tv Tonight From Washington CSPAN December 3, 2010 8:00pm-11:00pm EST
>> today the joint chairman of and the chiefs of each military branch gave their views on the possible repeal of the "don't ask, don't tell" policy. it comes a day after robert gates, mike mullen, and the co-chairs on the task force on the "don't ask, don't tell" all told the committee allowing days
and lesbians to serve would not harm ongoing operations and encouraged congress to repeal the law from 1993 that put the policy into place. senator levin chairs the three hour, 15 minute hearings. >> good morning, everybody. the committee meets this morning to continue receiving testimony on the department of defense's report on implementation of a repeal of don't ask, don't tell. yesterday we heard from secretary gates, chairman of the joint chiefs admiral mullen, and the co-chairs of the departments working group on this issue. today we hear from the vice chairman, james cartwright, and senior officers. george casey, gary roughead,
general james amos, chief of staff of the air force, general norton schwartz, and commandant of the coast guard admiral, robert papp. the chief's are tasked to organize, train, and equal our military forces. that's an important and challenging ask. and we are all grateful to the service of each of you to this nation. if we repeal "don't ask, don't tell" as i believe we should, the legislation stipulates that repeal will not take affect unless and until there's a certification by the president, secretary of defense, and the chairman of the joint chiefs that they have adopted the necessary implementation steps to assure that we maintain our standards of military readiness
and effectiveness, unit cohesion, and recruiting and retention. several of you have testified before this committee that you had concerns about repeal of "don't ask, don't tell." you also testified that you supported secretary gate's intention to conduct the working group review. and indicated that it's findings might influence your views. we heard yesterday that your views help shape the working groups report and recommendations. and we heard secretary gates testify yesterday to the following. quote, i would not sign any certification until i was satisfied with the advice of the service chiefs that we had in fact mitigated, if not
eliminated to the extent possible, risks to combat readiness, the unit cohesion and effectiveness. closed quote. committee wants to hear from each of you whether you are satisfied by this assurance from the secretary of defense, and we want to know whether you are adequately consulted by the working group. the report before us confirms that are large majority of troops believe that repeal is consistent with maintaining unit effectiveness as do the secretary of defense and the chairman of the joint chiefs. the working group found higher levels of concern about repeal in some segments of the military. such as the marine corps, combat arms branches of the army, and special operations forces. the working group found that
training, education, and leadership, will be vital in mitigating those concerns. and of grate importance, the report demonstrates that actual experience serving alongside gay and lesbian colleagues has a powerful and positive effect on service members attitudes. to the co-chairs of the working group, jay johnson, and general carter ham wrote in their report, quote, while a higher percentage of service remembers in war fighting units predict negative effects of repeal, the percentage distinctions between war fighting units and the entire military is almost nonexistent.
when asked about the actual experience of serving in a unit with someone believed to be gay. closed quote. that is to say that predictions of negative effects are higher among troops in war fighting units. but the actual experience of troops in combat units who have fight alongside gays is that their units were largely unaffected according to the working group report. this evidence is confirmed by the experience of some of our closest allies who have made this change. in the militaries of great britain and canada, there was even greater concern about this shift before it was made than exists today in our military.
but the working group reports that their transition was smoother than expected, and that there is no evidence that a change in policy has diminished combat effectiveness for these allies who have fought side by side with us over the last decade. the working group has laid out a careful, deliberative plan to implement repeal while mitigating risks. while that plan focuses on the importance of leadership, education, and training. i agree with admiral mullen who told us yesterday it is leadership that matters most. senator mccain? >> thank you, mr. chairman. let me thank our distinguished witnesses for their service to
our nation. as admiral mullen noted yesterday, we have a group of officers that represent more than 100 years of experience in our armed forces. i welcome them. and i'm pleased that admiral papp and general cartwright are joining us as well. as i said yesterday, we are considering in these hearings a complex and often emotional subject. the proposed repeal of the current law, current commonly referred to as "don't ask, don't tell." which have held differences of opinion among many americans. it's no different among the u.s. military as the pentagon's report demonstrates. however, i think we can all agree that our military today is the most effective, most professional, and arguably the most experienced force our nation has ever had. we can all agree that we appreciate and honor the service of every american who wears the uniform of our country as well as their families, especially
during the time of war, regardless of whether they are straight or bay. and finally, i think we can all agree, and i certainly would, capable force could implement "don't ask, don't tell" just like they do everything else that we ask of them. what it is the congress of duty to determine is not can our armed forces represent a repeal of this law but whether the law should be repealed. unfortunately, that key issue was not the focus of this study. and let me say again just to be clear, i'm not saying we should hold a referendum among our military on this issue and leave the decision in their hands. that's not how our system works, nor should it. what i am saying, and i repeal, that leadership means knowing
what your subordinates think, including on whether they think the current law in this case should be repealed or not. but that is the fundamental question that must be answered by congress, not by the president or the courts but by congress. it's a question that must be answered carefully, deliberately, and with proper consideration with the complexity and the gravity of the consequences for the military and the wars in which we are engaged. i appreciated hearing from secretary gates, admiral mullen, general johnson, and mr. ham yesterday. all of the public servants occupy leading positions within the establishment. their views all deserve careful consideration. the service chiefs are responsible for the training, organization, and administration of the men and women of their
servicive -- respective services. it's their responsibility to recruit, and retain men and women for the services. it's their responsibility to recruit and retain the best personnel possible and to implement policies consistent with the law that produce fully trained, motivated, and disciplined troops for employment in military operations. and at present, that means sustained high tempo combat. in short, it's the job of the service chief to ensure that our military is ready and able to win the nation's wars. as such, their views are especially relevant to the current debate. i have always said, always said, that i would listen to and fully consider the advise of our military regarding the potential repeal of "don't ask, don't tell." i did that yesterday. i will do that today.
i will continue to do that. anyone who alleges otherwise is disregarding the regard. as we move forward with our discussion on this matter, i hope that everyone will put aside political motives and agendas. i hope everyone on both sides will refrain from questioning people's integrity. i hope that everyone recognizes that debate is focused not more on broader social issues, at society at large, but in our military and it's effectiveness. on this matter, i look forward to hearing the view of our witnesses. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you very much. we are going to start with the vice chairman of our joint chiefs, general cartwright. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> general can i interrupt you for a moment. i believe we have a quorum that's present. that means we can quote on the conformation.
quorum now being present. i would ask the committee to consideration the nomination of general claude kaylor. it's been before the committee for a required length. is there a motion to move. >> so moved. >> i second. >> most carried. thank you. general. >> thank you, mr. chairman, senator mccain, and distinguished members of the committee, good morning. i appreciate the opportunity to comment on the final report of the comprehensive review working group regards the potential impact of repealing 10 usc 654 and associated department of defense policy commonly referred to as "don't ask, don't tell." the secretary and chairman
emphasized early in this process that our men and women in uniform deserve to have their voices heard. i want to begin by remarks by commending the working group to reach out and ensure the opportunity to participate was broad and far reaching. as expected, the they that gathered reflects a wide range of views on the servicemen and women in the u.s. military who are known to be gay or lesbian. if the law is repealed, implementation will require the deliberate and disciplined attention of leaders at all levels. it's my view, implementation of a new department policy would involve manageable risking with regard to military effectiveness. even during the high tempo of war time operations. some ask, why not wait for some more timely opportunity. there's never a perfect time. change challenges organizations.
however, contrary to expectations, this maybe a better time than one might expect. periods of reduced activity can create conditions wherein the challenges associated of making of change any kind seems enormous. but contrast, in times of conflict, the focus is on the war effort. u.s. service members are devoted to deserving our nation and their comrades. when they are engaged -- when they are engaged in combat operations, they rely on the warrior ethos of the men and women, not presumed or known at to do -- attitudes or lifestyles. from my experience and reinforced by the findings, i believe the men and women are the most well trained in military history. they look at terms of accomplishment, and look beyond issues of race, religion,
gender, and sexual orientation. in my opinion, the findings of the report confirm this view. the opinions are important. i respect their opinions. it's accurate that predictions by service members and combat arms unit were higher than the predictions of men and women in supporting organizations. any good survey though, asks key questions in multiple ways. what stands out to me when we viewing the report is where a sign to combat arms or units, service member who's have actually serve with people known or suspected of being homosexual are almost universally experienced -- they have experienced little or no disruption. it is right to be concerned about how the organization as a whole might be impacted by the repeal. but when based on actual experience our service members seem confident in their ability to service professionally and
effectively alongside gay and lesbian service members. i'm inclined to trust the real world experiences of our men and women on the battlefield. recently, we faced the very real potential. the law would be repealed in the courts. my greatest concern, should the law change through the judicial process, is the department may lose it's ability to transition in a way that permits the managed. repealing the law by the act of congress, on the other hand, offered the greater likelihood that the department will management legislation. they can provide the structure and predictability that the civilian and military leaders require to effectiveness and efficiently implement a change in policy. we pride ourselves as a nation that does not merely tolerate diversity, varying organization and attitudes, we embrace and are strengthened by the many differences among us. the strength of our nation is the willingness to acknowledge
the views, exchange in the debate and at the end of the dialogue, unite under the rule of law and pursue the interest. the character in appeal lies in it's equality, opportunity, and the inclusionive character of our organizational ethos. being more inclusive improves the institution as a whole. strong and committed leadership has plotted the course of the u.s. military throughout history. it is a certainty that change brings challenge, and challenge demands leadership. the quality of leadership that is a hallmark of our military institution will be the determining factor on the question at issue today. my faith in our leadership from top to bottom and the fair minded temperament of the american people, representational benefit derived from being a force defined by honesty and inclusiveness, rather than by concealment causes me to favor repeal of
title 10 u.s. code 654 and the associated policy known as "don't ask, don't tell." >> thank you, general cartwright. general casey. >> thank you, mr. chairman, senator mccain, members of the committee, good morning. >> good morning. >> i've reviewed the final version of the associated working group's report. i want to be able to provide my informed military advise to the committee. i'll begin by relating how i see the military risks -- the risk from a military perspective. then i'll give you my views on the impact on the force if "don't ask, don't tell" is repealed. first, i think it's important that we are clear about the military risk. implementation of the repeal of don't ask don't tell would be a major cultural and policy change in the middle of a war. it would be yeted by a force and
leaders that are already stretched by the accumulative effects of almost a decade at war. it would be implemented by a force in which a substantial number of soldiers perceive that repeal will have a negative effect on effectiveness and the morale and that implementation will be difficult. further, the report clearly states that over 40% of the combat arms soldiers believed that the presence of a gay service member in their unit have a negative impact on the unit effectiveness on the trust that the soldiers feel for each other, and on their morale. as such, i believe that the implementation of the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" in the near term will one, add another level of stress, two, be more difficult in our combat arms
unit; three, be more difficult for the army than the report suggests. that said, if repeal is directed, the implementation principals in the report constitute a solid basis upon which to develop plans that will mitigate the risk that i just described. properly implemented, i do not envision that the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" would keep us from accomplishing our worldwide missions, including combat operations. we have a disciplined force, and seasoned leaders who with appropriate guidance and direction can over see the implementation of repeal with moderate risk to the military effectiveness, and moderate risk to our ability to recruit and retain over the long haul. i do believe that we will have to closely monitor the impact on our mid level officers and noncommission officers as they wrestle will implementing repeal
simultaneously with the other challenges that they will facing after nine years at war. it's my judgment we could implement repeal with moderate risk to the military effectiveness and long term health to the force. tell me close by saying if "don't ask, don't tell" is repealed, the army will work to implement repeal in the same fashion that is characterized our service to this country for 235 years. thank you, mr. chairman. >> general, thank you. admiral. >> thank you, mr. chairman, chairman levin, senator mccain, and distinguished members of the committee. thank you for the opportunity to appear before you today to address the report of the comprehensive review working group in my perspective of the issues associated with the potential repeal of 10 u.s. code 654. i applaud the professionalism and seriousness of the men and women of the united states navy
as they participated in an unprecedented survey of our armed forces. i'm satisfied with the methodology and execution of the service member and spouse surveys and the extent to which they engaged sailors and their family. i believe the appropriate issues have been researched, examined, and necessary courses of action have been considered. the responses help me to assess the potential impacts to effectiveness, readiness, unit cohesion, and morale on our navy. 76% of sailors believe that the impact on these force characteristics to be neutral or positive. there will be issues to be addressed. especially in a period immediately following repeal. there's a sizable minority of the navy, 24%, who believe the impact of the repeal will be negative. areas of greatest concern expressed in the survey include social cohesion, privacy in sleeping and showering facilities aboard ships and
submarines, and increased stress on the force in periods of high tempo operations. i believe the concerns can be mitigated through engaged leadership, effective communications, training and education, and clear and con size standards of conduct. what we will engage all sailors regardless of their points of view, it's this minority upon which leaders must focus. we all understand and appreciate the critical roll of families in support of our sailors. the assessment of the spouses is important because of the support to sailors and role in the decision that navy families make. of more than 7500 navy spouses that responded to the survey, 81% told us they did not expect family readiness to be impacted as a result of the appeal. 10 u.s. code 654 is ongoing, and i cannot predict the outcome. i do believe any change in the
law is best in the legislative process and not judicially. legislative repeal affords the time to implement the significant change within our armed forces. should the law will repealed, the u.s. navy will continue to be the professional, global, and effective relevant force for the nation. repeal of the law will not fundamentally change who we are and what we do. the u.s. navy can implement the necessary changes to policies and procedures even in a time of war and increasing global commitments. with the exception of the moderate risk associated with projected retention, i assess the risk to readiness, effectiveness, and cohesion of the navy to be low. based on my professional judgment and informed by the inputs from our navy, i recommend repeal of ten u.s. code 654. i have the ultimate confidence in the men and women of the
united states navy and in their character, discipline, and in their decency. navy leaders will continue to set a positive tone, create a conducive work environment, and enforce our high standards of conduct throughout the navy as we serve the nation. our sailors will continue to live by the core values of honor, courage, and commitment which are fundamental to our character and conduct. >> thank you. general amos. >> thank you members of the committee thank you for the opportunity to appeal before you and discuss the working group's rereport of the issues associated with repeal of section 654 title 10 u.s. code, policy concerning homosexuality in the armed forces. i would like to begin by stating for the record that the study conducted by the comprehensive
working group is a valuable examination of the issues associated with appealing the policy and serves to usefully frame the perspectives of the service members and their families. i am grateful for the efforts of honor jeh johnson and carter ham. as team leaders, they let their groups effectively. they provide useful information about attitudes and the implementation of repeal across the marine corps. i would like to share what it says about our marine's opinions. viewed holistically across the corps, approximately 45% of marine surveyed viewed repeal negatively regarding unit effectiveness, unit readiness, and cohesion.
