Sensitivity Training in the U.S. Military©


Dr. Gerald L. Atkinson

Copyright 25 July 1999

Few Americans realize the depth to which behavioral psychologists have driven their 'thought control' deculturalization program, via 'sensitivity training,' into the heart of the nation's military establishment. These techniques have been perfected and utilized in the 'affirmative action' programs that have been implemented in the U.S. Navy and other services since the early 1970s. Since the early 1990s, and especially since females were allowed into combat aviation in 1993-94, this indoctrination has skyrocketed.

All military personnel, from the most senior officer [1] to the lowest recruit,[2] are subjected to this indoctrination through formal seminars and small-group encounter sessions where 'sensitivity trainers' invoke their magic.

The depth of the problem in the U.S. Navy and the other military services can be gauged by the strength-in-numbers of the military 'equal opportunity' infrastructure. The attitudes, goals, and desires of these 'affirmative action' activists are revealing as well. The Navy, Army and Marine Corps assign 'equal opportunity' responsibility as part-time collateral duty to enlisted leaders and younger officers [3]. The Coast guard, on the other hand, has 15 full-time 'military civil rights counselor/facilitators,' most of them senior enlisted men, E-7s, who perform all the duties of an equal opportunity adviser: investigating complaints of discrimination, conducting command climate assessments, advising commanders on gender and racial issues and conducting training and education courses (utilizing 'sensitivity training' techniques) in equal opportunity for all hands. They generally serve one or two three-year tours and then return to their regular military skill.

The Air Force goes a step further, using full-time 'social action' workers. The Air Force even puts them on their own social-action career track, bringing them in at the enlisted E-5 level from other skills.

An example of the mind-set of these affirmative action commissars [4] is provided by an article written by one of them in the Capital Flyer, the official newspaper of Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland. The 89th Airlift Wing Military Equal Opportunity Officer wrote, "May is a month of remembrance. Memorial day is a day when we stop and remember our loved ones [5] who have passed on, but it's more than that. May is also the month we remember and appreciate the contributions made to our nation by Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders." One might wonder what in the world America's 200-plus year history, including the expansion of its frontier, the doctrine of manifest destiny, the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and Bill of Rights depended on Pacific Islanders. But the commissar has not yet given us his exercise of Critical Theory right out of the Frankfurt School's litany.

The affirmative action commissar continues, "On Dec. 7, 1941, Japan bombed Pearl Harbor and the United States entered WWII. The War Department, suspicious of persons of Japanese descent, would not allow them to join or remain within the military. Japanese-Americans were ordered to report to relocation camps primarily located in remote and deserted places throughout the United States. Those who refused were placed in War Relocation Authority prisons. Japanese-Americans were robbed of their dignity, forced to sell their property and leave their homes."

This one-sided criticism of the treatment of Americans of Japanese descent during the early days of WWII serves only one purpose -- the degradation of our American heritage. America fought and won the War of the Pacific against a barbarous and treacherous enemy, the Japanese.[6] Suspicion of those who had not yet been assimilated into American culture was a wise and prudent step, taken at a time when our very survival as a nation was at stake.

But that realization was not presented by the affirmative action commissar. He continues in his Critical Theory approach to celebrating diversity. "Many Japanese-American veterans today don't look back on how their country treated them, instead they remember the reality of how terrible the war was and the need to do whatever they could to help end it. Earlier, I expressed the most important contribution of Asian-American/Pacific Islanders to this country was the virtues of life demonstrated throughout WWII. Just in case you have not figured out what those virtues are, I am going to tell you. Forgiveness, they immediately forgave the very people who placed them in camps. Unselfishness and loyalty, they were willing to lose their own lives to save others in support of their comrades and country."

There you have it. America was and is bad. Diversity must be celebrated, whether it is deserving or not. The theory behind Critical Theory is to 'criticize.' The purpose of such criticism is to destroy American civilization -- right out of the doctrine of the Frankfurt School, carried out by the foot soldiers of the elites in the Boomer generation. Indeed, the Frankfurt School is alive and well today, even in our military institutions.

'Sensitivity training' has been invoked primarily in support of flawed affirmative action programs within the U.S. military -- all under the guise of 'equal opportunity.' In conversations a reporter had with about 20 equal opportunity advisers from across the services at a recent military equal opportunity conference [7] in Florida, most said [8], "... they favored a full-time equal opportunity billet, particularly at anything larger than the smallest commands." One participant, a white Navy Radioman First Class who works on a mobile training team for equal opportunity issues says, "... his counterparts, whether white, black or Hispanic, overflow with enthusiasm for their work and would love to do it full time." He would "... gladly give up his undersea radioman specialty to become a career equal opportunity specialist." Indeed, the 'sensitivity trainer' commissars have become a permanent legion in today's military.

