This is a real problem and it needs to be handled ASAP.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) — Neo-Nazis and other white supremacists have increasingly been able to infiltrate the U.S. military due to recruitment pressures created by the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, a watchdog group said Friday.
The Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks racist activities in the United States, said thousands of hate group members are now in the armed forces, especially in the Army, increasing the threat of domestic terrorism.
“There is mounting evidence that military recruiters and commanders, under intense pressure to meet manpower goals with the country at war in Iraq and Afghanistan, have relaxed standards designed to prohibit racist extremists from serving in the armed forces,” the center’s Chief Executive Richard Cohen told Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld in a letter.
Cohen asked Rumsfeld to appoint a task force to determine the full extent of the problem and to adopt a “zero-tolerance” policy toward racist extremists in the military that could be rigorously enforced.
“The Army’s dealing with that,” Defense Department spokesman Bryan Whitman said when asked to comment on the issue.
He added that it was incumbent on individual commanders to address any activities that are inconsistent with “good order and discipline.”
Shortfall in recruiting numbers
The military toughened its peacetime policy toward extremists in 1996, after decorated Gulf War veteran Timothy McVeigh was convicted of detonating a truck bomb that killed 169 people in Oklahoma City.
But the Montgomery, Alabama-based center said in a report that military officers were proving less likely in wartime to weed out extremists, especially those in combat units.”
Look at this next section.
‘The Defense Department investigator quoted in the report said he has identified 320 extremists over the past year, only two of whom have been discharged.”
That is more than a little disappointing to say the least.