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Headquarters, Department of the Army
Department of the Army Pamphlet 27-50-401

October 2006

Unleashing the Dogs of War: Using Military Working Dogs to Apprehend Enemy
Major Charles T. Kirchmaier

Operation Hammurabi Information Technology Metrics Analysis Report for Baghdad
Lieutenant Colonel William McQuade

Anatomy of a Random Court-Martial Panel
Lieutenant Colonel Bradley J. Huestis

Setting Conditions for Success: Seven Simple Rules for New Staff Officers
Lieutenant Colonel Mike Ryan

Book Review
CLE News
Current Materials of Interest

Editor, Major Anita J. Fitch
Assistant Editor, Captain Colette E. Kitchel
Technical Editor, Charles J. Strong
The Army Lawyer (ISSN 0364-1287, USPS 490-330) is published monthly
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Issues may be cited as ARMY LAW., [date], at [page number].


Unleashing the Dogs of War: Using Military Working Dogs to Apprehend Enemy
Major Charles T. Kirchmaier.......................................................................................................................1

Operation Hammurabi Information Technology Metrics Analysis Report for Baghdad Courts
Lieutenant Colonel William McQuade .........................................................................................................13

Anatomy of a Random Court-Martial Panel ............................................................................................22
Lieutenant Colonel Bradley J. Huestis

Setting Conditions for Success: Seven Simple Rules for New Staff Officers
Lieutenant Colonel Mike Ryan ....................................................................................................................33

Book Review
Guests of the Ayatollah: The First Battle in America’s War with Militant Islam
Reviewed by Major Patrick D. Pflaum ........................................................................................................39

CLE News ................................................................................................................................................................ 44

Current Materials of Interest .......................................................................................................................... 54

Individual Paid Subscriptions to The Army Lawyer ......................................................Inside Back Cover



Unleashing the Dogs of War: Using Military Working Dogs to Apprehend Enemy Combatants
Major Charles T. Kirchmaier1
In the El Anbar province of central Iraq, an infantry company conducts a mission rehearsal in preparation
for a cordon and search operation to capture an enemy insurgent leader.2 The operation will be conducted
in a densely populated neighborhood within the city limits of Ar Ramadi. The company commander
planning the operation is concerned about what actions can be taken if the insurgent leader attempts to
escape capture. The Rules of Engagement (ROE) authorize the use of force, including deadly force, to be
used against the targeted insurgent leader. However, if the insurgent leader successfully avoids capture,
or is shot dead while trying to escape, the commander may lose an invaluable opportunity to gather
battlefield intelligence against the insurgency.3 The company commander is also concerned about the risks
of controlling lethal fires in a populated urban area. To mitigate the risks of collateral damage and
civilian casualties, the company commander submits a request to employ a non-lethal weapon for use
during the capture mission.
Back at the brigade command post, the company commander’s request to use a non-lethal weapon during
the cordon and search operation is forwarded from the battalion commander to the brigade commander.
The brigade commander has never received a request to deploy a non-lethal weapon in an offensive
operation and contemplates the ramifications of granting his subordinate commander’s request. The
brigade commander recognizes that the requested “non-lethal weapon” has never been used against the
enemy during offensive combat operations. After studying the request for several minutes, the brigade
commander turns to his Command Judge Advocate (CJA) and asks, “Judge, can we use a dog to apprehend
enemy combatants during a cordon and search operation?”
I. Introduction
Every weapon used on the battlefield is required to undergo a Department of Defense (DOD) legal review;4 but what is a
judge advocate (JA) supposed to do when a commander wants to use a military working dog (MWD) like a weapon? This
article attempts to answer that question by examining whether using MWDs to apprehend enemy combatants complies with
the law of war (LOW).5 Employing a MWD like a non-lethal weapon to capture targeted enemy combatants is not an
entirely fictional idea like the one depicted in the opening scenario.6 The legality of using MWDs during offensive combat
operations recently appeared as an issue on the U.S. Army War College’s 2006 Key Strategic Issues List (KSIL), suggesting
Judge Advocate, U.S. Army. Presently assigned as an Operational Law Observer-Trainer, Battle Command Training Program, Ft. Leavenworth, Kan.;
LL.M, 2005, The Judge Advocate General’s Legal Center and School; J.D., 1997, Temple University Beasley School of Law; B.A., 1989, University of
Florida. Previous judge advocate assignments include Advanced Operational Law Studies Fellow, Center for Law and Military Operations, 2005-2006;
Command Judge Advocate, 75th Ranger Regiment, 2003-2004; Special Counsel, Office of the Secretary of Defense, 2002-2003; Trial Attorney, Contract
Appeals Division, 2000-2002; Trial Counsel, 82d Airborne Division, 1999-2000; Legal Assistance Attorney, 82d Airborne Division, 1998-1999.