So now we see how entrenched the cancer of 'affirmative action' is in the military services. Personnel are now highly motivated to further full-time careers as 'equal opportunity' operatives. There is a formal training laboratory run by the U.S. military at Patrick Air Force Base, Florida that trains 'facilitators' in Kurt Lewin's art of brainwashing. Here the military practitioners become expert in the techniques of 'sensitivity training.' This training center is called the Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute (DEOMI). It is not bashful about publicly proclaiming its goals. This institute's Internet Web Site at provides an abundance of information concerning its mission and objectives.

Of course, those of us who are aware of even rudimentary recent history recognize the parallel of this 'equal opportunity' 'career track' with that of political commissars in the former Soviet Union who were attached to each Soviet military unit. These 'commissars' acted as internal informants and political indoctrination officers for their military units to assure loyalty to the ruling communist government. The indoctrination subject is different but the totalitarian technique is the same. The New Totalitarians' [9] reach is broad. It is deep. It is ruthless. It brooks no opposition. It has the trappings of a totalitarian state. It is destroying the U.S. Navy. And what are our military leaders doing about this cancer?

At a conference of 1,300 service members and officials during 15-17 April 1996, the Navy's then-personnel chief, VADM 'Skip' Bowman, announced [10], "We're likely to lose the [equal opportunity] momentum if we're not careful." Fred Pang, assistant secretary of defense for force management policy said [11], "...a full-time equal opportunity corps has been discussed in senior Pentagon circles, but no conclusion has been reached." In a statement at the same conference, William E. Leftwich III, deputy assistant secretary of defense for equal opportunity [the Pentagon's head political correctness commissar] stated, "A military that is at odds with itself cannot win a war." Although not meant to portray 'equal opportunity' in a negative light, this statement has the weight of a self-fulfilling prophecy. The momentum toward a formal 'affirmative action' commissariat within the Pentagon and the military services will lead to a 'military that is at war with itself.' This war has already begun. It reveals itself in Pentagon pronouncements that blacks [12] "...continue to be under-represented among the military's aviation officer corps." Presumably, the services need more entrenched 'affirmative action' enforcers to remedy this situation -- via quotas.

Some of the most strident commissars in the U.S. military's 'sensitivity training' cadre are mid-level officers. The author ran into one as a result of keynote speech he gave at a banquet for the 25-year reunion of a venerable naval aviation squadron in 1999. The former 'sensitivity trainer,' a retired Naval Flight Officer (backseater), sent me an e-mail [13] with the following introduction:

"My name is _____ ___________ and I sat through your presentation last month at the [name deleted] reunion and, as we used to say when I was a sensitivity training instructor in the Navy's Human Resource Management System, I would like to give you some feedback." He then sets up a scenario wherein he assumes the role of Critic. Straight out of 'cultural Marxism's 'critical theory.' He could not have given away his mind set any more directly.

The Critic then goes on to say, "The Critic is a retired US Navy Commander [who] ... served in carrier based aircraft in Vietnam and made three extended carrier cruises... The Critic has served in air wings where an F-4 crew, momentarily distracted during a carrier approach, flew into the water, where an A-4 pilot with a fodded engine 100 miles from a divert field, unable to get his ejection seat to fire or his canopy to jettison, calmly executed the emergency ditching procedure as per NATOPS, and of course was killed on impact. The Critic watched an A-7 launched on a bow cat on the Saratoga roll to the right immediately at the end of the cat stroke and make a big splash."

Having established his credentials as a member of the 'band of brothers,' a major topic of my formal speech at the reunion, he leveled his guns at my criticisms of reduced standards in naval aviation since the first female aviators were introduced into combat aviation in 1994. " Do standards never change? They seem to change periodically on eyesight, and on academic credentials - witness the now you see it now you don't NAVCAD program." Without giving any background information on the changes he asserts, he criticizes for the sake of drawing a negative inference regarding the naval aviation he claims to have so faithfully served. That is just the point of Critical Theory. The Theory is to criticize! And to do so always negatively -- never with the intent to provide constructive benefit. This is right out of the Marxist Frankfurt School doctrine -- intended to destroy American civilization. Here it is used in miniature to destroy naval aviation.

