The chiefs of the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, and National Guard have put out statements condemning racism and other forms of hatred in response to Charlottesville.
Adm. John Richardson, the Navy chief, kicked it off with a tweet Saturday night:
Events in Charlottesville unacceptable & musnt be tolerated @USNavy forever stands against intolerance & hatred...https://t.co/tg0cETibaq— Adm. John Richardson (@CNORichardson) August 13, 2017
The rest of the service branch chiefs followed suit a few days later, each issuing his own message to the branch he oversees.
The comments stand in stark contrast to President Trump’s remarks Tuesday during a press conference in which he said that the white supremacists and those protesting against them were both to blame for the violence.
“What about the fact that [the counterprotesters] came charging with clubs in their hands, swinging clubs? Do they have any problem?” Trump said. “You had a group on one side that was bad. You had a group on the other side that was also very violent.”
Unlike Trump, the service chiefs were unequivocal in their condemnation of racism and bigotry, emphasizing that such ideas have no place in today’s US military. Here are the other service chiefs’ tweets, in the order in which they were published:
Gen. Robert Neller, Marine Corps
No place for racial hatred or extremism in @USMC. Our core values of Honor, Courage, and Commitment frame the way Marines live and act.— Robert B. Neller (@GenRobertNeller) August 15, 2017
Gen. Mark Milley, Army
The Army doesn't tolerate racism, extremism, or hatred in our ranks. It's against our Values and everything we've stood for since 1775.— GEN Mark A. Milley (@ArmyChiefStaff) August 16, 2017
Gen. Dave Goldfein, Air Force
I stand with my fellow service chiefs in saying we're always stronger together-it's who we are as #Airmen pic.twitter.com/9XxOry93nf— Gen. Dave Goldfein (@GenDaveGoldfein) August 16, 2017
Gen. Joseph Lengyel, National Guard
I stand with my fellow Joint Chiefs in condemning racism, extremism & hatred. Our diversity is our strength. #NationalGuard— Gen. Joseph Lengyel (@ChiefNGB) August 16, 2017