Does the First Amendment apply in the military–yes, but only if we like your question

Sig Christenson at Military Reporters & Editors directs us to his piece at San Antonio Express News (of CAAF fame) about United States v. Hasan.

I recall the time in another high-profile case where the post, on the East Coast, demanded that journalists sign a ground rules agreement prior to entering the courtroom. . . . This sort of silliness has gone on elsewhere. At Fort Hood, they’ve told reporters not to ask certain types of questions if they should meet with prosecutors. The punishment for doing so? Expulsion from the court (emphasis added).  (Comment note:  wouldn’t the proper procedure be to allow questions or for the SJA to direct his TC’s not to make public comments on the case, and then if they didn’t want to, not answer the question – without of course any sort of ban on the person asking the question?)

.  .  .

Today the post’s Freedom of Information Act officer, Jacquelyn T. Lucas, cited two exemptions in stating that the [Article 32, UCMJ, hearing] report would not be released. She did not explain what those exemptions were or how they guided the decision to keep the investigating officer’s report secret.

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