Congress
Where Are Regs for DADT Repeal?

Bob Unruh, WorldNetDaily: Where Are Regs for DADT Repeal?



Congress Ignored Perils of Lifting Military's Gay Ban
House Acts to Mitigate the Consequences of LGBT Law in the Military

Obama Administration Disregards Congressional Concerns About LGBT Law  

On July 22, late on a Friday afternoon, President Barack Obama, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, and Joint Chiefs Chairman Adm. Mike Mullen signed a piece of paper purporting to “certify” that repeal of the 1993 law regarding gays in the military, usually mislabeled “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” would do no harm to the armed forces.  

As CMR stated in a news release, the timing of this event on a Friday afternoon signaled that the action was nothing to be proud of.  The document signed has no credibility, but it will have harmful consequences.  From this time forward President Obama owns the San Francisco/LGBT military he has created.

The House of Representatives of the 112th Congress has expressed concern about the repeal of Section 654, Title 10, U.S.C. by passing three amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act for 2012, and two more in the National Defense Appropriations Act for 2012.  These amendments, if passed into law, will not eliminate the most problematic consequences of LGBT law, but they help to mitigate some damage to the military until the political situation changes.  

The amendments reflect concerns of Congress that the administration should not ignore.

A.  House Armed Services Committee Protects Marriage and Combat Effectiveness

1.  The Akin Amendment:  Despite previous Pentagon promises to enforce the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in the military, Rear Adm. Mark. L. Tidd, the Navy Chief of Chaplains, issued a memo on April 13, 2011 titled “Revision of Chaplain Corps Tier 1 Training.”   The memo, self-described as “not a change” but a “clearer, more concise and up to date articulation,” actually revised earlier training instructions radically, in order to authorize same-sex marriages in Navy and Marine Corps facilities located in states where such unions are legal.  Following the initial CNSNews report, titled Navy Authorizes Chaplains to Perform Same-Sex ‘Marriages’ in Naval Chapels, a firestorm quickly ensued:

Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO) immediately responded by writing a stiff  letter of protest to the Secretary of the Navy, Ray Mabus, co-signed by 62 of his colleagues. 

“Mr. Secretary, we find it unconscionable that the United States Navy, a federal entity sworn to ‘preserve and protect the Constitution of the United States,’ believes it is their place alone to train and direct members of their service to violate federal law…It is not the place of any citizen of this country to pick and choose which laws they are going to obey.”

A few days later, the Navy tried but failed to do damage control.  The Washington Post reported the second memorandum, suggesting that it reversed the Navy’s previous memo announcing training for same-sex marriage.  However, the actual memo from DoD Principle Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy Robert T. Cali only “suspended” the policy pending coordination with the other services and more review by legal counsel.

As CMR stated in a news release, House committee members were not swayed by the Navy’s weather-vane policies and equivocation. 

Congressman Akin sponsored and successfully passed an amendment barring same-sex marriages on military bases. (38-23)

Akin Amendment (Sect. 535): Prohibits same-sex marriages on military bases (Passed 38-23) (a) LIMITATION ON USE.—A military installation or other property under the jurisdiction of the Department of Defense may be used as the site for a marriage ceremony only if the marriage complies with the definition of marriage in section 7 of title 1, United States Code.” (Defense of Marriage Act)

2.  The Hartzler Amendment:  Taking a step further, Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-MO) sponsored and passed an amendment to create a military version of the Defense of Marriage Act, or “M-DOMA,” to define marriage as the bond between one man and one woman.  The Hartzler amendment passed on a bi-partisan vote. (39-22) 

Hartzler Amendment (Sect. 534) : To define marriage in military policies (Passed 39-22) “Congress reaffirms the policy of section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act, codified as section 7 of title 1, United States Code. In determining the meaning of any Act of Congress, or of any ruling, regulation, or interpretation of the Department of Defense applicable to members of the Armed Forces or civilian employees of the Department of Defense, the word ‘‘marriage’’ means only a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife, and the word ‘‘spouse’’ refers only to a person of the opposite sex who is a husband or a wife.”

3.  The Hunter Amendment: Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA) also passed a measure that would expand and possibly slow the process of implementing repeal of the 1993 law.  Under Hunter’s amendment, the four Chiefs of Staff of the Army, Navy, Air Force the Marine Corps would be required to “certify” that repeal of the 1993 law would not degrade the readiness, effectiveness, cohesion, and morale of units and personnel that are engaged in combat, deployed to, or preparing for deployment to a combat theater.  (33-27)

Hunter Amendment: (Sect. 533): All service chiefs must certify repeal of DADT (Passed 33-27)  “The Chief of Staff of the Army, the Chief of Naval Operations, the Commandant of the Marine Corps, and the Chief of Staff of the Air Force each submit to the congressional defense committees the officer’s written certification that repeal of section 654 of title 10, United States Code, will not degrade the readiness, effectiveness, cohesion, and morale of combat arms units and personnel of the Armed Force under the officer’s jurisdiction engaged in combat, deployed to a combat theater, or preparing for deployment to a combat theater.”

