Former President Donald Trump, in an interview with Newsmax on Friday, railed against Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley for defending Critical Race Theory (CRT) during a House Armed Services Committee hearing earlier this week.
“Gen. Milley, I watched his statement, it was pathetic,” Trump told Newsmax anchor Rob Finnerty. “I watched the statements of some others, your head of the Navy, it was pathetic. And they didn’t talk that way when I was around, I can tell you. They didn’t talk that way or I would’ve gotten rid of them in two minutes.”
Trump also said CRT was terminated “very strongly” during his administration and the idea has only made a comeback because President Joe Biden took office. The former president signed an executive order in Sept. 2020 that banned CRT concepts in training for federal employees.
CRT holds that America is fundamentally racist, yet it teaches people to view every social interaction and person in terms of race. Its adherents pursue “antiracism” through the end of merit, objective truth and the adoption of race-based policies.
Milley, the U.S. military’s top general, defended CRT when questioned by Republicans on the House Armed Services Committee about the military’s embrace of CRT. The general said he wanted “to understand white rage” and claimed CRT “matters to our military and the discipline and cohesion of this military.” (RELATED: Tucker Torches Milley Over Focus On ‘White Rage’: ‘Have You Read Anything Recently About Winning Wars?’)
“I do think it’s important, actually, for those of us in uniform to be open-minded and be widely read … and it is important that we train and we understand,” he told lawmakers.
Milley also dismissed suggestions from Republican lawmakers that promoting CRT in the military undermines its overall mission. The general said he “personally [found] it offensive” that service members are accused of being “woke” because they’re “studying some theories that are out there.”
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin claimed during Wednesday’s hearing that the military does not “teach” or “embrace” the theory. The Navy, however, has faced scrutiny for including books, such as “How To Be Antiracist” by Ibram X. Kendi, in a reading guide for sailors.