This is a case I’ve been following for some time, in fact, since the West Point Graduation of cadet Spenser Rapone, who would not have stood out in the crowd of other graduating cadets had he not displayed a Che Guevara t-shirt–one of the most beloved symbols of American communists–and a charming anti-American message concealed in his cover. He stood out because he was photographed displaying both, and posting them on social media. Fox News reports:
The West Point graduate, who last year posed in a picture holding a cap that had ‘Communism will win’ written inside, is officially out of the U.S. Army with an other-than-honorable discharge.
Spenser Rapone rocked the military community last year after his social media posts were revealed, showing him wearing a Che Guevara shirt underneath his military uniform.
He is no longer part of the U.S. military after top brass at Fort Drum’s 10th Mountain Division accepted his resignation Monday after an earlier warning for ‘conduct unbecoming of an officer.’ He’s leaving the military with an other-than-honorable discharge.
When I first read of Rapone, I was surprised he had been allowed to graduate. Actually, he served as an enlisted man–in combat–before being given the honor of a West Point scholarship. By all indications, he was a Marxist before entering West Point, and also from his first day at West Point. He was apparently never shy about expressing his anti-American opinions. Of course, that was during the Obama years, so I suspect his superior officers were terrified of disciplining an avowed communist, lest they be accused of being prejudiced against those professing the most murderous ideology in history.
Let’s hear what Rapone has to say about this:
It began with my post on social media, in which I expressed my full and enthusiastic support of former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick in his fight against racial injustice, white supremacy and police brutality. After revealing a picture of myself in uniform with the hashtag #VeteransForKaepernick, I was met by solidarity from my fellow soldiers, as well as harsh blowback from my chain of command.
To this day, I stand by my convictions, despite the efforts of ranking officers to pressure me into silence. I believe that standing up for the exploited and the oppressed is the most honorable thing we can do as people. No job should hinder or repress this pursuit, which is why I decided to resign my commission as an officer in the United States Army. My conditional resignation was denied by the secretary of the Army. Instead, the military forced me into either submitting an unconditional resignation or appearing before a board of inquiry—an adversarial trial in which a jury of senior officers would determine my fate. Rather than submit to the antics of what amounts to a show trial at best, I tendered my unconditional resignation. Passing judgment on me one last time, the military determined the character of my service to be ‘other than honorable.’ Despite the brass prolonging my time in service, I have come to the conclusion that leaving the military altogether, whatever the circumstances, is the only moral way forward. During this ordeal, I have learned that I am far from alone in my feelings of disillusionment and betrayal within the rank and file of the U.S. military.
If you’ve the stomach for it, gentle readers, take the link and read the rest of Rapone’s statement. It’s standard communist agitprop. Rapone is all about peace and justice for oppressed peoples, all oppressed–naturally–by America.
Army officials condemned the cadet last year and opened an investigation into his social media activity. ‘Second Lieutenant Rapone’s actions in no way reflect the values of the U.S. Military Academy or the U.S. Army,’ an Army statement read.
And what are those values? The oath taken by Army officers:
I ___, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.
And this is the Army Soldier’s Creed:
I am an American Soldier.
I am a warrior and a member of a team.
I serve the people of the United States, and live the Army Values.
I will always place the mission first.
I will never accept defeat.
I will never quit.
I will never leave a fallen comrade.
I am disciplined, physically and mentally tough, trained and proficient in my warrior tasks and drills.
I always maintain my arms, my equipment and myself.
I am an expert and I am a professional.
I stand ready to deploy, engage, and destroy, the enemies of the United States of America in close combat.
I am a guardian of freedom and the American way of life.
I am an American Soldier.
Mr. Rapone appears to have fallen a bit short of honoring his oath and the expectations of the Army.
His open advocacy of communism attracted the criticism from Florida Sen. Marco Rubio who then urged the U.S. military to dismiss Rapone for supporting the country’s enemies.
The now-former cadet said the probe found him advocating for socialist revolution online and disparaging high-ranking officers and U.S. officials. The Army said it took ‘appropriate action’ in dealing with the situation.
As anyone that has served in the military knows, those things, among others, are just not done. They’re not done because they are not only dishonorable and a violation of military ethics and law, but a betrayal of everyone that has ever served and written a check, up to and including their lives, to preserve America and liberty. But Rapone, with his evolved social consciousness, is above such petty, uncool, unwoke concerns:
Rubio cheered the departure of Rapone. ‘While in uniform, Spenser Rapone advocated for communism and political violence, and expressed support and sympathy for enemies of the United States,’ the Senator said on Monday. ‘I’m glad to see that they have given him an ‘other-than-honorable’ discharge.
One need not worry overmuch for the future of Mr. Rapone. He is already being widely lauded in progressive/socialist/communist circles. I’m sure he’ll be a well compensated “activist” and speaker, and may even become that most noble of beings, a “community organizer,” following in the footsteps of another noted contemporary Marxist.
Military experts say it’s rare for an officer out of West Point to receive an other-than-honorable discharge. Greg Rinckey, an attorney specializing in military law, claimed that this opens an opportunity for the military to seek money back from Rapone for the education he received as he didn’t fulfill the five-year service obligation for all the graduates.
One can only hope. With Donald Trump as Commander In Chief, perhaps this is merely the beginning of long overdue military swamp draining. Our military must exist only to deter and kill America’s enemies, and in so doing, preserve peace. Mr. Rapone is now free to advocate for the actual oppression and murder of untold millions–in the manner of his communist forbearers–all he pleases.