The Obama Administration expressed strong displeasure with Congressional action by issuing a formal statement of opposition to all three amendments mandating congressional oversight:

CMR and organizations affiliated with the Military Culture Coalition appreciate HASC Chairman Howard P. “Buck” McKeon, Personnel Subcommittee Chairman Joe Wilson, and Representatives Akin, Hartzler, and Hunter who stepped up to sponsor the three amendments.  All three were passed as part of the 2012 National Defense Authorization Bill, which was referred to the Senate Armed Services Committee on June 6.

B.  House National Defense Appropriations Act Prohibits Funding for Same-Sex Marriage

The House of Representatives has approved two amendments to the Defense Appropriations Bill, H.R. 2219, which affirm congressional support for traditional marriage and for religious liberty.         

4.  The Foxx Amendment:  The first amendment, sponsored by Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC) and Rep. Dan Burton (R-IN), would ensure that defense dollars are not used to implement military policy changes that violate the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).  This is the text of the concise amendment and an analysis of it:  

“No funds under the act may be used for activities in contravention of Public Law 104-199, the Defense of Marriage Act.”

Foxx-Burton Amendment re Defense Funds and the DOMA

On Thursday, July 7, the Foxx-Burton Amendment passed on an overwhelming 248-175 vote (see Roll Call). 

  • Nineteen Democrats voted for the Foxx-Burton amendment: Jason Altmire (PA), John Barrow (GA), Rob Bishop (GA), Dan Boren (OK), Ben Chandler (KY), Jerry Costello (IL),  Mark Critz (PA), Henry Cuellar (TX), Joe Donnelly (IN, Gene Green (TX), Tim Holden (PA), Mike McIntyre (NC), Jim Matheson (UT), Daniel Lipinski (IL), Larry Kissell (NC), Collin Peterson (MN), Nick Rahall (WV), Mike Ross (AR), and Heath Shuler (NC).   
  • Six Republicans voted against: Judy Biggert (IL), Mary Bono Mack (CA), Mario Diaz-Balart (FL), Richard Hanna (NY), Nan Hayworth (NY), and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (FL).
  • Democrats Not Voting: Cardoza, Giffords, Payne, and Towns.  Republicans Not Voting:  Cantor, Culberson, Gibbs, and Sullivan.

5.  The Huelskamp Amendment:  Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS) also sponsored a successful amendment to the Defense Appropriations Bill. The legislation reads:

“None of the funds made available to this Act may be used to implement the curriculum of the Chaplain Corps Tier 1 DADT repeal training, dated April 11, 2011.”

This amendment is similar to the Akin Amendment described above.  The legislation became necessary when the Department of the Navy signaled a willingness to authorize and train chaplains for same-sex marriages in a memo issued by the Chief of Chaplains on April 11, 2011.  Rep. Todd Akin and 62 of his colleagues sent a letter of protest to the Secretary of the Navy, pointing out that the Navy’s training revision conflicted with assurances given with regard to enforcement of the Defense of Marriage Act.  

The Navy suspended but did not revoke the policy, pending further review and coordination with the other services.  As Rep. Huelskamp stated in a July 6 letter, his amendment would ensure continuation of a “consistent policy on marriage.”

On Friday, July 8, the Huelskamp Amendment passed, 236-184.  (See Roll Call)

  • Nine Democrats voted in favor of the Huelskamp Amendment: amendment: John Barrow (GA), Dan Boren (OK), Joe Donnelly (IN, Tim Holden (PA), Mike McIntyre (NC), Larry Kissell (NC), Jim Matheson (UT), Collin Peterson (MN, and Mike Ross (AR).
  • Nine Republicans voted Against:  Justin Amash (MI), Judy Biggert (IL), Mary Bono Mack (CA), Robert Dold (IL), Richard Hanna (NY), Nan Hayworth (NY), Leonard Lance (NJ), Patrick Meehan (PA) and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (FL).
  • Democrats Not Voting: Cardoza, Crowley, Giffords, Hinchey, Jackson Lee (TX), Payne, Rangel, and Rush.  Republicans Not Voting:  Campbell, Culberson, and Graves (MO).

The Defense Authorization and Appropriations Bills will go to conference committees, which will produce final versions for votes in the House and Senate.  It will be important for the 112th Congress to retain the five amendments described above as the two defense bills go through this process.  

