US defence survey boosts campaign for gay reform in armed forces | World news | The Guardian Campaigners for gay people to be allowed to serve openly in the US military received a huge boost today when a Pentagon survey of service members found morale would not suffer from reform. The Pentagon report, published today, anticipated only isolated incidents of opposition. The defence secretary, Robert Gates, at a press conference, said the survey was not a poll on the issue but to determine the impact of changing the law. He said the survey showed reform "would not be the wrenching, traumatic change many had feared" but he identified a major stumbling block, namely the higher levels of opposition among combat units, in particular the Marines, and said this was a matter for concern among military chiefs at a time when fighting two wars. Gates recommended the Senate support legislation to end the existing policy. "It can be done and should be done," he said, warning that it needed to be done with care, to avoid disruption to those "at the tip of the spear".