See, e.g., Lieutenant General David H. Petraeus, Learning Counterinsurgency: Observations from Soldiering in Iraq, MIL. REV., Jan.–Feb. 2006, at 6
(stressing the importance of developing actionable intelligence at the tactical level as instrumental to successfully fighting a counterinsurgency campaign).

U.S. DEP’T OF DEFENSE, DIR. 5000.1, THE DEFENSE ACQUISITION SYSTEM para. E1.1.15 (12 May 2003) [hereinafter DOD DIR. 5000.1].
Legal Compliance. The acquisition and procurement of DoD weapons and weapon systems shall be consistent with all applicable
domestic law and treaties and international agreements (for arms control agreements, see DoD Directive 2060.1, reference (1)),
customary international law, and the law of armed conflict (also known as the laws and customs of war). An attorney authorized to
conduct such legal reviews in the Department shall conduct the legal review of the intended acquisition of weapons or weapons


The DOD directive outlining the DOD Law of War Program defines the Law of War as:
That part of international law that regulates the conduct of armed hostilities. It is often called the law of armed conflict
(“LOAC”). The law of war encompasses all international law for the conduct of hostilities binding on the United States or its
individual citizens, including treaties and international agreements to which the United States is a party and applicable
customary international law.

U.S. DEP’T OF DEFENSE, DIR. 2311.01E, DOD LAW OF WAR PROGRAM para. 3.1 (9 May 2006) [hereinafter DOD DIR. 2311.01E].

See, e.g., R. Norman Moody, Canines Crucial Part of War Effort, FLA. TODAY, Apr. 26, 2005, available at http://www.floridatoday.com (ID:
brv13254527) (last visited Oct. 24, 2006) (describing how an Air Force staff sergeant and his MWD tracked and captured enemy combatants during combat
operations in Iraq) (copy on file with author).



a growing interest in expanding the use of MWDs on the battlefield.7 Ongoing combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan
demonstrate the importance commanders place on using captured individuals to provide actionable intelligence for
conducting follow-on operations.8 However, several high-profile courts-martial concerning the use of MWDs should raise
concerns about how MWDs are being employed during combat operations.9 Of course, commanders also will have to
consider a variety of non-legal factors including cultural considerations, public perceptions, and campaign objectives when
determining whether using MWDs in offensive combat operations is prudent in a given situation. Nonetheless, the
fundamental question with which JAs must contend is whether using a MWD team to apprehend an enemy combatant would
violate the LOW.
This article introduces the LOW principles that form the underlying foundation for determining the legality of a
particular means or method of warfare and examines the legality of using MWDs in offensive combat operations. The
analytical framework used in DOD weapon reviews can be adapted to examine whether MWDs could be used in offensive
combat operations.10 Judge advocates are required to conduct DOD weapons reviews to ensure any weapon used by U.S.
Armed Forces complies with the LOW and applicable DOD Directives.11 There is no specified format for conducting a DOD
weapons review, but there are common LOW principles that are usually found in them.12 Accordingly, the first half of this
article examines a MWD’s capabilities, limitations, and historical use in combat.13 The second half of this article examines
how a MWD might be employed in light of applicable LOW principles reflected in customary international law14 and binding
U.S. treaty law.15 If the LOW is not violated, then military commanders should be able to employ MWDs as non-lethal
weapons systems during offensive combat operations to apprehend enemy combatants.16

See U.S. ARMY WAR COLLEGE KEY STRATEGIC ISSUES LIST 59 (Dr. Antulio J. Echevarria, II, ed., July 2006), available at

