Monday, September 04, 2006

More on JAG 
Oak Leaf over at PoliPundit has some comments about the top tier of Army lawyers

I missed it when it came out. Just found it accidentally while I was checking a caption.

Oak Leaf did note something: The Army's top lawyer does not have a patch on his right sleeve denoting a combat tour.

It's very rare to meet an officer now, other than a brand new lieutenant, who has not served at least one tour overseas. The fact that the Army's top lawyer has not himself deployed to a combat zone would seem to explain some things.

Like this.

And this.

And this.

And this.

Splash, out


Not sure what MG Black's combat history has to do with what a court-martial does (convened by the 1 AD commanding general), the fact that a Marine officer was charged in the killing of Iraqis (Marines, Army, different services), or the fact that the FLEP program is designed to put the limited resrouces into the AD side of the house.
A couple other comments:

MG Black does have a Ranger tab on his left shoulder from his days as an infantryman, so he does have some idea what combat arms are about.

Also, like about half the Army, MG Black did not make it to Desert Storm. He was promoted to BG in 2001. There are no MTOE JAG positions for GOs (there are only five total, two MGs and three BGs), so it would have been difficult for any GO to have field experience in the GWOT.
There are always exceptions to any rule. I've met some good guys in the JAG Corps. For the most part though, they wear the same uniform, but they are not one of us. Their job is the application of law. Our job is the application of force. Their triumphs and tragedies take place over months and years after mountains of deliberation. Our triumphs and tragedies take place in moments and minutes with no chance to work out a course of action in advance. They don't have to consider the possibility of their own death if they screw up. I once read a science fiction story about an alternate universe where lawyers had to submit to the same punishment as their clients if they lost the case. How many lawyers would we have under those circumstances?
74 - thanks for summing that up. I was an enlisted guy, regular Army, for about 8 years. GWI and some peacekeeping tours. After I went to law school, a lot of my friends joined up. They couldn't believe that I (and a bunch of prior service guys) wouldn't go back in as JAG officers - expressions of disbelief that drew howls of laughter from us. I just couldn't see joining Army Lite, after I'd been Army. To some extent, lawyering is the opposite of soldiering and while I was interested in seeking a USAR position in combat arms until a blown ankle prevented it, I just couldn't see becoming a JAG. God bless the people who do, and who serve honorably, but it's not for me.
Well, the obvious counterpoint is that Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Yoo, Reddington and the rest of the torture/kangaroo court crowd have no combat experience, either.

Indeed, except for Rumsfeld, have no active military experience at all.

Also note that the JAGs of ALL the services opposed the Bush measure. Do they all lack combat experience?
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