Former Chairman of the Joints Chief of Staff Gen. John Shalikashvili stated, “Our military has been stretched thin by our deployments in the Middle East, and we must welcome the service of any American who is willing and able to do the job.” Current Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Michael Mullen has said, “We have in place a policy that forces young men and women to lie about who they are in order to defend their fellow citizens. For me, personally, it comes down to integrity: Theirs as an individual, ours as an institution.”
More than 13,000 Americans willing and eager to defend the United States have been forced out since 1993. Who are these soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines? Well, one is a decorated Air Force fighter pilot who American taxpayers have spent about $25 million to train. Then there are the gay linguists who have been outed and forced to leave.
The Senate Select Committee on Intelligence has found that the necessary cadre of U.S. intelligence linguists skilled in regional languages such as Pashto, Dari and Urdu “remains essentially nonexistent” and that “persistent critical shortages in some languages contribute to the loss of intelligence information and affect the ability of the intelligence community to process and exploit what it does collect.” The fact is that dozens of highly able and skilled linguists who are gay are kicked out of the U.S. military while we are facing a shortage of those who can do these critical jobs.