Nearly 1 In 5 Defendants In Capitol Riot Cases Served In The Military

I believe Rage Against the Machine have a song about this.

Of more than 140 charged so far, a review of military records, social media accounts, court documents and news reports indicate at least 27 of those charged, or nearly 20%, have served or are currently serving in the U.S. military. To put that number in perspective, only about 7% of all American adults are military veterans, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. [...]

Roughly one-third of active duty troops said they had "personally witnessed examples of white nationalism or ideological-driven racism within the ranks in recent months," according to a 2019 survey conducted by the Military Times and Syracuse University Institute for Veterans and Military Families. Troops said they had seen "swastikas being drawn on service members' cars, tattoos affiliated with white supremacist groups, stickers supporting the Ku Klux Klan and Nazi-style salutes between individuals."

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28 Responses:

  1. J. Peterson says:

    Prior to 9/11, the worst terrorist act in the US was committed by an honorably discharged veteran.

    • Flotsam says:

      Here in Australia the worst terror attack death toll is three. The incident was carried out by a white male. We're also good at incidents where the perp dies even though it wasn't meant to be a suicide attack. Safety through incompetence.

      • Christian Molick says:

        The Port Arthur massacre where 35 were killed and 25 wounded wasn't so much a terror attack as resolution of a commercial conflict. Commonwealth states are all about commerce.

  2. Milt says:

    I just want say that, while there's some people in the military who are definitely white supremacists, the culture of the military is pretty inclusive and egalitarian. It hasn't always been, that's for sure. But I'd say, currently, it's about as progressive as we're allowed to be. Try to get anything done that involves more than about 3 steps without a Philipino, Puerto Rican, and African American... It ain't gettin' done. Period.

    • Leonardo Herrera says:

      I believe that, historically, the way to control how warriors used their training and agression is to have strong indoctrination drilled into them - get them young, indoctrinate them, train them, point them to the enemy. But in these "enlightened" times we are living in, there is not much indoctrination and low ranks will fill in the blanks with their own particular ideas. Testosterone, low education and lots of angry energy are breeding grounds for wacko ideologies. So yes, racism.

      • Christian Molick says:

        The traditional way to control the threat posed by ex military persons is to pressure them to get married and raising a family. Getting hitched and having kids tames men, at least in relative terms. Unfortunately our society doesn't exactly shower ex military men with job opportunities that would support a family, nor does it help connecting to the masses of women on Tinder who want someone who is at least six feet tall and at least kind of Fabio looking.

    • Elusis says:

      $100 says you're white or white-passing.

  3. Lloyd says:

    Large portions of US society serve in the military. A cheap debt-free education, a way up and out. That is the failing of US society.

    • margaret says:

      i'm not sure what you mean by "That" in your last sentence. can you elaborate? it seems that the first two sentences would be a good thing (if they were true - i can only agree with "a way up and out" but that's neither here nor there). maybe i'm thinking "large portion" means "representative sample" and you mean "way too many."

      • George Dorn says:

        Because for a lot of people, it's the only way up and out. When your only viable social safety net requires you to potentially commit acts of violence or die, that's a failing of society.

        • Lloyd says:

          In your formative years in the military, you are taught that problems are solved using lethal force.

          You then leave the military and integrate back into mainstream society, where you see problems that need to be solved, including that of your own ongoing employment.

          So, you become a police officer, where you are again able to solve problems using lethal force, as you have been taught.

          Just remember 'cover me!' means 'point your weapon at ready' not 'lay down a barrage of covering weapons fire' and you'll be good.

          • This is, incidentally, the dynamic behind Martin Riggs in the Lethal Weapon franchise. Fiction is just a mirror to society.

            Still, its first two tv seasons can provide a guilty pleasure, if you don't think about its decadence.

  4. margaret says:

    the number of people wearing face-paint in the capital that day was much higher than the general population ergo the wearing of face-paint makes you become an insurrectionist. herp derp.

    to imply that the military or the culture within inculcated an insurrectionist tendency is lazy, dangerous, and not helpful. correlation is not causation. we have a huge problem that needs to be understood and solved but pointing a finger at veterans isn't helpful and not going to get us where we should be.

    fwiw, my experience in the military aligns 100% with what Milt wrote earlier.

