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Sunday, December 19, 2010

Senate Allows Executive & Military to Certify an End to DADT at some, unkown future date


In the last days of the mangled lame duck of the 111th, the Senate voted today, in two votes, cloture on the motion to concur and to adopt the House concurring resolution, to give the authority to the President, SecDef, and JCS Chairman to "certify" that a repeal of DADT would be timely and effective.

No time limit exists for when the Executive can present a certification.

No changes were made to the UCMJ, leaving in place the legal framework that existed prior to DADT (10 U.S.C. 654) that led to so-called "witch hunts" of gay and lesbian servicemembers and potential for dishonorable conduct discharges, if 'certification' doesn't occur (and perhaps even if it does).

With luck, the courts will review the existing cases on appeal, to shore-up the perimeter.

The Bill was managed as an historic stand alone, after its incorporation in the failed NDAA for FY 2011.

These changes take place in heavy times. In separate news, ISAF identified today a U.S. Marine killed in Afghanistan earlier this year, as well as an ISAF servicemember killed today. For 2010, total US casualities in Af-Pak "war" includes 361 IED deaths out of nearly 500 year-to-date.