UnwrittenTruce is a powerful depiction of Black Americans’ struggle for equality told through the lens of uniformed military service. Mosley uses superb story-telling, personal vignettes, and historical examples to show how millions of Americans have lifted themselves from oppression through opportunities gleaned from military service. Collectively these efforts exerted positive outward pressure on American society and by in large has resisted all forms of social change. One of the unique aspects of combat is that rarely are Americans more equal than when thrust into harms way. It has been said there are no atheists in combat; similarly, racism, sexism, and homophobia quickly go by the wayside when under enemy fire.Yet in the 19th century and well into the 21st century, America’s military policies regarding the use of manpower could best be described as an awkward attempt to balance the requirement to win the nation’s wars while supporting a socio-political caste system. President Harry Truman signed Executive Order 9981 on July 26, 1948 in response to police violence perpetrated against Black veterans. His actions broke this trend and set the military on the path to true meritocracy.
Today, retired general Lloyd Austin is the first black American Secretary of Defense in part due to the barriers broken down by men and women who served before him. The armed services fiercely resisted integration, gender equality, and LGBTQ equality but over time have grown to value America’s well spring of diversity as a strategic and operational advantage. Under the Trump administration many of the military’s policies supporting transgender inclusion were reversed, making the U.S. military one of many institutions caught in the ideological tug of war regarding social change, which is at the heart of the present day American polarization. For as far as America has come, we still have work to do for Truman’s vision of equality of opportunity to become a reality for all Americans. Join this thought-provoking narrative that celebrates the brave American military pioneers and challenges us all to continue the push for a better expression of America.
TroyMosley is a retired Army Lieutenant Colonel. He is the founder and CEO of Citizens Against Intolerance.
List of Figures
List of Tables
Chapter 1: Why This and Black Lives Matter
Chapter 2: America in 1946: The Events Leading to the Desegregation of the Armed Forces
Chapter 3: A Brief History of Diversity in America's Armed Forces
Chapter 4: Minorities in World War II: Sowing the Seeds for the Civil Rights Movement
Chapter 5: Women in the Armed Services
Chapter 6: Lesbians, Gays, Bisexual and Transgender Members in the Armed Services
Chapter 7: Remaining Challenges and Implications for the US and the Armed Forces
About the Author
Troy Mosley’s book, The Armed Forces and American Social Change, has a narrow but deep focus and presents the author’s personal views on African-American and other minorities’ contributions to our armed
forces since our Republic’s founding. The specific focus is on the ebbs and flows, since the creation of the Department of Defense (DoD) in 1947, of DoD leaders’ efforts at diversity and inclusion. In the author’s words, “Unwritten Truce . . . pivots on the notion that our nation’s military may be the best force we have to combat the overwhelming force of the systemic, institutionalized racism that we still face today” (3).