- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 25, 2020

The U.S. Army says its time to ditch photos in officer promotion board packages as a way guaranteeing a diverse racial aesthetic.

The move, which will go into effect Aug. 1, was confirmed by Military.com on Thursday and comes shortly after the creation of the “Defense Board on Diversity and Inclusion.”

“The strength of our Army comes from our diversity,” leaders wrote in a memo obtained by the defense website. “Developing and maintaining qualified and demographically diverse leadership is critical for mission effectiveness and is essential to national security.”

Reporter Hope Hodge Seck noted that photos were historically used by Army leaders to gauge “military bearing, fitness, and attention to proper uniform wear.”

Army Reserve Maj. Gen. Tammy Smith, however, dismissed the function on social media. 

The officer responded to a poll on promotion photos with the following tweet: “Nothing in a photo reveals talent.”

Air Force and Coast Guard personnel are also not required to include photos in their promotion packages, the website added.

• Douglas Ernst can be reached at dernst@washingtontimes.com.

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