Best Defense

Thomas E. Ricks' daily take on national security.

The bitter end of ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’

Congratulations to all those involved in lifting the ban on being honestly gay in the military. The next big step will be figuring out benefits, especially for those who claim to be gay but lack the ability to get a civil marriage. It would be easy for Willie and Joe to collect substantial off-base housing ...

Wikimedia
Wikimedia
Wikimedia

Congratulations to all those involved in lifting the ban on being honestly gay in the military.

The next big step will be figuring out benefits, especially for those who claim to be gay but lack the ability to get a civil marriage. It would be easy for Willie and Joe to collect substantial off-base housing benefits, for example, by claiming to be partners. "Sure, sarge, uh, we dig dudes. Now where's our $1,500 extra a month? Do you know how many six-packs that buys?" But I am sure that we can figure this out.

On the political side, I am surprised at how bad Sen. John McCain looks in all this. He was for lifting the ban if the military leadership said so before he was against it, as they used to say. I mean, he and Sen. Joe Lieberman used to be like peas in a pod, and now Lieberman just shakes his head in sorrow.

Congratulations to all those involved in lifting the ban on being honestly gay in the military.

The next big step will be figuring out benefits, especially for those who claim to be gay but lack the ability to get a civil marriage. It would be easy for Willie and Joe to collect substantial off-base housing benefits, for example, by claiming to be partners. “Sure, sarge, uh, we dig dudes. Now where’s our $1,500 extra a month? Do you know how many six-packs that buys?” But I am sure that we can figure this out.

On the political side, I am surprised at how bad Sen. John McCain looks in all this. He was for lifting the ban if the military leadership said so before he was against it, as they used to say. I mean, he and Sen. Joe Lieberman used to be like peas in a pod, and now Lieberman just shakes his head in sorrow.

Thomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military from 1991 to 2008 for the Wall Street Journal and then the Washington Post. He can be reached at ricksblogcomment@gmail.com. Twitter: @tomricks1

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