Friday, July 28, 2006

Military Intelligence (and other oxymorons)

A decorated sergeant and Arabic language specialist [who enlisted in a patriotic fervor in the days after 9/11] was dismissed from the U.S. Army under the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy
Right, well done, US Army. After all, it's not like there's a pressing need for "Arabic language specialists" at the moment. Oh, wait...

Think it's a one-off? Shearight.
[T]he GAO also noted that nearly 800 dismissed gay or lesbian service members had critical abilities, including 300 with important language skills. Fifty-five were proficient in Arabic, including Copas, a graduate of the Defense Language Institute in California.

... Shortly after Copas was appointed to the 82nd Airborne's highly visible All-American Chorus last May, the first [anonymous] e-mail came to the chorus director.

"The director brought everyone into the hallway and told us about this e-mail they had just received and blatantly asked, 'Which one of you are gay?'" Copas said. Copas later complained to the director and his platoon sergeant, saying the questions violated "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."

"They said they would watch it in the future," Copas said. "And [then] they said ... 'Well, you are not gay are you?'
He seems to have misinterpreted: what they actually said was they would watch him in the future. And they totally did:
On Dec. 2, investigators formally interviewed Copas and asked if he understood the military's policy on homosexuals
Look who's talking. What part of "Don't Ask" do these gomers not understand?

And it gets better:
if he had any close acquaintances who were gay, and if he was involved in community theater.
Aha! A clue! And they just knew they were on to something when Copas was forced to admit he'd attended a Beyonce concert in 2002.

And here's the part even the most vehement homophobes should feel queasy about:
Discharging and replacing them has cost the Pentagon nearly $369 million, according to the Center for the Study of Sexual Minorities in the Military at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
Have none of these brain trusts ever seen Catch 22?

Hat Tip (for comprehensive coverage of this issue, and an all-around smart, awesome blog): Towleroad. This is the part where you go there.


Blogger Paul said...

ummm... why the fuck is there an army chorus in the first place?! are you into payin' for that, i'm not! don't they have people to kill and oil to liberate?

7/27/06, 11:23 PM  
Blogger Scott said...

And why shouldn't they be able to carry a tune while they do it?

7/28/06, 7:40 AM  

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