 

* * * * * * *

DoD IG Report Exposes Improper Activities to Repeal Gays in the Military Law

With White House “Spin” the Fix Was In -- at Expense of the Troops  

A previously-undisclosed investigation conducted by the Department of Defense Inspector General strongly suggests that the so-called Pentagon “study” of gays in the military in 2010 was a publicly-funded, pre-scripted production put on just for show. This a link to the 30-page DoD IG report, which a concerned source sent to CMR:

Investigation of Improper Disclosure of For Official Use Only Information from the Comprehensive Review Working Group Draft Report

The report provides even more reasons why the administration cannot in good faith “certify” final repeal of the 1993 law.

The “For Official Use Only” report, completed on April 8, 2011, reveals improper activities and deception that misled members of Congress in order “to gain momentum in support of a legislative change during the ‘lame duck’ session of Congress following the November 2, 1010, elections.” (p. 20)   

The Center for Military Readiness has reviewed the DoD IG Report in a Policy Analysis, available here:

DoD Inspector General Exposes Improper Activities to Repeal Gays in Military Law (“Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”

A two-page summary of the CMR Policy Analysis, including excerpts from the DoD Inspector General Report, is available here.

Executive Summary: 

In 2010 the Defense Department’s Comprehensive Review Working Group (CRWG) commissioned an official survey of over 400,000 troops and families, and conducted scores of focus groups worldwide to seek opinions on the law usually called “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”    Uniformed personnel who participated in good faith were led to believe that their opinions would be heard and respected.  But as early as the July 4, 2010, weekend, even before the official survey of troops began, CRWG Co-Chair and DoD General Counsel Jeh Johnson was seeking advice from a “former news anchor” on how to write the report’s Executive Summary more “persuasively.”

The DoD IG report concluded that someone who “had a strongly emotional attachment to the issue” and “likely a pro-repeal agenda” violated security rules and leaked misleading information to the Washington Post.  On November 11, 2010, the Post published a highly-misleading story suggesting that “70%” of active-duty and reserve troops surveyed by the Defense Department thought that the results of repealing the current law would be "positive, mixed, or nonexistent."  

Pentagon officials allowed that well-spun "money quote" to dominate the news for weeks, without correction, even though substantial survey findings to the contrary were in the actual report that the CRWG officially released on November 30, 2010.  The  ultimate result of this travesty was a rushed vote to repeal the law regarding homosexuals in the military with delayed implementation, during the December lame-duck session of the 111th Congress.

Investigators interviewed 96 of 101 people with access, but stopped short of questioning five named White House officials who met to discuss the draft report on November 9—just before the carefully-spun leaked story appeared in the Washington Post.  One of these was James Messina, Deputy Chief of Staff for President Obama and the president’s “liaison” to LGBT activists.  Messina, hailed by gay activists as an “unsung hero” in the drive to repeal the 1993 law, is now the campaign manager for President Obama’s Chicago-based re-election effort.

The purpose of the contrived CRWG process was to neutralize military opposition to repeal of the law by manufacturing an illusion of support.  The administration misused military personnel, resources, and facilities to help President Obama to deliver on political promises to gay activists at the expense of unknowing troops who became props in the pro-repeal campaign.

The 112th Congress should question White House officials who were not interviewed by the DoD IG, and do everything possible to repair the damage done to our military.

 

* * * * * *

Elaine Donnelly: Congress Resists Rush for an LGBT Military
Questions About LGBT Law and Policies for Our Military

Inquiring Congressmen Have a Right to Know

In December 2010 Congress rushed to vote for repeal of the 1993 law regarding homosexuals in the military, Section 654, Title 10, USC, which is always mislabeled “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”  In doing so in the lame-duck session without substantive hearings, the 111th Congress disregarded the views of thousands of active duty combat troops whose views were heard by the Pentagon but studiously ignored. 

The law, however, remains on the books.  Final implementation of the repeal will not occur until 60 days after three officials─President Barack Obama, Defense Secretary Robert Gates, and Joint Chiefs Chairman Adm. Mike Mullen─issue “certification” that recruiting, retention, and readiness will not be harmed.  All three officials are on record in favor of repeal─why not issue “certification” that America will never have to fight another war? 

The Obama administration is rushing to complete the repeal process before the 112th Congress , particularly the new House Armed Services Committee, has a single hearing on the subject.  The last thing the administration wants is for Congress to start asking questions about what the new LGBT law and policies will do to the armed forces. 

To clarify the issues, CMR has prepared a summary of questions that Congress needs to ask:

 Would LGBT Law and Policies Benefit or Harm Our Military? 

