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‘Woke’ Topics Amid Military ‘Professional Development’ Courses

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The U.S. military’s Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) in May offered 17 virtual professional development courses to its personnel, including several that covered so-called “woke” topics.

One of the courses was titled “Diversity, Equity and Inclusion,” Fox News reported, and U.S. Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) public affairs officer Ken McGraw confirmed the topics to the news site, explaining that the Department of Defense “regularly notifies its employees of a wide variety of non-mandatory, professional education opportunities.”

“These courses are not unique to U.S. Special Operations Command or any USSOCOM subordinate command,” McGraw told Fox. “In this instance, JSOC notified their civilian and military personnel that DOD was offering 17 free, professional-development courses online, one of which is Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.”

“Employees can decide whether they want to attend any courses or not, to include how many courses and on what subjects,” McGraw added.

No personnel were encouraged to take one course over another, DOD spokesperson Lisa Lawrence said.

“The Department of Defense regularly offers non-mandatory, professional development courses to the workforce,” she said. “The courses offered by the Department for professional development are not unique to JSOC or U.S. Special Operations Command.”

“The training that was shared by JSOC’s Civilian Training Office to JSOC personnel included information related to a wide variety of non-mandatory, professional education courses from April to November,” Lawrence added. “The specific course reference was one of 17 free courses being offered and happened to be the next course offered in May.”

The “Diversity, Equity and Inclusion” course, according to Fox, is said to have included panels addressing anti-racism and white supremacy as well as one on leaders addressing “systemic disparities” and mitigating “bias.”

A backlash among Republican lawmakers and some veterans ensued after Space Force Lt. Col. Matthew Lohmeier was relieved of his command earlier this month after discussing on a conservative program a book he wrote alleging Marxism and anti-conservative bias in the ranks.

“Rather than e pluribus unum, rather than teamwork, rather than cohesion, we’re being taught an ideology which seeks to divide us based on the color of our skin,” retired Air Force Lt. Gen. Rod Bishop told The Washington Free Beacon.

Thirty congressional Republicans recently wrote to Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin urging him to “take action to fight back against the creeping left-wing extremism in the U.S. military” over Lohmeier’s dismissal.

“Our diversity, inclusion and equity industry and the trainings we’re receiving in the military via that industry are rooted in critical race theory, which is rooted in Marxism,” Lohmeier said.

Rep. Randy Weber, R-Texas, who signed the letter, said that “patriotic Americans cannot stand idly by watching the politicization of our armed forces. George Washington — first a general, then a president — relinquished his commission before entering office. A truly visionary leader, he recognized the perils of a politically biased military. Our men and women in uniform are not lab rats in a social science experiment.”

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