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Harvard and ROTC

The Reserve Officer Training Corps’ four-decade exile from Harvard University sort of ends today with an agreement that was spurred by a congressional vote allowing gays to serve openly in the military.
Harvard President Faust and Navy Secretary Mabus will sign an agreement that will establish the Naval ROTC’s formal presence on campus for the first time since the Vietnam War era.
ROTC was tossed off campus due to Vietnam era anti-war sentiment, and the school lately kept it off campus because of the policy that prevented gays from serving openly. But Faust said she had worked toward ROTC’s return after Congress repealed the so-called “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy in December.
Harvard and several other prominent schools, including Stanford, Yale and Columbia, had kept the Vietnam-era ROTC ban in place following the war using the excuse that they viewed the military policy forbidding gays from serving openly as discriminatory.
Under the agreement, “full and formal” recognition of ROTC at Harvard comes once the repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell” takes effect, expected later this year. Full repeal comes 60 days after the president, defense secretary, and chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff certify that lifting the ban won’t hurt the military’s ability to fight. The Army is currently training its force in the new law and officials said they hope to be finished by mid-August. The other services are also undergoing training. Of course, training troops in political correctness accomplishes nothing. If we have any honest folks in Washington, this “certification” will never come.

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