The Army discharged at
least 11 soldiers in January for violating the military's
"Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy.
Jim Moran, who has requested monthly figures on such firings by
the Pentagon until the ban on gay service members is repealed,
announced the number on Thursday.
This round of soldiers
were the last to be discharged during the watch of the Bush
Administration. The discharged soldiers included one human
intelligence collector, one military police officer, four
infantry personnel, a health care specialist, motor transport
operator and water treatment specialist.
"At a time when
our military's readiness is strained to the breaking point from
the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the armed forces continue to
discharge vital service members under the outdated, outmoded
'don't ask, don't tell' policy," Moran said
in a statement.
This week, both the
Philippines and Argentina announced they were lifting the ban
on gay and lesbian service members in their militaries.
"Our allies have
overcome this issue, facing no adverse consequences from
lifting bans focused on soldiers' sexual orientation. Polls
show the American people overwhelmingly support repealing this
policy. Yet, how many more good soldiers are we willing to lose
due to a bad policy that makes us less safe and secure? I'm
going to keep releasing this information each month until DADT
About 10,000 service
members have been discharged for being openly gay or
outed since the ban started in 1993, according to a 2005
Government Accountability Office study.
President Barack Obama
has been reportedly consulting with military officials and
defense department Secretary Robert Gates on how to properly
lift the ban. Plans have yet to be officially announced as to
how the ban would be lifted.