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Dan Choi, Gay Soldier, Debates Conservative Military Analyst Over "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" (VIDEO)

First Posted: 03/18/10 06:12 AM ET Updated: 05/25/11 03:15 PM ET

CNN's Anderson Cooper hosted a debate between First Lieutenant Dan Choi, a West Point graduate and Arabic linguist who is facing a discharge for announcing that he is homosexual, and Elaine Donnelly, president of the Center for Military Readiness, a group which opposes gay soldiers serving openly.

Donnelly claimed that homosexuals serving openly in the military "would be harmful to good-order discipline and morale" because it is "tantamount to saying that military men would be living with military women constantly with little or no privacy in conditions as what the law describes as forced intimacy."

Choi immediately pushed back against this: ""Gender is not the same thing as sexual orientation, and I think that somebody as smart as you Elaine, you should know that"

Choi steered the debate back to the central practical dilemma of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," which is can a nation conducting two wars along with a wider war on terror really afford to be kicking thousands of soldiers out of the military for being gay, especially when, like First Lt. Choi, they have specialized skills that our armed forces increasingly need and rely upon?

Choi answered no, while Donnelly dodged the question.

WATCH: (H/t Jon)

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Filed by Nick Graham  |