News & Opinion | June 19, 2018 10:08 am

Army Gives “Commie Cadet” Other-Than-Honorable Discharge

Spenser Rapone drew outrage for posting pro-communist images from West Point graduation.

commie cadet
Spenser Rapone (Twitter)

Several months after his graduation from West Point last May, Spenser Rapone posted two controversial pictures from the event on Twitter. In one, he is opening his dress uniform to reveal a red T-shirt depicting communist icon Che Guevara. In another, he raises his fist and shows the underside of his cadet cap, where he had written “Communism will win.”

Less than a year later, during which Rapone faced death threats, the second lieutenant who became known as the “commie cadet” has been other-than-honorably discharged from the U.S. Army. Before attending West Point, Rapone had served as an enlisted soldier with the Army Rangers in Afghanistan.

Top brass at Fort Drum’s 10th Mountain Division accepted Rapone’s resignation. He had earlier been reprimanded for “conduct unbecoming of an officer.”

Rapone tweeted afterwards on Monday, posting a picture of him extending the middle finger at a sign at the entrance of Fort Drum. The text said, “One final salute.”

“I consider myself a revolutionary socialist,” the 26-year-old Rapone told the Associated Press. “I would encourage all soldiers who have a conscience to lay down their arms and join me and so many others who are willing to stop serving the agents of imperialism and join us in a revolutionary movement.”