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31 Aug, 2022 23:32

US Air Force ordered to use gender-neutral language – media

The move is reportedly aimed at boosting the ‘lethality’ of the forces
US Air Force ordered to use gender-neutral language – media

US Air Force officers whose squadrons would be among those closest to the frontlines in case of any potential conflict with China have reportedly been ordered to use gender-neutral language in written reports under a policy that higher-ups claim will increase the “lethality” of America’s military.

“We must embrace, promote and unleash the potential of diversity and inclusion,” according to an order emailed earlier this year to officers at Andersen Air Force Base in Guam, which is part of the US Pacific Air Forces (PACAF). The Washington Free Beacon obtained a partial copy of the order and published it on Wednesday.

Specifically, commanders will be prohibited from using references to pronouns, gender, age, or race in documents such as performance reviews and award recommendations. For instance, instead of saying ‘he’ or ‘she’, the commander must refer to the person with such language as ‘this sergeant’ or ‘this member’. A commander would not be allowed to make such distinctions as the “youngest sergeant to achieve XYZ” or “the strongest female service member in the unit.”

“Competition against near-peer adversaries requires a united focus from the command, the joint team and our international partners,” the memo said. “Welcoming and employing varied perspectives from a foundation of mutual respect will improve our interoperability, efficiency, creativity and lethality.”

The directive reflects a push by President Joe Biden’s administration and the Pentagon to make America’s fighting forces more inclusive. For instance, the US Army requires gender identity training, and almost immediately after taking office in January 2021, Biden ended a ban on transgender troops. A dozen Republican senators released a statement last February noting that the Pentagon had invested 6 million man-hours in diversity, equity, and inclusion training.

“We face real threats across the world, yet the Biden administration is more focused on promoting its leftist social agenda in the military instead of countering China, Russia and Iran or creating an effective counterterrorism plan,” the senators said. They added that it was alarming to see so much time and money invested in “woke” social programming rather than “recruiting, training and equipping the lethal force we need to defend this country.”

A spokesman at Andersen Air Force Base told the Free Beacon that “diversity and inclusion are force multipliers and warfighting imperatives that enable our competitive advantage against near-peer adversaries.”

Andersen is touted as the “forward edge” of US air power in the Indo-Pacific region and the most important US Air Force base west of Hawaii. PACAF, which has responsibility for an area encompassing over half of the Earth’s surface and 60% of its population, has taken on increased importance amid rising US-China tensions.