five to 13% viewed repeal positively in those same categories. a particular concern to me is that roughly 56% of combat arms marined voiced negative concerns. negative benchmarks for combat arms and marines range between 66% per unit effectiveness and 58% for cohesion. these negative perceptions are held almost equally by aural ranks within the combat arms communitied. what the survey did not identify is the risk to the force should repeal be under taken while the corps is engaged in it's 9th year of combat operations. with half of the marine corps operating forces either engaged in fighting in afghanistan, returning from theater, or preparing to deploy to combat again, the readiness and associated focus are foremost in shaping my implementation assessment. my experiences throughout nearly 40 years in uniform tell me that
young men and women who volunteer to be marines do so with patriotic differences. even the personalities can be bridged. that said, if the law is changed implementing repeal and assimilating openly homosexual marines into the tightly woven fabrics has strong potential for disruption at the unit level as it will no doubt divert leadership, attention away from, and almost singular focus of preparing units for combat. i do not know how distracting the effort will be, or risk it pretends, i cannot turn my back on the negative perceptions by the marines that are most engaged by the hard workday to day in afghanistan. we asked them for their opinion. they gave them to us. the potential exists for the
disruption to the combat mission should repeal be implemented at this time. and the final analysis, i'm faced with two questions. the first is could we? could we implement repeal at this time? the answer is yes. despite the challenges i have briefly outlined above at the end of the day, we are marines. should congress change the law, then our nation marine core will faithfully follow the law. marine corps authorities, even it's existence in law flow from congress. we will follow the law. :
today your marines continue to faithfully served around the globe partnered with our sister services and allies protecting our freedoms and way of life. the focus of my complete energy is to ensure our marines are properly led, trained and equipped and that their families are cared for so that our marines can focus their energy on the vital task they are assigned. i can report to you the combat effectiveness, readiness and health and welfare are as high as it has been in my nearly 40 years of service -- four years of service. your men are accomplishing their missions with professionalism and high morale, confident in
their families, a fellow citizens and elected leaders. finally, on behalf of all marines, their families and civilian marines i want to thank you for your continued and faithful support. i know the real issue has been difficult for all concerned. i am grateful for the opportunity to represent the marine corps on this important matter and i look forward to your questions. >> thank you, general amos. general schwartz. >> senator mccain, members of the committee, if you for allowing the chiefs to offer testimony and best military advice from the proposed repeal of ten united states code 654. the dot study confirms that air force attitudes run roughly 70- 30 to those who see positive, next or no effect with respect to allowing open service by gay and lesbian eminem air force. the fever ability distribution runs slightly higher for the
spouse survey at about 75, 25 and lower for close combat air force skill sets about 60-40. cae study recognizes there are a ted factors, cohabitation, privacy and universal benefits among others. each of these complicating factors will require focused attention, and in time will be accommodated satisfactorily. thus, it is my assessment of the united states air force can accommodate to repeal "dont' ask, don't tell" with modest risk to military readiness and effectiveness in cohesion retention and recruiting of your air men. the air force will pursue implementation of repeal if the law changes thoroughly, professionally, and with conviction.
nonetheless, i do not agree with the study that the short-term risk to military effectiveness is low. it is inescapable that our officer in the in co leaders in afghanistan particular are carrying a heavy load. while the demand of close combat affect fewer air men and contrast personnel of the other services that were remained concerned with the study assessment that the risk of repeal of military effectiveness in afghanistan is low. that assessment and my view is too optimistic. i acknowledge the findings of the study that under the pressures of combat and attitudes of close combat skilled personnel regarding "dont' ask, don't tell" seems to moderate. after all, survival is a powerful instinct. still, it is difficult for me as
a member of the joint chiefs to recommend placing any additional discretionary demand on our leadership cadres in afghanistan at this particularly demanding time. i therefore recommend deferring full implementation and certification until 2012. while initiating training and education efforts soon after you take a decision to repeal. finally, i would like to emphasize and at my strong endorsement to secretary gates advice that legislative action on this issue is far preferable to the decision by the courts from which we would enjoy much less latitude to properly calibrate implementation. precipitous repeal is not. it is not a place where your
armed forces wants to be. mr. schramm, along with my colleagues, i look forward to your question. >> thank you very much, admiral schwartz. of papp to the islamic khator in german, senator mccain and distinguished members of the committee. thank you for inviting me and the coast guard to participate in today's hearing. i am grateful for the opportunity to provide you with my view regarding the report's findings and the potential impact of repealing "dont' ask, don't tell" and the recommendations for implementation. let me start by saying i'm very proud of our coastguard men and women. they are individuals of external character and ability to engage in the communities in which they live and served. i'm particularly proud of the strong response by the coast guard's and family members reply to this service put out by the report to read our active duty response rate was 54%. our preservers funds rate was 39% and our spells response rate was 39% which demonstrates their
understanding of the importance of this issue. i concur with the report's recommendations on how to implement the repeal of the law allowing gay and lesbian americans to serve on the coast guard openly will remove a significant barrier to those coastguardsman who are already serving capably and have been forced to hike or even fly about their sexual orientation. forcing these coastguardsman to compromise our values of honor, respect and devotion to duty and continue to serve as a choice they should not have to make. i'm very respectful of the unique challenges facing each service and i do not for the second suggest my circumstances and judgment would inform our very different responsibilities. my professional opinion is my own and comes from the two worlds in which i sit. the coast guard is tall times a military service covered by the law of this committee had chances to ensure the effectiveness of our armed forces.
though small in numbers, we are integrated with our sister services and around the world. but we are also tightly woven into the law enforcement and first responder communities and our nation. we work with federal, state and local forces where gay and lesbian americans serve with distinction and terrorism. while i concur with the report's recommendations, prudence dictates that implementation must be with caution. i infer from the data relating to the coast guard that many coastguardsman and their family members find gay and lesbian citizens and our service acceptable, however, minority views cannot be ignored. moreover, there is no total force view. use within our service communities vary to some degree. we must therefore fashion and implementation strategy that takes into account the attitude that vary among our command based on where our people live and where they served together. thus i ask the committee to
avoid injuring from the report the implementation of this rather significant decision will be easy. i describe myself as a pragmatist, which i define as an optimist with experience. my experience leads me to conclude we must inform you, our civilian leaders, that implementation will not be achieved without encountering challenges along the course ahead, some of which, despite our best efforts we can offer see and which will likely take considerable time and resources to overcome. with that, i am absolutely confident that the coast guard leadership is prepared to implement any change that you direct. moreover, i do not harbor this latest of coast guard men and women will be of to the task and will sustain their high levels of professionalism and effectiveness should the law change. they prove every day they are among america's best and i have unshakeable confidence in their ability to weather changes this magnitude. again, think you for the upper to indy 500 to testify today and i look forward to your questions.
