Spot Checks of Military Bases Ordered on Gay Harassment

Defense Secretary William Cohen has ordered spot checks of military bases around the nation to determine whether lesbian and gay service members are being harassed. The acting Pentagon Inspector General, Donald Mancuso, will supervise teams that will determine what problems exists in implementing President Clinton’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy for lesbians and gay men in the military. Cohen ordered Mancuso to report back within 90 days.

This action came after the recent court-martial and conviction of an army private who murdered a gay soldier in July. In response to this murder, Hillary Clinton has called for the elimination of the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy.

Vice President Al Gore also has called for the complete elimination of the policy stating that “Gays and lesbians should be allowed to serve their country without discrimination.”

President Clinton himself has said that the current policy for lesbians and gay men in the military is “out of what,” but has not called for the policy’s dismissal.


New York Times - December 14, 1999

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