable position.” Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) relayed her testimony in an Armed Services Committee hearing last week without revealing the woman’s name because she’s so worried about retaliation.

She was in basic training, “where she was sleeping in open bays and showering with biological males who had not had gender reassignment surgery but were documented as females because they had begun the drug therapy process,” Rounds explained. “She could have basically resigned or stepped away. She could have started over again.” But, at the end of the day, he argued, “I think this is one of the reasons why we’re not meeting our recruitment goals now,” he said. It’s Biden’s “woke agenda that we now see coming down by executive order.”

Yet the Pentagon and entire Biden team continues to argue that introducing mentally unstable people to the American military “is in our national interest.” Rounds and others, who’ve heard nightmarish complications, could not disagree more. “Most of the focus [under the Biden administration] is on the transgender individuals, not on the individuals who are working with them.”

And that may be one reason recruitment is collapsing. “As of July 12 of this year — so six days ago,” Rogers said, “just the enlisted ranks alone, the Coast Guard is down 3,559 members. That’s just recruiting. That’s not counting the shortages within the ranks that are already there.”

It’s the fruit, Lt. General (Ret.) Jerry Boykin insisted, of the Left’s years-long march through our armed forces. “I mean, give me any logical reason that you would see the kinds of things that we’re seeing in our military today. If you really want to understand [what Barack Obama meant] when he said, ‘I’m going to fundamentally change this country.’ … And if you want to do that, you start with the military. Now we’re seeing the results of that effort.”

AUTHOR

Suzanne Bowdey

Suzanne Bowdey serves as editorial director and senior writer at The Washington Stand.

RELATED VIDEO: Trump: “Corrupt” Biden is “dragging us into World War 3”

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2023 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

‘The Democrat Socialist Party Is Throwing a Hissy Fit and I’m Looking Forward to the Fight’

The Biden team has spent an awful lot of time talking about Senator Tommy Tuberville — but barely any time talking to him. That changed briefly Tuesday when Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin decided to carve out a few short minutes to address what Democrats would have you believe is the single greatest threat to military readiness: a few months’ delay in flag officer promotions.

Their brief conversation was hardly indicative of the hair-on-fire crisis the White House keeps insisting it is. Based on Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre’s comments Tuesday, you’d think the Alabama coach was a bigger threat to America than communist China. “I wanted to start today, once again, by calling out an unprecedented harm that Senator Tuberville’s actions have to our military readiness and military families — to every branch of our Armed Forces, disrespecting those who serve and the families who serve with them.”

Her Pentagon counterpart, John Kirby, took it a step further, blaming the Republican for everything from the DOD’s recruitment woes to a loss in military talent. At one point, he even accused Tuberville of “abusing” military families (as if somehow underwriting the slaughter of their unborn offspring isn’t).

Asked how his conversation went with Austin, the coach admitted they hadn’t made much progress. “No, not yet,” he told reporters. “None. … Just cordial [conversations]. Everybody gives their position and then, ‘Well, let’s talk again.’”

That talk may be unnecessary, depending on the progress Republicans make with the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) in the Senate. Thanks to the House’s conservatives, the latest version of the military spending bill includes language that would roll back the Pentagon’s illegal taxpayer-funded abortion policy — the very lawlessness fueling Tuberville’s stand.

The sooner the better, Tuberville told Family Research Council President Tony Perkins on Tuesday’s “Washington Watch.” “We’re looking forward to getting some closure to this. It’s been a pretty good fight for about six months now, but they’re really ramping up the pressure. I’ve got the IRS after me. I’ve got national TV going to Alabama interviewing people. You know, it’s just one thing after another. … They’re turning up the heat, but they don’t know what heat’s all about.” As for the battle heating up in the Senate, the coach said, “The Democrat socialist party is throwing a hissy fit. … Let them. I’m looking forward to the fight.”

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) inched closer to a compromise Wednesday, announcing that he wouldn’t stand in the way of a vote on the military’s policy. “The bottom line is that if he wants to have an affirmative vote, we would not object to it,” the New York Democrat said during a press conference. “Tuberville said he wanted a vote, we’ll see what happens.”

