Washington Free Beacon- Veterans Slam New York Times Piece Linking Vets, White Supremacist Groups

Washington Free Beacon- Veterans Slam New York Times Piece Linking Vets, White Supremacist Groups

Veterans and veteran advocates have denounced a New York Times opinion piece that connected veterans to white supremacist groups, Military Times reports. 

The NYT piece, titled “Veterans and White Supremacy,” tried to explain the actions of Frazier Glenn Cross (also known as Frazier Glenn Miller), the suspected gunman responsible for the deadly shooting outside a Kansas Jewish center. 

In the opinion piece published in the New York Times, Kathleen Belew wrote that while the majority of veterans are neither violent nor mentally ill, veterans have a history of joining right-wing extremist groups. She cites a 2009 Department of Homeland Security Report linking the return of combat veterans to Ku Klux Klan membership. 

Belew also wrote about Timothy McVeigh, an Army veteran responsible for the bombing of a federal building in Oklahoma City in 1995, which killed 168 people. 

Paul Rieckhoff, director of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, expressed his outrage to Military Times, “Both the title—‘Veterans and White Supremacy’—and an accompanying graphic joining service members with KKK members are shameful … And the piece relies on weak research and sweeping generalizations about veterans. Especially coming right after so much irresponsible journalism that surrounded the [April 2] Fort Hood shooting, this is stunning and sad to see.” 

Phillip Carter, who directs the veterans research program at the Center for a New American Security, also criticized the piece. 

“Belew’s piece also omits lots of important facts, like the U.S. military’s success in promoting diversity and racial integration within its ranks, so much so that it’s considered the leading large organization in the country in this regard,” Carter told Military Times. “Belew also fails to mention the massive effort in the late 1990s to root out extremism from the U.S. military—an effort which took place after the time window (1975-1995) that is the basis for her research.” 

Several veterans who are bloggers and writers also criticized the article.

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