    • Dude says:

      Like policing, the US military has its roots in imperialist, white supremacist intentions. The same US military all-but-decimated native tribes is the same military currently waging bullshit wars in the Middle East. The fact that it now includes (a still low number of) women and PoC means nothing when the term "Jody" is still thrown about (itself a racist appropriation of Black American folklore as a means to agitate white soldiers into fighting more viciously).

      The same military industrial complex Eisenhower warned about on his way out walks hand-in-hand with the same gun-nut American culture that let Kyle Rittenhouse casually walk past cops unmolested as he held the same automatic rifle with which he just murdered two peaceful protesters.

      You can't say "correlation doesn't equal causation" when the facts of the matter prove the two actually do correspond.

      • margaret says:

        correspondence is another word for correlation and i never said anything about there not being correlation. that still doesn't mean there's causation.

        the us military doesn't get to chose which wars it fights or how long we are involved. blame that on our politicians.

        implying that because a person's a veteran they are a racist, gun-toting, insurrectionist is about as useful as me saying "all blacks" or "all mexicans" are whatever. painting with that broad of a brush sucks and is lazy.

        if it weren't end-of-times and we could meet f2f over a beer or two i assure you'd find labeling me with all the above misses the mark.

        • jwz says:

          The important point here is that the military has:

          1) A serious Nazi problem, and
          2) All of the guns.

          These two things are an extremely bad combination.

        • Dude says:

          the us military doesn't get to chose which wars it fights or how long we are involved. blame that on our politicians.

          Like Trump, you mean? The guy who hated BLM protesters that he wanted to use a sci-fi death ray on them? The same guy who hated the results of a legit democratic election that he stirred up his fervent cult (including the aforementioned service members) to storm the Capitol Building?

          implying that because a person's a veteran they are a racist, gun-toting, insurrectionist is about as useful as me saying "all blacks" or "all mexicans" are whatever. painting with that broad of a brush sucks and is lazy.

          One is born into their race and ethnicity, they choose to enter the military (now that the draft has been eliminated). I come from a family of cops and vets; that hasn't stopped me (or them) from being racially profiled and attacked by others in uniform because of our Black skin.

          if it weren't end-of-times and we could meet f2f over a beer or two i assure you'd find labeling me with all the above misses the mark.

          Yeah... that worked oh, so well during Obama's first days when Henry Louis Gates was racially profiled by a racist cop, right? The whole "can't we all just get along" shit is a limp method of negating the concerns of those (Poc, LGBTQ+, women, etc.) who are genuinely getting fucked over by a system set up by, run by, and which is specifically meant promote white male supremacy.

          And yeah, that includes the military - the same ones Trump called "losers".

          • margaret says:

            veterans are racist, gun-toting insurrectionists with imperialist, white supremacist sympathies because they chose to join the military.

            you come from family of veterans.

            therefore, you come from a family of racist, gun-toting insurrectionists with imperialist, white supremacist sympathies.

            i take back my offer of having a beer. i prefer not to socialize with someone so closely aligned to the neo-nazis movement like you.

            • Dude says:

              Says the person claiming to have actual military experience.

              • margaret says:

                bitch - there it is. for playing 'woke guy' on the internet you're pretty cool with some good old fashioned sexism.

                btw, did i ever tell you about the time i met my good friend barack? i keep a picture of us right above my desk, tucked into my dd256, where i can see it every day. it helps me remember where i've been and how far i've come, despite those that would want to bring me down for who i am and choices i have made.

                • Dude says:

                  "I caaaan't be racist! I took a photo with a Black guy once!"

                  • margaret says:

                    that's it? you hit me with some hasty generalizations, a couple of ad hominems, and close with a blatant red-herring deflection coupled with yet another tired black-guy gif? i had more respect for you than that. i guess since we both already called each other nazis there not much new ground to till here. what we've learned here is you are "woke dude" but not so woke as to be above sexism and reducing a president to "token black guy" and i'm a racist gun-toting, insurrectionist that is definitely not a veteran. it's been a pleasure.

                  • Elusis says:

                    Stop poking the racist piƱata, Dude. She still has candy in her but it's, like, all candy corn and Hershey's "milk chocolate."

