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Trump nixes renaming military bases

by Kyle Ziemnick
Posted 6/10/20, 05:35 pm

WASHINGTON—U.S. Army bases such as Fort Bragg, Fort Benning, and Fort Hood derive their names from Confederate generals who fought during the Civil War. After U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper said on Monday he was open to discussions about renaming 10 major Army installations named after Rebel commanders, President Donald Trump ruled out the possibility. “These Monumental and very Powerful Bases have become part of a Great American Heritage, a history of Winning, Victory, and Freedom,” the president tweeted on Wednesday.

Were the changes likely in the first place? The Army had no plans to rename any specific base in the immediate future. Officials have considered such changes before with no concrete actions. The Navy announced on Tuesday it would join the Marine Corps in removing public displays of the Confederate battle flag.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Senate on Tuesday confirmed Gen. Charles Q. Brown Jr. as the first African American Air Force chief of staff. “I can’t fix centuries of racism in our country, nor can I fix decades of discrimination that may have affected members of our Air Force,” Brown said in a video message, adding that he wanted to create an environment in which all airmen “can reach their full potential.”

Dig deeper: From the WORLD archives, read Joel Hannah’s report on an African American airman who defied a direct order and helped integrate the U.S. military in 1945.


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Kyle Ziemnick

Kyle is a graduate of the World Journalism Institute.

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