See supra note 3; see also Office of the White House Press Secretary, President Discusses Creation of Military Commissions to Try Suspected Terrorists
(6 Sept. 2006), available at http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2006/09/20060906-3.html [hereinafter Military Commissions]. In a 2006 press
briefing on the creation of Military Commissions, President George W. Bush outlined the importance of gaining intelligence from captured enemy
combatants to thwart future terrorist plots:
In this new war, the most important source of information on where the terrorists are hiding and what they are planning is the
terrorists, themselves. Captured terrorists have unique knowledge about how terrorist networks operate. They have knowledge of
where their operatives are deployed, and knowledge about what plots are underway. This intelligence -- this is intelligence that cannot
be found any other place. And our security depends on getting this kind of information. To win the war on terror, we must be able to
detain, question, and, when appropriate, prosecute terrorists captured here in America, and on the battlefields around the world.
Military Commissions, supra.
See Josh White, Army Dog Handler Gets Six Months in Prison, WASH. POST, at A15 (Mar. 23, 2006), available at http://washingtonpost.com/wpdyn/conten/article/2006/03/22 (describing the court-martial sentence of an Army dog handler for maltreatment of detainees, among other charges, and
allowing his MWD to be used as a means of intimidating and harassing detainees during interrogations); see also Josh White & Scott Higham, Use of Dogs
to Scare Prisoners Was Authorized, WASH. POST, June 11, 2004, at A1 (reporting that senior ranking intelligence officers authorized military dog handlers to
use MWDs to intimidate and harass detainees at Abu Ghraib prison during interrogation operations) (copy on file with author).

See generally U.S. DEP’T OF ARMY, REG. 27-53, REVIEW OF LEGALITY OF WEAPONS UNDER INTERNATIONAL LAW (1 Jan. 1979) [hereinafter AR 27-53];
U.S. DEP’T OF AIR FORCE, INSTR. 51-402, WEAPONS REVIEW para. 1.2.2 (13 May 1994) [hereinafter AFI 51-402]; U.S. DEP’T OF NAVY, SEC’Y OF THE

See supra note 5 (noting that DOD Dir. 2311.01E requires legal reviews on all matters relating to “the development, acquisition, and procurement of
weapons and weapon systems. . .”).

See, e.g., Major Donna Marie Verchio, Just Say No! The SIrUS Project: Well-Intentioned, But Unnecessary and Superfluous, 51 A.F. L. REV. 183, 219
(2001) (describing how most DOD weapon reviews rely on a three-step analysis for determining the legality of a particular weapon including: (1) the
weapon’s mission and military advantage; (2) the weapon’s “nature;” and (3) the “weapon's applicability (or non-applicability) to specific international law
(law of war or arms control) rules or prohibitions”); see also Memorandum, Special Assistant for Law of War Matters, Office of the Judge Advocate
General, U.S. Army, to Office of the Project Manager Mines, Countermine and Demolitions, Picatinny Arsenal, N.J., subject: Cartridge, 120MM, XM1028
Cartridge, Milestone C and Low Rate, Legal Review (15 Sept. 2004) [hereinafter XM1028 Cartridge Weapons Review] (on file with author).

See Verchio, supra note 12, at 219.


U.S. forces will comply with the LOW during all armed conflicts, and “unless otherwise directed by competent authorities, will comply with the principles
and spirit of the law of war during all other operations”) (emphasis added).


The U.S. Marine Corps requires that a non-lethal weapon comply with all provisions of international law. See MCO 3430.7, supra note 10, para. 4.
Likewise, the Air Force requires a discussion on the relevant aspects of international treaty law. See AFI 51-402, supra note 10, para. 1.2.2.
See generally Lieutenant Colonel James C. Duncan, A Primer on the Employment of Nonlethal Weapons, 45 NAV. L. REV. 1, 26-27 (1998) (noting that
non-lethal weapons should undergo the same legal review requirements as lethal weapons systems).