The six-page summary is derived from a more extensive analysis and 25 pages of detailed questions that CMR has prepared on behalf of the Military Culture Coalition:

Questions That Must be Asked to Evaluate LGBT Law and Policies for the Military

The new House Armed Services Committee (HASC), headed by Chairman Howard P. “Buck” McKeon (R-CA) and Personnel Subcommittee Chairman Joe Wilson (R-NC), will have hearings early in 2011—and not a day too soon.

On February 23 the Obama Administration announced that it would no longer defend the constitutionality of Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act, known as DOMA.  In response, CMR issued the following news release: 

DOMA Decision Reveals: Obama Administration

Misled Congress on Benefits

for Same-Sex Couples on Military Bases

Obama Administration political appointees at the Pentagon are already conducting training for implementation of the LGBT law and policy for the military, in an attempt to prevent any examination of what that law would mean in actual practice. 

Given the administration’s duplicity and dissembling in statements to Congress, members must insist on candid answers to specific questions that are important to the future of our military.

MCC Submits List of Topics for Pentagon Gays-in-Military Working Group Report

In the weeks since the Senate refused to repeal the 1993 law regarding gays in the military on September 21 that is usually mislabeled “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” gay activist leaders have expressed the hope that a Pentagon Comprehensive Review Working Group set up in February to review the issue will issue a report favorable to repeal.  The CRWG, which is co-chaired by Defense Department General Counsel Jeh Johnson and Army General Carter Ham, is due to issue its report on December 1.

The project has been controversial from the start because major surveys and focus groups to “engage the force” have restricted the scope of discussion only to the question of how to implement repeal of the law, not if the law should be repealed.

Leaders of the Military Culture Coalition (MCCmet with the CRWG co-chairs and staff in the Pentagon on March 4 and again on September 16.  On October 1, 2010, eleven leaders of the MCC sent a formal letter to leaders of the CRWG, which included a lengthy list of major issues that ought to be addressed in the CRWG’s December report and an extensive  Bibliography of Policy Analyses, articles and commentaries relevant to each topic listed.

The list expanded on a CMR Analysis that that illustrated with schematic charts the many issues that should be included in the CRWG’s report to Congress.  The MCC letter and its accompanying documents present a long list of Issues of Concern assigned to the CRWG for review,   The list mentioned relevant issues that the CRWG that may not be discussing due to restrictions imposed by the Secretary of Defense, but nevertheless should be addressed for the consideration of Congress.

The Military Culture Coalition cover letter drew attention to the Flag and General Officers for the Military (FGOM) statement in support of the current law.  The statement was signed by 1,167 distinguished retired generals and admirals, including 51 who had achieved four-star rank.  It was presented to President Obama and senior members of Congress in March, 2009.  “This statement,” said the MCC, “is an unprecedented and authentic statement that reflects actual military experience in recent and previous wars, not just theory and ideology alone.”

The MCC letter and accompanying documents completely refute the theory, expressed by several lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) groups, that full implementation of an LGBT law or policy for the military would be “easy.”  As stated in the MCC letter,

“Misguided predictions of certain success for an unprecedented social experiment in the American military are based on theories that disregard decades of military experience and what we know about human imperfection.  They cannot be justified in terms of military necessity. The cumulative burden of predictable issues and problems requiring identification and ‘mitigation,’ should current law be repealed, would be complicated and problematic for military commanders and personnel at all levels.”

The MCC submitted with its letter an indexed list of these predictable issues and problems that the Pentagon group needs to address with plans and recommendations.  Every one of the following controversial and complicated issues should be addressed in the Working Group’s report, even if there are no plans or recommendations to resolve the highlighted problem:

Practical Consequences of a Non-Discrimination Policy Regarding LGBT Personnel

  • Accommodating lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered (hereinafter LGBT) personnel, without discrimination
  • Accommodating all sexual orientation groups in living conditions offering little or no privacy
  • Non-discriminatory policies permitting consensual male/male and female/female relationships, on- and off-base
  • Non-discrimination in handling non-consensual relationships
  • Handling potential complaints regarding inappropriate sexual behavior
  • Provisions for legal support for persons complaining of more serious sexual tension, harassment, threats, or abuse, both heterosexual and LGBT

LGBT Training and Corollary “Zero Tolerance” Policies

  • Modified, mandatory diversity training and education
  • “Zero tolerance” policies (comparable to those used to end racial discrimination and drug abuse in the military), to implement the new LGBT policy
  • “Zero tolerance” of chaplains and other personnel who disagree with the new LGBT policy for reasons of religious conviction
Burdens of Social Engineering that Affect the Quality of Military Life and Factors Essential to Sustain the All-Volunteer Force
  • Policies of concern to military commanders; i.e., unit cohesion, morale, retention, and readiness for deployment
  • Defining, maintaining, repairing or improving vertical unit cohesion in certain situations associated with the full and open acceptance of LGBT personnel in the military
  • Defining, maintaining, repairing or improving horizontal unit cohesion in certain situations associated with the full and open acceptance of LGBT personnel in all military branches and communities
  • Dealing with family resistance to military service recruitment and retention under a new LGBT policy

