Thursday, December 24, 2009

Legal Muddle from Iraq

Four U.S. Senators have asked Army Secretary John McHugh to rescind an order making pregnancy a punishable offense for some soldiers serving in Iraq, though the General who issued the order has said that he's not planning to jail anyone.

Thus far, four pregnant female soldiers and two male soldiers have been given temporary, "local" reprimands for violating the ban and one married male soldier has been given a permanent reprimand for impregnating a subordinate, who is not his wife.

Lots of issues have been raised about Maj. Gen. Anthony Cucolo, Commander of Multi-National Division–North's order, which makes this Stars & Stripes article an interesting read.

Among them, the fact that sex between soldiers is not against the rules in Iraq; there are married couples living together and no form of birth control is foolproof, plus if he's not going to imprison people for violating the pregnancy ban, who's to say the next commander will feel the same? And could they also decide to not punish people for other policy violations under this same order, such as a ban on alcohol use or having sexual contact with Iraqis?
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