II. Military Working Dogs: Capabilities, Limitations, and Historical Use
A. Capabilities and Limitations
The technical capabilities and limitations section of a weapons review usually discusses how a particular weapon
functions to accomplish its purpose.17 Examining how a MWD uses non-lethal force to apprehend an individual will provide
valuable information about how that same dog might be employed as a non-lethal weapon to capture enemy combatants. As
a logical starting point for this inquiry, JAs should first consider whether a MWD can even be compared to a weapon for
purposes of conducting a legal review. The DOD defines non-lethal weapons as “weapons that are explicitly designed, and
primarily employed so as to incapacitate personnel or materiel, while minimizing fatalities, permanent injury to personnel,
and undesired damage to property and the environment.”18 In contrast, the Army defines weapons as “all conventional arms,
munitions, materiel, instruments, mechanisms, or devices which have an intended effect of injuring, destroying, or disabling
enemy personnel, materiel, or property.”19 By comparison, both the U.S. Army and U.S. Air Force MWD training manuals
state that allowing a dog to bite during an apprehension is a non-lethal use of force.20 The question posed in the opening
scenario indicates that the MWD will be used to incapacitate enemy personnel while minimizing the potential for the
occurrence of a fatal shooting incident during the mission. The MWD would therefore seem to fit the latter definition
describing a non-lethal weapon; for purposes of this review, a MWD is likened to using a non-lethal weapon system to
apprehend an enemy combatant.21
1. Capabilities
Military working dog teams have special capabilities that have been employed effectively in law enforcement and
combat operations.22 The Air Force MWD manual describes the law enforcement capabilities of a MWD trained for patrol
work as follows: “MWDs seek, detect, bite and hold, and guard suspects on command during law enforcement patrol
activities. They deter attack and defend their handlers during threatening situations. They can assist in crowd control and
confrontation management, as well as search for suspects indoors and outdoors.”23 The Army’s MWD regulation notes the
following about employing MWDs in combat patrol operations: “The patrol dog’s superior detection ability is especially
useful at night or during periods of limited visibility. Patrol dogs can detect a fleeing person that a human could not detect
and, if necessary, pursue, attack, and hold the fleeing person.”24 The Army’s field manual on military police law and order
operations states that MWDs are “highly useful in cordon and search operations” and “on the battlefield just as in a peacetime
See, e.g., W. Hays Parks, Memorandum of Law: Review of Weapons in the Advanced Combat Rifle Program, ARMY LAW., July 1990, at 18 [hereinafter
Parks, ACR Program Weapon Review]; W. Hays Parks, Joint Service Combat Shotgun Program, ARMY LAW., Oct. 1997, at 16 [hereinafter Parks, Joint
Combat Shotgun Weapon Review].
See U.S. DEP’T OF DEFENSE, DIR. 3000.3, POLICY FOR NON-LETHAL WEAPONS para. 3.1 (9 July 1996) [hereinafter DOD DIR. 3000.3] (defining nonlethal weapons as “weapons that are explicitly designed, and primarily employed so as to incapacitate personnel or materiel, while minimizing fatalities,
permanent injury to personnel, and undesired damage to property and the environment”).

AR 27-53, supra note 10, para. 3.a. But see U.S. DEP’T OF DEFENSE, INSTR. 5525.10, USING MILITARY WORKING DOG TEAMS (MWDTs) TO SUPPORT
LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES IN COUNTERDRUG MISSIONS para. 4.2.1 (17 Sept. 1990) (stating the DOD view that MWDs are equipment and may be
loaned out, with the MWD handler, to assist law enforcement officials); U.S. DEP’T OF AIR FORCE, JOINT INSTR. 23-224, DOD MILITARY WORKING DOG
(MWD) PROGRAM para. 8 (1 Dec. 1990) [hereinafter AFJI 23-224] (noting that MWDs are designated as government property, branded for identification,
and accounted for by an inventory manager). The DOD has designated the Air Force as the primary manager of the DOD MWD program. AFJI 23-224,
supra, para. 2. As such, the Department of the Air Force is responsible for establishing DOD policies relating to the procurement, recruitment, training, and
logistical management of MWD teams. Id.

