Sen. Tom Cotton Complains About People Leaving the Military Over Diversity Training Yet Repeatedly Cuts Off Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin as He Attempts to Provide Context - ViralMula.com
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Sen. Tom Cotton Complains About People Leaving the Military Over Diversity Training Yet Repeatedly Cuts Off Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin as He Attempts to Provide Context

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Republican Sen. Tom Cotton of Arkansas was repeatedly interrupted Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on Thursday as the retired four-star general attempted to provide context about the racial issues in the armed forces during a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the defense budget.

Amid the Pentagon’s efforts to improve diversity, equity and inclusion in the military, Cotton took the opportunity derail the purpose of the hearing to complain that anti-bias initiative have caused some members of the military to leave.

He and Republican Rep. Dan Crenshaw of Texas, previously launched a web portal where “whistleblowers” can report instances of “woke ideology” in the military.

According to Cotton, a Marine reported that a military history training session was replaced with “mandatory training on police brutality, white privilege and systemic racism” which prompted multiple officers to leave the unit.

Cotton claimed in another unit service members claimed the were required to read “White Fragility,” which from which Cotton quoted “white people raised in western society are conditioned into a white supremacist worldview.”

Other service members on the portal alleged they were being taught that the U.S. special operations community is racist, while another reported he had been told by a general that the entire Army is racist.

In other cases, soldiers performed activities related to privilege where service members were separated based on race and gender, while some said they were force to watch videos that “rewrite America’s history as a fundamentally racist and evil nation.”

“Mr. secretary, we’re hearing reports of plummeting morale, mistrust between the races and sexes where none existed just six months ago and unexpected retirements and separations based on these trainings alone. … These are the words of the your own troops,” Cotton said, directing his comments to Austin.

Sen. Tom Cotton and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin engaged in a back-and-forth over racial issues in the military during a Thursday Senate hearing. (Photo: Eric Dolan/ YouTube screenshot)

Austin, the first Black secretary of defense, was appointed to run the Pentagon by President Joe Biden in December.

“If confirmed, I will fight hard to stamp out sexual assault, to rid our ranks of racists and extremists, and to create a climate where everyone fit and willing has the opportunity to serve this country with dignity,” Austin said at his January confirmation hearing. In February, he announced the U.S. armed forces would be conducting stand-downs over 60 days to tackle right-wing extremism in the ranks.

“Mr. Secretary do you believe that our military is a fundamentally racist organization?” Yes or no, please,” Cotton asked Austin on Thursday.

“Well, I won’t give you a yes or no answer on that, senator, because it deserves more than a yes or no,” Austin said. “The military, like any organization, will have its challenges, but I do not believe it is a fundamentally racist organization.”

Austin appeared to be continuing to elaborate on his response when Cotton interjected, cutting the secretary off.

“I’m sorry to cut you off, because our time is limited,” Cotton said. “I think it is a pretty simple question, I’m glad that you agree it is not fundamentally racist. Do you believe any member of the military should be treated differently base on their skin color and sex?” Cotton asked. “Again, yes or no will do.”

“Again, this question deserves more than a yes or no answer,” Austin said before Cotton interrupted again, citing limited time.

Austin replied that service members shouldn’t be treated differently based on race or sex, explaining that that’s the very reason why there is an emphasis on diversity training in the military.

After Cotton questioned Austin further about his views on the work of writers like Ibram Kendi, who wrote the book “How to Be Anti-Racist,” and asked whether qualifications or factors like race and gender should determine how people are selected to military senior positions, the secretary doubled down on his convictions.

“Diversity, equity and inclusion is important to this military now and it will be important in the future. We’re going to make sure that our military looks like America and that our leadership looks like what’s in the ranks of the military.”

Before his time expired, Cotton said his concerns aren’t about diversity, but about a “specific kind of anti-American indoctrination that is seeping into some parts of our military.”

Democratic Senator Tim Kaine gave Austin the opportunity to elaborate on what his experience in the military has been like after he was unable to provide context on his thoughts when Cotton interrupted him earlier.

Austin responded by explaining that the military could do a better job of being “absolutely inclusive” and making sure that there are pathways for everyone fit to serve to reach their full potential in the ranks.

“And so that’s what diversity, equity and inclusion is all about. It’s about cohesion. It’s about making sure that we remain the most effective and lethal fighting force in the world and we have been in the past and we will be in the future,” Austin said.

