On Memorial Day, Austin demonstrates the strength of the US military and dismisses criticism from opponents

The US military will never be “soft”, Austin told CNN’s Barbara Starr in an exclusive, comprehensive Memorial Day interview, saying that America’s adversaries, such as China and Russia, “would like to capitalize on such talking points.” . “

“I will not lose a single minute of what the Chinese leadership is saying or what (Russian President) Vladimir Putin is saying. What I will focus on, and what I am focused on, is the defense of this nation.” Is, and we have to make sure that we have what is necessary to be successful, ”the Defense Secretary said in an exclusive interview aired on Monday.

Retired Army General’s comments as a nation celebrated Memorial Day Army Biden administration’s efforts to return to America – and its foreign policy – for its more traditional role on the world stage and to prioritize diversity as the key to building stronger US forces.

The US Army released a campaign earlier this month recruiting advertisements designed to attract General Z, featuring stories from five soldiers about how they responded to calls for service. The series said in a press release, the series is “a distinct departure from previous Army campaigns”, given its use of animation and “intimate” portrayals and “a one-dimensional view of Army service turns into something more believable”. .

The ads were criticized, including conservative media and Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, who responded to the ads by tweeting, “Holy crap, maybe an awakened, decimated army is not the best idea.”

Cruz’s comments were in response to a Twitter video of a Russian military ad and part of an American ad featuring Cpl. The story of Emma Malonlord, who says she was “raised by two mothers” and “marched for equality”.

The Texas Republican senator said, “We have the largest army on earth, but dem politicians and waking media are trying to convert them into pansies.”

In his interview with CNN, Austin said that the US military is “the best military in the world today”, not only because of technology, but because of those who “populate our ranks.”

“I think we are doing a great job in recruiting the right kind of people, providing access to people from every corner, every sphere of life in this country. As long as you are fit and you are qualified “Until then, one has a place for you in this team,” he said.

Austin argued that a diverse US military force “should be a part of who we are.”

“We represent the United States. We should look like America, not just in rank,” he told the Star. “But our leadership should look like America.”

In the same interview, Austin Told CNN The United States has “aggressive options” to respond to a cyber attack following another major attack by the Russian group behind SolarWinds hack.
Austin, who served more than 40 years in the military, also reflected on the sacrifice that American soldiers have made as a nation. Near the end of its longest war Afghanistan and in the eyes Final withdrawal of US troops from Iraq.

Before he was Secretary of Defense, Austin served in a number of leadership roles, including Commander of the US Central Command, Deputy Chief of Army Staff and Commanding General of the US Army in Iraq.

“I have a front row seat … at the greatest stage of our history, you know, being able to see our soldiers in action, and see the things they would do for each other, Make their sacrifices for this country and for each other, ”Austin told the Star. “And I’ll tell you, despite the fact that we can make great films and write a lot of books, you can’t adequately describe the things I’ve seen in this 20-year period, these young people. What will they do. For each other, what they will do for their country is absolutely amazing. “

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