DADT: Mend it, Don't end it

Progressives proved with Obamacare that they wouldn’t let reality hinder the realization of their idealogical objectives. Washington is giving us a repeat performance in the spectacle otherwise know as the lame duck session of Congress with DADT; but this time it appears Republicans are lining up to help them endanger our national security. Our Constitution couldn’t be more clear in charging our government and its elected officials with the duty to “Provide for the common defence”. Unfortunately, the current membership of the US Senate views the dogma of political correctness a higher authority than our founding document. How else is one to view their headlong rush to endorse a Pentagon report that was written by a political appointee who was installed by President Obama for that very purpose? The US Senate should place more credence on the opinions of those members of our military who will be tasked with implementing and managing the consequences of outright repeal and as they testified before that body the overwhelming majority doesn’t support repeal.

As the AP reported:

The top uniformed officers of the Army and the Marines told a Senate panel Friday that letting gays serve openly in the military at a time of war would be divisive and difficult, sharply challenging a new Pentagon study that calculates the risk as low.

“If the law is changed, successfully implementing repeal and assimilating openly homosexual Marines into the tightly woven fabric of our combat units has strong potential for disruption at the small unit level, as it will no doubt divert leadership attention away from an almost singular focus of preparing units for combat,” the Marine commandant, Gen. James Amos, told the Senate Armed Services Committee.

changing the law now would “add another level of stress to any already stretched force” and be more difficult on the Army, particularly its combat units, than the recent Pentagon study suggests.Army Chief of Staff Gen. George Casey.

But most of the troops with concerns were serving in combat roles. Nearly 60 percent of troops in the Marine Corps and in Army combat units, such as infantry and special operations, said they thought allowing gays to be open about their sexual orientation would hurt their units’ ability to fight on the battlefield.

“I cannot reconcile, nor turn my back, on the negative perceptions held by our Marines who are most engaged in the hard work of day-to-day operations in Afghanistan,” Amos said.

The chief of naval operations, Adm. Gary Roughead, said it was likely that some highly trained combat sailors, including Navy SEALs, might refuse to re-enlist in protest of the personnel change.

The notoriously homophobic NY Times followed up with:

Gen. Norton A. Schwartz, the chief of staff of the Air Force, recommended delaying repeal until 2012 because of the strain the military is bearing now. “I do not agree with the study assessment that the short-term risk to military effectiveness is low,” he said. “It is an inescapable fact that our officer and non-commissioned officer leaders in Afghanistan, in particular, are carrying a heavy load.”

General Schwartz concluded that “it is difficult for me, as a member of the Joint Chiefs, to recommend placing any additional discretionary demands on our leadership cadres at this particularly challenging time.”

Let’s take another look at the results of the survey that’s being heralded by the advocates for repeal.

58% of Marines in combat units believe repealing DADT will negatively impact their military readiness.

40% of the Army units in combat responded the same.

It’s the same result for special ops, the most highly skilled, hence hardest to replace warriors we have. Just in case any senator has been locked away somewhere for the last nine years they are playing an irreplaceable role in our war against the jihadits all over the world.

Furthermore, 32% of Marines answered that outright repeal would cause them to leave the service earlier than they had planned.

How can any reasonable person regard this as constituting a “low” risk to morale and the effectiveness of our troops fighting two wars? The sad truth is that our national security is an afterthought in this decision.

One should also ask why a survey with such a low response rate 115,000 of the 400,000 sent out is being treated as if it were Holy Writ. A Marine officer wrote to the publishers of Powerline to give them and us a little insight to how the survey was conducted and why the response rate was so low:

I have to say that as an active duty Marine officer, I have been pretty heartened by the willingness of our leadership to stand up and say what a bad idea repeal of DADT would be. I think you have done a good job of sniffing out the phoniness of the DADT survey the Department of Defense sent around and the results that Gates and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs are running around trumpeting.

For the time that DoD was compiling the survey, I received 6 snail-mail letters and a dozen emails to my work email and my personal email address, telling me to access the survey with a special code, then input another special code as my password before I answered a bunch of questions about DADT. Of course, according to the emails and letters, my input would be completely anonymous. Riiiiiiiiiiight. Anonymous input requires 15 digit log ins.

I think that anyone who has been in the military more than a couple of years recognized what was going on. The decision to seek repeal has already been made and this survey is just part of the show trial. The results from the junior enlisted would be dismissed as ill-informed and contrary to “evidence,” just as you suggested. The results from officers and senior enlisted foolish enough to actually provide negative answers will be used later to “remediate” those whose answers showed that they were not with the program.

Even with the clear disincentives to provide negative feedback, the Marines still weighed in overwhelmingly against the political correctness. God bless them. Once again, for yet another reason, I am proud to be a Marine.

Semper fi, and thanks for all you do.

Is it possible that the results of this survey could represent the same political correctness run amok that caused several officers to look the other way with Maj. Nidal Hassan, of Ft. Hood massacre infamy and hope for the best?

The advocates of repealing DADT appear more than happy to cashier the men and women currently fighting for our freedom if they’re uncomfortable serving with openly gay members:

Military members who have a problem with a change in policy to allow gays to serve openly may find themselves looking for a new job, Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, warned Thursday.


The top enlisted adviser for U.S. forces in Afghanistan said on Friday that he believes the troops are ready for a repeal of ‘don’t ask, don’t tell,’ and that those who oppose ending the policy should leave the military.

Instead of telling the servicemen and women to “go to hell” and not to let the door hit them in the back as it seems Admiral Mullen is inclined to do, is there a better solution? Currently, women are prohibited from serving in combat units even in countries that have gays serving openly. From Wickipedia with a hat-tip to Hotair.com:

In On Killing: The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society, Lt. Col. Dave Grossman briefly mentions that female soldiers in the Israel Defense Forces have been officially prohibited from serving in close combat military operations since 1948 (in 2001, subsequent to publication, women began serving in IDF combat units on an experimental basis). The reason for removing female soldiers from the front lines is no reflection on the performance of female soldiers, but that of the male infantrymen after witnessing a woman wounded. The IDF saw a complete loss of control over soldiers who apparently experienced an uncontrollable, protective, instinctual aggression…

Melody Kemp mentions that the Australian soldiers have voiced similar concern saying these soldiers “are reluctant to take women on reconnaissance or special operations, as they fear that in the case of combat or discovery, their priority will be to save the women and not to complete the mission. Thus while men might be able to be programmed to kill, it’s is not as easy to program men to neglect women.”

If the US military feels it’s necessary to prevent women from serving in combat units because it will negatively impact those units fighting ability, why not use the same policy for open homosexuals? By closing certain specialties to women the military is saying that national security trumps equal treatment of the sexes. Considering that it’s the combat troops that are most resistant to serving with open gays it only makes sense to preserve DADT for those units and let them serve openly in support roles, the risk isn’t worth the reward of equal career opportunities. The French used the term esprit de corps to desribe the intangible element that holds troops in combat together and makes them an effective force, even when facing long odds. The US Senate messes with this at our peril, unlike the French, the US still fights.