>> five minutes is fine with me. whenever you want. [inaudible conversations] i.t. -- we are going to start on around one with a seven minute round. and if we need a second round, we will have a second round. let me start with you, general cartwright. yesterday as secretary gates and admiral mullen clearly and forcefully articulated that with proper leadership, education and training, the repeal of "dont' ask, don't tell" can be done without an acceptable risk to standards of military readiness and effectiveness. and your testimony indicates
your agreement with that. my first question to you is this, you are a marine. general amos is a marine, sitting right next to you, and i know you admire and respect each other briefly, not just because you're marines, but as human beings for all the great professionalism and experience that you've had. but your view is very different. apparently, general cartwright from that of general amos, his testimony is that the, particularly the negative perceptions that are held by marines create -- could create a problem for the day-to-day operations in afghanistan. can you comment on general amos's testimony? >> well, first out, we sat next to each other as second lieutenants overseas in our first overseas deployment and we served together ever since, and
we do, at least from my perspective, share a great deal of respect for each other. mauney view on this issue was shaped by the contrast and the questions and the way they were asked in the study, and then by my own opportunities to go to the field and talk not only to the marines but other services, and i tend to reflect probably because of my time joined a broader perspective than just one service but i certainly still wear this uniform and do so proudly and will always consider myself a marine. as i said in my statement, senator, i think the difference here is the look at what the perception of the future might be, the ambiguities that introduced when someone tries to guess what the future might be. as the study indicated, the likelihood that stereotypes' and mr. shipp since hall actions might occur in the future have some influence on how someone
might mark in the perspective. on tended to favor strongly the views of those, the question that was put to them in the study was a few suspected or knew that someone in your unit was gay or a lesbian, did it affect their combat effectiveness, the unit's combat effectiveness, and the study numbers swing drastically when you ask them for their actual reflections, and they generally came in and around the 92% level of it had no effect on the unit. it had no effect on their ability to conduct combat and in fact there were anecdotal comments in the study that were called out. one of them that is very memorable to me is from a navy seal, who reflected that a member in his unit he suspected to be gay was the biggest and the meanest and killed the most people and he wanted him in the unit and that -- the individual
carried a large portion of the unit's effectiveness. i weighed heavily, senator. i weighed the opportunity to understand the difference between the actual and the perspective, looking forward into the future. my conversations, when i went out to visit marines over the past year, most recently over the thanksgiving period and helmand province, talking to the marines. and i found that the studies insights were held up, those that had not have any experience or didn't believe the had any experience tended to believe that the future was more ambiguous. the rand study also pointed in the same direction that if you don't know, you tend to be more conservative in your opinion. if you have an opportunity to understand and served with someone who is gay and lesbian, then the facts tend to weigh heavy on your mind and the study the showed again, 92% of the
respondents believe that it would not have an affect. that is what we've my opinion, senator. >> i would like to ask each of you a question about the other military use transitions to policies equal treatment without regard to sexual orientation had been successful in the military of our allies, even though the opposition to change in their military was higher at the time that the change was made in those military than it is now for our military. that i think shows to an significant extent the change in attitude is over the last ten years or so. but putting that aside for a moment, these military's report that when it came after
implementation that the attitudes were not only different, but most importantly that the change in those militaries' had no negative impact on morale, recruitment, retention, readiness or overall combat effectiveness. so i'm wondering whether or not -- let me start may be at the other end of the line here, general casey, let me start with you. have you discussed the impact of repealing "don't ask, don't tell" with your counterparts in these other militaries? >> i have, senator. in fact, i think it was a few months ago at a hearing center wicker asked me to do that, so in october i sat down with my counterparts from the united kingdom, germany, france, netherlands, canada and denmark and purposely to talk about this particular issue. they told me that the execution was with minimal disruption,
pretty much as you had discussed. they suggested to me that when we do execute we keep things as simple last possible and keep the fraternization policy absolutely consistent. the date, however, point out to me the two key differences. and they said, you know, in our cases, in almost every case, there was broad national consensus before the law was repealed. and in some cases, the country's actually had laws that supported civil unions comes of the was a giffords i took back and we should take a different consideration. >> at mulken have you talked to your counsel? >> i have and i have long maintained that our military is different than the other militaries of the world, but the way that i would characterize the response from those chiefs of needy that have a policy that allows gays and lesbians to serve, the term that i would bring to mind is mauney --
non-event. i think it's also interesting to note that most of those changes have occurred well over ten years ago and in that time with most of these navys we have exchange programs where our officers serve on their ships and vice versa, and so we are exposed in a routine way if you will to the navy's that have a different policy. >> general, i'm not sure who your counterpart is, but -- >> i do have counterparts in each of the country's, and i have talked to a good number of them. i tend to find the same consensus that that model roughead just reflected. i will also highlight that particularly with several of our
nato allies the issue of serving side by side integrated with their forces on the battlefield has not been a problem for our forces or for their forces. >> general amos? >> mr. chairman, we have so few marine corps and around the globe i did not ask their opinion. i have no reason to doubt the efficacy of the report as it talks to the ease of transmission from the other services around the world. so i find no fault in that and i suspect it's factually correct. but we are the united states marine corps and we are heavily involved in combat right now. it would be difficult for me to reach back and look at the periods of time when these other services, these other nations made their transitions. i can only speak for where we are today with over 50% of my combat forces heavily engaged. >> thank you. >> mr. chairman i have chatted with my counterparts and they
have indicated relative ease into the transition, but i must state for you that i am not sure that that evidence is necessarily compelling. i find actually the fact that police departments and fire departments, municipal public servants, that that case with in the united states is a more compelling and a lot to the transition. >> thank you. adderall papp? >> search, it might not be expected, we actually exchange quite a bit with foreign countries, primarily with canada but we also put law attachment on the british ships, dutch ships. we work with the australians and others in the arabian gulf and counter piracy and other operations, as we have pretty good exposure to other navies and coast guards around the world, and in my discussions with some of their leaders it would reflect the same as admiral roughead, pretty much a non-event. i would also have i come from a
department where we have other operating agencies as well, all of which employ gay and lesbian members the secret service, customs and border protection, etc., and i work on a daily basis with services that have openly gay or lesbian members, and we actually see no effect. >> one of the conclusions of the working group report is that leadership is key to successful implementation, the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell." a couple of you have commented on that issue, but i want to ask all of you about that. so let me ask you again, starting with you, general casey. would you agree if "don't ask, don't tell" is repealed, that successful implementation depends upon leadership? >> i would, senator. leadership is the key to everything. the leaders have to embrace of
the law or the policy that comes out and move forward to effectively implement it. i will tell you so that as i mentioned in my opening statements, one of the concerns i have is that our captains or company commanders and first surgeons and mid level leaders and officers and noncommissioned officers have a lot on their plate right now and this will be another element that will be put on their plate. operations in iraq and afghanistan are hugely complex already. if we do this, it will get done and it will get done well, but other things are not going to be done, and i worry about the implications of that in iraq and afghanistan. >> what will not get done? >> i am talking about the broad numbers of tasks a company commander has to do in general and in combat in particular. and when he is focusing his efforts on implementing the new policy he won't be able to deflect the intellectual effort
to some others things and i can't tell you specifically what it will be. i'm talking about the fatality of the tasks. >> at morrill roughead? >> leadership, absolutely critical, senator, but it's critical to everything that we do. it's about setting the standards, and during to the standards and training your people to accomplish the mission and i have faith in officers and enlisted throughout the navy. >> does anyone else want to add a comment on this, because i want to go on to just one other question. let me ask about the need for congress to act. a number of you have commented upon the importance of the congress taking this action the alternative and in some cases and in the even if the alternative is going to be the possibility of a court decision. for those of you that have not commented on that, because i fink two of you have, could you come if you not commented on
that, ase statement about the relative importance of doing this legislatively with an implementation certification requirement that there will be no negative impact on recruitment retention more now that the certification will to time and there's a 60 day delay after that is of great value in this process and that that is not assured at all if there is a plan to be a court opinion. for those of you who haven't commented, and i forgot frankly who has and hasn't, please, give us the importance of that. you will remember -- >> senator, i believe that in the course of action that gives us appropriate time to prepare is the right course of action and its the preparation time and with it comes from congress or the courts, i think it is immaterial but no matter what
happens, we have to have the time to appropriately prepared. >> is that time which is part of a certification process that the chairman of the joint chiefs -- excuse me -- and the secretary defense must go through plus the deily after that. is that certification process with the time required before certification and the fact that the chairman must certify no impact, does that give you some reinsurance as well? >> it does. it gives us the time we need. >> and i.t. to colin general amos or general schwartz in terms of the certification process, the implementation process, the time that's involved in that as well as the fact that there must be a certification by the chairman of the tried chiefs of no impact or minimal impact moral or recruitment, is that important to you in your judgment, general amos, let me start with you.
>> i think it absolutely goes a long way towards me be easing some of the pressure. i felt a lot about the question if not now, then, which is the second part of what i think you're asking, german, and from my perspective and look at it is my concern is singularly those combat units that are in combat preparing to go or just coming back resetting their clocks getting ready to go then if that is the case, and it is for me, as i represent, and that is what the service came back and told me, then it would stand that what i would want to have with regard to implementation would be a period of time where our marines are no longer focused primarily on combat. i think the iraq drawdown model for the marine corps would be instructive. the last year and a half, the year fall of the marines and iraqi things have settled down for us. there were fewer and fewer
operations and we began to dramatically drawdown the size of the force. so my recommendation would be not necessarily -- i can't tie a timeline to the certification process, but my recommendation, chairman, would be that it begins when our singular focus is no longer on combat operations or preparing units for combat. at that point then i would be comfortable with implementing the retial. >> thank you. that's very helpful and i apologize to my colleagues. i didn't know these slips had been placed in front of me and i obviously went over my time and apologize for that. senator mccain. >> thank you, mr. chairman, and i thank the witnesses for their testimony and their courage. i think it's pretty obvious from the comments made by certainly the chiefs of staff, the service chiefs of the army navy, air force and marine corps today
that there is significantly divided opinion on this issue and there is a lot more scrutiny and work to be involved before passing this legislation. it's why we see such a diversity of views here among the service chiefs. and i also think it would be helpful, and i would imagine that our witnesses, or at least most of them would disagree we hear from the senior enlisted people, the sergeant major of the army and marine corps, senior enlisted personnel who will bear the brunt of their responsibilities for the training and implementation of any change in the law. i think we need to hear from the theater commanders, the various
commands throughout the world who also play a major role in ensuring the the security of our nation. i noted that on the "don't ask, don't tell" law originally passed in 1993 there was some 14 hearings held on this issue and much more extensive examination. so why don't have a lot of questions. general cartwright, i guess when you look at in the report, it's a little bit like studying the bible. you can to almost any conclusion from what part of it that you examine, but i don't understand your allegation on question number 66 treatises those who serve in combat with the service member believed to be homosexual affect on units combat
performance, mostly negative, army combat arms 58.8%, the marine, 57%. that's it seems to me a pretty straightforward indication of with those in combat arms fell about those who served with a service member to be believed homosexual. significant in both army and marine corps was negatived. general casey, this is a very tough issue for you. i know it is tough for all of our witnesses. and i especially appreciated if no way that you presented your testimony. you said i believe that implementation of the repeal and the near-term will, quote, add enough of their level of stress to an already stressed force and that is one thing we can all agree on that the force is very
badly stretched and be more difficult for the army and then to report suggest to the general case, what is your personal opinion about repeal at this time? >> senator, i believe that the law we should be repealed even chollet and as i read through the report, it seemed to me that the report called into question the basic presumption that underpins the law, and that is that the presence of a gay or lesbian service members creates a unacceptable risk for good order discipline. i don't believe that is true, and from the survey appears to be a large number of our service members don't believe that is true either. steven chu we believe it should be repealed. the question for me as i say is one of timing. about whether we can do this in the near term. >> and at this time your opinion of whether it should be repealed
at this time? >> i would not recommend going forward at this time given everything that the army has on its plate. >> thank you. general schwartz, and i don't usually like to do this but could i have your personal opinion about repealing at this time? >> as i indicated, i agree with general casey that we should repeal plan will at some point, and i suggested perhaps full implementation could occur in 2012, but i do not think it's prudent to seek full implementation in the near term. i think it is too risky. >> repeal at this time? >> no. senator, if you calibrate this, if you would allow us to begin a process of training and education but do not mandate that it happened in the very
near term, i believe not in 2011 but 2012 at the earliest, that would be an acceptable approach to me. >> thank you. i must say that volume largely in agreement with those opinions to rush this through in a lame-duck session would be of course - an action that would not have taken into full consideration, again, particularly the views of our senior enlisted personnel and ensure at least some of the witnesses at the table would agree that everything we learned about leadership, the young officers is from our senior enlisted personnel, and i think that they could contribute enormously to this discussion as well as our senior officer corps. so i want to thank the witnesses and those of you that have given
us a very frank and forthright opinion, and we appreciate your service to the country. >> thank you, senator mccain. senator lieberman. >> thank you to all of you for your testimony. you are obviously the leaders of the uniform of the three of the united states of america. i think this morning you've represented the best values of the u.s. military and have shown a slight the armed forces of the united states remain in my opinion the one central institution of our country that continues to burn the respect and trust of the american people, and i see that specifically here you'll know my position. i am for the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell." but you have come before us and stated your opinions, some have a support of repeal, some of kirsanow, leader. in the end of each of you,
regardless of your position have said you will not only follow the judgment of the congress, you will begin work -- make it work and that is a powerful statement. general amos, you have spoken with the most concern about repeal, but i found your words very moving and to set could we implement repeal at this time and the answer is yes despite the challenges of briefly outlined above the end of the day we are marines. should congress change the law in the nation's marine corps will faithfully supported the law? the first thing i wanted to do is think you come all of you, for the honesty of your testimony, and your ultimate respect for the law for civilian leadership, for congress, and for the larger mission to which you are committed.