                  • Milt says:

                    Anyone else notice how quickly the dialogue turned ugly? I blame the internet, text lacks context. All my ex wives and girlfriends will confirm that. I reinstate Margaret's offer of a beer (well, not hers, I can't do that). I mean me.

                    I only meant to share my experiences and perspective. I think Margaret had the same intent. Sharing my experiences doesn't invalidate yours. Quick story, a long time ago I decided one day to walk back from dropping off my car at the mechanic. At the end of my walk I hated everyone with a car. How much more does anyone born into disadvantage (of whatever kind) hate those with the advantage? It's gotta be alot.

                    I'm a veteran, I try to be self aware and not tolerate anything racist around me. Do we always succeed? Probably not. Are there systemic racist things happening that we're not aware of? Always possible. But we ask ourselves and conduct surveys and try our best to hold people accountable when they fuck it up. That's better than alot of the private companies I've worked for.

                    I'm relieved that orange man is gone. The military serves at the will of the people's elected officials, but it was hard to be proud of my service for the last 4 years. I'm hopeful for the future and not about to get dragged into the trap of being mad at folks who have different opinions and perspectives. Don't you guys fall for it either. Cheers!

                  • Elusis says:

                    Really interesting, Milt, that you characterize the above as "the dialogue turning ugly," as if there's equal "blame" to spread around.

                    You and Margaret both came in hot, with a #notallmilitary defensive attitude trying to talk over the obvious concerning implications of the article, which jwz thoughtfully distilled for you in case you were missing the forest for the trees.

                    This whole "confronting us on our denialism thing is MEAN and HATEFUL and CANCEL CULTURE and we are entitled to our OPINIONS no matter how poorly informed or willingly ignorant" thing is exactly what informed the absurdly defensive "1776 Report" after the 1619 Project tweaked the noses of Republicans and racists (potato, potato) a bit too firmly with its incredibly unfair reliance on things like "facts" and "informed analysis" and its totally rude refusal to consider whose feelings might be hurt by stating the truth.

                    Stating facts, and offering an analysis of those facts, is not "ugly" even if it makes you feel uncomfortable. Sit with that for a while. Try feeling what it's like to hold those feelings for a while instead of turning around in a defensive #notallX stance and then scolding people for being "ugly" when they shut you down.

                  • Milt says:

                    Yeah, definitely referring to the Dude calling Margaret a bitch. That's the ugly part, where real dialogue stops and people knee jerk angry-type at each other. Its a trap that shuts down people sharing their experiences and actually getting to know each other. Until we escape that trap, we can't really ever understand each other and how much we have in common as fellow humans.

                    Do you think an article and some dude calling girls bitch on the internet is somehow going to wash away my opinion formed through 17 years of meeting mostly reasonable, supportive, tolerant people in the military, though? I'm not naive, I'll admit there are probably white supremacists in the military, we exist inside the culture of our country. But in my opinion, based solely on my personal experiences, the military is not rampant with them, which is what the article seems to suggest. The few times it's come up (racism), it's been quickly shut down and not tolerated. That's again, from my perspective only. I don't speak for the entire military by any stretch of the imagination.

                    Anyone and everyone is welcome to disagree with me.

                    My intent was not to say that there's zero issue with the military's culture, not to say your opinions are somehow wrong, not to diminish anyone's voice on the subject. It was, rather, just to offer you my perspective based on lots of time serving this country in our military. I'm genuinely sorry if anything I said offended anyone, please know that I didn't mean it to.

    • Elusis says:

      Another $100 says you're white or white-passing too.

  5. Grumble says:

    In the old days, when we had a draft, a much higher percentage of the public had direct and close experience with the military. And aside from the usual halo effect after successful wars, military service wasn't high up on a pedestal. Career military were considered scammers, political climbers, or gung ho whacks, to be parodied for laughs in popular sitcoms like Sgt. Bilko, Gomer Pyle, McHale's Navy.

    Everyone knew the entire supply corps was a scam because so many people had first hand experience getting shitty gear (or going without) from guys who had bedecked themselves in every goody in the supply chain.

    Getting rid of the draft, then wrapping themselves in the POW/MIA flag, was the best PR scam that the DoD ever came up with. And we've all been paying for it ever since.

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