Following the ordered mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations by the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), all branches of the U.S. Military persist in issuing separations to service members for refusing to get the jab. Additionally, very few exemptions—especially religious—have been granted by any military service.
The Marine Corps leads the way in severing ties with those serving our country, announcing on June 2 that 2,715 Marines have been separated from the Corps for refusing to get the COVID-19 “vaccine.” The Marines have approved just seven of the 3,719 requests for vaccination exemption on religious grounds. Seven hundred forty-two medical and administrative exemptions have been approved.
Meanwhile, as of June 8, 2022, the U. S. Navy has separated 1,202 for refusing the COVID-19 shot—996 active-duty sailors and 184 reservists, along with 22 entry-level separations. As of June 8, 3,866 active-duty sailors and 3,258 active-duty reservists remain unvaccinated against COVID-19. Currently, due to a ruling by a federal judge in Texas, the Navy cannot separate any sailor who has filed a religious exemption request. As of June 8, the Navy has received 3,352 active duty and 862 Ready Reserve requests for a religious accommodation from the COVID-19 vaccine.
The Navy has approved just 13 religious exemptions for members of the Ready Reserve. However, the approval is based on the condition they become fully vaccinated if called to reserve or active duty status. The Navy has also approved 14 permanent and 206 temporary medical exemptions for active-duty sailors, one permanent, and 70 medical waivers for reservists.
The Army has separated 882 Soldiers for “refusing the lawful order to receive the COVID-19 vaccine,” according to its June 10 update. Army commanders have issued 3,448 general officer written reprimands to Regular Army Soldiers for refusing to get the mandated “vaccine.” The Army states that “prior to the June 30, 2022 completion goal for each [vaccination] component,” it will not release further data on Army Reserve and Army National Guard refusals and exemptions.
The Air Force has separated 583 service members, according to its June 13 update. With 98.6% of Active Duty service members fully vaccinated, the Air Force has approved a total of 709 medical exemptions and 979 administrative exemptions. At the same time, the Air Force has “disapproved” 6,476 religious accommodation requests, and there are 2,920 requests that are pending. The Air Force has only approved 95 religious accommodation requests.
Air Force members who receive a denial of their religious exemption request have five calendar days from the refusal to either begin a COVID-19 vaccination regimen, submit an appeal to the final appeal authority, or request to separate or retire.
The recent Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) application of Novavax remains under review by the FDA. Still, many believe that once approved, Novavax, which has received nearly $2 billion in funding from the U.S. government, will be a viable alternative to those uncomfortable with the currently available COVID shots, including the mRNA gene-therapy inoculations. Explaining further, the U.S. Naval Institute (USNI) references the science journal Nature, stating:
“Novavax developed a protein-based vaccine, which is a common method for vaccines, against COVID-19. Some have theorized that those uncomfortable with the mRNA vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna due to their reliance on a certain line of fetal cells and idea that the mRNA changes their bodies may be more willing to get the Novavax option.”
As previously reported by UncoverDC, numerous experts and politicians, including Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), recently questioned the accuracy of COVID data from the Defense Medical Epidemiology Database (DMED). Meanwhile, the fiscal 2022 National Defense Authorization Act enacted in December 2021 requires discharges of military personnel for vaccine refusal must be either honorable or general under honorable conditions.