i am repeating and that is why a tough time in our nation's history the u.s. armed forces remain the one institution that brings us to gather for common cause, which is of the security of our country and the freedom that is our blessing as americans, so i first wanted to thank you for that. i thought the question senator mccain asked was quite interesting about the positions you all have, and because as i heard the testimony, with apologies if i am misleading ad model roughead and admiral papp has said, three of the six of you, favored repeal at this time. general pc and general schwartz expressed concerns but in response to senator mccain's questions said they would favor repeal of don't ask don't tell but not now. for the reasons that you stated
and even general amos but i want to let you respond to this. you sit at the end of your testimony which is the second question you answered could we at this time of repeal, you said we should not implement repeal at this time. do you want to state an opinion as to whether you think at some time -- and i believe in saying this time you are talking about the combat the marines are involved in now whether he would favor repeal at a future time off "don't ask, don't tell." >> senator, you have captured it my concern right now as we talked before we walked in here on the forces that are tightly focused right now, and i spent yesterday, a portion of yesterday morning talking to a commander on the ground who many of you know, major general richard mills, and then i talked to the battalion commander who is absolutely in our zone in the most dangerous fight and tightly
focused. interesting i asked both of them i sit knowing i was going to appear before the committee today if they had any opinions on the task don't tell both of them said we are so busy right now with doing the business in afghanistan that i promise you there has not even been 1 ounce of discussion in afghanistan. you can interpret that a couple of ways, you can interpret it as they don't care. i chose to compare it to the survey results which said they are concerned but back to the issue at hand this is from my personal perspective, senator, this is a social issue across our country, it is transcended into becoming a political issue. and my suspicions are that bill law will be repealed, and all i am asking is the opportunity to do that at a time of choosing when my marines are not
singularly tightly focused on what they are doing in a very deadly environment. that battalion i was talking to you about has been on the ground three months of the seven month deployment. they lost 18 marines and had over 100 seriously wounded. so this is serious business for them. so - it will be repealed eventually. i just ask for the opportunity to be able to do it with my forces when they are not seen clearly focused on combat. >> i appreciate that answer, senator mccain and senator gramm and senator gereed and i visited that unit. they are doing a remarkable work initial in progress on the ground in afghanistan. so, my conclusion is that really in the and all six of you favor the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell." i don't mean to put words in your mouth with the questions that of the three of you have to do with timing. yesterday secretary gates -- let me step back and sure you know
what i want to state for the record that the provision in come national defense authorization act before us that repeals "don't ask, don't tell" does not implement repeal and so the president of the united states considered a defense and chairman of joint chiefs of staff certified through a series of affects or non-affects on military effectiveness, unit cohesion morrell, etc.. i was part of drafting that and we intentionally did not get a time limit in that. we didn't say they had to do it by 90 days after the law secretary gates said that he would not certify until he had engaged in full conversation with the chiefs of the services and i just wanted to give you a quick chance going down the road indicating where you are reassured by that and whether
that gives you some greater confidence we do repeal that we can review it in a way that does not interfere more than your worry of operation. general casey? >> i am very comfortable with my ability to provide military advice to secretary gates and have it heard. >> at morrill roughead? >> the same for mechem center. this is been an ongoing discussion at the department, access and freedom to talk about the issue in a way that we believe has been on a question, so i have no concerns about that at all. spec general kortright? >> i have no concerns and i look at this as an opportunity to tailor the mitigation and to tailor the timing so that we can in fact accommodate the fact that our forces rotate, so to me
that is where the opportunity for timing comes to we estimate that is an important point because secretary gates was asked yesterday tv crew yesterday whether he thought it was in the purview of the path to fees and the repeal in different ways for different services or different units, and i wonder whether you would respond to that. for instance, it is possible that psychiatry gates and the chairman might decide not to immediately implement this for the marines or army and combat, but to do it over a period of time. how would you respond to that, general amos? >> i think that would -- it sounds very selfish. that would probably be acceptable for us. back to your first question we've agreed opportunity to the secretary and the opinion to be a disconnect general schwartz? >> i would repeat that, but i would suggest that having some
differences between implementation time lines with in different communities of the armed forces is not a way to proceed. >> a year you're point. admiral papp? >> i know the committee knows full well domingo of the coast guard is now a member of the joint chiefs of staff, however, i am given the great courtesy of sitting with great joint chiefs of staff with regularity and secretary gates has given me the privilege to speak to him personally and with service chiefs on these matters and the coast guard has been a full participant and i would add i do have my own secretary napolitano who is very receptive and listens wisely and supported the effort as well. >> thank you. senator, if i may on the phased implementation i had 15,000 sailors on the ground in iraq and afghanistan. they are mixed in i think to parse it out by surface would cause confusion and inconsistencies that would not be helpful to the budget force.
so if the repeal is adopted, you would say it may be the sector chairmen may want to implement, but when it is implemented >> yes, sir. >> thank you senator. senator inhofe? >> let me ask the first question to the ground guys, general casey and general amos. both of you in your opening statement talked about your great percentages and recruitment and retention and that goes all the way across the services and the report states that there are 23.7% with lead or think about leaving sooner than planned. the question i would ask the two of you is how would you face a 23% drop in retention?
would that do to you, general casey? >> senator, projections on the retention or historical overstated. in other words, just in our normal retention -- >> let's assume it is overstated by 50%. how would you handle the 12%? >> it could have an impact on a senator and that is why i see in my statement i thought there was an increased level of risk over low for our ability to recruit and retain the force, so i think it would be an increased level of risk, but because they wouldn't all walked out the door at the same time, i think it would be in acceptable -- >> that's on retention now. also to add some figures that would cause the drop in recruiting, too, so i would assume you feel the same way about that. do you agree, general amos? >> on the agree with my colleague, general pc and that i think it is overstated. my instinct is i read those figures and knowing marines for
40 years, i don't sense the same level of impact on retention or recruitment. if you want to join the marine corps you're going to wait eight months from the time you sign up today in the recruiting office of the eight months before you can ship. i don't see that would have an impact. >> that's fair. >> general roughead, or in sorry, admiral roughead, you see to 60% of the sailors believe the impact on effectiveness and readiness coercion would be positive. now on the chart, 71 it shows positive would be 13.8%, - 35.3%. now, i can see you also said natural commesso if they did that, it still is more positive than negative. how can you go up 6%?
>> when we have looked at in all areas where i have to detention to our series of questions in the survey that captured the general attitudes were what i would consider the negativity -- >> it appears, admiral, that you put in the category equally as positive and negative we all in the other category the debts of 60%. i thought there might be something -- >> no, sir. as you look at the positives and the neutral, we see within the navy a positive to neutral effect on this. there are certain areas as i mentioned, specific areas we looked at more deeply. >> i appreciate that and i don't want the answer now, admiral papp that before the record and noticed the same chart and i didn't notice until we sat down to do that for some reason the coast guard, the positives are 10% to 44% comes over the record i would like to know why so many
of the coast guard people are opposed to the repeal as compared to the other services to read just for the record if you could give that to me. >> we talked yesterday about the fact that only one-third of the people responded to this survey, and i had felt the reason for that was the asked the right questions. i mean, they didn't -- the never asked a question to you think we should repeal don't ask don't tell. the question they asked was, and this is in the instructions come in next our mandate was to assess the impact of the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" and how best to implement and work the repeal should it occur. we were not asked to determine whether the "don't ask, don't tell" wall and policy should be
repealed. can anyone tell me why that question shouldn't have been asked? were let me ask you, general casey, should that have been asked? >> i don't think so. i don't think the survey should have been a referendum of the poll of our soldiers. a democracy in the military, and i believe the way that the survey was executed gave sufficient information to make a were judgments. some of anybody else think the question of should it be repealed should have been asked? how about you, general amos? >> during my confirmation i was asked a similar question and i made the statement at that time i was pretty confident after having gone through the questions myself that i would come away as the service chief with a real sense whether they should or not so line with the secretary defense and my colleagues. i don't think we needed a referendum type of question on that. i got the information on needed. with regard to the low turnout, i would suggest perhaps there
was a sense of inevitability. when the survey went out. >> i think that's right. >> and that was sent by certainly then, not conaway and he went to his marine corps and said okay, this is -- you know, set that aside. we need your honest opinions on this and then our inputs jumped up almost two or threefold. so i think we have about what we need it, senator. >> going from the time back when i was in the united states army if they wanted to get some results the would give a survey and say fill it out. we could have had 100% response. i think that is probably what should have taken place to live on the information exchange for an a lot of work was done. the comprehensive review working group conducted 95 information exchange for mom's, the contact over 24,000 service members, 140 smaller focus groups. this was quite an extensive thing and they came up with a
lot of information but not the information i thought we could have come up with. in chapter 6 of the report at page 49 states if the working group were to attempt to numerically defined the sentiments we heard expressed and information exchange for rim's online entries, focus groups, confidential online communication between those who are for or against "don't ask, don't tell" our sense is that the majority of views expressed were against the repeal. >> against the repeal would any of you like to have the information as to what is to quantify that in some way? is it going through all of these working groups? i would ask the question shouldn't that have been quantified in some way or if not, why go to all this expensive time in having this if we are not getting any results from it? anyone want to respond to that?
general amos? >> i read some of the anecdotal comments that came back that were recorded. i think there is value to get a sense for what the services fell, with the servicemen and women felt really think they got that. i don't think there is any question the sense that i got that was probably predominantly negative costs related to the marines. i think there is also a group of dynamics that in any group when you bring in much of marines together you bring three of them together there will be a sense of a little bit of the stampede you become and so i don't know how they could have done that. i thought about that. i wonder because it would have been my sense is probably a long your lines. wouldn't it be nice to quantify that? i just of know how they could have because it was all verbal and it was done in a group sitting with a group dynamic. >> i would only say it's an
awful lot of extensive work for not getting out specifically getting results in my opinion. >> thank you, senator inhofe. senator reid. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. general casey, i think in response to a previous question you made a comment i want to be clear about what the last several months if not several years has been indicated as the presence of gay and lesbian service members does not undermine readiness or combat effectiveness. is that, again, is that your conclusion? i don't want to read -- >> what i said, senator, is i believe what the survey indicates, what the report indicates is the presumption that underpins law that the presence of a gay or lesbian service member may unite the because the six and a unit causes unexpected risk to discipline and after reading the report, i don't believe that is
true anymore and i don't believe a substantial majority of our soldiers believe that. >> i think it is a significant point because i think it's -- again, i want you to respond, but all i think what it shows is that obviously there are individuals in units that are perceived even though they do not proclaim it as either be gay or lesbian, and that perception is relatively common in every force in various numbers in the military. and yet, with the survey seems to suggest to you coming in by the last your colleagues, too, is that that has not caused significant problems through the readiness of good order and discipline. what it has, and would go back to the basic leadership issue is and it's not for us or even to you gentlemen is going to be for the company commanders and
platoon leaders and how you deal with an issue where at this moment there is the perception that there are gays in the unit and it doesn't seem to affect a good order of discipline and we are giving about whether that individual, you know, we can be sort of truthful about the situation or assume are bound it or in fact, in some respects it might cause more leadership and more convolutions and trying to keep this policy going forward than simply admitting what seems to be the conclusion that you have reached that we are at a plant now we can accept the service openly. can you comment on the general casey? and i ask this as a question, not a conclusion or rhetorical -- >> the only thing i would say, senator, what you just talked about was that i do think we need to be careful with say and do you feel this way if you
believe someone is a gay or lesbian soldier versus do you know someone is a gay or lesbian soldier, and i think there's a difference, and i saw it with the survey said about that but i put a little times by that because there's a difference between thinking someone is gay or lesbian and knowing it, and i think the soldiers might react differently to that. >> your comments? this is a rather open-ended question, i admit. >> i think fundamentally the military that we serve today does not prohibit gay and lesbian from serving in the military. it is whether that orientation is disclosed or not, and what we are fundamentally talking about the standards of conduct and behavior that will be acceptable in the force should the law be repealed and that gets to leadership. we have taken our services
through significant change before, and i have confidence and the ability of leaders in the navy to be able to do this to the estimate. >> i like at merkel roughead and others believe it is going to be the determinant factor. i have, however, when i look at this and i had this exchange and senator mccain commented on it , liked your saying if you believe there is someone in your unit did that affect the behavior or the efficiency and effectiveness of the unit and by large everything i salles said no. >> is the difference between the meeting and knowing? how do you believe? do you believe in constant with the rule? if you do and it didn't affect readiness, then i believe that
leadership is going to take care of this and that is the ne attribute. >> on trying to recollect back 30 years but my sense of small units and platoons the difference of believing and knowing is quite small. some people because the mannerisms and implications made these are tight knit units that know what you're doing, so this distinction at a high level -- i think if we are talking of people who is believed have some basis in kind of behavioral or supporting this evidence and yet there still seem to be tolerated or the response seem to be saying when it comes down to the unit effectiveness that isn't
what i'm worried about. >> again, this is a rather open-ended question on your advice the smallest force as you know, we've recruit a little bit differently. we regret principally on the retail so we take less than one-tenth% of the american population so that automatically begins to wane large portions of the american society. the survey said that across all mos, military occupational specialty some 75% of the marines coming and i am going to quote in this, have not served with a gay or lesbian. 80% of the combat forces said they had not served with a gay or lesbian, so we have less experience at this and i think that's intuitive. my focus again in combat effectiveness of the units, and i would like it if you would bear with me one of the comments
that came in on the online survey, not the town halls, this came from a marine lieutenant whose platoon commander, my team's effectiveness is directly tied to its cohesiveness, despite differences we are so close that we anticipate each other's next move and garrison and combat, our ability to do our job is predicated on this kind of relationship. if you were to add any element of sexual competition, in tribunate sexual woody or hesitance and trust, it would unquestionably prevent those bonds destroyed and then it introduced. my concern or those units that are involved in combat right now. that is the cohesion that concerns me most. ..