 Anticipated Changes in Military Culture

  • Housing of same-sex couples on military bases and associated policies
  • Implementing benefits for LGBT personnel, equal to those of heterosexual couples
  • Accommodation of personnel known to be at greater risk of HIV infection; i.e., male personnel who engage in sexual conduct with men
  • Social events that involve LGBT individuals and same-sex couples

 Anticipated Revisions in Military Law and Regulations

  • Changes in UCMJ provisions and regulations regarding sexual conduct that are not consistent with a new LGBT non-discrimination policy
  • Retroactive implementation of new LGBT policy
  • Should current law be retained, plans/recommendations to improve understanding and enforcement of Section 654. Title 10, U.S.C., which states that homosexuals are not eligible for military service

 Arguments For and Against Repeal of the Current Law

  • Professional surveys measuring military and public opinions on issues related to the current law regarding homosexuals in the military and the consequences of repeal
  • Analysis of differences between the American All-Volunteer Force and the militaries of foreign nations
  • Analysis of personnel discharges for homosexual conduct since passage of the 1993 law

The MCC letter reminded CRWG leaders that the U.S. Constitution gives to Congress the authority and responsibility to raise and support the armed forces, and to write the laws that govern the land and naval forces. Members of Congress are not bound by academic theories or the administration’s political promises when deciding the best way to meet these responsibilities. 

The MCC leaders further requested that the panel “present all relevant information to Congress with an even hand,” correcting for an apparent bias resulting from the assumption that the 1993 law will be repealed.  The CRWG should recognize the myriad issues and problems that the MCC has indentified to it, and Congress should demand it give serious answers.

Message from a Marine: Don’t Break the Military

By Frank Gaffney

The United States Senate is poised to take one of the most fateful votes in its history.  It is expected – perhaps as early as tomorrow – to decide whether to impose the radical homosexual agenda on America’s armed forces.  Unless 41 Senators object to taking such a momentous step during a lame-duck session, without serious debate and in the absence of powerful evidence of its inadvisability, Congress will surely destroy the all-volunteer military.

That view has been expressed as eloquently and as forcefully by the 30th Commandant of the Marine Corps, General Carl Mundy USMC (Ret.) as by any of his comrades still in uniform or others knowledgeable about what is at stake.  He wrote a letter to members of the Senate that is the single most impressive piece of official correspondence I have read in 35 years of involvement in national security policy-making.

Gen. Mundy’s letter should be required reading – not only by those who will be responsible in the next few hours for casting votes on legislation that would repeal a seventeen-year-old statutory ban on homosexuals serving in uniform.  It should also be read by every citizen whose security may be dramatically reduced by the far-reaching repercussions of such legislation.

The full text of the Mundy letter to Senators can be read at the Center for Security Policy’s website here. After reading the letter, I sat down to talk with Gen. Mundy about this issue, and you can watch our extended conversation below.

 

 

Some of the most important highlights of General Mundy’s letter include the following (emphasis added throughout):

  • “You and your colleagues are at the epicenter of the impassioned debate over whether or not to repeal the law that excludes homosexuals from serving openly in the armed forces.  The President, social activists, and some among you are pressing hard for immediate repeal.  If you vote to do so, I believe you will inflict significant damage on the All-Volunteer Force, and that you stand to abdicate unwittingly your constitutional authorities and responsibilities in matters of governance of the armed services.”  
  • “I believe further that you are moving in that direction without any compelling reason to do so other than because of the demands by small, but highly vocal and financially influential special interest groups whose objectives go far beyond acceptance for military service.  To an outsider, it appears that partisanship, or perhaps a less than complete understanding of military service and the extraordinary dependence upon you of those who choose it may also be factors.”
  • “Each of you has a constituency from the state you represent.  However, collectively, you have a constituency of something near 2.4 million citizens who voluntarily serve in this nation’s armed forces in obligatory political silence while depending on you to represent their welfare and interests and most importantly, their effectiveness as a vital organization.  You will not hear them in loud demonstrations on the Mall, nor will they be among the vocal and demanding activists who visit your office, disrupt your hearings, or send demanding or politically-threatening phone calls or e-mails.

