‘Woke Madness’ – Defense Secretary Calls for Review of Race and Security Policies in Armed Forces

Amidst another contrived culture war controversy, Defense Secretary Grant Shapps has initiated a review of the Ministry of Defense’s diversity policies following reports of potential compromises to national security. Here’s the whole story.

Downward Spiral

As the UK government continues hurtles towards an anticipated defeat at the upcoming election later this year, an interesting new front has opened up in the one area where they can be confident of riling up their supporters: the culture wars. However, the target of the newest iteration of the appropriately named culture wars is one few could have expected: the British army. 

The Ministry of Defense (MoD) has initiated a review of its diversity and inclusion policies following criticism from Defense Secretary Grant Shapps. 

This unexpected move came after reports that suggested a potential relaxation of security clearance for overseas recruits to enhance minority representation within the armed forces.

Shapps’ Outcry

Predictably, this move to bolster the ailing numbers of British armed forces was met with an outcry from the Defense Secretary. Shapps expressed deep-seated reservations about what he termed “political correctness” influencing security measures within the armed forces. 

In an outburst that seemed to take even the British public by surprise, jaded by the constant back and forth on the ubiquitous culture wars, Shapps vehemently opposed the idea of lowering security clearance requirements, labelling it “woke nonsense.”

Race Action Plan

The catalyst for this latest melee within the culture wars was the 2023 British Army’s Race Action Plan, which highlighted security clearance vetting as a significant obstacle for non-UK personnel seeking positions within the army. In the plan, the army pledged to challenge these requirements and encourage more diversity within the military. 

This proposed plan enraged Shapps, who emphasized his commitment to maintaining stringent security standards, asserting that there would be no compromise on security clearance requirements under his leadership. 

This unwillingness to compromise is despite the UK military hemorrhaging experienced troops and a decades-long slump in recruiting numbers, which has left the British Army at its smallest since 1850. 

Gove Steps In

Cabinet Minister Michael Gove confirmed the review initiated by Shapps while also emphasizing the need to balance diversity initiatives and national security requirements. Gove went on to express concerns that diversity policies could compromise the operational effectiveness of the armed forces.

In response to this outcry from deep within the Government, a spokesperson from the MoD stated, “Our priority is protecting the national security of the United Kingdom and ensuring the operational effectiveness of our armed forces.”

They continued, “We take security extremely seriously and ensure that all personnel have the appropriate security clearance, which is reviewed on a case-by-case basis.” 

Labour’s Take

In response, Shadow Defense Secretary John Healey stressed the importance of maintaining strong national security while cautioning against relaxing security checks for recruits. 

However, he criticized the Conservative Government’s handling of military recruitment and budgetary allocations, emphasizing that the UK Army’s sorry state is entirely the Conservative Government’s fault. 

Militaries Diverse Opinions

Within the military ranks, there is a considerable divergence of opinions on the proposed policies. While diversity and inclusivity are acknowledged as important values, there must be more certainty about compromising security standards to pursue these objectives. 

Twelve former senior military officers expressed vehement opposition to the purported relaxation of vetting policies, labelling it as “dangerous madness” in a scathing open letter addressed to the defense secretary.

Manufactured Outrage

This latest outburst from Shapps is the latest in a long line of culture war battles instigated by the Government. 

The review of diversity policies within the MoD was a modernizing operation to increase hiring rates for the British Army and ensure inclusivity within its ranks. 

However, in the Government’s desperate need for good headlines, the MoD has become another casualty of the culture wars. 

The post ‘Woke Madness’ – Defense Secretary Calls for Review of Race and Security Policies in Armed Forces first appeared on Edge Media.

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / Fred Duval.

Grant Gallacher is a seasoned writer with expertise in politics and impactful daily news. His work, deeply rooted in addressing issues that resonate with a wide audience, showcases an unwavering commitment to bringing forth the stories that matter. He is also known for satirical writing and stand up comedy.

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