- An unknown person stole American and German flags from the 2nd Cavalry Regiment’s headquarters in Germany overnight.
- A Confederate flag was also found raised on a flagpole during installation.
- Military police are currently investigating the unusual incident.
U.S. military police are investigating after someone stole American and German flags and raised the Confederate flag at a military installation in Germany sometime between Sunday night and Monday morning.
“An unknown person entered the 2d Cavalry Regiment’s headquarters building,” located at the Rose Barracks in Vilseck, Germany, and stole the flags, the unit spokesman said in May. John Ambelang to the Army Times, adding that “The Confederate battle flag was also hoisted on a flagpole outside the regiment’s headquarters.”
The Confederate battle flag was “removed immediately” after regimental officials discovered it, Ambelang said.
“This criminal behavior is not in line with the values of the army,” the spokesman said, explaining that “it is also a violation of the policy of the Ministry of Defense.”
In June 2020, then-Secretary of Defense Mark Esper issued a note stating which flags may be flown at U.S. military installations.
“Flags are strong symbols, especially in the military community, for whom flags represent common mission, common stories and warriors’ special, timeless ties,” Esper wrote at the time.
“The flags we fly must conform to the military requirements of good order and discipline, treat all our people with dignity and respect, and reject divisive symbols,” he said.
Although the note did not specifically mention the Confederate flag, the restrictions effectively banned the display of the rebel banner from the Civil War, a flag widely associated with racism and hatred.
The U.S. military is steadily removing the Confederate legacy by not only banning flags, but also by pursuing new base names on installations named after federal leaders.
The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff previously condemned the Confederacy before Congress, calling it a “betrayal” and arguing that the U.S. military had to take a hard look at things like flags, base names and statues to honor people who “returned theirs. their oath. “
The Army Times noted that the incident in Germany could also violate the US military’s extremism policy, which has been revised in the wake of January 6 riots in the US capital.
The 2nd Cavalry Regiment prompted commanders to stress the seriousness of the incident at headquarters to troops, and military police are reviewing, according to Stars and Stripes, video camera footage from the base to try to track down the person in charge.