‘Yes or No Will Do’: Sen. Tom Cotton Complains About People Leaving the Military Over Diversity Training Yet Repeatedly Cuts Off Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin as He Attempts to Provide Context

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Olympics-Athletics-Gong takes shot gold on scorching day, Adams chalks up another medal for the mums

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By Mitch Phillips

TOKYO (Reuters) – China’s Gong Lijiao won the women’s shot put gold with a personal best effort on a blisteringly hot Tokyo morning on Sunday as the athletics world braced for the men’s 100 metres, one of the pinnacles of the Games, later in the day.

As trackside temperatures hit 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit) Gong, after 14 years of international competition, produced a throw of 20.58 metres.

Double world champion Gong had previously finished fourth, third and second in the Olympics – on the back of some promotions following the doping disqualification of rivals. All five of her legal throws on Sunday were better than the rest of the field and she delivered a lifetime best with her final effort.

Colourfully entertaining Raven Saunders picked up silver for the United States and New Zealand’s Valerie Adams became the latest medalling mother as she added a bronze to her Olympic collection of two golds and a silver.

The evergreen 36-year-old returned to action this year after having her second child and follows Jamaica’s Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, who is also combining motherhood with elite performance having won silver in Saturday’s 100 metres final.

“These Games have been a very tough one for a lot of athletes and since the last Games I’ve had these two humans come out of me,” Adams said.

“I just hope to continue to inspire female athletes all around the world. If you want to have a kid and you want to come back and be at the top of the world, you can. You can absolutely do that.”

African steeplechasers are well used to training in the heat but even they were looking somewhat distressed, despite being first on the track at just before 10am local time.

Heavyweight Kenyan duo Hyvin Kiyeng and world record holder Beatrice Chepkoech advanced. Bahrain’s former Kenyan Winfred Mutile Yavi was the fastest qualifier and also in contention will be Americans Courtney Frerichs and 2017 world champion Emma Coburn.

Defending champion and world-record holder Wayde van Niekerk progressed in the 400m heats but after a long run of injuries looks unlikely to be able to retain the title.

World champion Steven Gardiner of the Bahamas also went through smoothly but American 2021 leader Randolph Ross missed out.

Later on Sunday the men’s 100m resumes with the semi-finals ahead of the final to top out the night.

It is the most open race for years, possibly decades, with seven or eight athletes in with a real chance of gold and a dozen justifiably believing they can make the final.

Trayvon Bromell, the fastest in the world this year, was favourite coming in to the Games but will have to drastically improve on his start if he is to deliver after his stumbling run on Saturday saw him finish fourth in his heat and go through only as a fast loser.

There are also medals available in the men’s high jump and women’s triple jump.

Dutchwoman Sifan Hassan confirmed that she will attempt an unprecedented Olympic treble, adding the 1,500 metres event to the 5,000m and 10,000m.

“For me it is crucial to follow my heart,” she said in a statement.”

(Reporting by Mitch Phillips; Editing by Ana Nicolaci da Costa)



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SEC slaps new disclosure requirements on Chinese IPOs amid Beijing’s crackdown

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The Securities and Exchange Commission said Friday it will now require additional disclosures from Chinese companies seeking a listing on U.S. stock exchanges, following Beijing’s intensified crackdown on oversea share issuance.

“In light of the recent developments in China and the overall risks with the China-based [variable interest entities] structure, I have asked staff to seek certain disclosures from offshore issuers associated with China-based operating companies before their registration statements will be declared effective,” SEC Chairman Gary Gensler said in a statement on Friday.

The so-called variable interest entities are a structure used by major Chinese companies from Alibaba to JD.com to go public in the U.S. while skirting oversight from Beijing as the country doesn’t allow direct foreign ownership in most cases. These variable interest entities allow China-based operating companies to establish offshore shell companies in another jurisdiction and issue stocks to public shareholders.

Gensler said he worries that “average investors may not realize that they hold stock in a shell company rather than a China-based operating company.”

The SEC will ask Chinese companies to clearly distinguish the shell company’s management services from the operating company, while stating any risk from future actions from the Chinese government.

The move came as Beijing stepped up its oversight on the flood of Chinese listings in the U.S. Ride-hailing app Didi became the latest victim of the clampdown. The stock tumbled nearly 30% this month after Beijing announced a cybersecurity investigation, suspending new user registrations.

The tensions between the two countries could be a huge blow for Chinese companies, which have clamored to list in New York in recent years. In 2020, 30 China-based IPOs in the U.S. raised the most capital since 2014, data from Renaissance Capital shows.

There were at least 248 Chinese companies listed on three major U.S. exchanges with a total market capitalization of $2.1 trillion, according to the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission. There are eight national-level Chinese state-owned enterprises listed in the U.S.

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