The New York Times Blows It Again!
Frankly, if the New York Times cannot - still - understand basic military terminology, they should stop writing about national security; influential Americans should no longer pay attention to the Times, due to lack of confidence in their competence.
From an otherwise unrelated obituary on former Federal Appeals Court Judge, and unsuccessful Supreme Court nominee, Robert Bork:
A View Made ClearOne of his opinions, in Dronenburg v. Zech in 1984, dealt with the Navy’s power to fire a veteran for consensual homosexual activity. Judge Bork not only granted the Navy that power, but he also took the opportunity to make clear that a right of privacy did not exist in the Constitution. “If the revolution in sexual mores that appellant proclaims is in fact ever to arrive,” he wrote, “we think it must arrive through the moral choices of the people and their elected representatives, not through the ukase of this court.”
James L. Dronenburg was a Sailor when he was kicked out of the Navy. He only became a "veteran" after he had served, i.e., after he was kicked out. Granted, his case only got to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit after he was discharged, and was fighting it. However, it would be more correct to say that the Navy fired a Sailor, not a veteran.