The cadet who caused an uproar in the military community last year after he held a cap with the words “Communism Will Win” written inside has been officially kicked out of the U.S. Army.
Spenser Rapone was booted by top officials at Fort Drum’s 10th Mountain Division with an other-than-honorable discharge after they accepted his resignation on June 18. In an earlier statement, they said they had given him a warning for “conduct unbecoming of an officer.”
The graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point received widespread criticism for photos posted on his Twitter account following his graduation, one of them showing the smirking young man opening his uniform to reveal a red T-shirt underneath with an image of Marxist icon Che Guevara.
The photos, posted in September 2017, also sparked death threats and caught the attention of Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), who called on the Army to remove Rapone from their ranks.
Rapone, who is a member of the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA), a prominent communist front group, has become known as the “commie cadet.” Last year, Army officials condemned Rapone’s actions.
“Second Lieutenant Rapone’s actions in no way reflect the values of the U.S. Military Academy or the U.S. Army,” an Army statement read.
The highly controversial cadet first took the contentious photos during his May 2016 West Point graduation, before posting them on social media a year later. He told The Associated Press that he believes he is a “revolutionary socialist.”
Rapone, who remained unapologetic in the wake of the scandal, yet again added fuel to the fire by posting a photo on Twitter on June 18 showing him giving the middle finger to a sign at the entrance to Fort Drum. The photo was accompanied by the words “One final salute.”
Communism is estimated to have killed at least 100 million people around the world.
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