Pentagon report says ‘minimal risk’ to lifting gay military ban

PinkNews logo surrounded by illustrated images including a rainbow, unicorn, PN sign and pride flag.

A Pentagon report says that repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell will have have minimal risk to the war effort and troops’ safety, sources say.

The Washington Post, which cites two sources familiar with the document, says that more than 70 per cent of the troops surveyed said the effect of lifting the ban would be positive, mixed or non-existent.

The report’s authors concluded that objections to lifting the ban will fade away once troops become used to serving with openly gay colleagues.

The Post said: “One source, who has read the report in full, summarised its findings in a series of conversations this week. The source declined to state his position on whether to lift the ban, insisting it did not matter.

“He said he felt compelled to share the information out of concern that groups opposed to ending the ban would mischaracterise the findings. The long, detailed and nuanced report will almost certainly be used by opponents and supporters of repeal legislation to bolster their positions in what is likely to be a heated and partisan congressional debate.”

The Pentagon has not commented on reports and says it will not do so until December 1st, when a review of the policy is due to be completed.

Around 400,000 troops were sent the survey in July, which asked them about sharing shower facilities with gay colleagues and how they would feel if a servicemember’s gay partner lived in families’ accommodation. Their families were also surveyed.

The White House is now pushing for repeal in the lame duck session of Congress. The Republicans will take control of the House in the next session, which will make it harder to repeal the controversial bill.