The offer seemed to surprise Tuberville, who was informed and replied, “Oh, really? Well, I’ll have to talk to him. … I’ve never talked to him in two and a half years.”

Meanwhile, Schumer ramped up the hyperbole, insisting that Republicans should do a better job keeping their senators in line. “They are risking our security, and it’s up to them to fix it.”

Give me a break, Tuberville told Perkins. “If I thought I was holding up readiness and national security [in] this country, I wouldn’t be doing this. But that’s not happening. What’s causing our readiness [problems] is the woke policies that this administration is pushing. It’s awful. … And I don’t think they really understand what they’re doing to — not just the military — but all of our other institutions. But it is a total mess right now.”

As Republicans have argued since the beginning, the military has never provided abortion on demand at taxpayers’ expense — not under conservative administrations and not under liberal ones. “You can’t change the rules in the middle of the game,” the coach insisted. “And that’s exactly what they’re doing. They could care less about the Constitution. They have stomped all over our Constitution in the last two and a half years, and the American people should be outraged.”

At the end of the day, the coaching legend explained to Perkins, “The only way I’m going to move these holds is if they move that policy back, and then we bring a vote to the floor. And it’s pretty simple and we get back to business.” In the meantime, he warned, “… I’m standing up for the unborn, and I’m standing up for the taxpayers of this country. That’s what I’m here for.”

AUTHOR

Suzanne Bowdey serves as editorial director and senior writer at The Washington Stand.

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2023 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

A Defiant GOP Smashes Woke Military Policies with Rock-Solid NDAA

The biggest story of this past week isn’t that the House passed the military spending bill — or even that they passed it with language that beats back President Biden’s woke policies. The biggest story is the one that won’t be told: of House conservatives refusing to give an inch.

Former Congressman Jody Hice, now a special advisor to the president at Family Research Council, was blown away by the sea change in how this new Republican majority is doing business. For the last couple of years, Hice watched his party buckle under Democratic pressure, especially where military policy is concerned. “Progressively,” he told The Washington Stand, “the NDAA bills were becoming more and more woke. And we, as a Republican conference, were compromising to the demands on the Left. To see what took place Thursday night, I was just blown away. This is a major shift — not only from the woke agenda push from this administration — but this is a major shift from the direction of our own conference over the last several years, as it pertains to the NDAA.”

Late Thursday night, Republicans finally went to sleep after accomplishing what seemed impossible only hours before: adding a slew of pro-life, pro-military, anti-gender transition amendments to the bill. Democrats and the media spent the wee hours of the morning blasting the conservative changes, vowing it would never pass with such “poison pills.”

They were wrong.

Barely nine hours later, the entire NDAA — anti-woke language included — had squeaked by in a 219-210 vote, thanks to an even swap of Republicans and Democrats (four) trading sides. Reps. Jared Golden (D-Maine), Marie Gluesenkamp Perez (D-Wash.), Gabe Vasquez (D-N.M.), and Don Davis (D-N.C.) all threw their support behind the GOP-led bill.

Of course, the most jubilant celebration came Thursday afternoon when Congressman Ronny Jackson (R-Texas) managed to include language rolling back the Pentagon’s taxpayer funding of abortion — an absolute defiance of the law. In one of the most powerful moments of that debate, mom-to-be Rep. Anna Paulina Luna (R-Fla.) stood on the House floor and made it clear: “I am a United States veteran and a woman elected to Congress while pregnant. Advocating for a service member to have a child ripped from her womb completely destroys everything this military stands for.”

As Rep. Mike Johnson (R-La.) explained on “Washington Watch” moments before that vote, what the Department of Defense did with this sudden policy was nothing but an unconstitutional “end run around many of the pro-life states’ laws and all the hard work that’s been done after Dobbs overturned Roe.”

“This has become a really important issue in the country,” Johnson insisted. And what they’ve done, he explained, is used “executive fiat” through the Department of Defense. Secretary Lloyd Austin “[has] said that they will pay for or reimburse expenses relating to abortion services. So in other words, if a service member or a woman serving is pregnant, and she’s on a base somewhere in a [red state] … then she can travel to a state that provides abortion — and taxpayers will reimburse her for that. That’s a violation of the Hyde Amendment,” Johnson fumed.