Not surprisingly, the Critic reveals his attitude about the Vietnam War, a war in which he proudly claimed to have participated, presumably by risking his life, during at least one combat tour there. "On Vietnam: Is there any introspection even vaguely possible that the United States shouldn't have been there? That anyone who objected might have been right thinking? That possibly those who protested were right? That those who protested and objected weren't necessarily physical cowards but were perhaps guided by their conscience? That not all who opposed the war were an 'elite minority'? The Critic's recollection is that Lyndon Johnson knew he would never be re-elected and so declined to run because of opposition to the war by a majority of Americans."

This is propaganda right out of the mouth of Herbert Marcuse (make love, not war), Eric Fromm (Escape from Freedom) [14], Theodor Adorno, and Max Horkheimer -- the Frankfurt School revolutionaries who provided the anti-war foundation for the counter-culture Boomers who demonstrated against the war, dodged the draft, and fled to Canada to escape service in our armed forces. The Critic seems unaware that he is now an instrument of this same doctrine -- a revolutionary movement aimed at destroying American Civilization, by the long march through our institutions. In fact, the Critic belonged to the last institution to resist yielding to the onslaught of the 'cultural Marxist' agenda -- the U.S. military.

Then the Critic mounts the band wagon of 'multiculturalism' to apply the arrogant coup de grace to the Author's book, 'From Trust to Terror: Radical Feminism is Destroying the U.S. Navy.' He plays the ubiquitous race card. " Where is the evidence that blacks and women don't apply for flight training because they are lured away by the greater opportunities available in corporate America? The evidence is that just the opposite is true - where are the black and female faces in commercial aviation? Certainly not at the doors to the flight decks when we get off commercial flights. Except for the flight attendants standing along side, this is almost exclusively the domain of an all white male band of brothers."

So, there it is. In the Critic's view, white male racism is the reason so few minorities and females choose naval aviation as a profession. This counters all official Navy pronouncements on the subject. But, of course, the Critic knows better. It is his latent hatred (see below) of the white male and false guilt for his perceived role in society's 'discrimination' against minorities and women that consumes him in pursuit of the modern-liberal solution -- quotas. All outcomes must be equalized by an autocratic central government in which the Critic was, and is, a proud and powerful player via his role as Critic and 'sensitivity trainer.'

But that was not the last of the Critic's invective. In a telling testimony of his hatred for the Navy he once served and loathing for the dangers faced by those who fly from the decks of aircraft carriers, the Critic lambasts the Navy and its male aviators in particular for the following faults he witnessed during his career in naval aviation.

"On 'A Band of Brothers': The Author talks about the need for absolute trust that can only exist in an environment of uncompromising standards. The Critic suggests that this should be tempered with an attitude of healthy skepticism. Here are a few incidents from the Critic's experience to back that up:

Charlie ____ , squadron Commander, returning to Cubi Point from Atsugi, fails to make the turn directed by GCA and flies into a mountain. Three killed.

_______ _____ on one of the first Vigilante combat sorties, launches from Ranger and flies directly into a mountain near Danang. Two killed.

Ed ______, on a flight from Cubi Point to Guam, fails to check his wing fuel transfer until too late, and flames out short of Guam. His crew bails out but Ed, being a real man, didn't bother wearing a torso harness, and wasn't as fortunate.

Mike _____, trying to top a thunderstorm in an A-3, stalls the airplane above 40,000 feet and bails out the crew, who are all killed. Mike recovers the aircraft and lands safely. Five killed.

Dave _____, aka 'Bananas' in the A-3 RAG, loses control of his aircraft and instructs his crew to bail out. He himself gets hung up in his parachute harness and is unable to bail out, so he returns to the controls, recovers the aircraft, and lands safely.

_____ _____ , in the break at Atsugi, moves the fire wall cutoff switch to close instead of the flight/isolate switch of his Vigilante and jettisons a perfectly good aircraft. Pilot and RAN land in Tokyo Bay, almost freezing to death. Pilot is dried off and continues to fly Vigilantes until, years later, he quits during CARQUALS.

Doug _____, Hank _____, and Frank ______, in separate incidents land their aircraft gear up - one of them aboard ship. All of them are dusted off and continue to fly.

