Articles Posted in Humor in uniform

The Columbian reports:

Some people were taking the job of soldiering a bit casually on Dec. 6, 1941, says a Washougal veteran of World War II.

It took one day to change everything.

“In the peacetime Army, a lot of guys just took off,” .  . . Officially, they were absent without leave — AWOL — Hamley said, but nobody seemed to be too bothered by it.

“One noncommissioned officer had been gone for seven years,” Hamley said. “But during a war, AWOL is desertion.”

When the NCO reported back to Fort Lewis, he was court-martialed and acquitted.

The noncommissioned officer testified in his own defense, and apparently made a quite a compelling argument.

As the defendant explained it, he had been hauled in front of his commanding officer for some infraction or another.

The officer chewed out the soldier. Then, the NCO testified, the officer told him:

“Get your tail out of here. I never want to see you again.”

So apparently this was an “authorized absence.”

Here is a link to the 3 September 2010 Federal Register for the recent MCM amendments signed by The President.

And the humor you say – - – -

Hat tip to Native and Natural Born Citizenship Explored blog (a not a birther blog).

I was going through a couple of old cases looking for some information to use in a current case.  Here’s a interesting curative instruction.  Coming across this lead me to muse about how strange and how frequently seasoned law enforcement witnesses “forget” that there are certain words or issues they are not supposed to testify about.  It’s gotten so bad that I have a standard motion in-limine on HLD.  Here’s how one judge dealt with a forgetful law enforcement witness (after he’d agreed with my motion in-limine that the law enforcement witnesses should be instructed on HLD stuff prior to testifying).

The “error” came out in the witness’s first sentence.

MJ: Please be seated.  The court will come to order.

MJ: Okay.  Members, it was early in the morning, and I wasn’t sure what word WITNESS had used, but counsel confirmed for me that she did say the word, “Polygraph.”  The President of the United States, the Military Rule of Evidence that’s in the Manual for Courts-Martial, has decided that the results of a polygraph are so unreliable that the result cannot be used in any way, shape or form in a trial by court-martial.  You are officers under the command of the Commander in Chief, the President of the United States, as am I, as are most of the counsel in this courtroom.  We have an obligation to follow that order of the President of the United States.  The Supreme Court has considered whether or not the President acted reasonably in excluding polygraphs all together from use in trial by court-martial, and the U.S. Supreme Court has decided that the President acted rationally in doing that because polygraph results are not sufficiently reliable enough to be used in a trial by court-martial.  So, you must disregard completely what LE WITNESS said to you when she used the word polygraph, and any implication from the use of that one word.  Do the members understand that?

PRES: Yes, Your Honor.  [Mumblings in agreement from the panel members and positive response.]
MJ: Okay.  I have an affirmative response from all members.  Now, the Trial Counsel told me that he instructed LE WITNESS specifically not to use the word, “Polygraph,” when she was testifying.  My conclusion is therefore that she cannot follow guidance.  Therefore, I have excluded her as a witness in this trial.  Do the members understand that?[Positive response.]

MJ: If a witness can’t follow that simple guidance, then I don’t care to hear from her, and I don’t believe you ought to hear from her.  Do any of the members have any trouble with that instruction?  Can you completely ignore the use of the word, “Polygraph?” [Positive response.]

MJ: I have an affirmative response from all members.  Okay.  Government, call your next witness please.

The military judge did not grant a mistrial, partly because the trial counsel gave a proffer of expected testimony and it was all bad for the defense.  So the military judge’s rationale was that we’d benefitted by the witness’s mistake.  I’m still not sure that was the correct way to evaluate any prejudice because the members basically got to hear that the client had failed a polygraph.  And this was after the witness had been instructed on not to talk about the polygraph.

Press Republican reports that:

Cannon fire will permeate the air over the PARC museum campus this weekend as forces from the Union and Confederate armies collide on the open fields.

The Clinton County Historical Association will host the third-annual Plattsburgh Civil War Encampment, with two battles between the Blue and Gray scheduled for today and another slated for Sunday.

Another new feature this year will be the court-martial of a Union soldier between today’s battles. Hewson said he did not know how that trial may turn out, but soldiers were often executed for betraying their colors during battle.

Speedy trial anticipated, ending with a flash in a pan.

And here’s a report from The Fort Scott Tribune:

The death of Private John Summers, Co. E, 2nd Kansas Volunteer Cavalry was the result of one of two public military executions in Fort Scott during the Civil War. Both of these executions were in May of 1863 and were very deliberately public in nature. Summer’s crime, for which he was convicted by a General Court Martial, was DESERTION! He didn’t desert from the Union army just once! He did it THREE times after which he was caught and brought to Fort Scott for his trial. How was this possible? Not only was Pvt. Summers a deserter he was also a "BOUNTY JUMPER!"

Note the timing:

Trial:  11 March 1863.

CA action:  1 May 1863.

Sentence carried out:  13 May 1863.

LTC Lakin has made his CNN appearance.  His supporters are not happy, as this piece at World News Daily indicates.

I found a humorous note in the article.  The writer points out a typo in the charge sheet.

“in support of Operation Enduring Freedom with the 32nd Calvary (sic) Regiment, 101st Airborne”

The writer correctly ‘sics’ the typo.  In doing so the writer perhaps highlights what might be LTC Lakin’s calvary.