US Military Allies say that lifting ban on gay service has improved their militaries

Timothy Kincaid

May 20th, 2010

The Brookings Institute is looking to see whether openly gay service is detrimental to the militaries of our Western allies. (CNN)

Representatives from Great Britain, Canada, Australia, Israel and the Netherlands gathered Wednesday at the Brookings Institution, a think tank in Washington, to describe how the militaries in those countries handled allowing homosexuals to serve openly in their militaries. The consensus was that, in spite of concerns before the change, when gays and lesbians were allowed to serve, it was a non-issue.

Not only did none of the projected problems materialize, but open service has unexpected benefits.

Jones said British military officials saw an unexpected benefit of allowing gays to serve openly – better retention of qualified soldiers and sailors in key positions. In the late 1990s and early 2000s, the British military had a 6 percent to 8 percent gap in unfilled positions. Now it’s down to the 2 percent to 3 percent range. Jones said one reason for that is the new policy allowing gays to serve. Now that gays are able to serve, military recruiters in the United Kingdom have more volunteers to choose from, Jones said. Also, having children is often cited by British troops as one reason why they leave the military in their late 20s or 30s. And Jones said because gays and lesbians are less likely to become parents, they tend to stay in the military longer.


May 21st, 2010

But since all of those militaries are inferior to the American military, that’s okay. We’re perfect as we are, so we don’t need improving.

We’re taking gangbangers, white supremicists, and even murderers and folks with felony convictions into the ranks, be we don’t want no degenerates!

Because our troops are *so* sensitive, we can’t allow gays in the military, ’cause they’re afraid of being scoped out in the showers.

Paul in Canada

May 21st, 2010

Marlene – too funny, but… not really. The US is against changes in the military, not based on ‘moral’ grounds but based on finding the lowest denominator possible – recruit ‘anyone’ who will join. As pointed out in the article, recruiting strategies determine who enlists. The US military is so desparate, they’ll take anyone. The bigots, rednecks and low life that enlist now (with excpeptions, of course) are ‘afraid’ of gays. Changing the policy would ‘scare away’ these bullies, bullies that the US needs to fill positions for wars they shouldn’t be a part of in the first place.

The US, like it’s allies, needs to ask: what kind of military do we really want? Based on an answer that should be: a well trained, committed force of intelligent people, would change all types of recruiting, and training approaches, including the abolishment of DADT.


May 21st, 2010

True Paul… but other than the middle comment, those other two are more or less *actual* comments from “experts”.

Fred in the UK

May 21st, 2010

Unfortunately, I have to voice doubt as to whether the vacancy rate within the British armed forces fell entirely, or even mainly, because of allowing gay and lesbian soldiers, sailors and airmen to serve openly. I suspect that it relates more to the availability of alternative employment opportunities within the general economy.

That said, the main point is that for U.S. allies lifting their own bans turned out to be a non-issue. I have never heard any justification as to why U.S. forces are significantly different to their anglophone allies.


May 22nd, 2010

For the situation in the UK, check these links:

It’s like a different planet.

Jim in Ma

May 24th, 2010

It seems the kind of military we want is the type we can afford to lose. Gay people are just too valuable to lose, which is why we don’t want to scare off the other folk.


May 24th, 2010

What it comes down to is a gay friendly place is a better workplace.

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