Family Research Council President Tony Perkins made sure to emphasize, “Just to be very clear here, we’re talking about elective abortions. So this is new territory [President Biden is staking out]. For decades, [there] has been a bipartisan position that taxpayers would not be forced to facilitate abortion.”

Obviously, this has been a huge flash point in the Senate, where Coach Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.) has taken months of heat for holding up certain military promotions until the DOD drops its reckless abortion advocacy. And while Democrats — the president included — blame the senator for everything from recruitment problems to retention, they refuse to even meet with Tuberville. If this delay was really so devastating to military readiness, the coach has said, you’d think Biden would pick up the phone and try to negotiate.

“That’s what this place is about,” he added. “It’s about working with each other, talking it out, getting in situations where you can maybe compromise to a point. I mean, here’s a guy that doesn’t even want to talk.”

He may be forced to, now that Republicans have teed up a 1,200-page rebuke of the last two years of Defense Department radicalism. If Biden wants to blame someone for America’s shrinking force, he ought to look in the mirror.

After all, it’s “the president and his administration [who’ve] injected into the military all of this woke social policy nonsense. … We have ESG and DEI and anything else you can imagine —the funding of drag queen shows on military bases, [the] violation of parental rights. We were able to get amendments … to take care of all of that,” Johnson said. But frankly, “it’s far more contentious than it should be. You know, our military has a very important job,” he insisted. “They’re trained to be a powerful force that wins wars and defends our nation, not experimentation with social policy. And so it’s just completely disingenuous for the president to [blame Republicans or blame Tuberville for these problems]. … [I]t’s not Republicans and conservatives that are inserting this. It was him. We’re undoing the damage that has been done.”

Along with crushing the Biden abortion policy, Republicans also held the line on the avalanche of diversity training and wildly inappropriate mission creep like taxpayer-funded gender transitions. Amendments to:

  • Outlaw the flying of Pride flags on military property (Norman Amendment #34) passed 218-213;
  • End the indoctrination of children in Defense Department schools by banning pornographic and dangerous gender ideology books (Boebert Amendment #35) passed 222-209;
  • Ban taxpayer-funding of gender transition procedures (Rosendale Amendment #10) passed 222-211;
  • Strip the funding for Chief Diversity Officers or Senior Advisors for Diversity and Inclusion from the ranks (Roy Amendment #30) passed 217-212; and
  • Outright block the DOD from creating new DEI administrator positions or taking action to fill existing DEI jobs (Burlison Amendment #62) passed 218-213.

One lone Democrat — Rep. Henry Cuellar (Texas) — voted with conservatives to stop the president’s out-of-control extremism on abortion and transgenderism. And while he refused to comment about the decision, he probably heard from the same constituents that his neighbor Rep. Chip Roy (R-Texas) did. “The American people I’ve talked to back home don’t want a weak military; they don’t want a woke military; they don’t want rainbow propaganda on bases; they don’t want to pay for troops’ sex changes.”

And yet, as Perkins pointed out, Biden blames Republicans for injecting social issues into the military. “You know, it’s like they poke the bear, and the bear pushes back — and they accuse the bear of being aggressive. The Left has been pushing this stuff for years.” And finally, conservatives pushed back.

“I do want to point out,” Perkins said, “that there’s something unique here under this Republican Congress. … I don’t want people to miss that … a year ago, we couldn’t even have a debate under the Democratic rules. There was no debate. It’s just that you were steamrolled in the Left’s process of getting their agenda through. … [This open dialogue] is something that hasn’t happened in a very long time.

“Yeah, what a concept,” Johnson joked. “We were able to get some real process reforms in that long, drawn-out battle for the speakership in January. And as painful as that process was for everyone, the result was really good. We got transparency again. We eliminated—forever, we hope—the possibility of omnibus spending bills and giant pieces of legislation that no one has read. … It takes a lot more time and effort, but this is what is demanded, and it’s what the American people deserve. And I’m really glad we’ve gotten back to some regular order here.”

