The Dog has to admit this one caught him by surprise…..When it was reported that the Seante would hold a hearing about the almost 20 year old Clinton policy of the Miliary’s action on gays among their troops ….I though forget about it……Ike Sheldon got up and complianed the next day…..
But The Obama Adminstraion…not the Pentagaon…has pushed the Defense Scetratary and Chair of the Joint Chiefs to move a few inches and lay low while the policy is studied…..at the Pentagon………
Don’t ask, don’t tell. Don’t worry.
Defense Secretary Robert Gates says military brass will take a lenient stance toward gays while the Pentagon takes a year to study revising its policy against homosexuals in the service.
The study, expected to be announced Tuesday before the Senate Armed Services Committee, is a step in the slow march toward President Obama‘s goal of eliminating the military’s policy banning gays from military service.
The study will be led by an “active-duty four-star general” and a “senior-level” civilian Pentagon official, Pentagon spokesman Geoff Morrell said.
It will recommend the best way to lift the ban without harming the capabilities or cohesion of the military force, officials said.
While the study is being hailed as a good start by gay rights activists, high-ranking military officers have been reluctant to support a change while troops are stretched thin on two battle fronts.
Gates and Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, are expected to outline a more lenient standard for enforcing the current ban while the study takes place, sources familiar with the stragegy said.
The interim policy would make it harder for a third party to turn in a gay service member and would raise the standard of evidence for dismissing a gay service member.
The Dog still believes that getting rid of the policy is fight the White House doesn’t want to have until January 21st, 2012……
For this reason…….
Few in the audience at today’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” hearingbefore the Senate Armed Services Committee were surprised when Defense Secretary Robert Gates unveiled long-term plans to get rid of the ban on gays in the military.
But many were shocked by Joint Chiefs Chairman Adm. Mike Mullen’s strong endorsement of those plans, and his decision to tell skeptical lawmakers that he believes the change can only make the military stronger.
For months gay rights advocates have speculated whether Mullen could be their top ally or worst foe in the fight to allow openly homosexual servicemembers to stay in the military. Last year an essay on the merits of letting gays serve appeared in the chairman’s own in-house magazine. Just last month, word leaked that Mullen’s own legal staff was telling him to delay any massive social changes in the ranks until after fighting in Afghanistan is completed.
So, when Mullen read this statement at Tuesday’s hearing, there were audible gasps of excitement from many of those same repeal supporters:
Mr. Chairman: Speaking for myself and myself only, it is my personal belief that allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly would be the right thing to do.
No matter how I look at this issue, I cannot escape being troubled by the fact that we have in place a policy which forces young men and women to lie about who they are in order to defend their fellow citizens. For me, personally, it comes down to integrity: theirs as individuals, and ours as an institution.
I also believe that the great young men and women of our military can and would accommodate such a change. I never underestimate their ability to adapt.
Mullen was careful to point out that he wants to see results from the year-long study proposed by Gates before making a final decision, admitting that such a dramatic policy change may have adverse consequences he hasn’t anticipated. And he encouraged lawmakers to grill the service chiefs and other top military leaders, saying their opinions should be heard as well.
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