Pentagon general suspended for allegedly creating racist work environment

The three-star Pentagon general is said to have made disparaging comments about Black general officers.

Published February 17, 2022 4:00AM (EST)

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

This article originally appeared on AlterNet.

If someone holds extremist views, the last place they should be is the Pentagon or the U.S. military. But according to Task & Purpose, a three-star general at the Pentagon is on suspension while allegations of overt racism are investigated.

Task & Purpose's Haley Britzky, in an article published on February 16, reports that U.S. Army Gen. Duane Gamble "has been suspended while the service investigates claims that he created a toxic climate, regularly degraded others in public forums, went out of his way to criticize the performance of Black officers, and made racist remarks."

"Lt. Gen. Duane Gamble, the Army deputy chief of staff for logistics — head of an office commonly referred to as the G-4 — was reported to the Army's Office of the Inspector General in September 2020 amid accusations that he cultivated a toxic environment in the office," Britzky explains. "Two months later, an official investigation was launched."

Cynthia Smith, a U.S. Army spokesperson, told Task & Purpose that the U.S. Defense Department Inspector General's Office completed its investigation of Gamble on February 11. Smith, on February 15, confirmed that Gamble had been suspended, according to Britzky.

"Three sources who spoke with Task & Purpose, including a recently retired Army colonel, described a harmful work environment which one source described as 'racist and toxic,'" Britzky reports. "The general was known to frequently degrade subordinates and peers alike, and regularly made inappropriate comments during staff meetings. This article is based on interviews with those three sources, all of whom have direct knowledge of Gamble's remarks and the culture within the G-4 office, as well as documents and e-mails outlining the allegations against Gamble while he served as one of the Army's most senior logisticians."

Britzky adds, "Gamble, who is white, almost exclusively made disparaging comments about Black general officers he worked with and knew, the sources said. He often spoke down to Black subordinates in meetings and overlooked their suggestions, only to praise the same suggestion when it came from a white colleague."

According to Britzky, "Sources also accused Gamble of making insensitive and inappropriate comments in the wake of the death of George Floyd, a Black man who was killed after a white police officer knelt on his neck for more than eight minutes."

By Alex Henderson

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