Bill _____, XO of a Vigilante squadron, loses his aircraft doing a loop on a test flight, doing a falling leaf into the Georgia landscape after a stall/ spin. Given a FNAEB, his aviator wings are pulled and he is made a Naval Flight Officer.

Frank _____, during a day/VFR carqual while in the Vigilante FRS (with the Critic in the back seat), plants his aircraft so hard on the flight deck that the Critic, believing he had just been killed, ejects. The aircraft hits short of the #1 wire and bounces forward catching the #4 wire. The wheels are gone. The main landing gear struts are driven through the wings. Transverse bulkheads are shattered. Both engines are fodded, the engine spools having been bent by the impact and the engines bottomed out on the engine casing. Frank is given a FNAEB, which decides to give him another chance to complete his CQ. During that subsequent CQ, he quits."

"It should be noted that with the exception of the last incident, all of the pilots involved were senior aviators of the grade of O-4 or O-5. So The Critic would like to suggest that the feeling of absolute confidence among members of the 'band of brothers' should be tempered with a healthy skepticism. Because, looking back at these incidents - and they bring so many more similar ones to mind - it would seem that the Navy had an affirmative action program to protect the jerkoffs who managed to survive their screwups."

There you have it. This guy, scared to death of a profession which requires courage, skill, and honesty did not have the guts to leave when he became fearful and disillusioned with the challenge of death a naval aviator faces every day in his profession, and, instead, chose to betray his brothers, the Navy, and his country by blaming all of this misfortune on his peers. And asserting that all this misfortune, without providing context for each accident, resulted from white male stupidity, incompetence, and/or malfeasance. His fear and loathing of a profession that we all came to love, because of the death-defying challenges in our everyday lives, drove him to an occupation within the Navy that would assure its demise -- the 'sensitivity trainer.'

The enemy is not from without. He is working from within to destroy a proud service worthy of honor and praise, not loathing and contempt. The Critic is but a foot soldier in the service of the revolutionaries of the Frankfurt school. He is but one of many who are now active in the destruction of a military based on tradition and honor (duty, honor, country) which has protected America's freedoms by winning every war in which it engaged, including the Cold War.



1) Larson, Ruth, "Pentagon's focus on diversity raises fears about ability to fight," The Washington Times, 25 March 1994. About 250 senior military and civilian officials met [during the Spring of 1994] for a daylong 'Diversity in Defense' forum sponsored by the Department of Defense. The objective was to "...focus on numerical goals [quotas] to increase minority representation in the officer ranks." Defense Secretary William Perry, under congressional pressure to ensure equal opportunities for women and minorities, "... ordered increased equal opportunity training, especially for senior officers, and commissioned an extensive study of whether discrimination is preventing women and minority of officers from reaching senior ranks. He has also re-established the office of deputy assistant secretary for equal opportunity -- a position created in 1963 but abolished in 1986."

2) Pexton, Patrick, "Services discuss affirmative action," NAVY TIMES, 6 May 1996.

3) Pexton, Patrick, "The 'better way' of addressing prejudice: On matters of equality, services learn from within," NAVY TIMES, pp. 6, 13 May 1996.

4) Taylor, Jeffery, Staff Sgt. USAF, "Andrews honors Asian-Americans, Pacific Islanders,," Capital Flyer, pp. 3, 7 May 1999.

5) Contrary to the arrogant commissar's view, Memorial day is NOT a day of general remembrance. It is America's special day of remembrance for those American servicemen who have died in America's wars to protect our Constitution, and our freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

6) Chang, Iris, "The Rape of Nanking: The Forgotten Holocaust of World War II," Basic Books, 1997.

7) Pexton, Patrick, "Services discuss affirmative action, " NAVY TIMES, 6 May 1996.

8) Ibid, Pexton, Patrick, 13 May 1996.

9) Atkinson, Gerald L., "The New Totalitarians: Bosnia as a Mirror of America's Future," Atkinson Associates Press, 1996.

10) Ibid, Pexton, Patrick, 6 May 1996.

11) Ibid, Pexton, Patrick, 14 May 1996.

12) Scarborough, Rowan, "Pentagon studies, finds no reason for lack of black pilots," The Washington Times, 7 May 1996.

13) Last Name, First Name, [anonymous for sake of privacy] "Feedback from the _______ Reunion," e-mail received 6 May 1999.

14) Ibid, Eakman, B.K., pp. 149-150. Fromm wrote that 'positive freedom' implies the existence of no higher power than the 'unique self' -- man is the center and purpose of life.

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