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Gen. Petraeus Says Time to Consider Change in DADT

Petraeus-PDToday the Senate Armed Services Committee held yet another hearing on the Fiscal Year 2011 Department of Defense Authorization bill, this time with testimony from Adm. Eric T. Olson, Commander, U.S. Special Operations Command and Gen. David H. Petraeus, Commander, U.S. Central Command.  Gen. Petraeus was questioned by Senator McCain regarding "Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell" (DADT).  Although he was given little time to respond, Gen. Petraeus said that he “believe[s] the time has come to consider a change to 'Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,'” and expressed his support for Secretary Gates and Adm. Mullen’s proposed plan for review and repeal.  Chairman Levin reiterated several times that Gen. Petraeus was welcome to submit a statement explaining his opinion on DADT for the record and thanked the General for his thoughtful consideration of the issue. Gen. Petraeus has made statements supportive of repeal in the past.  Earlier this month he told CNN’s GPS television news program host Fareed Zakaria that “I think this is something that can be worked through, frankly.” He also noted that other nations that allow open service by lesbians and gays employ “very sensible and pragmatic policies.” The Senate Armed Services Committee is scheduled to have a hearing this Thursday, March 18, on “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”

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