Democrats Push Bills to Purge Military of Racists, ‘Extremists’ in Wake of Capitol Riots

US

Last week, NPR revealed that almost 20 percent of the individuals charged over the 6 January storming of the Capitol had a military background, among them active duty troops and veterans. Democrats characterized the raid on the Capitol as an attempted coup and have sought to expel potentially ‘unreliable’ elements from both the military and police.

House and Senate Democrats are brainstorming ways to root out extremists and racists from the military using legislation, with one plan including inserting language to that effect into the 2022 National Defence Authorisation Act, The Hill reports, citing lawmakers.

“We must recommit ourselves to rooting these beliefs out of our ranks, protecting our service members from radicalisation and ensuring all Americans feel safe serving the country we all love,” Brown added, stressing that he has been in contact with the Biden White House and newly appointed Pentagon chief Lloyd Austin on the matter.

The lawmaker’s broad brush characterisation of the Capitol raiders was echoed by Biden earlier this month, with the president describing the protesters as “a bunch of thugs, insurrectionists, white supremacists, anti-Semites,” and “domestic terrorists” who should be treated as such.

The Pentagon has already been ordered to review its policies on potential extremism in the military in a defence bill passed 1 January, but Democrats in the House and Senate want to speed…

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