Political Correctness and Multi-culturalism Are Destroying the US Military: The ideological seeds that contributed to the destruction of the Wehrmacht have implications for the US military today
On June 22, 1942, in a surprise attack that flabbergasted and confounded even the wily Josef Stalin, German armies raced across the border of Russia determined to crush the nation and expand Nazi domination. That they did not succeed in so doing is one of the providential miracles of history for which the world may be profoundly grateful.
Historians have been studying the causes of the Nazi defeat for decades, and most concede that if it were not for the incredible heroism of the Russian people and the entrance of America into the war, Russia would have fallen to the Nazi war machine.
But it is seldom noted the Nazi version of political correctness played an enormous role in bringing the German armies to their knees. German military success was hindered by the racist ideology which put at the forefront of the military agenda the drive for Aryan purity, which purity was to be achieved by the extermination of Jews and Slavs.
With a few notable exceptions which would later translate into plots to assassinate Hitler, the German military was gradually absorbed into the political and ideological milieu engendered by Nazism, becoming not only a weapon for Nazi expansionist goals, but also an instrument to achieve the racial purity Hitler longed for. Prussian ideals of absolute loyalty to country and ruler were made to include Nazi ideological goals.
There was, in other words, a dual agenda comprised of military victory over the Russian armies but also victory over racial "pollution."
German army units that had thrust forward with incredible speed and determination into the very heart of Europe rushed headlong into Russia, but they were now accompanied by einsatzgruppen, special units designed to exterminate non-Aryans. As long as the Nazi blitzkrieg moved with the astonishing rapidity and success rate it had enjoyed in Europe, the einsatzgruppen could work without impeding the advance of the German armies. But as the war wore on, it became apparent that conventional and racial warfare could not co-exist without bogging down the army's military goals.
Gradually the twin goals of military victory and extermination of racially undesirable elements became so intertwined that in combination with stiffer Russian resistance than expected and the onset of the famed, brutal Russian winter, the German armies were slowed and eventually halted.
So it happened that the drag of ideological warfare was part of Hitler's "Waterloo." Because ideology trumped military strategy and sapped morale, the might of the German army was vitiated. While shedding oceans of blood in battle and in extermination campaigns, the army itself was suffering a vampiric suctioning of its life blood in the form of Nazi political correctness. The famed disciplined hierarchy of the German army broke down into a bloody anarchical melee.
Lessons for the US Military
US military forces face the prospect of being weakened from within by ideological forces as surely as the Wehrmacht was weakened by the absorption of Nazi ideology. While it is true there are far subtler ideological forces at work within our military than the odious racial ideology of Nazism; nonetheless, as with the Wehrmacht, ideological purity tests foreign to the ideals of the American military have been and are being introduced into its ranks, assuring its gradual vitiation. The US military is presently subject to and weakened by the ideologies of political correctness and multi-culturalism, both of which are inimical to a strong military, which, if it is to remain effective as a fighting force, requires strict adherence to its own longstanding traditions and ideals.
While remaining under civil authority, the military must be free to live and act according to the principles it articulates. It must have its autonomous sphere of authority, hierarchy and discipline. If it is forced to absorb and to obey the current politically correct thinking that is the hallmark of our current administration as well as of academia, it is bled of strength, compromised in its principles and subject to revisionist thinking.
In fact, it is in danger of not being the military at all.
For those unfamiliar with US military ideals, they are those of warriors devoted to God, country, the branch of the military to which one belongs, acceptance of the hierarchy of command, unflinching obedience to superiors and steadfast loyalty to one's unit and fellow soldiers.
Add to those ideals self-effacement and denial of individual privilege in the interest of protecting the innocent and vulnerable of one's country. All of the above mean that the individual soldier's "rights" as defined by the current civilian climate of opinion are freely suspended for the sake of unity--a unity necessary for fighting; a unity that melds all soldiers together as one force.
For instance, the honor code of the US Marine Corps outlines the general principles by which our military stands and by which it is led. Every action of any given Marine is guided by the honor code, by service to one's fellow citizen accompanied by prayer to God. Even the use of the Marine's gun is subject to a strict protocol of honor.
