Sacrificing National Security to Insane Political Correctness
With little more than a year in office, President Obama and his overwhelming Democratic majority in Congress have managed to seriously undermine the economy by implementing inflationary government spending programs that actually strangle long-term job creation, threaten devaluation of the dollar, and risk the enormous wealth-destroying pain of hyperinflation. Because his policies are based on economic theories that do not pass the common sense test and have proved failures in Europe, Japan, and past American administrations, we can expect things to get worse unless the people’s outrage puts out the lights of the Obama administration in November 2010 and 2012.
Obama also has a plan that threatens to destroy the morale and combat effectiveness of the U.S. military. In just 38 words of his State of the Union address on January 27, he proposed to rescind the 1993 Congressional and Military compromise with the Clinton administration, allowing gays and lesbians to serve in the military on a “don’t ask, don’t tell basis.” Rescinding “don’t ask, don’t tell” would allow gays and lesbians to serve openly in the military. This is essentially an endorsement of open homosexual behavior as healthy and harmless. Although most military leaders opposed even the “don’t ask, don’t tell” compromise in 1993, most agree that the damage to military morale and preparedness has so far not proved significant enough to seriously endanger national security. Approximately 13,500 gays and lesbians, however, had to be dismissed from the service between 1994 and 2009.
Obama made several campaign promises in 2008 to open the military to gay and lesbian applicants. Following his inauguration in January 2009, however, he began to receive strong opposition from retired military officers. Over 1,000 retired generals and admirals representing all the services submitted a letter to him on March 30, 2009, strongly supporting the 1993 law and affirming that “homosexuality is incompatible with military service.” This included six four star generals and admirals and a Congressional Medal of Honor winner.
The letter goes on to say:
“Our experience as military leaders leads us to have great concern about the impact that repeal of Section 654, Title 10 (known informally as “don’t ask, don’t tell”) would have on morale, discipline, unit cohesion, and overall military readiness. We believe that imposing this burden on our men and women in uniform would undermine recruiting and retention, impact leadership at all levels, have adverse effects on the willingness of parents who lend their sons and daughters to military service, and eventually break the All-Volunteer Force.”
While many Congressional Democrats and some Republicans stood to applaud Obama’s January 27 State of the Union proposal to welcome openly gay and lesbian servicemen and women into the military, when the camera turned to the Joint Chiefs of Staff seated before him, they appeared notably unenthusiastic.
However, Obama had already secured the approval of several top ranking military officers who are either sympathetic to Obama’s social engineering or who are for career advancement or social approval willing to sacrifice the military effectiveness of our armed forces on an altar of political correctness and revolutionary social change. This includes Admiral Mike Mullen, current Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, who denounced the present policy and said of Obama’s proposal, “It’s the right thing to do.” Other endorsements came from retired Admiral Charles Larson, retired Army General John Shalikashvilli, and retired General and former Secretary of State Colin Powell, as well as Defense Secretary Robert Gates, the only cabinet holdover from the most recent Bush administration. About 100 retired generals and admirals have signed a petition to repeal “don’t ask, don’t tell.” This does not compare, however, with the more than 1,000 general and flag officers, who signed the March 2009 letter expressing grave reservations about Obama’s plans to allow and essentially endorse openly homosexual behavior in the military.
Representative Dan Tausche (D, CA) has introduced a bill in the House of Representatives to repeal the 1993 law and allow gays and lesbians to practice their life style openly while in the military. Senator Jeff Sessions (R, AL) reacted strongly against Obama’s proposal and accused Admiral Mike Mullen of preordaining the results of a study on the issue. General Carter Ham has been appointed to oversee the study. Ham was among those who studied the recent slaughter of American troops at Fort Hood, Texas, by radical Muslim U.S. Army Major Nader Hasan. That study de-emphasized Hasan’s religious association and refused to call the mass slaughter a terrorist act. Senator John McCain (R, AZ) suggested that making such policy changes is ill-advised when we are fighting wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. This was also the reaction of Ike Skelton (D, MO), Chairman of the House Armed Forces Committee. The ranking Republican member of the House Committee, Buck McKeon (R, CA) expressed concern that the Obama proposal would undermine military readiness.
According to a Pew Foundation poll, 59 percent of America’s residents favor letting gays and lesbians enter the military. According to a Military Times poll of over 2,000 active duty servicemen and women, over 59 percent oppose repeal of the present rules. Nearly ten percent say they would resign or not reenlist if the law is changed to allow openly gay and lesbian behavior, and another 14 percent say they would consider resigning or not reenlisting. Seventy-one percent said it would not affect their decision to stay in the military. According to a similar Zogby poll in 2006, only 26 percent of active duty servicemen and women favor tolerating open gay and lesbian behavior. Military opposition may be much higher than the polls show. Political correctness has been drummed into American servicemen and women for several decades, so they know to be very cautious about what they say and to whom. Political correctness will also undoubtedly hinder accurate appraisal of any impact study, especially since, as Senator Sessions has indicated, Obama and the top brass are eager to cram the changes through. In addition, Representative Barney Frank (D, MA) is threatening to cut the Defense Budget in 2010 and is likely to put pressure on military leadership to see the homosexual issue his way.
It is also possible that President Obama will try to make his social engineering changes to the military by Executive Order. There have been extensive closed-door meetings between Obama administration officials and gay and lesbian political activist groups. Former President Bill Clinton is also pushing hard in their behalf.
Elaine Donnelly, founder and President of the Center for Military Preparedness, estimates that active duty manpower losses of between 141,000 and 323,000 would result from Obama’s proposal. Based on the Military Times poll, the loss could conceivably go as high as 527,000, and quality new recruits could be difficult to attract. To put this in perspective, the U.S. Army now has 545,000 personnel, and the Marine Corp has 200,000. Donnelly has said that the Obama policy would “virtually destroy the volunteer force.” If implemented, our choice may be to reinstate the draft or recruit foreign volunteers or mercenaries to defend what is left of the former American Republic. Or perhaps Obama’s purpose is to replace most of our armed forces with a radical socialist force implementing and defending a new radical socialist order in America. .
The homosexual activist organizations are pointing to over 30 nations that now have what they call “don’t ask, don’t care” policies. In these nations, soldiers may openly live gay and lesbian lifestyles. This includes two of the best armies in the world: the British and Israeli armies. Most of these armies, however, could not fight their way out of a paper bag, and I am certain that such policies—not yet fully tested in combat—are beginning to destroy the combat effectiveness of the good ones.
Obama’s proposed social reengineering of our military is also, as could be expected, an ominous sign that America’s traditional Judeo-Christian and family morality is being thrown under the bus and replaced by a humanist universalism which appears to be extremely intolerant of Christian and traditional Jewish faith and teachings. Many armed forces chaplains are already being reprimanded and marginalized for praying in the name of Christ.
I have been studying military history for over 50 years, have fought one war, and have authored two books on war, and my studied opinion is that Obama’s proposal to sacrifice the morale and effectiveness of our armed forces on the altar of political correctness and homosexual advancement is a perfect recipe for disaster.
Mike Scruggs is a retired financial consultant and corporate business executive. He holds an MBA from Stanford University and a BS from the University of Georgia. He is a USAF combat veteran of the Vietnam War, holding a Distinguished Flying Cross and Purple Heart. He was recently Chairman of the Board of a Classical Christian School and is a former Republican County Chairman. He writes and lives in Hendersonville, NC.