Defense Department commission tasked with replacing Confederate names seeks suggestions
AUGUSTA, Ga. (Tribune News Service) — On Tuesday, the Defense Department Naming Commission tasked with identifying and renaming military assets named for Confederates announced they will be taking public comment.
Among the nine military bases being renamed are Forts Gordon and Benning. Both John B. Gordon and Henry L. Benning served in the Confederate military and held politically powerful positions in the state of Georgia.
"The Commission team were here July 19th and 20th, but this was not an 'open' visit," wrote Anne H. Bowman, deputy public affairs officer for Fort Gordon, in an email. "They were meeting with senior leadership only this go around. We currently have no information on when they will return."
A spokesperson for the naming commission said there is no deadline currently for public comment. The commission is due to brief Congress before Oct. 1 on their progress so far. The entire process is due to be completed by the start of 2024, although the commission's only role is making recommendations, not implementing the name changes.
The naming commission will present an update to the Senate and House Armed Services Committee before Oct. 1 and present the committees with a complete list of assets to be renamed, the new names and the cost of renaming by Oct. 1, 2022.
The commission is authorized to go beyond bases to examine the names of ships, streets, weapons and anything else — except graves — under Department of Defense control. The bill also authorizes the removal or renaming of "displays, monuments or paraphernalia."
To provide a new name for any military asset under consideration, visit www.thenamingcommission.gov/recommend-a-name.
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