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1 John Vreeland  Apr 11, 2014 12:04:41pm

you know what is more archaic than military justice?

common law

Commanders have great power to pardon their underlings. Is that what you are complaining about? From the part you quoted the opposite appears true. In fact the accused has a lot of protection against conviction. For example, confessions are mostly worthless; there must be material evidence.

But as for the pardons, that appears to me to be a case of commanders not getting it. This should not surprise anyone. There are a lot of men, perhaps most, who do not get it. There was a time when i didn’t get it. but now I do and soon so will everyone else. I really don’t see any reason to overhaul a system that is in the process of correcting itself, just as the society that sees the issue has had to correct itself.

2 palmerskiss  Apr 11, 2014 3:22:54pm

re: #1 John Vreeland

you know what is more archaic than military justice?

common law

Commanders have great power to pardon their underlings. Is that what you are complaining about? From the part you quoted the opposite appears true. In fact the accused has a lot of protection against conviction. For example, confessions are mostly worthless; there must be material evidence.

But as for the pardons, that appears to me to be a case of commanders not getting it. This should not surprise anyone. There are a lot of men, perhaps most, who do not get it. There was a time when i didn’t get it. but now I do and soon so will everyone else. I really don’t see any reason to overhaul a system that is in the process of correcting itself, just as the society that sees the issue has had to correct itself.

I am not personally very familiar with the military justice system, this was a post on a lawblog i read, i found it very interesting - the sourcing is quite good, and i think in light of problems in the area of sexual assault that statistics do suggest is a problem, i thought it was a fair argument to discuss.

I appreciate your feedback and context :)

3 kirkspencer  Apr 11, 2014 7:48:03pm

re: #1 John Vreeland

you know what is more archaic than military justice?

common law

Commanders have great power to pardon their underlings. Is that what you are complaining about? From the part you quoted the opposite appears true. In fact the accused has a lot of protection against conviction. For example, confessions are mostly worthless; there must be material evidence.

But as for the pardons, that appears to me to be a case of commanders not getting it. This should not surprise anyone. There are a lot of men, perhaps most, who do not get it. There was a time when i didn’t get it. but now I do and soon so will everyone else. I really don’t see any reason to overhaul a system that is in the process of correcting itself, just as the society that sees the issue has had to correct itself.

The issue of most concern in the process is command influence. You’ve already noted the pardon power. The flip side is that the commander selects the individuals from whom the panel (jury) will be formed.

This leads to a perception that the commander can protect his ‘pets’ while hammering his ‘goats’.

It does not usually happen. There’s enough evidence it has, however, that it’s a concern (In and out of service).


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