“Lt. Gen. Stephen Whiting, Space Operations Command commander, relieved Lt. Col. Matthew Lohmeier of command of the 11th Space Warning Squadron, Buckley Air Force Base, Colorado, May 14, due to loss of trust and confidence in his ability to lead,” the Space Force said in a statement to the Washington Examiner.
“This decision was based on public comments made by Lt. Col. Lohmeier in a recent podcast. Lt. Gen. Whiting has initiated a Command Directed Investigation (CDI) on whether these comments constituted prohibited partisan political activity.”
Lohmeier self-published Irresistible Revolution: Marxism’s Goal of Conquest & the Unmaking of the American Military this week. The book, according to the description, explores the “impact of a neo-Marxist agenda” and the manner in which the “Black Lives Matter movement, anti-racism, postmodernism, [and] political correctness” affect the national security of the United States.
Lohmeier said that he had informed his superiors, public affairs staff, and lawyers for the military about the book prior to publication, but it was not subject to a pre-publication review.
Department of Defense Directive 1344.10 prohibits active-duty personnel from engaging in “partisan political activities.” Service members are, however, permitted to express their personal opinions on political candidates and issues in their personal capacity and when not in uniform. Lohmeier denied intending to participate in partisan politics.
“My intent never has been to engage in partisan politics. I have written a book about a particular political ideology (Marxism) in the hope that our Defense Department might return to being politically nonpartisan in the future as it has honorably done throughout history,” he told Military.com.
The Air Force Academy graduate appeared on the podcast Information Operation last week to publicize the book, in which he criticized Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin’s diversity and inclusion “agenda.”
“I don’t demonize the man, but I want to make it clear to both him and every service member this agenda — it will divide us. It will not unify us, ” Lohmeier said.
Austin instituted a 60-day force-wide extremism “stand-down” to determine how best to root out extremism from the military after the Capitol riot on Jan. 6.
“There were members, sadly, of the active-duty force participating and espousing these radical beliefs,” Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said. “We don’t know the full breadth and depth of it.”
Lohmeier said he was asked to train his troops with extremism training and was given a “70-page” booklet of “talking points.” The lieutenant commander said the booklet opened with the Capitol riot and included examples of “white nationalists that have been caught at some point in the last decade and punished for it and kicked out of the military, or a radical Islamic terrorist.”
“The diversity, inclusion and equity industry and the trainings we are receiving in the military … is rooted in critical race theory, which is rooted in Marxism,” Lohmeier said. The Space Force lieutenant colonel also criticized spokespeople at the Defense Department for saying the military has “too many white pilots” amid a pilot shortage. Kirby denied making that claim, however, the Air Force has proposed a plan to increase diversity in the ranks of pilots, which includes “recruiting, retaining and removing barriers” for minorities and women to become pilots.
Citing a diversity initiative in which service members read So You Want to Talk About Raceby Ijeoma Oluo, in which the U.S. is referred to as a “white supremacist nation,” Lohmeier told the Information Operation podcast that the young service members are inundated by a “hyperpoliticized work environment where diversity and inclusion initiatives are being pushed constantly.”