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Ted Cruz Courts Controversy With Tweet About 'Woke' Army

Senator criticized over his complaint about 'emasculated' US military
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted May 21, 2021 1:45 PM CDT

(Newser) – Ted Cruz has stirred up controversy again, this time over an Army ad and his view that left-leaning advocates are turning soldiers into "pansies." But he's getting a lot of pushback about that. Coverage:

  • This all began when Cruz commented on a TikTok video that purports to contrast an ad for the Russian army with one from the US Army. "Holy crap," tweeted Cruz. "Perhaps a woke, emasculated military is not the best idea."
  • The Russian ad shows brawny male soldiers doing pushups and jumping out of a plane, per the Hill. The American one is animated and tells the story of US Army Cpl. Emma Malonelord, who was raised by two moms. You can watch it here. It's one of a series of animated ads the Army put out highlighting individual members.

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  • Leading the charge against Cruz is Democratic Sen. Tammy Duckworth, a former Army National Guard lieutenant colonel, notes the Washington Post. "Holy crap,” she tweeted. “Perhaps a U.S. Senator shouldn't suggest that the *Russian* military is better than the American military that protected him from an insurrection he helped foment?” VoteVets, a group that supports liberal causes, called Cruz "a sedition-loving traitor," per CBS News.
  • Cruz responded to the controversy with another tweet in which he accused "lefty" critics of distorting his meaning. "We have the greatest military on earth, but Dem politicians & woke media are trying to turn them into pansies," he wrote. Cruz is apparently not alone in his view. The YouTube video has 51,000 dislikes compared with only about 2,400 likes. Comments were so vitriolic that the Army disabled them, notes the Army Times.
  • At CNN, Chris Cillizza writes that Cruz knows precisely what he's doing. "He is very interested in running for president in 2024," writes Cillizza, and Cruz "knows that attacking the 'woke' left is a sure-fire winner among a GOP base that responded fervently to [Donald] Trump's urgings that the country needs to get stronger and tougher."
(Read more Ted Cruz stories.)

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