The Pentagon has officially put an end to its COVID-19 vaccine mandate with regard to the Armed Forces.
Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) posted the official memo of the Pentagon's top officials on Twitter on Tuesday evening. In the memo, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin applauds personnel for their efforts to fight the spread of the disease throughout the entire pandemic. The memo also explains the rollback of COVID protocols.
“Section 525 of the NDAA for FY 2023 requires me to rescind the mandate that members of the Armed Forces be vaccinated against COVID-19, issued in my August 24, 2021 memorandum, ‘Mandatory Coronavirus Disease 2019 Vaccination of Department of Defense Service Members.’ I hereby rescind the memorandum.”
The Pentagon also rescinded the same requirement for those who belong to the National Guard and the Ready Reserve.
The memo indicates that those who are members of the Armed Forces who refused the vaccine would not suffer any “adverse actions” if they sought a reprieve on the basis of the principle of religious freedom.
“The Secretaries of the Military Departments will update the records of requests, including letters of reprimand. The Secretaries of the Military Departments will further cease any ongoing reviews of current Service member religious, administrative, or medical accommodation requests solely for exemption from the COVID-19 vaccine or appeals of denials of such requests.”
Roy described the move as “an important step,” but stressed that there's still a lot more to do. As of now, people who were dismissed because they refused to undergo the vaccination will have the right to get their records amended to eliminate any negative words or descriptions. It's unclear whether any member in the Armed Forces unfairly dismissed will be able to be reinstated to the service.
According to RedState writer Streiff, this issue is more than just about a vaccine. Someone must take responsibility for the horrible treatment of our military personnel, who only wanted to serve our country and safeguard our sovereignty.
“The Department of Defense has become unaccountable. The new Republican House needs to take steps to stop the problem from getting worse. The next Republican president must take a page from George C. Marshall’s playbook, ignore rank and seniority, and immediately fill the military’s upper ranks with men focused on fighting and winning wars instead of the princely class that runs the Pentagon today.”