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Author Topic: Army general in Iraq says pregnant soldiers, fathers could face court-martial  (Read 9381 times)
Juni
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« Reply #15: December 24, 2009, 03:29:06 pm »

WASHINGTON - A U.S. Army general in northern Iraq has added pregnancy to the list of reasons a soldier under his command could be court-martialed.

Isn't this over the top?  Does he really expect this to work?  Does the Military Laws allow this?

I've been avoiding this thread, because my initial reaction appears to be considerably different than the reactions of the members of this forum (at least, the ones posting here) and I've been trying to pinpoint why. For me, this line from the first article sums up the issue for me (emphasis mine):

Quote
But other restrictions seemed aimed at preventing soldiers from leaving their unit short-handed, including becoming pregnant or undergoing elective surgery that would prevent their deployment.

Some have mentioned in this thread about the military keeping their nose out of people's business, about providing contraception, etcetera, but I think you're missing a fundamental point here. Joining the military is a choice in the United States. Yes, in some cases it is a choice taken because there are no viable others, but it is still a choice. And it is a massive responsibility, especially when deployed. I think that a soldier's unit has the right to depend on the other members to be there for them, and pregnancy interferes with that. I am not a soldier, I have never been one and I never will be. I cannot ever comprehend the stresses of deployment and active duty, and I can understand that sex would be an outlet. That does not, however, negate the fact that you made a choice and you took on a responsibility.
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« Reply #16: December 24, 2009, 03:44:39 pm »


Some have mentioned in this thread about the military keeping their nose out of people's business, about providing contraception, etcetera, but I think you're missing a fundamental point here. Joining the military is a choice in the United States.

I don't think that fundamental point is being missed. From how I read the thread, the question is whether the military's blanket ban on sex is a proportionate way of ensuring the integrity of the unit. That's related to, but different from, the question of how responsible the soldiers are. YMMV.
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« Reply #17: December 24, 2009, 03:59:18 pm »

I don't think that fundamental point is being missed. From how I read the thread, the question is whether the military's blanket ban on sex is a proportionate way of ensuring the integrity of the unit. That's related to, but different from, the question of how responsible the soldiers are. YMMV.

It's not a blanket ban, however. Typically, pregnant soldiers are simply sent home. Only those serving under Maj. Gen. Cuolo in northern Iraq would be subject to this decision.
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« Reply #18: December 24, 2009, 07:08:28 pm »

It's not a blanket ban, however. Typically, pregnant soldiers are simply sent home. Only those serving under Maj. Gen. Cuolo in northern Iraq would be subject to this decision.

My mistake. You'd think I'd have paid more attention to the first post when I reread this thread.  Embarrassed Though I stand by my point otherwise.
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« Reply #19: December 24, 2009, 07:23:02 pm »

I don't think that fundamental point is being missed. From how I read the thread, the question is whether the military's blanket ban on sex is a proportionate way of ensuring the integrity of the unit. That's related to, but different from, the question of how responsible the soldiers are. YMMV.

well, when a pregnancy removes a soldier from the unit, and an actual ban on sex is the only reliable way to keep it from happening (rape not included), then, actually, a ban is reasonable.  And the courtmartial idea is a way to have the personal downsides seriously override the possible upside of being removed from your unit and sent back out of harms way.  I'm not saying that the women intentionally get pregnant to be sent home, but if you don't want to be there and you don't have a man at home that's going to leave you over this, your oopsie can have a major upside if it doesn't affect your career otherwise than the normal affect being a single parent will have on any woman's career.
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« Reply #20: December 24, 2009, 07:52:37 pm »

well, when a pregnancy removes a soldier from the unit, and an actual ban on sex is the only reliable way to keep it from happening (rape not included), then, actually, a ban is reasonable. 

Agreed. But I have no idea whether that ban is the only way to keep it from happening, and that hasn't been really discussed so far, so I don't know how reasonable it is.

(But my point to Juni was that, as I read the thread, the question is about the reasonableness of the ban rather than the reasonableness of the soldier's actions.)
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« Reply #21: December 24, 2009, 07:57:25 pm »

well, when a pregnancy removes a soldier from the unit, and an actual ban on sex is the only reliable way to keep it from happening (rape not included), then, actually, a ban is reasonable.  And the courtmartial idea is a way to have the personal downsides seriously override the possible upside of being removed from your unit and sent back out of harms way.  I'm not saying that the women intentionally get pregnant to be sent home, but if you don't want to be there and you don't have a man at home that's going to leave you over this, your oopsie can have a major upside if it doesn't affect your career otherwise than the normal affect being a single parent will have on any woman's career.

And it may be the only upside to the oopsie, but this is more incentive not to engage in behavior that could lead to pregnancy.  And so long as it subsequently has the same effect on the man, I'm ok with it.

What we really need is something a friend of mine came up with for his mature level star trek game, as unmarried starfleet members, we all had little stopcocks in the important places, that prevented pregnancy/  But that is yet a ways away.
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« Reply #22: December 24, 2009, 09:18:37 pm »

Update

War zone pregnancy punishments being dropped

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20091225/ap_on_go_ca_st_pe/us_iraq_pregnant_soldiers
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« Reply #23: December 24, 2009, 09:43:33 pm »

War zone pregnancy punishments being dropped

I expected as much. This was not going over well with the US public.
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« Reply #24: December 25, 2009, 05:57:31 pm »


Good.
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