Air Force Academy To Fight Insidious Threat Gathering From Within

The Daily Caller reports that military academies in the United States have asked for more attention to the Constitution and to shift away from politics when training new recruits.

To promote the idea that Air Force Academy education should be oath-based, military educators wrote a commentary piece for War on the Rocks.

Dr. Marybeth Ulrich (a professor of government at U.S. Army War College) and Dr. Lynne Garcia (an associate professor at U.S. Air Force Academy), were among the authors.

Administrators at the Air Force Academy have launched the “Oath Project” to combat partisanship and politicization in the Armed Forces. They are focusing their attention on the Constitutional oath, which is taken by all military personnel upon enlistment.

The project’s mission statement states that “Our mission is cultivate a program for institutionalizing, education, and training all cadets in the Oath to Commissioning and civil military relations norms to foster an understanding of military service within a democracy.”

The educators believe that the Oath Project should be paired with a “democracy philosophy” equally important. This is a 2022 document which identifies a lack in trust among civilians for the Air Force and deems it too politicized. It also pointed out a serious threat from domestic politics and a lack of civic understanding.

The document stated that “the threats stemming out of great power competition and losing our technology-based advantage are accompanied by another, more insidious threat collection from within the American domestic politics system.”

The ethos also stated that “This new threat is rooted in a decline of civic understanding in society at-large, complacent citizens, and insufficient development a professional military philosophy steeped in democratic civilian-military relations.”

The authors pointed out that only five lessons at the Air Force Academy are dedicated to Constitutional Foundations and Civil Control of the Military.

They argued that military academies need a course in civil-military relations, which would cover topics such as history, politics, and leadership. Although they acknowledged that reforming the curriculum would take many years, the professors stated that the Oath project is providing some of the practical experience that cadets require in the interim.