In the meantime, Republicans are crossing their fingers that the heavy lifting they’ve done on the NDAA survives the Democrat-led Senate. One thing’s for sure, Perkins said. Biden doesn’t have Tuberville to kick around anymore. If he wants to end the freeze on military promotions, there’s a simple solution now: support this bill. “The remedy’s right here in front of him.”

AUTHOR

Suzanne Bowdey

Suzanne Bowdey serves as editorial director and senior writer at The Washington Stand.

RELATED ARTICLE: House State and Foreign Ops Funding Bill Contains First-of-Its-Kind Pro-Life, Pro-Family Protections

EDITOR NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2023 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

Biden’s Abortion Obsession Could Crater Space Command’s HQ

“Does not compute.” That catchphrase from the 1960s show “Lost in Space” certainly captures the Biden administration’s decision-making of late. After a years-long process to find the perfect spot for America’s Space Command, the most radical president in history seems to be hanging his final choice on a completely unrelated policy: abortion. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand that the two issues have nothing to do with each other — unless you’re a part of the new Left-driven Democratic Party, where social extremism eclipses everything.

The controversy kicked off at the end of the Trump administration, when the president announced that he was reviving the Department of Defense’s Space Command and moving its headquarters from Colorado to Alabama. Democrats were furious, claiming that he’d only awarded the spot to the Yellowhammer State because of its conservativism. (It also happens to be home to one of the largest aerospace industry presences in the country, and a storied history in the space race, not that the Left is interested in the facts.)

Even after the Defense Department’s Inspector General cleared Trump of any wrongdoing — the administration “complied with law and policy,” it found — Democrats have continued to urge Biden to maintain the Colorado status quo. As recently as this month, Senator Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) went to the floor and complained that sending the Space Command from “a blue state to a red one” hurts service members. How? Because according to Bennet and other Democrats, pro-life laws are a detriment to “our readiness and our national security.” “Reproductive health,” Bennet argued, should be first and foremost in the president’s mind.

In other words, he’s insisting that Biden do the very thing Democrats accused Trump of: politicizing a military decision. And the White House has been quite content to play along, kicking the 2022 decision well into 2023. Of course, the Biden administration claims that postponing the move has nothing to do with Alabama’s strong new pro-life law — or the fact that one of its U.S. senators, Tommy Tuberville (R), is blocking military promotions until the Pentagon reverses its unconstitutional policy on taxpayer-funded abortions. But insiders say otherwise.

“The belief,” one U.S. official told NBC News, “is they are delaying any move because of the abortion issue.” Another confirmed that report, saying, “This is all about abortion politics.”

To Tuberville and other Alabama leaders, the idea that this president would base his decision on a radical social agenda over Space Command’s best interest is astounding. “Multiple independent, nonpartisan government reviews have found Space Command headquarters would be best served in Huntsville,” the coach explained. “… Two independent studies from the Department of Defense Inspector General and the Government Accountability Office nonetheless affirmed the process that ranked Alabama as the best choice for the Space Command. Colorado didn’t make the top three.”

Even Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.), who stands to lose the program from his district, hopes the White House is “professional enough to make national security the focus of how they make their decision.”

That’s optimistic considering the Democrats’ track record of ideological retaliation. In the last several years, we’ve witnessed the weaponization of government against pro-lifersparents, and Christiansstatewide travel bans against red states for democratically-enacted laws, and even the defection of major league sports from conservative regions — all at the Left’s prompting.

If Joe Biden continues his party’s tradition of punishing states he disagrees with, then, in the words of the iconic robot, “Danger, Will Robinson!”

Do we really want to go down this path as a nation where we allocate resources based on which party’s values are in control? If this president starts basing his decisions about government facilities on the extreme ideology of his base, it will open the door for Republican leaders to be pressured to do likewise. As we’ve seen with the debt ceiling debate, conservative voters are no longer satisfied with promises and platitudes; they are demanding the GOP confront the dangerous policies of the Left. In a nation that’s already hyper-politicized, this would mark a devastating shift in how an already-dysfunctional Washington operates.