See, e.g., U.S. DEP’T OF ARMY, REG. 190-12, MILITARY WORKING DOGS para. 4-2.b (30 Sept. 1993) [hereinafter AR 190-12] (stating that, “[r]elease of a
patrol dog to apprehend a suspect is a greater measure of force than use of an MP club, but less than deadly force because a patrol dog is trained to terminate
an attack on voice command of its handler”); see also U.S. DEP’T OF AIR FORCE, INSTR. 31-202, MILITARY WORKING DOG PROGRAM para. 3.2 (1 Aug.
1999) [hereinafter AFI 31-202] (instructing that, “[r]elease of an MWD to bite or allowing it to bite while on leash, although considered use of force, is not
considered use of deadly force”).


See DOD DIR. 3000.3, supra note 18, para. 3.1 (defining non-lethal weapons as “weapons that are explicitly designed, and primarily employed so as to
incapacitate personnel or materiel, while minimizing fatalities, permanent injury to personnel, and undesired damage to property and the environment”).

See, e.g., Corporal Christi Prickett, Military Working Dogs Essential Tool in Iraq Mission, May 3, 2005, available at http://www.usmc.mil/marinelink/
mcn2000.nsf/0/91943E720D2572C585256FF6001A74E6?opendocument (noting that the 2d Military Police Battalion, II Marine Expeditionary Force
(FWD), has employed MWD teams to support entry control points, maneuver and mobility support operations, cordon and search missions, and main supply
route security operations); see also Air Force News Service, Air Force K-9 Dogs in Iraq, Sept. 10, 2003, available at http://usmilitary.about.com/cs/
airforce/a/afk9dogs.htm (describing the conduct of air-base defense and force protection operations with MWDs in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom).

AFI 31-202, supra note 20, para. 8.1. But see U.S. DEP’T OF ARMY, FIELD MANUAL 19-10, MILITARY POLICE LAW AND ORDER OPERATIONS 114 (30
Sept. 1987) [hereinafter FM 19-10] (discouraging the use of patrol dog teams for direct confrontation with demonstrators).


AR 190-12, supra note 20, para. 4-4.b.



environment, MWD teams are useful wherever the dogs’ highly developed senses of smell and hearing can be used to detect
the presence and location of otherwise invisible intruders or enemy.”25 The Marine Corps’ warfighting publication on
providing military police support to a Marine air-ground task force operation advises that MWDs are trained to “attack on
command, cease attack on command, search buildings and open areas for criminal offenders, perform reliably off the leash,
and work safely and effectively around people.”26 Thus, MWD teams have proven themselves to be quite skillful at locating
and apprehending individuals with non-lethal force during law enforcement operations and combat support missions.
2. Limitations
The MWD does have operational limitations that may restrict how and where a dog may be employed on the battlefield.
One of the most important limitations is the understanding that a MWD is usually trained to respond only to the commands of
the dog’s designated handler.27 If the MWD’s handler is seriously injured or killed during a combat mission, the dog cannot
be transferred immediately over to another individual and be expected to carry out its mission.28 Military working dog
handlers maintain control over their dogs by using hand signals, voice commands, and physical restraint of the dogs.29 Thus,
a handler needs to maintain close physical proximity to the dog. If the MWD and its handler become separated, then the
ability to control the dog becomes diminished, and the possibility of the MWD biting someone other than the intended target
becomes more likely.30 The Air Force MWD manual specifically warns a handler not to release his dog if the suspect being
pursued is not in sight.31 Likewise, MWD handlers are cautioned against releasing their dogs into angry crowds during riot
control situations where the dogs could become agitated and possibly bite people.32 Finally, extreme caution must be used if
the MWD is released where children may be present.33
B. Historical Use
Studying how a particular weapon has been employed historically in combat can yield valuable information for the legal
review.34 Specifically, JAs may gain some insight into the military necessity for implementing a particular means or method
of warfare. Likewise, a state’s practice of using a particular weapon on the battlefield could indicate whether a particular


FM 19-10, supra note 23, at 116.


2000) [hereinafter MCWP 3-34.1].

