Defense Department Study Shows Few Problems with Ending DADTPosted: November 30, 2010
U.S. Army Gen. Carter Ham, commander of U.S. Army Europe, said the study found that 50 to 55 percent of people surveyed said there would be no major effect if the repeal passed, while 15 to 20 percent said they’d expect a positive change. Only 30 percent said repeal would have a negative impact.
Ham indicated that he doesn’t think repeal would be harmful, if handled properly and performed deliberately. He said the leadership today has the ability to implement a new policy and maintain unit cohesion.
There is still a lot of discussion required, Ham said, but the military should begin planning now. “The best way for us to think about this is as a contingency plan,” Ham said. “Our report lays out the groundwork for actions that we recommend, if repeal does come.”
You can read the full report here.
From The Boston Globe: Pentagon study finds overturning “don’t ask, don’t tell” will do little long-term harm.
A long-awaited Pentagon report released today concluded that overturning the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy would do little long-term harm to morale or military effectiveness, dispelling chief arguments opponents have had with allowing gay and lesbian service members to serve openly.
The report’s release shifts the focus on the issue to moderate members of the Senate, including Scott Brown of Massachusetts, who had said they wanted to read the report before voting on whether to end the policy.
The House has passed a bill overturning the policy, but a Republican-led threat of a filibuster halted a similar effort in the Senate in the fall….
The study, conducted over ten months, found that 70 percent of troops surveyed believed that repealing the law would have mixed, positive, or no impact. The other 30 percent felt there would be negative consequences if gays were allowed to serve openly, with opposition strongest among combat troops.
Secretary Gates is strongly recommending that Congress and the President complete the repeal of the law before the end of this year. He held a long press conference earlier today. Lynn Sweet at the Chicago Sun-Times published the transcript. Here is an excerpt:
Earlier this year, the House of Representatives passed legislation that would repeal Don’t Ask Don’t Tell after a number of steps take place – the last being certification by the President, the Secretary of Defense, and the Chairman that the new policies and regulations were consistent with the U.S. military’s standards of readiness, effectiveness, unit cohesion, and recruiting and retention. Now that we have completed this review, I strongly urge the Senate to pass this legislation and send it to the president for signature before the end of this year.
I believe this is a matter of some urgency because, as we have seen this past year, the federal courts are increasingly becoming involved in this issue. Just a few weeks ago, one lower-court ruling forced the Department into an abrupt series of changes that were no doubt confusing and distracting to men and women in the ranks. It is only a matter of time before the federal courts are drawn once more into the fray, with the very real possibility that this change would be imposed immediately by judicial fiat – by far the most disruptive and damaging scenario I can imagine, and the one most hazardous to military morale, readiness and battlefield performance.
Therefore, it is important that this change come via legislative means – that is, legislation informed by the review just completed. What is needed is a process that allows for a well-prepared and well-considered implementation. Above all, a process that carries the imprimatur of the elected representatives of the people of the United States. Given the present circumstances, those that choose not to act legislatively are rolling the dice that this policy will not be abruptly overturned by the courts.
At the San Francisco Chronicle, that was seen as a thinly veiled “warning to John McCain.”
BostonBoomer was much faster with her post. I wanted to add this video showing McCain bizarre behavior on DADT. What a creep!
The ball is now in the Congress’s court. What will President Obama do now to prevent gays from serving openly in the military? Or will he actually support repeal of this discriminatory and unjust law?