The above ideals necessarily preclude privileges and special exceptions required by the agendas followed by special interest groups defined by race, gender, national origin, or sexual behavior, all of which must be submitted to ideals and goals that sacrifice individual demands for the sake of the unifying, transcendent ideals that define a unified fighting force.
There is no room in the military for soldiers who think of themselves primarily as victims of societal sins; sins which must be rectified at the expense, vitiation or outright jettisoning of the universal moral code which defines the soldier's duty.
There is no room for campaigns and fights for individual "rights" and privileges that are not shared by the entire fighting force. There is only room for fighters; for heros devoted first to God, country and the constitution.
Current political correctness and multi-culturalism are pernicious to military unity because they are intrinsically divisive. They focus on the individual and splintered groups rather than on overarching unity. When a soldier thinks of himself primarily as an aggrieved member of a minority entitled to special privileges, he automatically is disloyal to the military hierarchy, as he sees the strict military command and fixed hierarchy as a barrier to the establishment of his personal goals and individual rights.
Examples of the dangers of political correctness and multi-culturalism
For instance, if a soldier is thinking primarily about her grievances as a woman, she divides herself from her male fellow soldiers and creates a sub-hierarchy of demands and expectations as relates purely to her and other women, not to the overall unit.
That is why it is insanity to put women on submarines with men and expect the two sexes to operate as one unit. It simply will not happen. The requirements of women are quite different than men, and military protocol would have to take note of and enforce the subset of requirements specifically geared toward women. The result would mean that the whole unit's code would have to be re-worked within what can only be broadly categorized as civilian expectations and guidelines. Those guidelines are most often formed within a radical overt or quasi-feminist framework of rules and regulations concerning not only women's special physical needs but also a convoluted protocol established to protect women from any hint of sexual harassment.
One can only imagine how such elaborate protocol between the sexes would work out when both are housed undersea for months in the equivalent of a large tuna can. One certainly can imagine and expect the fracturing of unity as the men were handed out a Chinese menu of regulations relating to treatment of the opposite sex while being exhorted to follow the rest of military protocol to the letter.
But one thing is certain: Nothing but trouble and divisiveness will result as the unity necessary for an effective fighting force is placed under extreme duress and perhaps entirely dissipated.
One final example of the rotten fruit of multi-culturalism and political correctness as concerns the US military: The case of Major Nidal Malik Hasan. Hasan's case has been thoroughly examined and commented on. It is not the intent of this piece to review the shootings at Fort Hood. Nonetheless, his actions exemplify the Achilles' heel of multi-culturalism as it relates to the US military.
The grip of current politically correct thinking concerning the supposed equality and non-violent character of all faiths and religious viewpoints in Hasan's case hit the rock of reality. In fact, Hasan's personal religious views were violently incompatible with the ideals of the US army. Indeed, he placed himself in opposition to the Army from the onset of his career. The principles of his brand of religion superceded loyalty to his nation, to its constitution and to his oaths as a soldier. His religious ideology came first. In the end, Hasan thought of himself primarily as a jihadist bent on the destruction of the very nation to which he had pledged his loyalty.
All Americans know the horrible result.
The Hasan case demonstrates the ideals of multi-culturalism are in direct opposition to the ideals of the US military, which simply cannot incorporate disparate and opposing ideological forces within its body without being weakened and destroyed as surely as the Wehrmacht. The US military must require and enforce adherence to its stated ideals, its chain of command and its hierarchy if it is to remain an effective, unified fighting force.
If the US military continues to seek to incorporate the competing ideals of political correctness and multi-culturalism within its ranks, it is inviting suicide of the armed forces by treasonous bloodletting from within.
As the weakening of the Wehrmacht by ideology demonstrates, no military divided against itself can stand. If the US military does not wish to suffer a fate similar to armies which crumbled within, it must stand up for its traditions and ideals.
It must fight for its life.
Ms. Voshell is a free lance writer living in Wilmington, DE. She holds an M.Div. From Princeton Theological Seminary, where she was awarded the Charles Hodge Prize for excellence in systematic theology. She is also one of the Delaware GOP's "Winning Women, Class of 2008.
(I would like to acknowledge my debt to authors too numerous to mention. But I am particularly grateful to Peter Hass, whose Morality after Auschwitz provided much clarification concerning the dual ethic driving the Nazi forces in their Russian campaign.)