Backlash After Official Marine Corps Twitter Account Blasts Tucker Carlson

Tucker Carlson, host of "Tucker Carlson Tonight," poses for photos in a Fox News Channel studio, in New York, Thursday, March 2, 2107. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)
Richard Drew/AP Photo

Following outrage from progressives in the military towards Fox News host Tucker Carlson for contrasting China’s push for a “more masculine” military against the U.S. military’s focus on inclusivity for women, the official Marine Corps Twitter account joined in the criticism, sharing an image of a female Marine carrying another Marine with hashtags aimed at Tucker Carlson and Fox News.

On Tuesday evening, Carlson noted how in January the Chinese Ministry of Education released a proposal to cultivate students’ masculinity amid a Chinese military buildup, then played a March 8 clip of President Joe Biden introducing two female generals he approved for promotion while noting how much the military is working to accommodate women, including providing specially-designed body armor for females, flight suits for pregnant women, and updating hairstyle requirements.

“So we’ve got new hairstyles and maternity flight suits,” Carlson stated. “Pregnant women are going to fight our wars.” 

“It’s a mockery of the U.S. military,” he continued. “While China’s military becomes more masculine as it’s assembled the world’s largest navy, our military needs to become — as Joe Biden says — more feminine, whatever feminine means anymore, since men and women no longer exist.” 

Following the segment, progressives serving in the military expressed outrage on Twitter, with some calling for Fox News to no longer be broadcast in military installations, and others calling on military leaders to weigh in.

“Women lead our most lethal units with character,” tweeted Michael Grinston, the Army’s senior enlisted leader. “They will dominate ANY future battlefield we’re called to fight on.” 

“@TuckerCarlson’s words are divisive, don’t reflect our values,” he added. “We have THE MOST professional, educated, agile, and strongest NCO Corps in the world.”

Gen. Paul E. Funk II, the Army’s commander for its Training and Doctrine Command, also tweeted, “Let’s be clear…women make our military stronger.”

Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby also commented on the uproar over Carlson’s segment.

“What we absolutely won’t do is take personnel advice from a talk show host,” he said during an off-camera, on-the-record gaggle with reporters.

The controversy progressed to a new level Friday when the Marine Corps responded with a picture of a woman carrying a fellow soldier on her back, seemingly with little effort.

“Get right before you get left, boomer,” read the tweet from an official Marine Corps account, including the hashtags #TuckerCarlson and #FoxNews. 

In response, many on Twitter expressed outrage at the military’s use of its official Twitter account to attack journalists.

“Pretty fascist for the military to be attacking a journalist,” wrote reporter John Gage.

“If this had happened under Trump there would have already been a congressional hearing,” wrote former Acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell.

“Unconscionable that active duty military members – in uniform and from official military social media platforms – have leveled personal political attacks on a media figure,” wrote Rep. Rick Crawford (R-AR). 

“This is no longer the same military my grandfather, my father, my uncles, my brothers and I served,” he added.

“If you were under my command you and your troops would be standing at attention in front of me right now so you could accept your court martial charges and they could witness it,” wrote Colonel Rob Maness (USAF, Ret.) who is also the executive director of Military Veterans Advocacy.

“Who the hell is in command of these buffoons?” he asked.

“Everyone involved in this humiliating spectacle needs to resign in disgrace or be discharged,” wrote columnist Benny Johnson.

“The taxpayers who fund our military will not stand for these official accounts being used to woke-scold private citizens,” he added. “How embarrassing.”

“Has Biden directed Pentagon brass to use social media platforms to bully and intimidate civilians?” asked former Fox host Todd Starnes.

“Anyone who thinks pregnant women should be serving in combat roles needs to have their head examined,” wrote columnist Gavin Mario Wax. 

“The US military going out of their way to attack a journalist is like 7000% more fascist than anything Donald Trump every dreamed of,” wrote commentary writer Drew Holden.

“Multiple official military accounts personally attacked a United States citizen and reporter and Congressional Republicans are silent,” wrote author, filmmaker, and journalist Mike Cernovich.

“Say what you will about the left, but you can’t deny they’re completionists,” wrote Omri Ceren, national security adviser to Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX). “When those guys commit to reorienting an institution they show up, roll up their sleeves, and they take care of their business.”

“Armed troops in front of razor wire cutting Americans off from Congress and the military attacking conservatives by name in uniform from official accounts,” wrote right-wing commentator John Cardillo. “But nothing to see here folks.”

“One Fox News segment has done more to discredit the military in the eyes of the demographic that supports it than twenty years of incompetence and failure in the Middle East,” wrote researcher Richard Hanania.

“A senior military leader attacking an American journalist while in uniform from an official command account demonstrates a serious lack of judgment,” wrote best-selling author Sean Parnell.

“This isn’t leadership,” he added. “In fact, it sets a dangerous precedent & it undermines public confidence in a once apolitical institution.”

“You have lost your minds making opinion comments about a civilian using an official @DeptofDefense account,” wrote retired U.S. Marine Corps Gunnery Sergeant Jessie Jane Duff.

“Now using female Marines to prop yourself up as some type of heros?” she added. “Tucker was right. Discussing maternity uniforms at a ceremony for 2 female Generals was embarrassing.”

The exchanges come only weeks after Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin claimed there are “enemies” within the military’s ranks and ordered a “stand down” to root out so-called “extremists.”

Follow Joshua Klein on Twitter @JoshuaKlein.

.

Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.