Letting the abortion lobby preempt logic and reason is no way to run a country. If we allow this president — or any president — to elevate politics above our national security, then we might as well hand over the country’s keys to China. When access to abortion is more important than fighting and winning wars, this Space Command debate proves that we are light years away from creating the strong defensive posture we need to confront America’s present and future threats.

AUTHOR

Tony Perkins

Tony Perkins is president of Family Research Council and executive editor of The Washington Stand.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. ©2023 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

3,000 Military Veterans Reject Pentagon’s ‘Left-Wing Social Agenda,’ Support Tuberville’s Fight

The cavalry is coming to help Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.). For months, the Alabama Republican has waged a fight against the Defense Department’s woke agenda by blocking the Senate’s approval of nearly 200 promotions for military generals and flag officers.

The military establishment, Senate Democrats, and the Biden administration have resorted to name-calling and unfounded warnings — even though Tuberville insists he won’t budge until the Pentagon reverses its policy subsidizing abortions.

Two weeks ago, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), touted a letter from seven former secretaries of defense to make his case. Today, a significantly larger number of current and retired service members announced they’re backing Tuberville.

In a new letter shared first with The Daily Signal, more than 3,000 veterans and active-duty members of the U.S. armed forces are expressing their support for Tuberville and calling on the Pentagon to rescind its politically motivated abortion policy. Four members of Congress joined state lawmakers, national leaders and thousands of everyday Americans who have served their country in the military.

“The undersigned stand united in condemning this policy,” they write in the letter to Schumer and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.). “This policy is not just illegal, it shamefully politicizes the military, circumvents the authority of Congress, and exceeds the authority of the Department of Defense.”

The letter includes 593 individual names — including Reps. Eli Crane (R-Ariz.), Andrew Clyde (R-Ga.), Ronny Jackson (R-Texas), and Anna Paulina Luna (R-Fla.) — plus 32 endorsers and partners with the Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty, which represents the position of over 2,500 military chaplains.

The Defense Department issued its policy Feb. 16, providing three weeks of taxpayer-funded paid leave and reimbursement of travel expenses for military personnel and dependents who are seeking an abortion. An estimate from Rand Corporation predicts the number of abortions would skyrocket from 20 to more than 4,000 each year.

Using his leverage as a U.S. senator, Tuberville is holding the nearly 200 military promotions. He’s earned the support of Republican colleagues, including influential Senator John Cornyn (R-Texas) who said this week, “I regret that it’s necessary, but I think it is.”

Last week, a group of House conservatives stood with Tuberville on the Senate floor. Previously, CatholicVote organized pro-life and conservative leaders to enlist their grassroots organizations to aid his effort. And now a diverse group of service members and veterans are speaking out in support.

Their letter directly refutes the claim by Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and his seven predecessors that Tuberville’s actions are affecting military readiness. Democrat senators, led by Schumer, have repeatedly made this assertion — without factual evidence — to attack Tuberville.

“Over the past few months, the senior senator from Alabama has singlehandedly hindered our national security by blocking hundreds of critical military appointments,” Schumer alleged Monday. “Those holds are hamstringing our military. According to former secretaries of defense who served presidents of both parties, this blanket hold ‘is harming military readiness and risks damaging U.S. national security.’”

Beyond broad warnings about military readiness, however, Democrats are unable to point to specific examples proving their case.

The letter from service members suggests the real readiness problem is a result of Austin’s actions as secretary and the “politicized agenda” of the Biden administration.

“The American people, including its service members, are disappointed by President [Joe] Biden and Secretary Austin’s recent decisions to mandate receipt of the COVID-19 vaccines, promote the radical LGBT agenda, and now subsidize abortion,” they write. “Because of these policies, the military now faces an unprecedented crisis of recruitment — missing its recruitment goal for the first time ever last year. The focus of our military must be on keeping the American people safe, not advancing the left-wing social agenda.”

Even when Democrats have pressed military leaders for evidence, they’ve come up empty.

At an April 20 hearing, Senate Armed Services Chairman Jack Reed (D-R.I.) asked U.S. Indo-Pacific Command Cmdr. John Aquilino about the consequences of Tuberville’s hold on readiness in the region. Aquilino responded, “Operationally … no impact, because Seventh Fleet commanders are not going anywhere until the proper replacement is in place.”