“The limitations on their rights that you, in your constitutional authority impose, and that they accept voluntarily and swear to uphold, preclude their active engagement or their open-voiced views on this issue.  Can you cite any other citizens’ group anywhere that functions in this ‘one-hand-tied-behind-your-back-and-the-other-in-respectful-and-obedient-salute’ circumstance only for the privilege of serving our nation and the honor of defending it? Ladies and gentlemen, it is your sacred obligation as Senators to put the well-being of these selfless servants before partisanship, self-interest groups, or political ambition, and it is my strong recommendation that you do so.”

  • “Neither the Constitution nor the Congress gives any citizen the right to serve.  No one today is compelled to do so, and for the past 38 years, all who have chosen to serve have been volunteers who, at the point of enlistment, have knowingly given up certain of their civil rights and have sworn, as set out above, to uphold the laws that deny them certain rights.  Not all who apply are accepted, and to ensure the effectiveness of the military in the purpose for which it exists, you give the Services authority to reject applicants for reasons that are unacceptable or less restrictive in ordinary society — age, physical or mental challenges, education, drug use or abuse, excessive weight, and a number of other reasons.”

“One of the long-standing reasons judged by you and your predecessors not to be in the best interests of the armed forces because of its impact on the cohesion and teamwork critical to effectiveness in the unique environment of military service is homosexuality.  Seventeen years ago, after extensive debate in a dozen hearings, your predecessors and some of you enacted a law based on reasoning as sound then as it is today, that prohibits those who ‘demonstrate a propensity or intent to engage in homosexual acts’ from serving in the armed forces, because, you concluded, their presence ‘would create an unacceptable risk to the high standards of morale, good order and discipline, and unit cohesion that are the essence of military capability.’

  • Nothing in this law requires anyone to lie about who they are. Indeed, their enlistment contract requires only that applicants give truthful certification of their understanding and of what they have revealed and that they give their sworn oath of loyalty and obedience.  It denies no civil right.”
  • “‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ isn’t the law.  It is counter to the law. It is a euphemistic term used to describe a political accommodation which, in the current debate, has been carefully ‘spun’ to confuse and play on public sensitivities and emotions.  It is apparent that many in the media, the public, and most disturbingly, in high places in government do not understand this distinction — or are using it for political leverage.  The policy enables those with a ‘homosexual orientation’ to serve so long as they don’t ‘tell’ or otherwise behave in a way contrary to good order and discipline.  The law, on the other hand, requires no one to lie or deceive.  It simply excludes from eligibility to serve those who exhibit ‘a propensity or intent to engage in homosexual acts.’  The findings that support this law are compelling.  If you have not done so, I strongly encourage you to review them as part of your deliberation.”
  • “Almost a year ago, the Secretary of Defense commissioned a review to identify significant factors of concern in implementing repeal, should the Congress decide to overturn the law.  Purported leaks to the media have suggested that a majority of those surveyed are “O.K. with repeal”.  This is an extraordinary claim given that by Secretary Gates’ intent and clear tasking, the survey did not solicit nor seek to determine servicemember attitudes toward repeal.  As one member who took the survey told me: ‘The fact that I indicated I would not give up my commissary privileges or move my family off base is not a basis for judging whether or not I’m O.K. with open homosexuality.  No one asked me that question and I wasn’t allowed to volunteer it.’”
  • “…The results of an earlier poll of active-duty servicemembers by the Military Times Newspapers that revealed that ten percent of the survey population stated that if the ban on open homosexuality is lifted, they will not continue in service at the end of their terms of enlistment.  Another 14 percent indicated they would consider not reenlisting. These are dramatic statements of attitudes by those in uniform that must not to be ignored.  To suggest, as one or two in senior military positions have publicly, that those with such attitudes should “vote with their feet” is an astonishing breach of fundamental leadership together with a cavalier disregard for the impact such an exodus would have on military effectiveness.”
  • “[Perhaps at least] 24,000 current members of the armed forces might be lost over and above normal discharge attrition in a one-to-three year period – a figure roughly double the total number lost to “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” discharges in the previous 17 years.  Because these personnel would be completing one or more terms of service, they would, in fact, represent a hemorrhage of mature, skilled losses from the professional ranks.  This is an enormous risk to the viability of our armed forces.”
  • “The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff has given personal views [in support of repeal].  In his authorities and responsibilities as the principal military adviser to the President and the Secretary of Defense, his views on a wide range of matters of national security are of significant strategic import.  However, none of his statutory authorities or responsibilities as Chairman extends to personnel matters in the individual armed services, nor do they grant any authority over the services or over his counterparts in their roles as Service Chiefs.  His personal views as a senior naval officer have been given, but they need to be balanced carefully against the professional views of the Service Chiefs who bear responsibilities for those who comprise their respective services that he does not.”
  • “Whatever your conclusions in this critically important matter, your ultimate decision must focus foremost on a single question: “What do our armed forces gain — or what do they lose — from repeal of a law crafted to ensure their effectiveness in accomplishing the sole reason for which they exist?” That reason is not social reform; it is military effectiveness.”

