FAIRFIELD, CA: In response to today's Military Administrative Board decision recommending the discharge of Lt. Dan Choi under the military's "Don't Ask Don't Tell Policy," Choi's West Point Classmate and CA 10 Congressional Candidate Anthony Woods issued the following statement:
"Today, a Military Administrative Board recommended the discharge of my friend, West Point Classmate, and fellow Iraq War Veteran Lt. Dan Choi for refusing to lie to his fellow soldiers, and for refusing to violate the Honor Code to which all Army officers are bound. Lt. Choi is an experienced combat leader and Arab linguist-two things our military desperately needs-- who is ready and willing to re-deploy with his unit. Today's decision only highlights the fact that the Don't Ask Don't Tell Policy" is undermining the strength of our military and the security of our nation.
Having served two combat tours in Iraq and brought all 81 of my soldiers home alive before being discharged under the policy last year, I understand what Lt. Choi is going through all too well.
Since 1993, the careers of tens of thousands of soldiers have ended prematurely because of "Don't Ask Don't Tell"----at a cost of more than $400 million to taxpayers, the safety of combat soldiers deprived of experienced leaders and specialists, and the readiness of a force already stretched thin by two wars and repeated, extended deployments. More than 70% of Americans support its repeal because Americans understand that in a time of war, America's security is far more important than political expediency.
I applaud Lt. Choi's resolve to appeal this wrong-headed decision, and look forward to leading the effort to repeal this misguided policy as the next Congressman from California's 10th District."
Anthony Woods is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. He is a veteran of two combat tours in Iraq, and was awarded both the Bronze Star and Army Commendation Medal for his service. Woods is a native of Fairfield, CA, and is campaigning for the expected Special Election to replace Representative Ellen Tauscher in California's 10th District.