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In a sharp reversal of it’s “look the other way” policy, the Pentagon will openly salute gay soldiers in June, abandoning the last vestiges of the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy that framed the military’s reluctant acceptance of homosexual personnel for nearly 20 years.
Pentagon officials announced Thursday that they host an even to openly recognize gay and lesbian troops during June, which is gay pride month.
Until the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy — put in place in 1993 — was repealed last September, more than 13000 soldiers were cashiered out of the military after admitting their sexual orientation.
Defense Secretary Leon Panetta now says he feels it is important to recognize the service of gay men and women in the American military.