Defense Sec. Austin Swipes At Complaints About Diversity Push In Military

U.S. Army (retired) General Lloyd Austin speaks after being formally nominated to be Secretary of the Department of Defense by President-elect Joe Biden at the Queen Theatre on December 9, 2020 in Wilmington, Delawar... U.S. Army (retired) General Lloyd Austin speaks after being formally nominated to be Secretary of the Department of Defense by President-elect Joe Biden at the Queen Theatre on December 9, 2020 in Wilmington, Delaware. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) MORE LESS
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May 31, 2021 1:15 p.m.

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin pushed back against conservatives’ complaints that the Pentagon’s efforts to promote diversity in its recruiting campaign was somehow emasculating or other undermining the U.S. military.

“It is not too soft. It will never be too soft,” Austin told CNN in a pre-taped interview that aired on Memorial Day. “I think our adversaries would like to capitalize on talking points like that, you know, the Chinese, the Russians.”

“And I welcome them to do that because what this department, what Lloyd Austin is focused on, is the defense of our nation,” he added.

Austin’s remarks came after Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) griped about a new U.S. Army ad featuring a soldier telling her story of being raised by two moms before joining the military.

“Holy crap,” Cruz tweeted on May 20 with a video comparing the ad to a Russian military recruitment ad. “Perhaps a woke, emasculated military is not the best idea….”

“We have the greatest military on earth, but Dem politicians & woke media are trying to turn them into pansies,” Cruz, who was caught escaping to a tropical vacation in Cancun during a winter storm that left millions of his constituents freezing without power, tweeted the next day.

A top Space Force official was fired two weeks ago after he claimed the military’s diversity trainings were “rooted in Marxism.”

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