Retired three-star Gen. Jerry Boykin, executive vice president at the Family Research Council, flatly rejected the idea when FRC President Tony Perkins asked him if Tuberville’s effort was endangering the U.S. military. Boykin responded, “No, it is not.”

“In the military,” Boykin added, “you don’t replace somebody until you have a replacement for them, which means the person holding that slot stays there until he has a replacement. This whole thing is more propaganda than anything else.”

And last week, three Heritage Foundation vice presidents — including retired Lt. Colonel James Jay Carafano, vice president of Heritage’s Davis Institute for National Security and Foreign Policy — pointed to greater threats to military readiness than the failure to promote flag officers.

“America’s military readiness is of vital importance and one The Heritage Foundation takes seriously,” they wrote to Tuberville. “Each year, we publish an Index of U.S. Military Strength to gauge the U.S. military’s ability to perform its missions. This year, for the first time, we assess the military as weak and at growing risk of not being able to meet the demands of defending America’s vital national interests. While the reasons for this are many, your holds are not among them.”

Carafano was joined by two others from Heritage: John Malcolm, vice president of the Institute for Constitutional Government, and Roger Severino, vice president of domestic policy.

Democrats could circumvent Tuberville’s hold by voting on each nominee individually. Doing so, however, would be a laborious process for senators who would rather approve the promotions as a group.

Just as he’s done several times already, Tuberville is prepared to continue his fight until the Pentagon changes course. Now, he has the backing of more than 3,000 service members and veterans.

“There is no truth more profound than the fact that all human life is sacred,” their letter concludes. “The mission of the United States Military is to defend and protect all American lives — not subsidize the practice of destroying innocent and vulnerable American children via abortion with taxpayer dollars. By pledging to hold these nominations to the Department of Defense until administration officials reverse course, Senator Tuberville is doing a great service for the American people — including its service members.”

This article was originally published in The Daily Signal.

AUTHOR

Rob Bluey

Rob Bluey is executive editor of The Daily Signal.

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2023 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

‘The Only Thing That Should Be Dragging in the Navy Is an Anchor’: Congressman

Anheuser-Busch hasn’t exactly been teaching a master class on marketing after its poisonous partnership with Dylan Mulvaney. When sales crashed, CEO Michel Doukeris tried the “It wasn’t a campaign — it was just a can” excuse for Bud Light’s relationship with the trans influencer, but it was $6 billion too late. Now, the U.S. Navy seems to be floating the same alibi for its drag queen recruiting videos. “The program has concluded, and the Navy is evaluating it,” Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin claimed. Well, the evaluation from House and Senate Republicans is in, and if this doesn’t stop, “heads will roll.”

For the last two months, the Navy has defended the salacious posts of 2nd Class Petty Officer Joshua Kelly (who goes by stage name “Harpy Daniels”) against the criticism of leaders like Rep. Jim Banks (R-Ind.), who asked how and why the branch chose a drag queen as one of its five “digital ambassadors.” “Do you believe TikTok videos of sailors dressed in and performing in drag is the best use of the Navy’s recruitment efforts?” he asked, before pointing out that Kelly is dressed in lingerie, underwear, or nothing with captions too grotesque and profane to repeat.

Lt. General (Ret.) William Boykin, who spent 36 years serving his country, openly seethed about Kelly’s posts. “I can’t even watch that,” he told Family Research Council Tony Perkins of Kelly’s videos, revolted. “I mean, I saw it earlier today on the computer, and I can’t watch. … They’re trying to add another 5,000 people to the Navy,” and this is the “kind of nonsense [they think is] going to help recruiting?”

Boykin wasn’t alone in his disgust. Rob O’Neill, the Navy SEAL who killed Osama bin Laden, held nothing back on Twitter, fuming, “Alright. The U.S. Navy is now using an enlisted sailor Drag Queen as a recruiter. I’m done. China is going to destroy us. YOU GOT THIS NAVY. I can’t believe I fought for this bull—-.”