>> i think what's been repeated in terms of the policy, the change in coming. i think you all recognize, i think what you've just said is that it has to be done in a way that does not provide such an immediate disruptive. i think frankly, that's the way we would hope every policy that affects marine, soldiers, airmen, sailors in combat. >> thank you, senator.
senator chambliss. >> thank you, mr. chairman. gentleman, as always we appreciate your service. particularly on an issue like this, it's very sensitive, very emotional. you've always played an awful lot of attention to it. whether we agree or disagree at the end of the day with the result, your service is what's important, your commitment to your soldiers, your sailors, your airman, and marines is unquestioned. mr. chairman, i want to correct something that you i inferred in your state. it said a majority support. as senator inhofe reported from page 39 of the report, not the case. after talking to all of the individuals through the ief, online box, focus groups, confidential online communications between those more and against the repeal, it's the consensus of the
authorities of the report that a majority of the views nor opposition to repeal of the current policy. it's pretty obviously that general casey and the general amos, that comeback troops, the guys in the foxhole are the ones that have the largest percentage, at least in the sir ray, of objection to this. as i've been in theater and had soldiers come up and talk to me, it's been primarily in theater where i've had this issue brought up. so i wanted to direct this yes, general casey to you, and general amos, would the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" at this time have a positive or negative impact upon the readiness of your troops? >> senator, i think you could take from my testimony that i believe that it would increase the risk on our soldiers, particularly on our soldiers
that are deployed in combat. and as i said, we could execute it now at a lier level -- higher level of risk than in the survey. >> would that higher level of risk, general casey, put soldiers in loss of injury or life? >> it could. but i couldn't want to make that as a projection that it would. >> general amos, would it impact readiness of marines? >> sir, i don't -- i don't -- would repeal impact the readiness of marines? is that the question? >> yes, sir. >> i think it would absolute have an impact on the combat farces, senator. forces, senator. i'm not convinced on the
remainder of the corps. but the combat, it would. it goes back to the issue of cohesion, bonding, element of trust for those units that are heavily involved in the come -- combat. that's where the impact would be the greatest. >> let me ask the same question, would the troops in theater have the potential of increasing the risk of injury or perhaps loss of life to those marines? >> senator, as i read that quote that unique fabric, the tightly woven fabric, i think the potential for damage is there. >> thank you very much. i think that's the heart and soul of this issue at point in time. i appreciate the frankness of each and every one of you. thank you, senator. >> thank you, mr. chambliss.
mr. webb. >> thank you. let me begin by saying that i think we have an enormous amount of valuable material in this report. we can talk about what the response rate was, what it could have been, whether you could have set people down and made every person in the military fill out of form. we have 160,000 responses here in -- and it's given us the capability of really examining this issue and discussing it, a lot of it is in the manner that we've discussed it already this morning. i hope that on any side of this issue and i think they are really valid concerns, people will take a look at the in depth and read some of the numbers. question have a tendency to cherry pick one item or another out of the survey. i said again yesterday i want to repeat today that this is a valuable piece of work. so that we can evaluate this
issue in a proper way. and i have tremendous regard, particularly for general ham. when you think about the jigty that he brought to this process, as he said yesterday, he didn't exactly seek this task. he was the best employee to ask. he's a former infantry. i listen to him very carefully in his remarks yesterday. i would like to actually focus on two different questions. and one is this notion of the ability to tailer this process as it's been said today or to structure it if it were to occur. and from what i'm hearing, my initial impression on this, there might be the ability to do
this service by service or looking at the difficulties of implementing it into combat arms as general amos has pointed out, where the need for cohesion is paramount and the amount of command attention that would be put into this and this environment. from what i'm hearing, general cartwright, that's not on the table. >> i want to make sure i'm answering the right question. >> let me restate it after all of that rambling in one quick sentence. what i'm hearing here is that this talk of being able to structure any implementation of this process does not mean that it would be structured even in a time sequence for different services or for operational units. am i correct in that understanding? >> as i read the plan as it was
recommended by the study, the opportunity is there to structure the implementation phase. >> service by service or combat arm by combat arm. >> we would look at it. and i think we would look at it from the perspective of the chiefs but also the combatant commander, centcom, and the isaf commander to ensure that whatever implementation plan made sense on the battle field. >> it's not off of the table. there's mixed opinion on it. >> i think where our opinion probably varies is in the how. whether it's time, whether it's by service, whether it's by unit, whether it's by deployment cycle, where you have elements of the force. because most of our service elements are mixed. they have liaisons, multiple types of particularly airmen for the air services, et cetera. so what we are trying to understand here is what would,
in fact, be a logical implementation structure that by which we could work for. >> right, if the certification went forward, we're talking about the certification process. the deliberations had been made. the certification went forward. does that go to all units in the military the next day? that policies. >> that's what we'd have to work our way through. the question here is we're trying to understand in the rotation cycles since they don't all line up and we do it by different elements. >> right. so basically it's not. it's not being. >> but it's not being restricted either. in other words, we are not being -- that opportunity is not being taken away from us. the chiefs when we sit down together are both service chiefs and joint chiefs. and we look at the problem that way. >> so the correct interpretation of the way the process is being considered as of today is -- could be considered service by
service or combat arm by combat arm or unit by unit. that's on the table? >> yes, sir. >> the second question. >> may i make a comment? >> i know you don't like that general. i heard you say that earlier. i'm short on time here. i want to put this other issue out on the table. yesterday, i asked general ham what percentage of the military he believed or that the statistics showed were gay or lesbian. and his comment basically was just about the same as in society. a little lower on the male side, higher on the female side. that was his comment. well, i don't think anybody at the table is advocating that those people who are now in the military under "don't ask, don't tell" should leave other than on -- for the reasons of conduct. is there anybody that would disagree with me on that?
so here's the ultimate question on this policy as it evolved. and that is when someone is serving well, and if they are gay or lesbian, and they get through the wickets that general amos so clearly points out in the small unit deployments, what is it that we should be doing? when they are 15 years into their service and they want to be able to live an open and honest lifestyle? what should we be doing? what do we -- what should we do with them? general casey. >> senator, you are talking about the period between now and the time the law might be repealed. >> if we keep the policy as it is now, "don't ask, don't tell." you have someone who has given 10 to 15 years service, their
are valuable to the military, they want to be able to live an honest and open life, their conduct inside the military is above reproach. how do we do that? >> senator, we'll follow the law. we'll do what the law says. if the law changes, we'll follow that. >> i'm not talking about changing the law. we'll keep the law. under the present law, do you see the dilemma? >> i understand the dilemma. >> that's basically the challenge, i think, that we all have. >> right now we are in a position that we need to follow the law. >> i understand that. i'm talking about the human dimension of having -- someone having to live under the law. >> i understand that, senator. i'm saying as chief of staff of the army, i'm bound to execute the laws of the land. >> right, do you understand the human dimension of the point? >> i do. >> does anybody have a comment? >> yes, i come at this with a slightly different perspective. i agree with all of the aspects.
where i come from on this, all of our leaders, whether it's senior leaders or senior enlisted leaders that senator mccain spoke about, they need clear and unambiguous direction in terms of what they are supposed to enforce. i would suggest that right now we find ourselves in a very ambiguous position in terms of those people who are gay and lesbian in the service and those people who are supposed to enforce the law. what i think we're doing is putting people who are gay and lesbian, they are forced to compromise our core values. we have leaders who are getting ambiguous signals in the leadership in terms of the law they are supposed to support which puts them in a position of being obedient. i think for those of you who have served in leadership position, you understand when you allow selective obedience, that's insidious thing that hurts our overall military effect iiveness. i would say we need to give them
clear and unambiguous guidance in terms of what they are supposed to enforce. >> thank you, mr. webb. >> thank you. i've made reference to the opening statement that the report confirms that large majority of troops believes appeal is consistent with effectiveness. i'm going to put the entire report in the record at this point, as well as the plan for implementation. but the specific reference and statement in the report that i was referring to said quotes the results of the service member survey reveal a widespread attitude among a solid majority of service members that repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" will not have a negative impact on their ability to conduct their military mission. but the entire report, again, and the plan for implementation will be put in the record.
not at this point obviously, but at an appropriate place in the record. senator thune. >> thank you, mr. chairman. thank you, gentleman, for your great service to our country and for appears here today to answer question on a very difficult issue. secretary gates told us yesterday that the service chiefs are less than the working group about the level of risk of repeal. with regard to combat readiness. we've heard that in testimony today as well as in previous testimony. many of you have offered in front of the committee, you told the committee a few months ago in your view, and i quote, the policy and unique requirements of the marine corps, thus, i do not recommend it's repeal. end quote. and your prepared system for today's hearing repeats that view. i guess i would just pose the question of you that i did of the panel yesterday. secretary gates and admiral
mullen, how should we as members of congress weigh the fact that there isn't consensus among the service chiefs and secretary on this important issue? general casey? >> senator. i think you should be grateful for that. i think we are trying to provide our military advise, our informed military advise so that you can understand all of the aspects of the problem. i think you will get a better decision out of it. >> do you believe the implementing legislation, if, in fact, this moves forward should allow for the chiefs, the service chiefs, any of you to certify. i asked the secretary yesterday about whether that ought to be a requirement. he said it should not. i think senator lieberman asked the question earlier about consulting with the chiefs. there's a big difference between consulting and having the chief certify this can be done without impacting military readiness.
>> yes. as i said to senator lieberman, i am very comfortable with my ability to provide input to secretary gates and to the chairman that will be listened to and considered. so you could put it in there. but i don't think it's necessary. >> would you agree that's a very different standard though? if you had to certify as the secretary and the president and the chairman have to that this would not impact military readiness? >> for me to certify rather than just provide advise -- >> right. >> >> -- it might take it up a notch. believe me, i will make sure my views are heard. the other thing, if you put that in the law, i think it under cuts the goldwater-nichols, we've been trying to put the chairman as the principal for advise. >> anybody else care to comment? >> i'm comfortable with the access and input. in fact, as the report came
along, i could see the changes that we are recommending. i have no concerned, whatsoever, about my advise not being heard. >> the survey is -- been talked about a lot. yesterday there was some question about there's a statement that i think that senator chambliss mentioned earlier today that there, other comments that were provided, e-mails, et cetera, through the process, that suggested that the majority view was against repeal of the current policy. and it was mentioned yesterday that wasn't scientific because it wasn't part of the quote survey. and the statistical, you know, the integrity of the survey was the important part of this process. do you all believe that there ought to be some consideration given to -- we all here, you heard many people traveling abroad and talking with troops individually and the information and feedback get. i'm sure many of you get as
well. that type of input also is important in formulating an opinion of this nature? >> senator, i'd say that that type of input is infortive -- informative, as is hands call, where we talk to our sailors. that all comes together to inform the opinion and the recommendation that i make up the chain of command. but it's all inclusive. >> the survey itself and 28% response arguably that means there's 72% of the people that didn't answer. there are a lot of people that didn't register the opinion. the point was made yesterday, that's not how we do business. i understand that, it's the mill. -- military. you don't ask for opinions. there were a lot of conclusions drawn from what the contents and the ultimate outcome of that survey was.