In light of General Mundy’s strong warnings, informed as they are by his own vast experience and that of nearly 1200 retired flag and general officers who have written their own open letter opposing repeal of the ban on homosexuals in the military, Senators should decline to support such a repeal.  At the very least, should they decide to do so, they should indicate whether they are prepared to vote for a return to conscription – which will be the practical effect of breaking the all-volunteer force.

Senate Vote Protected the Military
By Elaine Donnelly

September 23, 2010 - Much to the dismay of the New York Times, on Tuesday the U.S. Senate refused to be rushed into voting for repeal of the 1993 law regarding homosexuals in the military. Forty-two senators of both parties stepped up to fulfill their constitutional responsibility to provide oversight in matters affecting the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps, and it was a huge victory for the United States armed forces.

The military is a strong institution, but the fact that it is subject to civilian control makes it vulnerable to political pressures from activist groups that do not understand the military’s unique culture and mission. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Pres. Barack Obama tried to use the defense bill to score political points with LGBT activists and other groups they are counting on to get reelected.

The annual Defense Authorization Act should be used to strengthen our armed forces, not to provide political payoffs to liberal constituency groups. Fortunately, 42 responsible senators rejected Harry Reid’s self-serving attempt to force a pre-election vote on legislation that would have imposed an LGBT policy on our military, authorized abortions in military hospitals, and circumvented orderly systems for legal immigration.

If passed by Congress, the Obama administration’s “Repeal Deal” for gays in the military would have revoked Section 654, Title 10, U.S.C., which is usually confused with Bill Clinton’s inconsistent administrative policy, called “don’t ask, don’t tell.”  In 1993, members of Congress rejected the “don’t ask, don’t tell” concept because they anticipated the confusion and problems that gay activists complain of today. Everyone can serve our country in some way, but by law homosexuals, lesbians, bisexuals, and transgendered individuals are not eligible to serve in the military.

If this Congress repeals the law with “delayed implementation” (a meaningless charade, since Obama, Mullen, and Gates already are on record favoring repeal), all military branches and communities would be required to accept and promote LGBT personnel in living conditions offering little or no privacy on a 24/7, retroactive basis. According to simplistic “roadmap” plans promoted by LGBT activists, hapless field commanders would be expected to tame the powerful and sometimes unruly force of human sexuality. New issues involving male/male and female/female sexual entanglements would complicate and hurt morale, recruiting, and retention — elements that are essential to maintain our all-volunteer force.

Guided by civilian LGBT “diversity training” programs, politically correct Defense Department bureaucrats would issue unrealistic directives wrapped in the ill-fitting cloak of “civil rights” and enforced with “zero tolerance” of dissent. As military officials have admitted in unguarded moments and as gay activists have never denied, corollary “zero tolerance” policies would deny promotions to anyone who dissents for any reason. Intolerance in the name of tolerance would end the careers of thousands of chaplains and experienced personnel who are current and future military leaders.

Unlike the racial integration ordered by President Truman in 1948, none of this would improve or benefit the armed forces. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates only talks about “mitigating” anticipated problems. Tuesday’s vote protected the right of our military men and women to be heard in this debate — an opportunity they would have been denied otherwise. We hope that we will never again see such a blatant attempt to use the defense bill for political payoffs and misguided expediency. Our military is the finest in the world, and we intend to keep it that way.

Military Dodges a Bullet

By Frank Gaffney

September 22, 2010 - Yesterday, 43 U.S. Senators voted to protect the U.S. military from the radical agenda espoused by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) activists.  But for their courage in the face of the vilification and other forms of pressure brought to bear by LGBT champions of repeal of legislation barring avowed homosexuals from serving in the armed forces, we would be well on our way to breaking the All-Volunteer Force on which our country relies in time of war.

Every Senate Republican and two Democrats, Blanche Lincoln and Mark Pryor, both of Arkansas, effectively voted to retain that ban by supporting a filibuster of the National Defense Authorization Act led by Senator John McCain of Arizona.  Sen. McCain is to be commended for his robust opposition to repeal of a 1993 statute adopted after extensive deliberation and debate, in advance of a Pentagon report due December 1 on the impact such a step would have on the military.

military

Three GOP legislators who commendably resisted the mau-mauing from LGBT agitators are Maine Senators Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins and Massachusetts’ Scott Brown.  Each offered various reasons for acting as they did, but what matters is the practical effect of their votes:  The most dangerous window of vulnerability for enactment of repeal legislation has now closed.

