Gen. Wesley Clark On ‘This Week:’ DADT Puts Military In ‘Culture War Crosshairs’


Christiane Amanpour devoted most of ABC’s This Week today to the seemingly endless debate over Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, and hosted pundits and professionals from both sides of the repeal dispute.

Among them was former NATO commander Gen. Wesley Clark, a supporter of repeal who contends DADT unfairly thrusts service men and women into the “culture war crosshairs.”

“What we need to do is take the military out of the crosshairs of the culture wars,” said Clark. “Let this policy be decided and give the men and women who are leading the armed forces the opportunity to do their job, get the policy implemented.” Indeed: there are bigger wars to fight than those surrounding people’s private love lives.

Clark also said he agrees with the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Adm. Mike Mullen, and the group’s Vice Chairman, Gen. James Cartwright: wartime is the right time for repeal. “I do agree with the point that the chairman and the vice chairman made,” explained Clark. “If the military’s focused on war, this is the ideal time to do it, because we’re talking about building teamwork around a common purpose.”

Meanwhile, on the opposing side of the divide, Elaine Donnelly from the conservative Center for Military Readiness, harped on statistics suggesting 67 percent of combat Marines  think a repeal would hurt their unit’s effectiveness.

“For anyone to say that it’s OK to make military life more difficult and more dangerous, I don’t think that’s really fair, because it’s like putting stones in someone’s rucksack,” she insisted.

Here are links part one and part two of the discussion, which also included Sergeant First Class Stacy Vasquez, who was discharged under DADT, the Log Cabin Republicans’ Clarke Cooper, Tammy Schultz from the Marine Corp War College, as well as Bob Maginnis, a retired Army Lt. Col. who now works for the Family Research Council.

Not surprisingly, Maginnis echoed Donnelly’s “burden” argument, while also trying to shift blame to Bill Clinton, DADT’s signatory president.

Of course a right winger on the wrong side of history would try to make “Slick Willy” the center of attention, rather than the cold, hard facts, as reported from our troops themselves: repeal would have little to no on unit cohesiveness.


  1. jerome says

    Somebody clue Clark about life not being fair. Evidently he didn’t get that memo. If McCain would quit bitching, and take a well-deserved Mydol, then all the media circus hoopla would dissolve faster than you could say:Plop-Plop Fizz-Fizz Oh What A Relief It Is.

  2. Danny says

    @Jerome: Clark is on the side of the Angels in this. The word “fair” is used by his opponent Elaine Donnelly. Please read the story again. Clark stood up for us on this issue.

  3. TANK says

    Jerome, you should be slapped repeatedly. In fact, that’s one of the things I want…my own personal slapping butler. One day. Big hands, too, for maximum slap sound (the real insult in a good slap)…I’ll call him mr. spanx and he’ll slap around people that irritate me. And it is, in fact, elaine donnelly and other professional bigots that are bringing soldiers into the culture war.

  4. says


    Clark has been pro gay marriage, pro gay adoption and against DADT for years all the way back to like 2000 when lady gaga was still a twinkle in some music moguls eye.

    turn off your airheaded club music and pay attention a little more

  5. says

    Read Elaine Donnelly’s bio from the Center for Military Readiness website:

    “Secretary of Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger appointed Mrs. Donnelly…”

    “…H.W. Bush appointed her to the Presidential Commission on the Assignment of Women in the Armed Forces.”

    “…Mrs. Donnelly participated in fact-finding visits to numerous military bases all over the country…”

    “…first woman to receive the Adm. John Henry Towers award from the New York Naval Aviation Commandery, in recognition of her support for naval aviation.”

    Notice something? This “expert” hasn’t served. She’s a conservative hack in one of the think tanks that get invited EVERYWHERE because they pretend they are non-partisan. But they aren’t. They have a political agenda.

    This is from their own site: The Center for Military Readiness is an independent, non-partisan educational organization, which does not receive government or corporate funds.

    They don’t disclose their donor list.