and the number that's been thrown out is the 70% approve of the change in the policy. very different numbers when you talk about marine corps, army, people engaged in combat, 57% was the number for army and 66.5% for marines and people who thought this change would impact negatively or very negatively. even if you take the broader number, question 68a which discusses the effect of repeal on the ability to get the job done. you add up mixed, negative, or very negative responses, you get 61%. that means that 61% said would have a mixed or negative, and yet the working group focused on the positive and mixed number at 70%. it seems that as is the case with a lot of the surveys, draw very different conclusions. i'm curious about the chiefs
perspective on that issue and how you reconcile the different and almost in some ways opposite conclusions that were from what the -- from the working group survey. anybody want to? >> senator, my take is that the categorizing the mix group on the positive side is -- does not undermine the basic credibility of what -- of the conclusions of the report. and i might also add that it's important to read all of page 49 in context. >> right. and i understand that. i've read the context of page 49. but it's very clear that a lot of the information that was received through these other sources, that quote nonscientific part of this. >> yes, sir. >> anecdotally. >> yes. i addressed my comments in the inbox. we looked at those, digested
those as well, the statistical data in coming to the conclusions. i also gathered information from the leadership team just as each of the others have. this was a fairly comprehensive effort on everyone's part. >> i would just add, senator, just real quickly that we had innumerable meetings to highlight what we were trying to bring out. what we interpreted numbers. we compared back and forth. that's not all goodness. it's not always bad. we all got a chance to come pair with each other when we saw numbers. what does it mean? what does it mean to the service? that helped us also. >> good. well, and i appreciate the fact that not all of this entirely can be -- i should say i don't think this is entirely scientific exercise. i think there's a lot of input that comes. and the people who express their views which was discounted yesterday because they are motivated to express their views. i think they are people that
have to be listened to. i appreciate your testimony. i think i know where all of this is headed. but i would simply say that the bottom line, in my view, is combat effectiveness. the military is a unique and distinction group of people whom we tasked. i know you all take that responsibility seriously. as you consider final conclusions, i hope that will be -- that the bottom line consideration is to make sure the men and women in uniform in this country can serve and defend this country as effectively as possible. thank you. >> thank you, senator. senator udall. >> thank you, mr. chairman. good morning for all of you. thank you for the way in which you've brought this difficult but important discussion forward. i have admiration for every single one of you and your service. mr. chairman, i'd like to enter into the record a statement which was released by faculty
members that serve academies in response to some of the conditions expressed yesterday at the hearing about the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell." if i might, let me summarize briefly some of their points. they pointed out that concerns that their repeal would undermine combat effectiveness inconsistent with available evidence, it would be hard to understand why gay discharges always decline during war time. secondly, they point out that concerns that we do not know what the troops would say whether they support repeal based on evidence. they point out that three different polls found the same result that the working group did. these surveys included combat groups. the faculty members went to point out about the response rate and they were not reflective of the views. in fact, 28% response rate is above average for surveys.
response rates have nothing to do with validity, as far as the sample size is large enough and sampling is done properly. in this case, the survey has a margin of error that's better than most, and gallop's editor and chief said the survey represented a huge sample compared to most surveys. the director of maris polls wondered why the survey included as large of a sample as it did. finally, mr. chairman, the faculty members pointed out that the claim that "don't ask, don't tell" is effective is inconsistent with the evidence. the u.s. district court found that according to all of the research, it has armed -- it has harmed in wasting talent and undermining cohesion and morale. it has led to dismission of critical specialist. no evidence has been provided to
show that "don't ask, don't tell" promotes or is working in any way. i wanted that to be in the record, mr. chairman. if i'd like, i'd like to move to a follow up on what senator lieberman discussed and that was the timing of certification. it seems to me that for implementation to work, the military needs a lot of planning and training and changing of regulation time to make sure it's done right. and none of that will begin to occur until there's a certainty that the law will change. and since most of you if not all share the view that the law should be repealed, but some of you believe it just shouldn't be implemented right now, does it make sense for the congress to pass the pending legislation right now? that way you could lay down some of the groundwork necessary for change which might be good to do anyway given the concerns of court action. but you wouldn't have the flexibility not to implement
right away. and i -- in that context, i move to what secretary gates said yesterday. he said that the certification process is a critical piece of the legislation and that he would not sign any certification until he was satisfied with the advise of the service chiefs that was sitting here today that we had, in fact, mitigated if not eliminated to the extent possible risk to unit cohesion and effectiveness. i'd like in that spirit to ask each of you if secretary gates comments alleviate some, if not all of your concerns. general casey, perhaps i can start with you. >> secretary gates comments that he's not going to certify until implementation is -- we've told him we're okay with it. >> so i'm fair to secretary gates, the quote that i have in front of me, general, he would not sign any certification until he was quote satisfied with the advise of the service chiefs
that we had in fact mitigated if not eliminated to the extent possible risk and unit cohesion effectiveness. >> i would agree with that statement, senator. i would also agree what i've said several times here already. i'm very comfortable with my ability to get my opinions and advise to secretary gates and have them listened to. >> i agree with that statement, sir. >> i agree with that statement. >> senator, i absolutely agree. >> likewise. >> i agree too, senator. >> i would add, and i'm going to editorialize and then i have one final question that there's concern here expressed in the committee that i've been honors to serve on the committee. we are moving too hastily in the congress to repeal "don't ask, don't tell." my worry is the for congress to
act now and put in place directions to how we proceed with the repeal, we could do it in a way with keeps faith what you have outlined today. with a particular focus on combat effectiveness. and that's my appeal to my colleagues in the senate that we've actually act before this session of congress adjourns. so let me end on this note with a final question, i just like to go down the line and ask each and every one of you. if we change the policy can your branch until the u.s. military make it work? this end of the line, admiral pat. >> yes, i have complete confidence that we could make it work. >> as i indicated earlier, we would execute thoroughly, professionally, and with conviction. >> senators, indicated in my written and verbal statement we
will follow the law and execute it fatefully. >> -- faithfully. >> i concur. >> we can make it work and my most senior commanders believe that as well. >> i believe we can and will implement the policy with moderate risk to short term effectiveness and long term health of the force. thank you, gentleman. >> thank you very much, senator udall. senator wicker is next. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you. i have the greatest respect for my chairman. he's aware of that. i do have to wonder if the american people watching are thinking where why are we here? our best military minds should be concentrated on winning in afghanistan, winning the global war on terror, making sure our success in iraq stays and is
guaranteeed. are we taking the time and energy of this committee and these talented military people away from that central mission? and we are doing it in my judgment because a political decision has been made in the white house that now is the time when we have the votes to do this to push this through. and if i might say so, all difference to my colleagues, it reminds me of the time spent on the health care debate last christmas and during the early months of this year at a time when the unemployment rate of this country was hovering near 10%. and we were in one of the most serious recessions in any lifetime. we talked about that -- we
talked about an issue that had issue with unemployment and creating further recession in the country. to paraphrase the members of the joint chiefs of staff, really the question before us, and i suppose the question during the lame-duck session is should we with all that's going on and all of the demands made on the military, should we accept the strong risk of disruption? should we divert leadership away from the combat effort? those were the words of the commandant in the marine corps. to paraphrase general casey, is that the time to add another level of stress?
it's time to be making things more difficult in combat units or to paraphrase the words of general schwartz, place additional, discretionary demands on our personnel we ought to be asking them to focus all of the effort on winning the war. i wonder this, general amos, you read a very compelling statement of a marine. and i might ask you to read those words again. concerning a unit that is as in combat now, can you give us the most compelling sentences of that quote, sir? >> senator, the lieutenant said that his teams, his team, his
platoon, his squad, his fire teams effect i haveness is directly tied to it's cohesiveness. i think that's for me to work through the issues today. that became center part of my concerns. despite the differences, we are close that we anticipate the moves. that's the intricate woven where everybody thinks as one instead of as ridge -- individuals. our ability is predicated on the kind of relationship. we would all agree on that. any element of sexual to add any element of sexual competition for sexuality or hesitance and trust, it would prevent the
bonds. and the bonds in the unit, from forming, it may destroy them. >> thank you for reading them again. i have to ask myself, there seems to be a resignation around this table and the panel that this is going to happen eventually. it's just a matter of time and just a matter of timing. let me be somewhat of a contrarian here, i can't imagine that situation is going to be that different in 2012 for that marine lieutenant or in 2013. we're always going to be asking that type of fighting man to operate under those types of conditions. and i wonder if 2012 or 2013 is going to make that lieutenant is
going to make it better. would you care to comment on that general amos. >> sorry, it goes back to the if not now, then when? having worked my way through that, my recommendation would be not to do it as long as we have forces that are involved, similarly focused to where they are right now on combat. i'm assuming it's sometime in our future that we will come out of afghanistan. i think we all know that and believe that. i'm looking down the road at is there a more favorable time when our combat units have more time at home and we have more elasticity and flexibility in the training schedule. this particular unit, not the unit that i quoted early, had been deployed 21 of 23 months, three deployments, two of which involved in combat.
so in that very short period of time, their kick bag is pretty full. highly focused on reconstituting the force, training the force, language, culture, ied training, all that goes on to bring the uniting to and make it cohesive. as long as that's the case that we are in today, then my recommendation would be this is a bad time, senator. if we get to a point down the road where that is not the case, then i think probably we could do this. >> okay. i appreciate your answer. one final line of questioning. it's been suggested that "don't ask, don't tell" has hurt military readiness by the separation of many individuals who are mission critical. the facts are that 13,000
service members has been separated on the basis of homosexuality? 17 years, that's certainly far less than 1,000 per year. i was a judge advocate in the united states air force involved in separation of homosexualities back during an earlier law. i didn't serve on active duty during "don't ask, don't tell." it was frankly my experience that many military members who were separated because of homosexuality, actually came forward of their own volition and asked voluntarily to be separated and cited the requirement in the military at that time as the reason for their requested separation. would any of you care to comment
on that? or would any of you take a stab at the circumstances under which these 13,000 or the majority of these 13,000 have been separated over time. certainly, i think we would agree they were not rounded up in witch hunts. we didn't didn't -- under "don', don't tell" if they are not willing to admit it, there's no separation. how many? let my ask you, general schwartz, since we are both air force, i would -- am i incorrect in assuming that a significant portion of the air force members who were separated during the last 17 years actually voluntarily came forward and asked for separation on those grounds? >> separations in support of 654 where less than 1% of the entire
flow of individuals who separated and yes they were predominantly voluntary. >> anyone else care to comment on that? general admiral roughead? >> our were statement, as opposed for acts were marriage which is the actions. >> desiring to be separated, they came forward. >> people came forward claiming to be homosexual or admitted to be homosexual and asked to be removed. >> that's correct. yes, sir. >> anyone else? >> senator, the marine corps has since 1993 discharged a little over 625,000 marines, not for this, but just normal discharges. honorable discharges, retirements, so -- and of that 625,000 plus marines that have returned back to the united states of america, we have discharged 1304 marines were homosexuality.
of note, in that 1304, 400 of them happened at boot camp. the first 12 weeks of a marines career. i was at paris island about three or four weeks ago. i was there talking to the senior drill instructor. it just happened. he talked to me about a young marine that came forward. the rest of them i can't comment. the remainder i would suspect as some were outed. i suspect a majority of them were volunteers. but i don't know that for a fact. >> thank you very much. >> thank you, senator wicker. senator manchin. >> first of all, let me say thank you for all of you who are here and the branches that you represent. i would say that every west virginia is proud to be an american because of you. i want to thank you for your service. yesterday we had some questions and i'd asked secretary gates. and it was based around a cost
in time of dire financial challenges that we all have for the armed services. you know, they were talking about $100 billion in reduction of defense spending. is this going to be a cost effective measure for those of you in your branches to represent? and whoever want to smart and comment, i'd appreciate it. based on cost. >> i think, senator, if i may, one the things that we have to understand before we get into cost will be the issue of benefits. and what are the costs associated with putting in place the cadray that provides additional medical counseling? but that's always going to be a function of what the benefits are that are decided upon.
i think there are some unknowns. and that would be part -- at least from my perspective, of what would be involved in the certification process as well. in other words, if we are going to go forward, if the law is repealed and we are going to go forward, one the things that i think is important so that the combat effectiveness and cohesion is not effective is that we can provide our people across the board the types of benefits, services, that maybe -- >> you budget. there's no. i guess it's fair to say that nothing have been budgeted in each branch for this? >> that's correct. >> you assume there will be an additional cost? is it fair to say? >> senator, the report by my reading indicated a cost in the neighborhood of $40 to $50 million. i don't know what the constituent pieces of that estimate are. >> is that just in the air force? >> no, sir.
