Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Andy Stapp, founder of American Servicemen's Union, dies at 70

Andy Stapp, who founded the American Servicemen's Union, has died at age 70. Click here for the New York Times obituary, which reports:
At its peak in the early 1970s, the union that Mr. Stapp formed, the American Servicemen’s Union, claimed to have tens of thousands of members. It issued membership cards, published a newspaper and helped form chapters at military bases, on ships and in Vietnam.
Although the Army never came close to recognizing the union formally, it certainly recognized it as a problem. Mr. Stapp brought colorful idealism to his counterintuitive cause, and the Army did what it could to silence him.
Since 1978 it has been a federal crime to organize or join a military union in the United States.

Death sentences in Nigerian mutiny

Twelve Nigerian soldiers have been sentenced to death in connection with a mutiny in which shots were fired at a general officer. If the sentences are upheld, the soldiers will be shot.

U.S. Navy nurse who objected to force-feeding Guantanamo hunger strikers faces administrative separation

A U.S. Navy nurse who refused on grounds of conscience not to participate in the forced feeding of hunger strikers at Guantanamo Bay will not be prosecuted under the Uniform Code of Military Justice but could be separated administratively. Details here. Compare the current case of the 43 Israel Defence Force objectors. "It has been noted that a Board Inquiry, or administrative review, can keep details of the incident secret. A military trial, however, would have brought up questions about the military’s hunger strike policy and a debate about the medical ethics over force feeding."

Welcome to the cellphone era

In this era of digital cameras and cellphones, nothing is surprising . . . even this case from Paraguay, where a soldier is caught on camera whipping another soldier, under an officer's orders. The lieutenant has been charged.

The numbers

As of this morning, Global Military Justice Reform has had over 50,000 hits from readers in 118 countries, with 682 posts and 130 comments. The blog began on January 12, 2014.