Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Diversity Weakens the United States Navy

How bad is it? Very bad, if we are to believe a new report, commissioned by members of Congress and written by retired Navy officers.

The question is: how woke is the United States Navy? Very woke, as it happens. 

How prepared is the Navy to engage in conflict? Not very prepared at all. 

How diverse is the Navy? Very diverse, if you will. The Navy is spending more time fostering diversity than in preparing for combat.

This has surely been a long time coming. And yet, it persisted during the Trump administration, as much as it had during the Obama presidency. The Biden administration is all in for diversity equity and inclusion. Not so much about fighting wars.

Besides, what with the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff opining that he could learn about racism by reading the works of a certifiable imbecile named Ibram X. Kendi, we should pray that our Navy will not be engaging in any warfare any time in the near future. 

If you want to be really nice about it, put aside the question of military readiness for the moment and ask yourself why the military wants to dumb down the troops by filling their minds with patent stupidities.

The story has been largely ignored by the mainstream media--tell me you are surprised?-- but has been reported by The New York Post, the Times of London and the Daily Mail. 

We quote the Daily Mail:

A scathing new report commissioned by members of Congress has claimed that the Navy's surface warfare forces have systemic training and leadership issues, including a focus on diversity that overshadows basic readiness skills.

The report prepared by Marine Lt. Gen. Robert Schmidle and Rear Adm. Mark Montgomery, both retired, came in response to recent Naval disasters, including the burning of the USS Bonhomme Richard in San Diego, two collisions involving Navy ships in the Pacific and the surrender of two small craft to Iran.

The authors conducted hour-long interviews with 77 current and retired Navy officers, offering them anonymity to identify issues they wouldn't feel comfortable raising in the chain of command.

Nearly every officer interviewed said that the culture of the Navy has been seriously contorted, in favor of diversity and against combat readiness. Does term concept of self-sabotage pop into mind?

The report found that a staggering 94 percent of the subjects believed the recent Naval disasters were 'part of a broader problem in Navy culture or leadership.' 

'I guarantee you every unit in the Navy is up to speed on their diversity training. I'm sorry that I can't say the same of their ship handling training,' said one recently retired senior enlisted leader.

One recent destroyer captain said: 'where someone puts their time shows what their priorities are. And we've got so many messages about X, Y, Z appreciation month, or sexual assault prevention, or you name it. We don't even have close to that same level of emphasis on actual warfighting.' 

'While programs to encourage diversity, human sex trafficking prevention, suicide prevention, sexual assault prevention, and others are appropriate, they come with a cost,' the report's authors wrote.

Nearly all agree, it’s an enormous time suck. It wastes time and resources. Note that it is coming down from the top, presumably from the Defense Department leadership:

'The non-combat curricula consume Navy resources, clog inboxes, create administrative quagmires, and monopolize precious training time. By weighing down sailors with non-combat related training and administrative burdens, both Congress and Navy leaders risk sending them into battle less prepared and less focused than their opponents,' the report added.

The current cultural climate has also made commanders more risk averse. It is generally bad to fight a war or even to run a corporation while avoiding risk. Call it cancel culture, but officers have learned not to risk losing their careers over a small mistake. And today’s Navy does not forgive and forget. It sanctions and dismisses:

The report argues that the independence of command has been eroded and commanding officers fear risk due to its adverse impact upon their careers. 

'The general unwillingness to rehabilitate one-off mistakes, the disinclination to weigh errors against the totality of a naval career, and the practice of discipline-by-paperwork, were broadly understood to be a drain on the Navy's retention efforts,' the report stated.

'Goldman Sachs, Amazon, Apple, Google, whatever. All of these institutions of high performance and high excellence do circus flips trying to figure out how to cultivate and retain talent,' said one former naval officer who is now a senior leader at a major hedge fund's philanthropic arm. 'The Navy all but chases it out the door.' 

The Navy is chasing talent out the door. Diversity training doe snot make us stronger; it makes the Navy weaker. If you say the wrong thing to the wrong person, even inadvertently, you are going to be accused of being a bigot. And, you will lose your career. If you are talented, why would you want to join an organization that follows such rules? The sad part is that the Navy is surely not the only American organization that punishes risk takers and that cultivates mediocrity.

Interviewees described an undercurrent of fear that gripped the surface fleet, with commanders unwilling to delegate and senior ranks quick to hand down punishments in response to media pressure.

As for the Navy’s preparation for potential conflict with China or even Russia, the truth seems to be that it is not:

Report suggests Navy is ill-prepared for major conflict with China. 

The report suggested that since the end of the Cold War, the lack of a major adversary had caused the attention of Navy leaders to drift away from military readiness.

Other countries have noticed. They have become emboldened. They do not have diversity and equity officers:

But it pointed out that China has been aggressively expanding its navy, and noted that the U.S. Navy has not zeroed in its focus on understanding China's forces the way they were trained on every class of Soviet ship and missile. 


