Military Orders Unethical

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Following Military Orders That May Be Unethical. Amanda Chiudioni Pamela Collins SOC 120: Introduction to Ethics & Social Responsibility April 22, 2013 Complex Moral Minima’s Following Military Orders That May Be Unethical The U.S. Armed Forces are governed by the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). These code are ethic codes that inform all service members what they are and are not allowed to do these codes are additions to the U.S. law and regulations that every other law abiding citizen must follow. However, when looking into the ethic of the UCMJ there what service member call the catch all article, Article 134. The Article 134- General Article covers everything else not mentioned in any governing book. This…show more content…
The first case of the U.S. military following illegal orders dates back our war with France in 1799 when President John Adams orders the U.S. Navy to seize ships bound to any French Port or traveling to or from a French port. In pursuant of the President’s instructions a naval captain seized the Fly Fish which was a Danish Ship en route from a French port. The Danish ship owners sued the naval captain in U.S. maritime court. The naval captain was convicted in maritime court. The U.S. Supreme Court upheld the decision and held the naval captain accountable even though he was obeying presidential orders that were illegal. (Powers,…show more content…
Another famous case of obeying unlawful orders would be the case of “First Lieutenant William Calley for his part in the My Lai Massacre on March 16, 1968. The military court rejected Calley's argument of obeying the order of his superiors. On March 29, 1971, Calley was sentenced to life in prison. However, the public outcry in the United States following this very publicized and controversial trial was such that President Nixon granted him clemency. Calley wound up spending three and a half years under house arrest at Fort Benning Georgia, where a federal judge ultimately ordered his release.” (Powers, 2013). Even though these two men were obeying orders they were both tried and found guilty of committing murder. These men regardless if they opted to obey the orders or not would have been tired. Either as murderers or as violating UCMJ Articles. It is an ever losing situation and these cases are still going and murderers from this ending war will eventually be brought to trial for killing innocent by

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