From a reader:
I spent ten years in the military, two years as an
officer platoon leader in the parachute infantry, and
it annoys me a bit when I hear people say that you can
disobey an illegal order.
The army trains its soldiers from day one to obey
orders unhesitatingly. Most NCOs would have the ass
of any soldier who said, “Well, Sergeant, I think I’m
going to have to let that order pass since it seems
illegal to me.” Most soldiers wouldn’t even think of
trying it on for size.
I saw one order disobeyed when I was in the army and
that was when a new replacent battalion commander
ordered one of our rifle companies to move into an
area where there was a major wildfire and an enormous
amount of unexploded ordnance. As soon as it was
explained to the major, he backed off.
These enlisted men/women deserve some punishment, but
the real miscreants are the officers. No excuse.
Either they authorized this nonsense, created the
environment where it could flourish or were so
delinquent in their duties that they didn’t spend
enough time with their people to know what was going
Hang ‘em high!