'What are the things the Chinese are concerned about? What are the things the Iranians are concerned about? [The] Intel folks know that, but like there's no general education about, 'What are the wars we could fight, and how do we understand the context of these so we get in combat,'' one respondent said.

This says that officers are not even being briefed about the Chinese Navy or the Iranian Navy. Besides, any future conflict will be short and to the point. The Navy will not have the time or the resources to reform itself.

'We can have both the cultural and political understanding as well as the warfighting implications. And to me, if we're focused on the front-line warfighting, we should know the worst we're going into and what the greater context is. There's none of that right now.' 

The report concluded: 'A major peer-level conflict in the 21st Century will likely play out largely in the naval theaters of operations; unlike the surface Navy's last major war, which concluded 76 years ago, such a conflict will likely proceed swiftly and not permit significant time for organizational learning once it is underway.'

'Unless changes are made, the Navy risks losing the next major conflict.' 

Do you find it consoling to know that the Navy is more diverse than it has ever been? And do you see that if corporate America follows the same road to perdition, we will lose out in industrial competition, too?


IamDevo said...

At the current rate, the Navy--and all other arms of our defense entities--will diversify themselves out of any white American members. Talk about comedy gold! I can't wait!

David Foster said...

There is a certain unpleasant similarity which is developing with the Soviet armed forces, especially under Stalin, with a network of political commissars parallel to the actual unit commanders. See my post Pasha is Going to Need to Talk to You:

Sam L. said...

I spent 20 years in the AF, 17 in the missile biz, and 8 of it underground. I've been out since '87. I have no idea what's going on in the AF. It could be as bad as the Navy.

370H55V said...


You bet. No young white man should ever enter the military to defend a nation that loathes him, wishes him dead, and will engage in adventurism abroad to achieve that goal. That goes ditto for law enforcement in any major American city, where he will run the risk of a long prison sentence for doing his job. Let the urban hipsters and ghetto dwellers fend for themselves.

Callmelennie said...

In 1914, a combined German and Austro Hungarian force confronted the invading Russians. The total ineffectiveness of the multi national Austro Hung force obliged the German High Command to divert troops from the Western Front. At which point, the non diverse Germans routed the somewhat diverse Russians at the battle of Tannenberg

Afterward German commander Ludendorff said of the Austro Hung forces, "We treasure our alliance with Austria Hungary as a paragon of the truth of the statement, "Only in diversity is there true strength."

Wait a minute, Im wrong. Actualy Ludendorff said, "We are chained to a corpse."

Tune in tomorrow when we learned how a diverse Hungarian-Romanian-Italian force stymied a Red Army counterattack and saved the the day at Stalingrad

David Foster said... Austria-Hungary...Captain Georg van Trapp, best known as The Captain in the musical The Sound of Music, was in real life an Austrian submarine commander in WWI.

On shore leaves, von Trapp heard increasingly frequent stories about corruption, and also saw evidence of the disaffection of some of the nationalities and ethnic groups within the Austro-Hungarian empire. While having some shipyard work done in his submarine, he observed that “the work is actually delayed. It is quite similar to Penelope’s tapestry: mysterious forces impede the construction. The crew is suspicious.” He thought it likely that Czechs working in the shipyard were deliberately slowing the work, noting that “At the American declaration of war, they supposedly really celebrated, but you can’t pin anything on them.”

Historian AJP Taylor wrote about the ethnic conflicts which plagued the Austro-Hungarian empire:

"The appointment of every school teacher, of every railway porter, of every hospital doctor, of every tax-collector, was a signal for national struggle. Besides, private industry looked to the state for aid from tariffs and subsidies; these, in every country, produce ‘log-rolling,’ and nationalism offered an added lever with which to shift the logs. German industries demanded state aid to preserve their privileged position; Czech industries demanded state aid to redress the inequalities of the past. The first generation of national rivals had been the products of universities and fought for appointment at the highest professional level: their disputes concerned only a few hundred state jobs. The generation which followed them was the result of universal elementary education and fought for the trivial state employment which existed in every village; hence the more popular national conflicts at the turn of the century."

Taylor also noted that the ethnic conflicts were exacerbated by the government dominance of economic life. “There were no private schools or hospitals, no independent universities; and the state, in its infinite paternalism, performed a variety of services from veterinary surgery to the inspecting of buildings.”

The problem wasn't the existence of the multiple ethnic groups...these groups, and more, existed in the US. The problem was using ethnic identify as the primary basis of individual identity.

ErisGuy said...

For the first time in its history, the US armed forces and state department should prepare “Case M: How to Ask For Mercy When Decisively Beaten.”

ErisGuy said...

Apparently history will repeat itself, this time as both tragedy & farce. Should the US lose a major war*, a stab-in-the-back legend would, in fact, be true.

* failing to save Taiwan? Poland? Estonia?

Sam L. said...

Our Navy is encouraging the Russians and the Chinese.