Tag Archives: ethics

Mullen Tells New Lieutenants: Support Changing Military

According to the Air Force Times, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen told the graduating cadets at the US Air Force Academy they need to “support a changing military.”  The article notes Mullen did not directly address any particular issue, but his statement occurred “as Congress nears a vote on repealing [DADT].”

The quote by Mullen could make for a fascinating discussion on morality, ethics, leadership, and military service:  Read more

Marine Fighter Pilot Charged with Stealing $440K

In the initial stages of both the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the US used (and often still uses today) large quantities of cash for a variety of purposes, from paying for reconstruction to compensating local nationals.

A Marine F-5 fighter pilot now stands accused of stealing $440,000 of reconstruction funds while he was a project purchasing officer with a civil affairs group in Iraq.  For a point of reference, a Major in the US military makes approximately $70,000 per year in base pay before taxes.

Regardless of the outcome of this particular case, it stands as a stark Read more

Chaplain Protects Humanity in Military Service

Chaplain (Maj.) Sid A. Taylor is a Baptist Pastor and US Army Chaplain, currently deployed to Iraq.  He oversees the “spiritual needs of more than 4,000 Soldiers:”

While not everyone here has the time nor the desire to attend the service of his or her choice, within FOBs Marez and Diamonback [sic], there are six protestant services, five masses, one Latter-Day Saints service, an Islamic Prayer Room and a Jewish meeting held each week.

Chaplain Taylor has an admirable perspective on the concept of the total person in the military, something the US Army is trying to recapture in its Comprehensive Soldier Fitness programs:

One of the biggest tasks before a chaplain is “Ensuring the spiritual and human dimensions of what we do are not lost.”

“The Army understands the importance of values, morals and integrity in everything we do. Soldiers have emotions and Families. They also have a soul that needs to be sustained in order to do what they do.”

Some might say, for example, that the scandal at Abu Ghraib Read more

The Rules are Written in Blood

Fighter aircraft are amazing combinations of machinery, technology, software, and the human mind.  Old and young alike are awed at airshows that display fighters from the Pursuit (P) aircraft of the World Wars to the Fighter (F) and Attack (A) aircraft of the modern era.

Miracles in motion that they are, they are still bound by rules and regulations.

They have simple rules like speed limits, g-limits, and angle of attack limits.  They also have more complex rules that say if you’re rolling left with a missile on the right wing and you’ve got half a tank of gas, make sure not to exceed 14 units of AoA.  Some rules seem arbitrary (“Don’t fly with your feet resting on the brake pedals…”), and others ridiculous (“Lower landing gear prior to touching down…”).

There’s a saying, though, that the rules of aviation Read more

Ethics and the US Military: the Army Reconsiders

The US Army is “[rethinking] how it teaches ethics.”

Some of the interest in ethics is tied to the wars: the black eye of the Abu Ghraib prison scandal, concerns that stress from unconventional conflict leads to bad decisions, and, for at least one retired general, the sense that the military lost the public’s trust in Iraq.

Officers involved in the effort say that eventually a soldier’s grounding in ethics — strong or weak — will become a factor in promotions.

Two of the primary places that ethics might intentionally be taught in the Army include the US Military Academy at West Point and the Command and General Staff College at Leavenworth.  The need for ethical maturity has already been recognized in some sense at the military academies.  Each has its own variation of a “character development center.”

Oddly, the director of military ethics at West Point provided a contradictory assessment of ethics in the Army:  Read more

Navy Sailors Punished for Academic Cheating

The Navy Times reports that the US Navy has disciplined 13 sailors for cheating during a written nuclear propulsion test on board the carrier USS Harry S Truman.  The reports do not explain what the sailors did, except to say they were using notes; it is possible that the notes were test gouge, especially since the Navy subsequently made all the sailors re-take the test.

Retired Capt. Jim Colgary, a former submarine commander, said:

Trust is the fundamental bedrock of going to sea on these ships.  If an individual is dishonest enough to cheat on an exam, you can’t trust them to stand watch or take logs on systems associated with nuclear reactors.

Colgary’s analysis applies well beyond the nuke test.  The trust bestowed upon the US military by the American public is a sacred one, Read more

Army Battles Culture of Cheating

An Army Times article notes the US Army’s struggle to end a near-tradition of cheating on military promotion tests.  It appears many of the exams are long-running, meaning that gouge of one sort or another is readily available and frequently used.

The Army is far from the only service to experience such scandals.  The Navy has had its fair share of cheating, as has the Air Force, and cheating scandals at all of the military academies have made headlines at one time or another.

Hunts for online “help” for military courses is so common that one of the frequent searches that leads people to this very site is “pme,” “sos,” or “acsc” “gouge.”  Those who land here will instead find Read more

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