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U.S. soldiers in Iraq face courts-martial for getting pregnant


U.S. soldiers in Iraq could face courts-martial for getting pregnant

Barbara Starr and Adam Levine, CNN
December 21, 2009 6:03 p.m. EST


Washington (CNN) -- A new order from the general in charge of U.S. troops northern Iraq makes getting pregnant or impregnating a fellow soldier an offense punishable by court-martial.

The directive, part of a larger order restricting the behavior of the 22,000 soldiers under Maj. Gen. Anthony Cucolo's command, is meant to prevent losing soldiers at a time when troop strength is stretched thin, Cucolo explained in a statement sent to the troops under his command and provided to CNN.

"I need every soldier I've got, especially since we are facing a drawdown of forces during our mission," Cucolo wrote. "Anyone who leaves this fight earlier than the expected 12-month deployment creates a burden on their teammates. Anyone who leaves this fight early because they made a personal choice that changed their medical status -- or contributes to doing that to another -- is not in keeping with a key element of our ethos."

The rule, enacted November 4, was first reported by Stars and Stripes, a military-focused publication. It prohibits "becoming nondeployable for reasons within the control of the soldier," which include "becoming pregnant, or impregnating a soldier ... resulting in the redeployment of the pregnant soldier."

Pregnancy that arises from sexual assault would not be punished, Cucolo said.

The directive applies to all military and civilians serving under Cucolo in northern Iraq, an area that includes Balad, Kirkuk, Tikrit, Mosul and Samarra, according to the Web site of Multi-National Force Iraq.

Of the 22,000 people under Cucolo's command, 1,682 are women.

Cucolo will decide what cases will be pursued.

"I am the only individual who passes judgment on these cases. I decide every case based on the unique facts of each soldier's situation," Cucolo wrote in his explanation of the new rules.

Cucolo said he considers his female soldiers "invaluable" and he wants to ensure they fulfill their deployments.

"I am responsible and accountable for the fighting ability of this outfit. I am going to do everything I can to keep my combat power -- and in the Army, combat power is the individual soldier," his statement said. "To this end, I made an existing policy stricter. I wanted to encourage my soldiers to think before they acted, and understand their behavior and actions have consequences -- all of their behavior."

In an e-mail to CNN, Cucolo stressed the rule "is just a small part of a general policy on behavior and actions," and is "lawful."

The memo outlines a long list of behaviors that are prohibited, from gambling and using drugs to behaviors that would offend Iraqis, such as entering a mosque or religious site unless "required by military necessity."

While the rules may seem unusual to some, they are not out of line with how the military regulates behavior to a much stricter degree than the general public is used to, said Eugene Fidell, who teaches military law at Yale University.

"Questions of personal autonomy play out differently in the military," Fidell said.

He said the purpose of the rule is mostly to have a "chilling effect" on behavior, but he doubts it would ever be fully prosecuted. If it were, however, it appears to be legal, he said.

"If push came to shove and there was prosecution, I think the rule would be upheld as a reasonable balance of the competing interests," he said.

It is not without precedent, Fidell said. During the Vietnam War, a female troop would be discharged for getting pregnant. That rule was challenged, but the government did not want to defend it at the time.

According to the explanation of the policy that was sent to all those affected, only a few cases have been considered for punishment under the new rules. Four soldiers have gotten pregnant since Cucolo took over command of northern Iraq operations at the beginning of November, he told CNN in an e-mail. Of the eight soldiers involved, none were court-martialed. Instead, all received a written reprimand, Cucolo said.

In one case, a male soldier received the "most severe punishment," according to the explanation sent to those serving in northern Iraq. Cucolo does not give any other details about the case except to say the soldier "committed adultery as well."




Entry #1,518


Comment by pumpi76 - December 22, 2009, 12:12 pm
I cant think of another strategy, this is only if they want to..They will have to pool between 10 female soldiers...10 females chip in: $50 a month, it will be: $500 a month and pay someone to get a: vasectomy temporarily...And the iraki, or whoever becomes the female soldier: sexual male secretary...Either that or start buying the machine that penetrates women...
And if the female is married in the USA all i can say is: good luck...
dude if your wife is a: SOLDIER, a SOLDIER giving her life to die, be lenient, understanding, you act like she was a   robot...However this is ONLY if your spouse is a female soldier not a male soldier...If is a male i am sure he can use his hand...I also understand many male soldiers feel: if i am going to be KILLED HERE, i may as well enjoy the ride...Dude i dont know i am not KING SALOMON...
Comment by pumpi76 - December 22, 2009, 12:23 pm
Also about the male if he uses his hand and he survives and comes home..be ready to give him lots of sex because is the right thing to do is the fairest thing to do..
going back to the female soldier let them have their own sexual male secretary in groups of 10 and let their male sexual secretary use condom, i dont know...LOTS OF female soldiers will say: OH i dont want that to share 1 guy with 10 guys...My answer is: Many of you have sex where there is: 1 women with 5 guys doing that 1 women...isnt that the same thing...That male sexual secretary is only going to work for those 10 female soldiers, nobody else..Unfortunatelly: $500 a month is not enough but you will have to do with what you got, actually is enough but the problem is that you are also dealing with the image of the Army....And isnt it: $50 or $100 how much they pay to see a women or male prostitute, just for 1 night...While female soldiers will pay: $500 to their private sexual male secretary to have him any given day...
if female soldiers think they are superman go ahead...
Comment by pumpi76 - December 22, 2009, 12:33 pm
female soldiers can pay: $100 a month and have a male sexual secretary share with 5 females instead of 10...
also a message to female soldiers...if you are trying to play superman, dont forget when the bucket is full if you know what i mean every micro second counts in combat so for you to be 2 or 3 seconds NOT ALERT/FAST and you are slow aready by nature...
Comment by pumpi76 - December 22, 2009, 1:10 pm
after all the males soldiers se la tiran de grain vaina when they get home...
Or if the army wants they can transport their own sexual personal secretaries..So much people say they ¨SUPPORT¨ their troops, well cut the chit chat and prove it plus you are getting paid to do it...
Comment by pumpi76 - December 22, 2009, 1:11 pm
after all the males soldiers se la tiran de grain vaina when they get home...
Or if the army wants they can transport their own sexual personal secretaries..So much people say they SUPPORT their troops, well cut the chit chat and prove it plus you are getting paid to do it...
Comment by pumpi76 - December 22, 2009, 1:22 pm
anyways the USA army should had thought about this a long time ago..Since world war2....

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