See, e.g., AR 190-12, supra note 20, para. 4.1.b (“Each MWD will have only one assigned handler so that the dog will maintain an aggressive attitude
toward all other persons. A handler may be assigned to more than one dog; however, a dog will never be assigned to more than one handler.”); see also U.S.
DEP’T OF ARMY, PAM. 190-12, MILITARY WORKING DOG PROGRAM para. 1-19c (30 Sept. 1993) [hereinafter DA PAM. 190-12] (“The dog depends directly
on the handler and, in keeping with the principle of one dog-one handler, the dog should never have to depend on anyone other than the assigned handler.”).

See, e.g., MCWP 3-34.1, supra note 26, at E-2. The publication explains in relevant part,
Team members must know what to do if a handler is seriously wounded or killed. A dog that has worked closely with a team
and has developed a tolerance for one or more of the team members will usually allow one of the members to return it to the
kennel. If the MWD will not allow anyone near its handler, other handlers must be called in to assist.

See AFI 31-202, supra note 20, para. 3.1-3.3 (discussing the importance of maintaining control over the MWD at all times); DA PAM. 190-12, supra note
27, para. 2-6.b.2 (instructing that prior to releasing a dog inside building or enclosed area, a handler should provide a warning that the dog may attack
without warning and cautioning handlers to maintain voice control over the MWDs throughout the search).
See DA PAM. 190-12, supra note 27, para. 2-2.b (warning that, “[h]andlers must avoid releasing the dog to attack until the danger to innocent persons can
be eliminated or minimized”); see also MCWP 3-34.1, supra note 26, at E-4 (noting that a MWD should not be used to search an area until there is relative
certainty that the area is clear of innocent people).

AFI 31-202, supra note 20, para. 3.2.3.


Id.; see also FM 19-10, supra note 23, at 114; DA PAM. 190-12, supra note 27, para. 2-17.a.(2)-(3) (observing that the “high levels of confusion and
excitement” can make it difficult to control the dogs and warning that the MWD should never be released into a crowd of demonstrators).

See AFI 31-202, supra note 20, para. 3.2.3 (“Handlers will not release MWDs in areas where children are present, except as a last resort short of deadly
force.”). Some researchers have noted that when dogs attack children the severity of the wounds are more likely to be greater than those sustained by an
adult and it is likely that the children unknowingly provoked the dog to attack. See, e.g., NAT’L CANINE RES. FOUND., FATAL DOG ATTACK STUDIES (2004),
http://ncrf2004.tripod.com/id8.html (noting that adults are physically more capable of fending off a dog attack than are children).
See, e.g., Parks, Joint Combat Shotgun Weapon Review, supra note 17, at 16-17 (noting that history constitutes state practice and providing a historical
overview of the shotgun’s use in combat).



means or method of warfare has developed into a rule of customary international law.35 The widespread use of dogs on the
battlefield to perform certain combat functions suggests that using MWDs in combat has become a universally-accepted state
practice.36 Judge advocates should consider whether the acceptance of using MWDs on the battlefield in general might also
extend to employing MWDs during offensive combat operations.
The employment of MWDs in combat is well-recorded throughout American military history and can be traced as far
back as the French and Indian wars.37 In spite of Benjamin Franklin’s advocacy for the use of dogs in combat, the U.S.
military did not adopt a program to train MWDs for battlefield use until the outbreak of World War II (WWII).38 By the time
the United States entered WWII, Germany, France, Japan, Russia, and Great Britain all had adopted military training
programs to employ dogs on the battlefield.39 Since the end of WWII, the U.S. military has expanded widely the use of dogs
on the battlefield.40 A survey of the MWD doctrine and training manuals indicates that MWDs are employed in a variety of
combat support operations including: area defense and perimeter security missions; early detection sensors during combat
patrols; force protection and apprehension capabilities during EPW operations; and, detection, by use of a superior sense of
smell of bombs and other types of explosive materials.41
Arguably, one of the most important functions MWD teams perform in combat is helping U.S. forces detect, find, and
capture enemy combatants.42 With the exception of an abandoned training program during WWII, MWDs have not been
trained to conduct offensive combat operations against enemy combatants.43 However, the U.S. military has trained and
employed other animals to conduct offensive combat operations against enemy combatants during Operation Iraqi Freedom.

