Main | Thursday, February 18, 2010

Admiral Mike Mullen: Little Resistance To DADT Repeal Among Troops

Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman Admiral Mike Mullen says he is finding little resistance among the troops to the idea of repealing DADT.
Mullen was nearing the end of a 25-minute question-and-answer session with troops serving here when he raised a topic of his own: "No one's asked me about 'don't ask, don't tell,' " he said. As it turned out, none of the two dozen or so men or women who met with Mullen at Marine House in the Jordanian capital Tuesday had any questions on the 17-year-old policy that bars gays and lesbians from serving openly in the military - or Mullen's public advocacy of its repeal. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Darryl E. Robinson, who's the operations coordinator for defense attache's office at the U.S. Embassy here, explained why after the session. "The U.S. military was always at the forefront of social change," he said. "We didn't wait for laws to change." Some Republicans in Congress have expressed outrage at repealing the ban in wartime and the Pentagon has embarked on a yearlong study on what impact the repeal might have. At a Senate hearing earlier this month, Sen. John McCain R-Ariz., urged Mullen and Defense Secretary Robert Gates to "keep the impact it will have on our forces firmly in mind." Yet those gathered at Marine House made it clear they've already accepted the idea of gays and lesbians serving among them.
Next week the head of each branch of the armed services will testify before Congress about the repeal attempt. The Commandant of the Marine Corps has said that he is strongly opposed, the Army Chief of Staff opposes the repeal taking place during wartime.

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