Adam Polaski

Group Releases Investigation of DADT Survey Leak

Filed By Adam Polaski | June 29, 2011 9:15 AM | comments

Filed in: Politics
Tags: Center for Military Readiness, Don't Ask Don't Tell, leak, survey

Files.jpgThe Pentagon's investigation into who leaked the DADT survey that galvanized support for the policy's repeal last December has also been leaked, according to Talking Points Memo.

The Center for Military Readiness, the anti-gay group that opposed repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" partly because of the "huge issue" that it would force gay soldiers to shower next to straight soldiers, leaked the investigation on Monday. The 30-page document (PDF) looked into who was responsible for leaking the survey of U.S. soldiers to The Washington Post for an article indicating that there wasn't much risk at all to repealing the gay military ban.

The organization has leaked this new information in its attempts to block certification of final repeal of DADT. The document demonstrates that someone close to the survey who wanted to see the policy repealed leaked the survey to the press to show that U.S. military personnel weren't up in arms about repeal.

The Center for Military Readiness views it as a huge betrayal:

The ultimate result of this travesty was a rushed vote to repeal the law regarding homosexuals in the military with delayed implementation, during the December lame-duck session of the 111th Congress. [...]

The purpose of the contrived [Comprehensive Review Working Group] process was to neutralize military opposition to repeal of the law by manufacturing an illusion of support. The administration misused military personnel, resources, and facilities to help President Obama to deliver on political promises to gay activists as the expense of unknowing troops who became props in the pro-repeal campaign.

The newly leaked document - which bears the "For Official Use Only" label - doesn't uncover the whistleblower.

"We interviewed 96 of the 101 individuals with access to the draft Report or knowledge of its content. Each denied under oath that he or she disclosed information to the Washington Post or other media sources. We did not interview the White House staff members. Evidence otherwise accessible to us was insufficient to identify the Washington Post's unnamed sources. Accordingly, we could not exclude the possibility that persons outside DoD provided information to the Washington Post.

That leads Talking Points Memo's Ryan J. Reilly to one real assumption:

Pentagon investigators, according to the original documents, did find that whoever leaked information from the report (they didn't single anyone out) likely did so "with the intent to shape a pro-repeal perception of the draft Report prior to its release to gain momentum in support of a legislative change during the 'lame duck' session of Congress following the November 2, 2010, elections."

The report found that 101 individuals had access to the draft report, and 96 of them denied under oath that they gave access to the report to members of the media. Five White House staff members were given access to the report, but were not interviewed by investigators. Investigators don't outright say it, but unless someone is lying, the logical conclusion is that the leak came from the White House.

"Don't Ask, Don't Tell" repeal was signed into law by President Obama in December, but until it is certified by the president, Secretary of Defense, and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, it will remain in effect and discharges will still be possible.

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And how much did it cost the government to do this wonderful investigation?