Army to Oust Lieutenant for Making Holocaust Jokes on TikTok
The army lieutenant, who posted a video on social media joking about Jewish people sent to Nazi ovens during the Holocaust, will be kicked out of the army, an official from Fort Bragg, North Carolina confirmed.
In August the XVIII. Airborne Corps carried out a 15-6 investigation of the 2nd Lt. Nathan Freihofer, a popular TikTok influencer with millions of followers, after one of his plainclothes videos showed him in front of a mirror telling the offensive joke and what appeared to be a Nazi salute.
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The subsequent investigation ended with Freihofer's commander recommending that he be reprimanded and kept in the army, the XVIII spokesman said. Air Force, Col. Joe Buccino, told Military.com.
Lieutenant General Michael "Erik" Kurilla, Commander of the XVIII. Luftwaffe disagreed, saying his behavior was contrary to the values of the army, especially for a soldier serving in a leadership position, Buccino said. He added that Kurilla "made the decision not to keep".
Freihofer, an artillery officer with 3.8 million followers on TikTok, has been investigated for months and removed from his leadership position in the 3rd Infantry Division in Fort Stewart, Georgia, the Washington Post reported.
"He does not lead troops; he has been transferred to an unmanaged position," Buccino told Military.com.
However, the decision is not final. Freihofer had been given time to prepare an argument in his favor, which he would present in the next two weeks, said Buccino.
If Kurilla decides that Freihofer should leave the army, it is still unclear when this will happen, as the case has to go to the level of the army staff for processing.
Army top leadership sought to eradicate racism and extremism from the ranks after the death of George Floyd, a black man who died in the care of the Minneapolis Police Department. The incident sparked protests against racism across the country.
- Matthew Cox can be reached at email@example.com.
Related: Fort Bragg Investigator for Blatant Holocaust Joke on TikTok
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