Aaron Belkin's blog

Victory Found, Opportunity Lost

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As someone who has worked on the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" for the past 12 years, I felt conflicting emotions watching the U.S. Senate authorize the repeal of the policy on the same morning that it rejected the DREAM Act-the proposed path to citizenship for illegal alien students of good moral character.  read more »

Elena Kagan and Blind Faith in the Military

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According to Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions, Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan "punished the military and demeaned our soldiers as they were courageously fighting two wars overseas" when, as Dean of Harvard Law School, she declined to provide military recruiters the same access to campus resources that other employers enjoyed.  read more »

Former Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Fires Back at Service Chiefs on Don't Ask Don't Tell

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After the Chiefs of the Army, Air Force, Navy and Marines sent letters to Congress today in a last-ditch effort to block the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell," former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff John Shalikashvili responded in force by sending his own letter to the Hill.  read more »

Jim Crow? Really?

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I am so glad that I was wrong.  For two years, I have been predicting that Congress would not have what it takes to pass "don't ask, don't tell" repeal legislation.

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Obama Defers Repeal to 2013

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Secretary of Defense Gates's letter to Congressman Skelton urging Congress not to repeal "don't ask, don't tell" was a de facto White House decision to delay action on the issue for a very long time.  read more »

New York Times Op-ed on Gay Troops Distorts Evidence

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Former Air Force Chief of Staff Merrill McPeak published an op-ed in the New York Times today in which he claimed that during the 1993 debate over gays in the military, "A lot more heat than light was produced." McPeak says that as Washington reconsiders the question this year, "I doubt that we'll have a more enlightened public discussion in 2010."

But the way to have an enlightened public conversation is to offer reasoned claims based on evidence and research, and to characterize and evaluate opposing arguments honestly. McPeak does no such thing.  read more »

A New Pentagon Strategy on Gays

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After Senator Carl Levin announced yesterday that he would hold hearings on "don't ask, don't tell," anti-gay forces in the Pentagon responded immediately. Levin was sending a strong signal that both the White House and Congress are ready to move forward with plans to repeal the gay ban, so the Pentagon needed to move quickly.

Marine Defies White House on Gay Troops

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Conway's apparent resistance may be a warning shot to the White House telegraphing arguments that opponents of repeal will invoke if the Senate holds hearings on "don't ask, don't tell."

More on Air Force Censorship

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My original commentary on this case did not present the Air Force's side of the story.

White House Doesn't Need Protection, Gay Troops Do

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It was sad but not surprising to read the recent article in Politico.com which suggested that the legislative process to repeal “don’t ask, don’t tell” is badly stalled.
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