See Jean-Marie Henckaerts, Study on Customary International Humanitarian Law: A Contribution to the Understanding of and Respect for the Rule of
Law in Armed Conflict 179-81, INT’L REV. OF THE RED CROSS, vol. 87, no. 857, Mar. 2005 (noting that State practice is derived from a State’s physical acts
and verbal acts, including the use of certain weapons and how a force conducts itself on the battlefield); see also Parks, Joint Combat Shotgun Weapon
Review, supra note 17, at 17 (noting the substantial employment of shotgun weapons by several nations during combat operations and the corresponding lack
of restrictions on their employment due to LOW concerns).
See, e.g., Staff Sergeant Monica R. Garreau, MP K-9s Enhance Force Protection Efforts, ARMY NEWS SERV. (27 June 2004), available at
http://www4.army.mil/ocpa/read.php?story_id_key=6094; James Pettit & Captain Ronald J. Hughes, Engineer Mine Detection Dogs, 18 ENGINEER 34 (July–
Sept. 2004); Specialist Cheryl Ransford, Canine Units Issued New Protective Gear, FREEDOM WATCH 8 (27 Feb. 2005) (copy on file with author); Corporal
Paul Robbins Jr., Taking a Bite Out of Ramadi, MARINE CORPS NEWS (28 Sept. 2006), available at http://www.usmc.mil/marinelink/mcn2000.
nsf/homepage?readform (story ID#: 20061029624); Air Force K-9 Dogs in Iraq, AIR FORCE NEWS SERV. (10 Sept. 2003), available at

See, e.g., MICHAEL G. LEMISH, WAR DOGS: A HISTORY OF LOYALTY AND HEROISM 6 (1999) (attributing early consideration to the use of dogs in combat
to Benjamin Franklin). Around 1755, Colonel Benjamin Franklin wrote to Major Frank Read to encourage the use of dogs to defend the town of Reading,
Pennsylvania, against an impending attack by natives and foreign insurgent forces:
Dogs should be used against the Indians. They should be large, strong, and fierce; and every dog led in a slip string, to prevent
their tiring themselves by running out and in, and discovering the party by barking at squirrels, etc. Only when the party comes
near thick woods and suspicious places they should turn out a dog or two to search them. In case of meeting a party of the enemy,
the dogs are all then to be turned loose and set on. They will be fresher and finer for having been previously confined and will
confound the enemy a good deal and be very serviceable. This was the Spanish method of guarding their marches.

Id. (citing to Fairfax Downey, Dogs for Defense 2 (1955)); see also Willard Sterne Randall, Colonel Benjamin Franklin, MIL. HIST. Q.: Q. J. OF MIL. HIST. 6
(Winter 2001) (copy on file with author).

On 13 March 1942, the U.S. Army’s Quartermaster General created the Canine (K-9) Corps. See OFFICE OF THE QUARTERMASTER GENERAL, U.S.
ARMY, FACT SHEET ON WAR DOGS 4 (15 July 1948) (copy on file with author).

See, e.g., Thomas F. Newton, World War II Combat: Axis and Allies, http://community-2.webtv.net/Hahn-50thAP-K9/K9History21/ (last visited Oct. 23,
2006) (providing a compilation of primary and secondary historical sources relating to the use of dogs in combat during WWII).


See, e.g., Maryann Mott, Dogs of War:
Inside the U.S. Military’s Canine Corps, NAT’L GEOGRAPHIC NEWS (Apr. 9, 2003),
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2003/04/0409_030409_militarydogs.html (writing about the training of explosive detection and patrol dogs at
Lackland Air Force Base, San Antonio, Texas).

See, e.g., AFI 31-202, supra note 20, para. 8.4 (“MWDs are employed to provide enhanced patrol and detection capability to perimeter and point defense,
as a sensor system, and drug and explosives detection.”); DA PAM. 190-12, supra note 27, para. 2-26 (stating that in past combat operations, MWDs have
provided early warning of imminent attacks, helped clear protected areas of hostile persons, explosives, and weapons after attacks); MCWP 3-34.1, supra
note 26, at E-2 (instructing that a MWD’s capabilities are used to enhance the security posture of a tactical patrol through the detection and location of
enemy soldiers).

