In an interview
with CNN Thursday, former secretary of State and retired
general Colin Powell once again reiterated his support for a
military review of the U.S. "don't ask,
don't tell" policy, which prohibits gays
and lesbians from serving openly in the armed forces.
"We should be
reevaluating it," he said.
evolving views on "don't ask, don't tell" are the
source of much interest on Capitol Hill precisely because
people think he holds so much sway inside the Beltway.
However, his comments to CNN do not represent a change
of position. In fact, they parallel those he made at
the Aspen Institute in July, when he endorsed reviewing the
policy but stopped short of calling for its repeal.
"I agree with
[former] Senator [Sam] Nunn -- you can review it, but
I'm not prepared to say that you should do away with it
until you have talked to the people who have to
execute it and implement it -- the armed forces
leadership," Powell said while being interviewed by Walter
Isaacson. Nunn chaired the Senate Armed Services Committee
when the policy was adopted in 1993.
ultimately be resolved in a way that many people would like
it to be resolved, where there are no restrictions,
perhaps?" Powell continued. "But I think we have to go
at it slowly in the way that Senator Nunn said: Have
hearings on it, get the military leaders up, have them
justify it -- just as i was required to appear before
Senator Nunn and many other committee members to
explain the 'don't ask, don't tell' policy and why we
thought it was appropriate at that time."