Dems Seek to Root Out White Nationalism in Military After Capitol Siege

Dems Seek to Root Out White Nationalism in Military After Capitol Siege

The siege of the U.S. Capitol has created a new urgency for lawmakers and the Pentagon to root out white nationalism and right-wing activism in the U.S. military.

Congress plans to insert language into this year’s National Defense Authorization Act to address extremism at the Pentagon and other federal agencies, according to The Hill.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and a group of House Democrats last week called on the Department of Defense to investigate and address white supremacy and extremist ideology in the ranks of the military.

The Pentagon is already taking steps to identify and root out far-right extremism in the ranks, including monitoring social media postings from service members. The Defense Department inspector general also announced an investigation into DOD efforts to develop and implement policy and procedures addressing ideological extremism with the U.S. Armed Forces.

Nearly 1 in 5 people charged in connection with the riot Jan. 6 have some form of military background, according to an NPR analysis.

“The attack on our Capitol was an insurrection fueled in large part by groups that espouse the same extreme white supremacists’ views – groups that actively recruit veterans and from the ranks of our military,” Rep. Anthony Brown, D-Md., said in a statement to The Hill.

“We must recommit ourselves to rooting these beliefs out of our ranks, protecting our servicemembers from radicalization and ensuring all Americans feel safe serving the country we all love,” he added.

In 2019, the Republican-controlled Senate cut the phrase “white nationalist” from a measure in the NDAA, which was intended to explicitly address the threat of white nationalists in the military.

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