The hunt must never end, no matter how tired we are, no matter how thin we are streached, no matter the danger to our society and our citizens, we can never rest until each and every homo is sacked from the military,......no pun intended.
This really is remarkable,
As the Pentagon begins its open-ended review of U.S. strategy in Iraq, military leaders face withering attacks for having insufficient boots on the ground, for making National Guard troops into regular soldiers and for involuntary recalls of thousands of former service members who returned to civilian life long ago, most believing they would never again wear a uniform.And if you think the loss of a few translators is no big deal, read this from today's NYTs.
But at the same time that the U.S. armed forces are hurting for qualified soldiers, they're also firing qualified soldiers just because they're gay. According to Pentagon statistics, three to four gays and lesbians, on average, have been sacked every day for the last decade.
Worse, many of those discharged include badly needed infantrymen, nuclear power engineers, missile guidance and control operators and nuclear, biological and chemical warfare specialists. Another category in short supply, translators, was highlighted last week with the publication of data I obtained from the Pentagon that reveal that since 1998, 26 Arabic and Farsi language speakers have been fired from the military for homosexuality.
The Price of Homophobia
....Three years after the towers were destroyed, the F.B.I., rife with translation problems, admitted it had an untranslated backlog of 120,000 hours of intercepts with potential value about looming threats. At the State Department, a study showed that only one in five of the 279 Arabic translators were fluent enough to handle the subtleties of the language, with its many regional dialects.
The military's experience is no more encouraging, with intelligence results muddied at times by a rush, as one inquiry put it, to recruit Arab convenience store owners and cabdrivers, who couldn't handle the task. The military is right to rely more on its language schools, but it can take several years to produce fluent graduates. The folly of using "don't ask, don't tell" policy against such precious national resources amounts to comfort for the enemy.