Highest Ranking Jewish American Officer Denounces George Floyd’s Death as ‘National Tragedy’

WASHINGTON – General David Goldfein, the Chief of Staff of the United States Air Force and the highest ranking Jewish officer in the American military said on Tuesday that "every American should be outraged" by the police murder of George Floyd, calling it a "national tragedy."

Goldfein, who was appointed Chief of Staff by former President Barack Obama, distributed his public memo to commanders at all ranks of the Air Force. He wrote in it that “We all wish it were not possible for racism to occur in America. But it does, and we are at a moment when we must confront what is.”

"What happens on America’s streets is also resident in our Air Force," he acknowledged. "Sometimes it’s explicit, sometimes it’s subtle, but we are not immune to the spectrum of racial prejudice, systemic discrimination and unconscious bias. We will not shy away from this; we will do our own part and confront it head on.”

The chief commander added: “Let’s start the conversation by acknowledging we have many valued Airmen who live and work for One Nation Under God, Indivisible, but for them, without liberty and justice for all.”

– Tweet

Message to Airmen:
Join CSAF @GenDaveGoldfein and @cmsaf18 in a conversation about race, the Air Force, and acknowledging change that we must achieve. pic.twitter.com/C6OfmW3mZZ

— U.S. Air Force (@usairforce) June 2, 2020

Goldfein ended the memo by saying that he will hold a “Facebook town hall” on the subject of racism in the Air Force later this week.

Last year, several news outlets in the U.S. reported that former Secretary of Defense, retired Marines General James Mattis, was leaning towards choosing Goldfein to be the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the highest ranking officer in the entire military. President Donald Trump, however, chose General Mark Milley for the job, against Mattis’ recommendation.

Goldfein’s reaction to Floyd’s death and his acknowledgement of racism within the ranks of the military is very different than Miley’s conduct over the past few days. Most notably, his role in Monday night’s use of military force outside the White House against non-violent protesters in order to make a clear path for Trump to film a campaign video of himself walking to a church.