Veterans

September 20, 2012

Dempsey: Public trust requires apolitical military

Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service
Dempsey
Chairman of the Joint Cheifs of Staff, Army Gen. Martin Dempsey

The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff wants service members and veterans to consider what using the uniform for partisan politics does to the trust Americans have in their military.

Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey has maintained throughout his 38-year career that the American military, as a whole, must remain apolitical — meaning being neutral in political matters.

“I have sworn an oath to support and defend the Constitution and one of the principles of the Constitution is freedom of speech,” he said during an interview on his way to Ankara, Turkey. “Anyone who claims that I am in any way trying to deny someone freedom of speech, I just can’t accept that.”

Dempsey has been outspoken that service members have truly earned their right to vote, and that all Americans are entitled to private and personal opinions. But he also is worried that using the uniform for partisan purposes could damage the trust Americans have in their military.

Survey after survey reveals the American military is one of the most trusted and most respected institutions in the land, and maintaining that trust is key to the success of the United States, Dempsey said. In his studies of civil-military relations, he added, the cornerstone of the profession of arms is that “we remain apolitical — that we are not a special-interest group.”

And he applies that across the board. “I don’t care what side of the aisle someone happens to sit on or happens to support,” he said.

The chairman said he wants service members and those who have served and who may still use the title “just to think about what impact their actions will have on our standing as a profession with the American people if they engage in partisan political activity.”

“I just want them to think about it,” he said.

Retired general and flag officers must be extra careful when engaging in partisan political activities, the chairman said. They are held to a higher standard and probably should be, he explained, because many Americans do not make the distinction between an active duty and retired status. “And most (retired general and flag officers) understand that standard and meet it,” he added.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

479 selected for top enlisted rank

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas (AFNS) —  Of the 2,525 senior master sergeants eligible for promotion to chief, 479 were selected for an 18.97 percent selection rate, Air Force Personnel Center officials announced Nov. 20. To see the selection list, go to the Air Force Portal, or myPers. Airmen will be able to access their...
 
 

Turkey Bowl

Senior Airman Philip Taylor, Davis-Monthan Air Force Base Desert Lightning Team quarterback, dodges a Black Knights defensive player during the annual Turkey Bowl at Fort Huachuca, Ariz., Nov. 14. D-M’s Desert Lightning Team scored two touchdowns in the final 45 seconds leading them to win 18-7. Davis-Monthan Air Force Base Desert Lightning Team members line...
 
 

Resolutions aren’t just for the new year

EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. — It’s almost that time of year when most of us will commit to reforming a habit, lifestyle or just change our lives for the better. It starts when we take a critical look at ourselves and determine what we can do, or stop doing, to make the improvements we desire. These...
 

 
DoD

AF tests first all-electric vehicle fleet in California

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — Air Force officials unveiled the Department of Defense’s first non-tactical vehicle fleet composed entirely of plug-in electric vehicles, Nov. 14, at Los Angeles Air Force Base, California. The rollout of the 42-vehicle fleet marks a milestone in the DOD’s demonstration of emerging technology and the vehicles will serve as a resource to...
 
 
(U.S. Air Force photo/ Senior Airman Jarrod Grammel)

Maintaining fitness standards during the holidays is important

VANCE AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. — During the holidays, going to the gym usually isn’t on the top of most peoples’ priority list. Priority is given to visiting families, planning vacations, and most important, indulging in...
 
 

Exchange keeps the ‘Thanks’ in Thanksgiving

DALLAS – With a quarter of its work force comprised of military family members, the Army & Air Force Exchange Service is a true example of family serving family. As such, the focus on Thanksgiving will be on family. “Exchange Main Stores in the Continental United States will be closed Thanksgiving, but open early Black...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin