Skip to comments.Marine commandant concluded DADT repeal may risk lives
Posted on 12/15/2010 7:25:25 AM PST by A.A. Cunningham
Marine commandant concluded DADT repeal may risk lives
By Kevin Baron
Stars and Stripes
Published: December 14, 2010
ARLINGTON, Va. The nations top Marine Corps officer said he could not endorse a change in the dont ask, dont tell law that could cause distractions or endanger the lives of Marines in combat.
Ultimately, the voices of forward-fighting combat Marines who worried about unit cohesion in the Pentagons survey swayed Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James Amos, leading him to recommend that Congress not repeal the law banning openly gay Americans from military service.
Mistakes and inattention or distractions cost Marines lives, he said on Tuesday, explaining how he came to his decision. Thats the currency of this fight.
I dont want to lose any Marines to the distraction. I dont want to have any Marines that Im visiting at Bethesda [National Naval Medical Center, in Maryland] with no legs be the result of any type of distraction.
By the end of the day, that statement had drawn sharp response from pro-repeal advocates, including a call for him to step down for being out of step with his own bosses.
At the White House, press secretary Robert Gibbs responded to a question about Amos remarks, saying that President Barack Obama was not concerned that the Marine Corps chief continues to voice his opposition to repeal after the service chiefs have testified.
"No, I mean, look, I think their views are very well-known, just as the commander-in-chiefs views are very well-known," Gibbs said. "I think if you look at the commander-in-chief, the head of the Pentagon (Defense Secretary Robert Gates) and the chair of the Joint Chiefs (Adm. Mike Mullen), youll find unanimity in the belief that its time to do away with this policy, and thats exactly what the President is working to do."
Amos was the only service chief to recommend against the repeal outright in his testimony to the Senate Armed Services Committee two weeks ago. Marine Corps leaders and survey responses have indicated the service is more reluctant to support repeal than other military branches. The Army and Air Force chiefs told Congress they preferred that repeal come later, taking a softer stance, while the Navys chief said his service was ready to implement repeal now.
Following that testimony, Republicans last week held their filibuster of the repeal for a second time, blocking a Democrat-led attempt to move the annual defense authorization bill closer to a final vote this year.
On Tuesday, the commandant spoke at length about how he came to his decision in an intimate, hour-long session with a small group of reporters in his Pentagon dining room.
This was not a flippant, rush-right-in preparation, he said. This was a very, very deep, thoughtful I read the report, the survey over and over again.
When pressed to explain exactly what a breakdown of unit cohesion could look like and why it would endanger Marines in combat, or the larger war effort, Amos said he was unsure but that the significant concern of breakdown was good enough for him.
I cant explain what the expectations are. I cant explain what they think might happen, Amos said.
Repeatedly, Amos pointed to the survey results.
We asked the questions, and the Marines answered them, he added. And I had to listen to that. Thats where I came down.
Amos said that before early drafts hit his desk several weeks ago, he was unsure how Marines would answer the survey. He noted it found Marines in noncombat roles seemed more ready to accept repeal.
But with so many Marines engaged in Afghanistan, he thought about what could happen to small units like those in Sangin, where fighting is the heaviest by many accounts. When a firefight breaks out, he said, lives depend on intuitive behavior free from distraction.
I dont want to permit that opportunity [for distraction] to happen, he said.
Critics pounced on Amos stance that dont ask, dont tell repeal could lead to casualties.
General Amos needs to fall in line and salute or resign now, said Aubrey Sarvis, executive director for Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, which advocates for repeal, in a statement. He implied that repeal will lead to Marines losing their legs in combat. Those fear tactics are not in the interest of any servicemember.
Amos said he felt good about his Senate testimony, especially that he was clearly allowed to deliver his best military advice without pressure or rebuke, and senators thanked him afterward, even though his advice was, he said, counter to the way some folks wanted me to go.
The commandant said he would silence his concerns should Congress vote to repeal the law.
And what if they do?
Thats easy. Im going to get in step and do it smartly, he said, leading the effort with public messages, videos and personal visits with commanders.
Get the Zot machine ready!
Good for him.
We all know what happened to General Pace and I fear it is to be repeated.
The American Left is on full-assault against out military.
Take my own mega-lib sister for example.
She actively campaigns for:
1. Abortions in military hospitals.
2. Acceptance and even “celebration” of homosexuals in the military.
3. The elimination of military chaplains using the “separation of church and state”, but really because chaplains are the most opposed to homosexuals in the military.
When I ask her how any of those things would make our military better, she claims that she “doesn’t give a f&%^”.
So, there you have it.
Of course, because Gen. Amos has no clue about the effects of a breakdown in unit cohesion will have on combat effectiveness, does he, Aubrey?
Other militaries have openly homosexual personnel;but American homosexuals are represented by ideologically driven politically aggressive anti-Christian anti-moral hatetheist far Left flaming exhibitionists on pink power trips!!!
Other countries also go out of their way to trample any dissent of over their gay policies. England how has military representation in homosexual “pride” parades and displays. Nobody is allowed to speak out on the policy.
Even now, the left is threatening the careers of senior military officers who oppose the repeal of DADT. And they’ve got a willing media to carry their water.
And what if they do? Thats easy. Im going to get in step and do it smartly
Apparently the CMC does not really believe repeal of DADT would cost Marines lives. If he truly did, he would never back it. I hate to see the USMC cave to progressive, political pressure which is going to decimate our fighting forces.
You get fired for saying the truth.
Don’t Ask Don’t Steal Like a Pig bump.
To socialists, the military is a just a jobs program. And the reality is that is what it has become over the last 40 years. We are now totally dependent on “special forces” and technology to get the true military work done.
“By the end of the day, that statement had drawn sharp response from pro-repeal advocates, including a call for him to step down for being out of step with his own bosses.”
Eff ‘em. He’s a leader - this would be that “running through a forest fire with a gasoline can” situation Allen West spoke about. Good man.
Well stated. It is the agenda that creates the distractions.
You got it.
Its bad enough having to deal with the race card, then the gender card now it is the homo card.
He is not an acceptable candidate.
Ask your sister when is she going to demand that all women between the ages of 18 and 25 be required to register with the Selective Service?
Her hatred for the military hasn’t allowed her to think it through.
Really, the American Left sees a capable military as the problem. If our armed forces weren’t so good, we wouldn’t be able to embark upon “imperialist, hegemonic, patriarchal occupations and the oppression of indigenous peoples”, yada yada yada ...
They really do want to destroy our military, at all costs.
Yeah, what the heck does Gen. Amos know? He’s only Commandant of the USMC. /sarcasm off
Why does every touchy-feely initiative always seem start with the Navy or naval officers? That’s what I want to know.
It’s amazing that not one single gay guy in the whole US of A is allowed to give a drop of blood at a donation drive according to the Federal Center for Disease Control, but it’s just fine to have them in the bloodiest and blood-neediest profession in the entire nation.
Our leaders “thinking themselves wise, became fools!”