Tucker Carlson has accused Joe Biden of prioritizing ‘woke’ identity politics over national security, insisting on Thursday night that the president’s drive to make the U.S. military more diverse and representative was misguided, and doubling down on his controversial take earlier in the week.
Carlson outraged senior military officials and veterans on Tuesday by mocking women in the military, with Pentagon leaders speaking of their ‘revulsion’ at his provocative remarks.
The Fox News host was angered by Biden’s announcement on Monday that the military was developing uniforms for pregnant women in the Air Force, and criticized it the following day, to the anger of many.
On Thursday he doubled down on his mockery.
‘Maybe pregnant women make the best pilots,’ he said.
‘As the Department of Defense measures everything, there’s got to be extensive research on this question.
‘If the Pentagon can show pregnant pilots are the best, we will be the first to demand an entire air force of pregnant pilots.’
Tucker Carlson on Thursday night doubled down on Tuesday’s criticism of military priorities
Full Tucker Carlson segment responding to the DOD’s criticisms of his show:
“If the Pentagon can show that pregnant pilots are the best, we will be the first to demand an entire air force of them.”
Van Ovost on Thursday addressed the Women’s Air and Space Power Symposium
Biden, at a White House ceremony, said that the military was making progress in recruiting more women to its ranks, including ‘designing body armor that fits women properly, tailoring combat uniforms for women, creating maternity flight suits and updating requirements for their hairstyles.’
Carlson ridiculed Biden’s remarks the next night on his show.
‘So, we’ve got new hairstyles and maternity flight suits,’ he said.
‘Pregnant women are going to fight our wars. It’s a mockery of the U.S. military.’
Carlson went on to praise the Chinese military for increasing the number of ships in its navy, a move he described as ‘more masculine.’
On Thursday the Pentagon took the unusual step of issuing a press release condemning Carlson’s words.
John Kirby, the Pentagon press secretary, condemned Carlson’s words on Thursday
Carlson mocked the military for what he termed its ‘woke’ obsession with recruiting women
‘Press Secretary Smites Fox Host That Dissed Diversity in U.S. Military,’ they titled their article, which quoted John Kirby, the Pentagon spokesman.
Kirby described ‘the diversity of our military’ as ‘one of our greatest strengths’ and acknowledged that ‘we still have a lot of work to do to make our military more inclusive, more respectful of everyone, especially women.’
He continued: ‘But what we absolutely won’t do is take personnel advice from a talk show host or the Chinese military.
‘Now, maybe those folks feel like they have something to prove. That’s on them.
‘We know we’re the greatest military in the world today, and even for all the things we need to improve, we know exactly why that’s so.’
He added that Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin ‘shares the revulsion’ of other leaders who have criticized Carlson’s remarks.
Senator Tammy Duckworth led the criticism of Carlson’s remarks
Duckworth was a Black Hawk pilot before losing both her legs in combat in Iraq
Army Gen. Paul Funk, head of Training and Doctrine Command, tweeted on Wednesday that female service members are ‘beacons of freedom’ who ‘prove Carlson wrong through determination and dedication. We are fortunate they serve with us.’
Sgt. Maj. of the Army Michael Grinston also tweeted on Wednesday that women ‘lead our most lethal units with character. They will dominate ANY future battlefield we’re called to fight on. @TuckerCarlson’s words are divisive, don’t reflect our values.’
John B. Richardson, deputy commanding general of Fort Hood, tweeted: ‘Mothers in uniform fight & win our nation’s wars. Fathers in uniform fight & win our nation’s wars.
‘Soldier is not a gendered noun. America’s army is made up of countless mothers and fathers. Being a parent (& being pregnant) does NOT negatively impact on our nation’s defense.’
Master Gunnery Sgt. Scott Stalker, the top enlisted leader at U.S. Space Command, released a video message on Thursday denouncing ‘drama TV.’
He urged soldiers to ‘get back to work’ and ‘remember that those opinions were made by an individual who has never served a day in his life.’
His comments also infuriated military women.
Amy McGrath, a former fighter pilot who challenged Mitch McConnell for his Kentucky senate seat in November, tweeted: ‘Hey
@TuckerCarlson, I’ve logged 20 years in the Corps, 2000 flight hours, 3 combat tours, 3 kids delivered on active duty. How about you?’
Duckworth mocked Carlson by pointing to his 2006 performance on the television show ‘Dancing With the Stars,’ which resulted in him being quickly eliminated from the competition.
‘While he was practicing his two-step, America’s female warriors were hunting down Al Qaeda and proving the strength of America’s women,’ she tweeted.
‘Happy belated International Women’s Day to everyone but Tucker, who even I can dance better than.’
On Thursday evening, Carlson responded to their criticism.
‘You hear politicians like Tammy Duckworth say it’s unpatriotic to question the Pentagon unless you have served in the military yourself. You haven’t earned that right.
‘Really?’ he asked.
‘Could only cops talk about police brutality? If you haven’t been elected to office, are you allowed to criticize Congress?
‘They’re not making a real argument, they are trying to silence dissent.’
Carlson also ridiculed the Pentagon press statement about him, accusing the military leadership of coordinating an assault on him.
‘The DOD even issued a news release attacking us,’ he said.
‘”Press secretary smites Fox News host” – like we are a hostile foreign power.
‘We suspect this is one they may actually win: they have got a manpower advantage.
‘Since when does the Pentagon declare war on a domestic news operation?’
Carlson concluded that the incident was ‘deeply worrisome’ for the country.