Pentagon divulges few details on 'don't ask, don't tell' repeal
Despite a comprehensive study on the subject, the Pentagon offers few specifics about how it will implement the 'don't ask, don't tell' repeal. The process could begin this month.
As the Pentagon moves forward with its plans to implement the repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell,” US military officials say they are “pretty certain” that they will be able to begin training US troops on the new policy during the month of February.
For now, details about the implementation of the DADT repeal remain hard to come by – despite the fact that the Pentagon produced a comprehensive report in November about how, precisely, the plan allowing gay troops to serve openly in the military would be put in place.
In a recent briefing, senior military officials said only that implementation of the repeal can likely happen at some point in 2011.
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But other sources suggest that the Pentagon hopes to have the training done by this summer, perhaps as early as May. Such a timeline would have the benefit of allowing the Obama administration to prepare for 2012 elections without the distraction of implementing the DADT repeal, says Jarrod Chlapowski, field director for Servicemembers United in Washington, D.C., an advocacy group for gay and lesbian troops and veterans.
“It’s in their interest for them to knock this out as quickly as possible," he says.
Mr. Chlapowski estimates that the training will last about three months. “We’ve been hearing 90 days being tossed around for the full length of the training,” he adds. “But I think we’ll have a better idea how this is going to go once each of the service chiefs reports" to Defense Secretary Robert Gates.
The joint chiefs are expected to report to Secretary Gates this week, according to senior military officials.