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Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Time for Change?
 
Army General Carter F. Ham, commander of U.S. Army Europe, heads the panel seeking to get the widest range of viewpoints from both within and outside the Defense Department as they conduct the review concerning potential repeal of the law commonly known as  

 

DON'T ASK, DON'T TELL:
TIME FOR CHANGE?

LTC Irene Glaeser
US Army Reserve

The views expressed in the document are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the U.S. Army War College, the U.S. Department of the Army, the U.S. Department of Defense, or the U.S. Governments.

 

SUMMARY

After World War II the United States Congress wrote laws to prohibit homosexuals from openly serving in the military. The rationale was based on unit cohesion and fear that allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly could negatively impact recruiting and retention. President Clinton was responsible for the updated policy in effect today known as "Don't Ask Don't Tell" (DADT), now almost 15 years old.

This USAWC resident student paper provides the historical background and then examines the DADT policy in light of current research findings with respect to: changes in society, emerging doctrine, impact on college campuses and recruiting, impact on foreign militaries for which the ban has been lifted, and in police and fire departments where no ban exists.

The author's purpose is not to examine the issue of gay marriage or gay rights, but rather to evaluate the existing data for a conclusion and determination for a way ahead with respect to the DADT policy.


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This page last updated on 9 April 2010.

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