Yet officials defended Kelly’s involvement, insisting that his social media presence didn’t violate military policy since it wasn’t technically endorsed by the Navy. That’s interesting, House and Senate Republicans fired back, since the branch asked their ambassadors to use their accounts to attract new recruits.

“[The Navy said] they weren’t paying him,” Perkins, a Marine veteran, pointed out. “But when you’re in the military, all of your time belongs to the military. … And this is what he is — a ‘digital ambassador’ as a drag queen representing the Navy. I mean, think about what our enemies [are saying], how they responded. They’ve got to be laughing at this.”

The sick images caught the attention of more than a dozen senators, who sent a letter to Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro on May 3, demanding to know if the Navy approves of these sexually explicit performances. “Would the Navy enlist burlesque or exotic dancers to reach possible recruits? Such activity is not appropriate for promotion in a professional workplace or the United States military,” Republicans Ted Cruz (Texas), Tom Cotton (Ark.), Tommy Tuberville (Ala.), and 11 others insisted.

The controversy has been even more infuriating when you consider that the Biden administration was already under fire for hosting Drag Queen Story Hours on military bases. At a House hearing in March, Secretary Austin testified that the DOD does not “support or fund” drag shows. But, Banks argued, “If he was testifying honestly, then he has an obligation to discipline the officials who decided that sexually explicit content should be featured [here] in the Navy’s Digital Ambassador’s program. [This] divisive and woke insanity [is what’s] helped drive recruitment to a record low.”

Like Bud Light, which should be a cautionary tale on how to offend heartland consumers, the Navy is alienating the very patriots who’ve historically made up the military. Putting a man in women’s lingerie isn’t how you appeal to people with conservative values, the most likely pool of future soldiers, sailors, and airmen.

Congressman Mark Alford (R-Mo.) agreed. “I’ll tell you what … the word salad that you just heard from the DOD [defending Kelly’s role], that is standard for the Biden administration,” he said on Thursday’s “Washington Watch.” “What is happening here, I think, is an abomination. … This is not any way to recruit anyone into the military. The only thing that should be dragging in the Navy is an anchor.”

“When we have China on the march, Russia threatening nuclear activity, China launching warships almost on a weekly basis, and we’re focused on pronouns and drag queens,” Perkins shook his head, “something is seriously wrong.”

Worse, Alford pointed out, “only 9% of young people surveyed recently said they had any interest whatsoever in joining the military. … [W]e could possibly be at war with communist China in less than three to five years. We’ve got to rebuild our military. We’ve got to bring some sanity back to the Department of Defense.”

In his testimony, Austin said he would get back to the committee in “due time.” “I’m here to tell you, Secretary Austin, it better be quick,” Alford warned. “We have some serious answers that we need on these serious questions … about the wokeness that has infected our military. … We have got to put a stop to this … and someone’s head is going to roll on this. I don’t know who, but we cannot continue down this path where we are turning our military into [a] circus.”

And before someone accuses him or other conservatives of being “anti-gay” or “transphobic,” he reminded them, “If this were a woman doing burlesque in an oversexualized manner trying to recruit people into the military, it would be wrong as well. … This is not getting people passionate about America again. We need Normal Rockwell … not the ‘Rocky Horror Picture Show.’ And that’s what we’re living in.”

Kelly, meanwhile, was quite content to play the martyr. He blamed critics for creating “toxic environments and hate.” “You only want to support the military when it benefits you and doesn’t involve queer people. … Well, as a service member, a queen, and an open queer person, you don’t scare me and you won’t stop the LGBTQ+ community [from] thriving,” Kelley continued. “Haters only hate when we’re winning.”

But winning — as a nation — is exactly what Republicans are concerned about. “The situation … is so serious with China,” Alford warned. “They are getting ready to invade Taiwan; Russia [is] in this illegal war against Ukraine. What’s going on in the Sudan? We have serious problems in America, and we are asleep. … The big bad wolf is at the door. As I’ve said before, he is huffing and puffing. Our house right now is not made out of brick. And I’m worried that it’s going to be blown down.”

AUTHOR

Suzanne Bowdey

Suzanne Bowdey serves as editorial director and senior writer at The Washington Stand.

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2023 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.