Outside the Senate, the real hero of this stunning legislative victory is Elaine Donnelly, the indefatigable and gutsy founder and President of the indispensable Center for Military Readiness (CMR).  For many years, Elaine has had the military’s back when it comes to feminists, homosexuals and others who give priority to advancing their respective social and political agendas over the readiness and good order and discipline of our armed services.  She does her homework, arms herself with the facts and argues persuasively and tenaciously for her position.

In this fight, CMR played a critical role in mobilizing and organizing opposition to the LGBT repeal agenda.  It helped 1167 retired senior military leaders come together to warn that doing so would “break” the All-Volunteer Force (Roll Call published the Flag and General Officers for the Military’s open letter from earlier this year as an advertisement on Monday).

CMR conducted a national survey that strongly rebutted the claims that the American people are overwhelmingly in favor of having homosexuals openly serve in the military.  And, thanks to Elaine’s leadership, a formidable new team has taken the field, the Military Culture Coalition, made up a broad array of national security, social conservative and other groups and individuals who understand the importance of the military’s unique culture to its ability successfully to defend the rest of us.

Taken together, the effort to stave off repeal of the ban on open homosexuals’ service in the armed forces is a textbook case of how, with capable and inspiring leaders, those committed to the national security can prevail over the combined forces of the President of the United States, the Secretary of Defense, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, virtually the entire Fourth Estate, the Democratic Party and an aggressive and well-funded interest group like the LGBT lobby.

Having said that, yesterday’s victory could prove to be but a stay-of-execution, rather than a commutation of the death sentence the repeal legislation poses to the United States all-volunteer military.  Senate majority leader Harry Reid has promised to bring it up again in the lame duck session.  It is a safe bet that the intervening period will see an aggressive ramping up of the campaign of ad hominem attacks and political intimidation that have been hallmarks of the radical LGBT team.

As things stand now, however, there will be five new legislators taking office in time to vote in that session, at least some of whom are likely to be Republicans who will be unlikely to want one of their first votes in the Senate to be on so controversial a piece of legislation, without benefit of hearings or an opportunity to get up to speed on the issue.

In addition, it remains to be seen how soon the Pentagon report of the implications of repeal for the armed forces will be made available, let alone exactly what it says.  The Center for Military Readiness has submitted to those conducting the study a detailed memorandum laying out myriad issues that must be assessed for the real magnitude of that impact to be fully, let alone properly, assessed.  In my Washington Times column of yesterday, I highlighted just a few of these, which serve to make the point that repeal of the ban will be, at a minimum, complicated and distracting, and at worst debilitating to the good order and discipline essential to the military’s functioning:

  • If LGBT individuals are allowed to serve, on what basis could heterosexual male and female personnel be kept apart in accommodations, lavatories and other circumstances in which privacy is limited or non-existent?
  • Would officers in command of units be given career-ending negative fitness reports if they truthfully advise their superiors that there are real problems implementing the new LGBT policy – for instance, by disclosing that consensual or non-consensual behavior is undermining morale, discipline and morale?
  • How many military chaplains will be penalized for not complying with the new LGBT policy that their religious beliefs tell them is immoral (including performing same-sex marriages, conducting diversity programs that promote LGBT conduct as equivalent to heterosexual conduct, etc)?
  • How will housing of same-sex couples be handled on military bases in states that do not recognize such relationships with marriage or civil unions?
  • How will transgender personnel be accommodated in housing, lavatories, etc.?  Will sex-change operations be a covered health care benefit for the military?
  • How will the military contend with personnel known to be at greater risk of HIV infection – namely, males who engage in sexual conduct other with men – with regard to medical services and medication, exemption from deployment, emergency transfusions, etc.?
  • Most importantly, what evidence is there that repeal of the 1993 law will strengthen and improve the combat capability, discipline, morale and overall readiness of the All-Volunteer Force?

The fight to protect the U.S. armed forces from the repercussions of such social engineering is not over.  Even before the lame duck session, there looms a critical decision about a non-legislative effort to eviscerate the law:  Tomorrow is the deadline for the Justice Department to decide whether to appeal an overreaching and irresponsible ruling by a federal judge in California striking down the statute as unconstitutional – even though other courts have repeatedly found to the contrary.  Can we count on Attorney General Eric Holder to uphold the law as he is sworn to do?

Yesterday, nonetheless, represented an incredibly important victory for the military, and for those who are determined to keep it focused on what is and must remain its Job #1:  Safeguarding our country and its people.

Military.com - New Poll Finds Most Oppose DADT Repeal