department wide. the other thing we talked about also is the effect it has on our clergy. have you spoken to the clergy what this would do to them and how it might cause attrition there? more rapid than intended? general casey. if you want to start. >> i have. senator, welcome to the committee. >> thank you. >> my chief of chaplain was involved with the survey grown up. he assured me if the law is repealed, that our chaplains will be able to serve and conduct religious services according to their faith. and that they will perform in accordance with the law and with army regulation. >> did you have -- and i asked this question because it came to me yesterday afterwords, i had a few phone calls that they believe there was some concerns about you might have more of the chaplain corps if you will than
all of the branches muster out quicker and at a higher percentage. >> his assessment, we have about 2800 army chaplains from about 200 different faith groups. he thought the attrition, if the law was repealed, would be small, in his words. >> we are seeing the same thing in in the navy. the data that shows how many would leave is relatively small. >> sir, i got to talk to the sponsors. their input is they believe they would be able to continue to sponsor if "don't ask, don't tell" were repealed. >> senator, for us, similar to the others, the impact would be modest based on feedback that we've received. the understanding is the
chaplains practice the protocol and the discipline of their faith. and what have you. but they also have a mandate to minister to the entire flock. and that is an ethic which all of our chaplains share. >> senator, our chaplains in the coast guard are detailed from the united states navy as to the marine corps as well. we have 42 chaplains. i've spoken to senior leadership and just as general schwartz indicates, they understand that they are to minister to everyone regardless of their faith. and i don't expect much of a change. >> and everything that we've been hearing and, i think, that some of the senators that commented on this is a matter of time. it looks like it's a policy that sooner or later is going to take effect. whether it's by the courts or by this body, if y'all would see
fit to do it yourself. with that being said, if we took in action whatsoever as a body, as congress, and the president, as i understand it, has the statutory authority to promotion, retirement, or separation of any member of the armed forces who the president would determine is essential to national security would -- if we don't repeal this, would still be in the per view of the president to make that decision if he thought it was national security? or need for us to act on it? and i'll start, general amos. >> senator, i can't comment on that. because i don't know the law that well. i just can't give you an answer. >> let me ask you, does it commander in chief see it as a statutory authority to suspend certain laws relating to promotion retirement or
separation? is there anyone that can comment to that? >> sir, i'd like to take that question for the record to give you an accurate answer. >> you may have come up with the question, senator, that is above our pay grades. [laughter] >> i wasn't sure that was possible. >> me either. [laughter] >> i meant the pay grade. if y'all could. that would be very helpful. i just being the newest person on the block, if you will, what we have in front of us right now, i was wondering the time. i've heard loud and clear, y'all would like to have that time guidelined in your per view, rather than ours. i think that's a very, very worthy consideration that we would have for y'all. i appreciate very much your appearance and the job you do and the service you perform for our country. >> thank you very much.
senator manchin. senator sessions? >> a little league advise. [laughter] >> i would just observe that i believe senator chambliss is correct, the report says total evaluation of the members of the military, a majority of them opposed the change. we don't need to be in a misimpression that there's some great ground swell of support for this. and i -- talk a little bit about how hard our military men and women work to prepare for combat. i mean how many hours they work, how many hours they work during the combat period, and how anything that adds to that can be a difficult thing. i would observe that the army, marines, and air force chiefs of
staff all have question that this change. and that represents 75% of the men and women serving our country today. and i think on the governor's question about our cost is something that we probably should look at a little more. there are many other factors, i think, that go into that. i want to take general schwartz. one quick question for you. on a different subject. i know there was an inadvertent, i believe inadvertent disclosure of competitive data in the air force tanker competition. and i accept that you've taken remediation, you've got a plan for that, one of the competitors and supporter, mr. loren thomas
of the lexington institute has complained about this. i want to give this an opportunity to say at first can congress have integrity in this procurement process as it goes forward? >> senator, a couple weeks ago, we had an inadvertent disclosure that was a profound disappointment, considering the diligence that our program office and source selection team had demonstrated up to that point. what occurs -- if i may, sir, what occurred was the inadvertent release of a single page of nonproprietary data that involved our analysis of the efficiency of the offers proposals, but it did not, it did not include any offer of proposed prices.
>> do you have any information that would indicate either competitor has acted inappreciately when they received the data that should not have been sent to them? >> both offers reacted in a responsible manner and returned the discs that are mistakingly forwarded to them, to the air force, and we have confirmed that by forensic evidence. >> thank you. admiral papp, you talked about some confusion in the law. all -- almost every one of you in previous panel has talked about the uncertainty of the law that somehow the courts are liable to make this happen. therefore, it would be better for the military to act on it's own. and get this done on congress
act. i just want to say to you, i've been -- i've looked at that law carefully. i am absolutely convinced that the aclu who lost the first circuit case 13 of 14 individuals, who complained about the constitutionality of the law, found the law constitutional. and they did not appeal. why? because they thought the supreme court was going to affirm as it has consistently done throughout the history of this country that being in the military is different than civilian life. a private, a sergeant, can't go out and attack the president of the united states whereas an individual american citizen can. there's always difference. so this is -- i just want to tell you to the extent to which that has caused you to believe this is somehow inevitable
because the supreme court is going to rule otherwise, i don't agree. i am very critical of solicitor general alaina kagan were so well known that she did not defend the united states and the military and the department of defense effectively in the california case and the way that was done was to obtain a letter from the chief counsel at the department of defense to say they thought in the wic case, it should be sent back to the lower court for further hearings. that was mr. jeh johnson, who the president and secretary of defense has chosen to co-chair. he should not have done that. the proper thing to do was to seek an appeal of the 9th circuit. so i do not believe that under the present state of the law, is that the supreme court is likely
to over throw the statute and i think i'm in accord with the aclu in that view. i saw in the report here general amos question. i'm not here to condemn anybody. we live in a great country. we have all kinds of people with different perspectives and lifestyles and dues and we accommodate that as best as we can. but i did notice that in one of the questions where they ask
individuals who had served with homosexuals in units how did it work? and was it -- did it affect the morale or efficiency of the unit? and the numbers were pretty high. i think in the range it was 45%, i think the army was around 30%. it was either affected adversely the morale of the unit by a lot, a little, or somewhat. and in that range. so it's a little bit different from some of the testimony that i've heard that people who have served in units with homosexual members, it made no difference to them. is that a correct interpretation of that question that you recall it? general amos? >> sir, i -- i'm drawing a blank
on that. i just -- i mean i know that how many of our marines have answered saying they have served with gays. that they are aware of. drawing a blank on the question that you are talking about. >> i'll submit that for the record. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you, senator sessions. senator hagan. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i wanted to thank all of you for being here today and for your service and for your leadership. i also know that -- i want you to know i'm extremely proud of all of the great men and women that we have in our service now and the job they are doing on behalf of our country. and you've all mentioned that leadership is going to be the determining factor in effectively implementing a repeal of this existing law. you also mention the importance of not phrasing the implementation among military branches,units, or ranks if it comes to pass.
will the joint chief of staff and the service chief coordinate the execution of this implementation and plan so it would be universally implemented at the same time? how would that actually happen? >> go ahead. >> yeah. >> i'll take the first swag at it. we would get together and sit down and work our way through an implementation plan to understand where the challenges would be. and i think each of the members here have highlighted various challenges. we know we would have to take on. the rotation rates, the intermixing of units where you have different services and different skills that rotate at rates. trying to understand the likelihood of trying to do it while deployed and when at home is it appropriate? those are the things we would have to sit down and talk our way through. i understand at that point. >> senator we -- chapter 13 has a good framework to initially get started on implementation.
the case of the navy taking into account some of the units that may be forward and how we would want to work them in, but i think it's important that if, in fact, we were to go forward, we should -- we should do it relatively directly because i think long periods of uncertainty are not helpful in any military organization. >> senator hagan, i agree with that, except in my case the case and might miss the most challenging unit, not even the average units and our armed forces, and those are probably, again, those which practice close combat in any of the surfaces. >> as a senator lieberman has said, the provision in the existing version of the national defense authorization act will not implement the repealed until the secretary of defense science a certification that among other
things, effectively negates impact to unit cohesion, effectiveness and readiness. and we've been talking about courts also, and i was just wondering, do you believe that the unpredictability of the courts to overturn the existing the law is negatively affecting our forces? and would it be preferable to congress to repeal the existing wall now with implementation taking effect after the secretary defense feels comfortable in citing the certification? so the impact of the uncertainty that we are operating under right now. general cartwright? >> my sense is that the uncertainty really surfaced here in the most recent court case, and i am not sure that it is really permeated the service down to the individual members. speaking for myself i would say it certainly caught my attention and that has a leader and sitting where i do, that i want to make sure if, to the extent i
can, our preference would be this body to the implementation, not the courts. >> and senator, i would say the uncertainty does permeate down because as we had to a couple of months ago, we had to provide additional guidance to recruiters, we had to make sure that everyone understood what any of the disclosures would be, and i would say even today it's more pronounced because of the access that all over forces have to instantaneous information, not necessarily good information. and so as that's turning around, i think it injects an u.n. uncertain area into force that isn't helpful. >> i would just say, senator, i agree there was some uncertainty, but i couldn't grasp farsi it had a negative impact on the force. and as i said earlier, with her, no matter how the law is
repealed, we need the implementation time to properly do it. >> man, i would say that injunctions and quick successions were disruptive. >> yes, ma'am, exactly and as i stated earlier, this ambiguity that is created for particularly our jr leaders, people on the front line need to be clear so they know where they stand in terms of enforcement in the way ahead. >> i don't think anybody as a recruiting officer would have certain uncertainties with the law changing or the thing is back-and-forth but it would certainly be a problem. yesterday, admiral mullen and his eyes to implementing a repeal of the existing law and the time of war is not an issue. he put forth an example that in 1948 when president truman ordered the military to racially integrate our forces, which was implemented throughout the caribbean war, and admiral mullen added that war facilitates change and i were
forces are completely different than they were back in 1993 when this existing law was passed. secretary gates indicated with enough time and preparation, the dod could mitigate all concerns, even those of our combat and special forces units were up to of this year. could you describe how the forces of evil to since 1993 and being receptive to change regarding this issue and maybe describe how the war has facilitated change in this regard. i know some of the answers are different from what i've read in the report. >> senator, i didn't necessarily cure chairman mullins statement in its entirety. but i would say as i said in my testimony i believe the fact that we are up for war complicates repealed, and i described the additional tasks that we've placed on small unit leaders in a combat zone to
implement this and how that would detract from their ability to the broad range of complex tasks are required to do in iraq and afghanistan. now, that said, i can understand what the chairman was saying about there is a tight bond and close-knit bond, and in some cases that may facilitate it. but frankly, i think that is a bit of a stretch. >> senator, my sense is that the on known here is the implementation plan. other words, what does that implementation plan allowed us to do in mitigation, and the secretary was very clear about what he believed it gave us which was he was not going to sign until service chiefs were ready. if that's the case i think that makes me very comfortable that the fact that there is a war going on the there's an implementation plan each of the service chiefs have had in put and felt the have mitigated and can give that kind of offense to the secretary that we could in fact do this.