  6. jerome says

    Yes Danny, I know he’s on our side, yet the unfairness point I made still stands as is. When have we ever been treated fairly? On any issue? Elaine Donnelly is a “Pay Per Spew”, statistic reciting, propagandist. I read her vile article “Gays In The Military:A Losing Battle”. How can you conduct a scientific study with just 1000 participants? Unfair? You betcha! Of course military men and women are going to get caught in the cultural war crosshairs! It’s unfair but, hey, that’s life.

  7. George says

    I just want to state that I find this man incredible hot. Just to get to the point of a homosexual blog…after all, it is about who I love and have sex with, isn’t it?

  8. Jason 2 says

    Wesley Clark is one guy I really, really, really have always wanted to vote for for prez. He’s right about practically everything.

  9. ratbastard says

    Sorry, the fault of this clusterfuck is at the top. Our president is weak. Roosevelt stared down powerful internal forces who would have been willing to kill him or commit a coup. Truman stood up to brutal opposition and unhesitantly did the right thing in desegregating the armed forces. Eisenhower didn’t allow the military industrial complex to walk all over him. Kennedy bravely stood up to various powerful institutions, may even have paid with his life for doing so. And his position on civil rights was originally hesitant but he eventually did the right thing. President Obama can’t muster the courage to just do the right thing, in what in comparison to what Roosevelt, Truman, Eisenhower and Kennedy faced, is relatively minor.

  10. CoMo'mo says

    This is one of those odd days when I agree with Tank. It’s a Blue Moon thing, but I’m glad it happens time to time. I doubt that we’d enjoy a long lunch together but a coffee break might be good.

    And Yes, George, the Genl is a handsome man and a bright one, but I think we need talk only about the latter this morning and take the former for granted.

  11. CoMo'mo says

    Marine Corps opposition might be real, even if it’s not the 67% level donnelly claims. The Marines project and invest for themselves a hypermasculine image that has long been a gay male fixation. To function, the Corps instills the notion of all Marines being Brothers, with the officers as surrogate fathers, which is significant because I recall reading somewhere that the Corps enlists a disproportionate number of orphans and young men from broken homes. The love of brothers is useful for what Marines have to do in the places where they do it. This kind of fraternal love is tinged with homoerotic energy. According to Steve Zeeland in THE MASCULINE MARINE, Marines like to be looked at, by women and by men, and they like to look at each other. Though actual sexual contacts among Marines is probably no more prevalent than in other services, the exploitation of the image by these men with gay men and het women is well recorded. It works so long as the sex is for pay, in money or other ways, and the understanding is that whatever happens, the masculinity of the Marine isn’t compromised. Somebody said, “You can f##k a Marine but never try to f##k with a Marine”.

    All this is fine so long as the erotic elements remain under the surface. Marine officers and others fear that allowing them to become visible will embarrass and compromise the elaborate facade of super-masculinity. I suspect that the average Grunt doesn’t give a damn whether his Brother is gay or het so long as he does the job right and maintains esprit and keeps his hands off anybody but the acceptable outsiders.

    Of course, my personal relations with Marines have been limited: I prefer the ‘softer’ image and reality of sailors so I may be wrong, and none of this should be taken as an insult to the Corps or its men–not even to most of the officers.

  12. CoMo'mo says

    Query: I note that my posts are frequently the last in a string. I can’t help wondering about that. Are they 1)so profound that nobody wants to try to add to the depth, breadth and quality or 2)so incoherent that nobody understands what I’m saying or 3)made so late in the day that people have gone on to other topics or 4)nobody cares what I say, for any number of reasons, and they don’t want to encourage my verbiage?

    Sorry to burden y’all with this but I DO wonder sometimes if I’m not talking into a void. It’s a bit egotistical to ask, I know. If you choose to respond, be honest but kind, please. I like to be part of the Reindeer Games…

  13. Malcolm says

    I never comment here but:
    1)He is great.
    2)I would date his at least 15 year younger self.
    3)His son is hot.
    4)His son is also great.
    5)I feel kind of creepy saying these things.