>> senator, on the areas of specialty i'm most concerned in talking to those commanders, i am assured that the affect of the front line would not be that great because of their focus and their current level. >> i think the secretary defense indicated some measure of caution with respect to implementation and i think that is warranted. >> yes, ma'am. as i sit in my opening statement, there's just things that we cannot foresee, even when we try very hard to. while it's not directly translatable, we've had experience of too long ago introducing women into the services and fully integrating them into our -- >> [inaudible] >> yes, ma'am. and even with -- the coast guard academy was the first federal academy to introduce women coming and we put women out to
the fleet very early, and even with a lot of thoughtful consideration, there are things that you miss that you don't learn about until you actually go ahead and implement the plans. >> thank you. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you, senator hagan. senator brown. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i actually agree with senator wicker, in that in the worst recession we've had in quite awhile, and we seem to be doing everything except working on the one thing that can get our economy moving, which is jobs. so i'm hopeful that when we get working that we will actually start to work on one issue, but i do certainly appreciate participating in this process as well. as i said, long before i got elected and then when i got here, being inquire about this and many other issues many, many, many times, and i always said i would pledge to have an open mind and learn and try to understand the intricacies of
this very important decision and -- excuse me -- a meeting with you and speaking with you about this and secretary gates and petraeus and mcchrystal in the whole list of probably a thousand people now in congress but outside congress as well. and it seems to me one of the things in following up with senator inhofe ase i've been in the military 31 years, so we understand this issue i think maybe more than some folks or some leaders here in the house and senate that haven't had any military experience. dalia understand it, i observed it, as a jag, i read the rules concerning this issue. i am a little -- senator inhofe asked a question, and i've done many surveys in the army and don't remember them being voluntary. i always remember them saying here's a survey, get them, as a
company commander, get them done. i'm a little confused, still, as to why we didn't just say here's a survey. we are spending a ton of money. it's a critical piece of what we are dealing with in society and the armed forces. get it done, company commanders. so, any thoughts on that, general casey, as to like why we didn't just say here's a survey, get it done. we will see you next week. >> i honestly don't know why they chose to do it the way they did. >> anyone else have any thoughts at all? >> i think, senator, from our perspective we use surveys for various purposes, looking at personnel issues and things like that, and this is very consistent with the way that we -- we survey our force, and figures that we've seen in these surveys are free consistent, and the patterns are very consistent, so this, in our opinion, was a good way to
sample the force. >> it's interesting. like i said, i've been 31 years and i've taken a ton of surveys, voluntary gorgeous to get it back. one thing we're dealing with is a very important part for our military is going not only not in the future. i would have thought it would have said get it done, period. i would note that for the record. and it seems and listening, as i said, i've read the report, i've spoken with at least a thousand people, afghanistan, national guard, reserves from active army, etc., in getting their input. it seems to me that each and every one of you says yeah, not opposed to the repeal, however, i do have very serious concerns about the battle readiness and effectiveness of the repeal on our battle troops. the troops are actually on the front lines fighting. is that an accurate representation of your position, and if it isn't, if someone could clarify that for me. general cartwright, did you have a comment? >> my sense is that each of us have represented what we think are the key areas that either
the mitigation has to handle or some other method has to handle before we are ready to move forward, and clearly this issue of can we put one more stone for the implications, not knowing what the the implication is until we go forward with it. >> thank you for that. mr. chairman, one of the things that concerns me greatly after speaking and doing my due diligence is the one issue is senator thune also pointed of is the only issue that's the important issue in my mind right now and while fighting the to wars is the safety and security of the men and women serving, regardless the sexual orientation. i want to make sure we give them the tools and resources to do their job safely and come home. and to implement social change in the middle of two battles, you know to i think quite eloquently, not only to everybody in this committee, but to anyone who's listening. you're very real concerns, and quite frankly, i'm a little surprised at the kortright
nature in which you have conveyed that to us and i appreciate that. i'm hopeful that if in fact we do move forward with this at some point, i know speaking with counselors, you said march is when they felt the next court battle would be done and then thereafter i sure there would be an appeal. i hope if in fact this -- when or if this "don't ask don't telstra quote to be given the three signers to certify to let them know what you're very real concerns are because on the and many others share those concerns so let's assume argument's sake it's been repealed and we all agree it's time. one of the things i need to be made aware of and be very, very comfortable with, sirs come
izzie will do your utmost to convey to the certified years that we are ready. we are ready to implement the beckham trips first. we have a plan for education, we have a plan for implementation, we have done our due diligence, this is our strategy, this is what we are going to do. we are going to focus on the troops that are home first, the kind of back mind, you know, transportation, you know, those kind of units, service and support units, and then with the rattle units we are going to leave them as is. they just have too much on their plate. we are going to leave them as is and let them do the force, but then when they come home we are going to implement them and get the training. we are going to give them the education, we are going to work it through and cyclist in. i think it would be potentially
detrimental to gistel for sutphen if the courts in fact do something like that to just go over my to think it would be exceedingly disruptive to the force, and i am basing that on everything i have learned, forgetting my personal opinion, but everything you in your 100 plus years of testimony have indicated. is anything that i have said, sirs, is their anything there that night said that you feel needs to be corrected or is anything different from your positions? >> my sense first is that none of us will be shrinking violence in this activity. we all feel like we have the access that we need and the opportunity that we need in order to give advice. i would put that up front. the details of exactly how we will do the implementation i think remain to be unfolded. >> anyone else? >> i agree. we often gather -- often are in
agreement, but in seldom in complete disagreement, but we have the opportunity, each one of us have been hired for our own roles confirmed by the senate. i've got great confidence in the leadership of the department of defense to do this thing the right way. >> general casey, i've got to hear from you, the last person, before we wrap up. >> and injury comfortable that we have access. i said that several times today, and we will have access and take great interest because as you say, it is about the safety and security of our force. i just wouldn't commit to any kind of implementation plan now because we really just haven't had enough -- >> it's premature obviously. well listen, in conclusion, mr. chairman, like i said yesterday, you know, on an approach to be on this committee, and i am glad that we have had an opportunity to participate in this process. timing is we are here, it is our
work. so, i want to thank you all for your accessibility in answering it not only me but my staff's questions and getting us the appropriate information and guidance, and i also want to say thank you also to you in your family service to our country. it makes me very proud to be here. >> thank you very much, senator brown. let's have a second round now. one of the real issues that people have focused on is the question of the war fighting units, and i want to read you, from this report on page six, while the higher percentage of service members in war fighting units predict -- and that word is in italics, the emphasize it -- predict negative effects of repealed, the percentage distinctions between war fighting units and the entire
military are almost nonexistent. when asked about the actual experience of serving in a unit of some believed to be gay. for example, for those in the overall military who were asked about the experience of working with someone they believe to be gay or lesbian, 92% stated that their units, quote, ability to work together was a very good, good, or neither good nor poor. meanwhile, in response to the same question, the percentages 89% for the was an army combat armed units a and 84% for those and marine combat armed units are jury high percentages. close quote and then the report continues anecdotally we heard much the same.
as one special operations force war fightold us, we have a gay guy in the unit. he's big, he's mean, and he kills lots of bad guys. no one cared that he was gay, end of quote. well, general amos, that guy was not apparently in the marines, he was a special operations force war fighter. i'm not sure what force he was in. but would you say that that expression of his about no one cared he was gay. we have a gay guy here. he's big, he's a mean and he tells a lot of bad guys. should that be read two or three times also? >> chairman, i don't doubt at any given base or combat outpost that we will find men and women
that are out there just exactly like that special operations soldier, marine concealer, whatever he was. >> what about the percentages that i read? >> i can't comment on that, but i can see that 80% of our combat marines say they've never served with the or lesbians -- >> the ones who have? >> the ones who have a suspect or a more tolerant of it. that probably is where you are going at this point. >> it's not where i'm going, it's where the reports went. >> well, i understand that, sir. >> it's critically important, it seems to me. and it really needs a great deal of focus. i couldn't agree more with the colleagues who say that we've got to look at this entire picture. i don't know what percentage of our men and women in the military are in kind of a point of this speaker. do you know how many people in
the military altogether how many are there? >> somewhere in the 2.2 million. >> what percentage would you say are in combat arms units? >> i would have to go back and look. >> it would be a minority that are in combat? >> yeah. >> so we have to try to do this right for everybody. general schwartz, you said that we ought to be paced by the people who are in combat. okay. obviously we ought to consider them. you sit 2012, that's the right date. do you know how many people will be in combat in 2012? >> i don't. >> why is 2012 the right time? there may be people in combat. >> there may well be, sir. it's my conviction so that in 2011i have enough confidence in what is going to transpire in
2011 that i think that is too soon. >> i understand that, but you said it should be based on the number of people in combat and you don't know how many people will be in combat in 2012. and yet, pay, do it then, not now. >> there is uncertainty here, no question, but it is clear to me that you cannot disaggregate the force, the joint team -- >> i have to agree with you on that, by the way. i agree with your point that you cannot, i think, kind of have a different phase in for a different place. i think admiral roughead, you also made the same point. i have to agree with that. you know, we like to say one size shouldn't it all and one size can't fit all. there are ways we think in the implementation that will be able to do some sensitive response to where the various people are in
terms of their education. i don't think you can have an education program when people are in a fight. you've got to wait obviously for them to come home and be rotated. so there are things you can do. i just think the latest until 2012 is totally arbitrary -- >> what i offered in my testimony was that we would not execute full implementation until 2012. we could begin education and training soon after you act to repeal. >> you have to repealed before the implementation stage comes. >> absolutely. and my forecast would be, unlike others, that it's not a matter of months. >> for the implementation stage, even if it takes a year to begin, you've got to repealed or you can't be implementing a
repealed. so first step is to repeal. why now? waukee in a lame-duck? that wasn't our timing. we have this bill, i believe in march? what was the month? de remember? okay. six months ago we adopted a defense authorization bill. a majority of the committee, i think's 16-12, said we should repeal a provision which the committee had adopted it years before, more than that. 18 years before. the bill contains -- and i agree with what senator brown said -- the tools and resources that need to be given to our troops are in the bill. if people want to vote against this provision, fine.
we are trying to get the bill to the floor so they can vote against the provision if they want to, but in the meantime, the bill is being held up from getting to the floor. a bill which contains the provisions for the tools and the resources for our troops. you can't get to the floor. you've got 57 or 58 votes. the last time i was brought up. we are trying to get the bill to the floor. we've been trying for a long time. we didn't pick the lame-duck to bring this up. people understandably said wait until we have the report. okay. there was a reasonable request. many felt strongly it was important we have a report. well, we didn't set the time for the report. the report came in michaud believe it was due december 1st. and we got a bill which contains a central provision for the men and women in the military. training, benefits, health care for them and their families and many more things beyond that.
and so we are trying to get the bill to the floor where people who oppose this provision could either vote to strip it or modify and that is what we are trying to do. the timing isn't our choice, the timing we've been trying to get this to the floor for six or eight months, and we are going to hopefully find a way to get this to the floor this month, but there is a lot in that bill is essential for the well-being of our troops. and for those who think this is a mistake, and i respect their position of the white disagree with it because of the caution that's in there in terms of the implementation phase and the certification, and i commend all of you for saying that you feel very comfortable about having access before this is a certified, if it is, that this can be done without any negative effect on capetian or on readiness, and i thank you all for your testimony in that regard. >> but that is in the bill.
that needs to be strengthened. some offer an amendment to strengthen it. but the timing when we are asked why it now? but one of my colleagues, believe me, we have been trying for six months to get this bill to the floor and this is part of the bill by majority vote of the committee. because it was this committee that put a "don't ask don't tell" into the law in the beginning and it's appropriate for this committee to address it. should the majority see fit. my time is up. senator mccain. >> thank you, mr. chairman, and i am sure that our witnesses were intrigued by the lecture on the legislative process here in the united states senate authenticating mr. bismarck's comment about the two things you never want to see made our laws and sausages. i just finished a reelection
campaign. every place i went all over my state for nearly two years and one came up to me with significant military retiree and military bases and presence. no one came up to me and said she, please, senator mccain, get to work on "don't ask, don't tell." in fact, every place i went, the members of military came up to me and said things were fine. it's working. but most importantly, they said they want to get their job. they want to stay in their homes. i know one this morning went up to 938%. and we are about to raise taxes the first of the year. and an overwhelming majority of americans. middle-income, high income, whichever it is, because my friends on the other side of the ogle, an incredible act of courage, went out of session without addressing the issue of tax extensions so that the small
and large business people and my state, what's left of them, have no predictability has to what their investments could be. whether they could haulier or not. so, the fact is, and this morning we find out an increase in the unemployment rate up to 9.8%. i appreciate the candid assessment made by every member of this panel whether i agree with him or not. and as i said before, in my opening statement, we should not be questioning in the one's integrity of motives in addressing this issue. admiral roughead, obviously i disagree with your assessment, but i respect your assessment. general cartwright, the same. and i know it's tough, sometimes to speak truth to power. and i know that in the military