See, e.g., Prickett, supra note 22; Air Force K-9 Dogs in Iraq, supra note 22.


During WWII, the Army developed a program to train dogs to carry explosives strapped to their backs into enemy fortified bunkers. Though suicidal for
the dogs, it was believed at the time that this method of warfare could potentially save thousands of American G.I.s lives during the Pacific campaign to end
the war. LEMISH, supra note 37, at 89 (citing to a letter from Colonel William A. Borden, Office of the Chief of Staff, to Major General S.G. Henry,
Director, New Developments Division, War Department Special Staff (8 Nov. 1943) (letter available in the National Archives at NARA RG407) (copy on
file with author). Ironically, this same tactic may have been used against U.S. forces serving in Iraq. See Dog Bomb Used Against U.S. Forces, WASH.
TIMES, Aug. 14, 2006, at 11 (reporting that an Iraqi insurgent group claimed responsibility for attacking U.S. forces near Baghdad by “setting off explosives
attached to a dog”).



Specifically, the U.S. Navy used sea lions in the Persian Gulf and dolphins in the Iraqi port of Umm Qasr to perform enemy
swimmer interdiction missions.44 The U.S. Navy developed a training program that taught these sea mammals to help Navy
combat swimmers detect and apprehend enemy personnel using non-lethal force.45 Like their sea mammal counterparts,
MWDs might also be trained to assist U.S. forces in performing the mission of locating and apprehending enemy combatants
on land.
For over sixty years, the U.S. military has relied on the invaluable service rendered by MWDs during numerous combat
operations. While MWDs only have been employed in combat support roles, there is a growing body of evidence that
suggests MWDs also could be used in direct combat action missions.46 As demonstrated by the U.S. Navy’s use of dolphins
and sea lions to perform enemy swimmer interdiction missions, animals can be trained and relied upon to provide non-lethal
force capabilities.47 Likewise, MWDs could be trained to use non-lethal force to apprehend enemy combatants during
offensive combat operations.

III. Legal Obligations and LOW Considerations
Most JAs are familiar with the admonition that the means of injuring one’s enemy are not unlimited.48 This LOW
requirement arises from customary international law, as expressed in Article 22, Hague Convention (IV) Respecting the Laws
and Customs of War on Land, Annexed Regulations (HR), which states, “The right of belligerents to adopt means of injuring
the enemy is not unlimited.”49 The Army’s field manual on the laws of land warfare further clarifies this requirement: “The
means [of warfare] employed are definitely restricted by international declarations, and conventions and by the laws and
usages of war.”50 Even if MWDs are not considered weapons for purposes of conducting a DOD weapons review, JAs
should still be prepared to render legal advice concerning LOW compliance before a MWD is employed as a non-lethal

See Lieutenant Junior Grade Josh Frey, Anti-Swimmer Dolphins Defending Persian Gulf Ports, FLAGSHIP (Aug. 13, 2003), at
http://www.flagshipnews.com/archives_2003/aug212003_11.shtml. The U.S. Navy’s sea lion swimmer interdiction program, known officially as the
Shallow Water Intruder Detection System program, has been described as follows:

The sea lions are trained to detect swimmers or divers approaching military ships or piers. The animals carry a clamp in their mouths.
They approach the swimmer quietly from behind and attach the clamp, which is connected to a rope, to the swimmer's leg. With the
person restrained, sailors aboard ships can pull the swimmer out of the water.
Id.; see also Scott Simon, Marine Mammals on Active Duty: Navy Uses Dolphins, Sea Lions to Patrol Waters in Persian Gulf, NAT’L PUB. RADIO (Mar. 29,
2003), at http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=1211780 (describing the U.S. Navy’s use of sea lions and dolphins to perform enemy
swimmer interdiction missions in Bahrain and the Iraqi port of Umm Qasr). The United States may not be the only nation that has trained sea mammals to
perform enemy swimmer interdiction missions. See, e.g., Iran Buys Kamikaze Dolphins, BBC WORLD NEWS (Mar. 8, 2000), available at
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/world/middle_east/670551.stm (describing how dolphins that were sold to Iran had been trained by the former Soviet Union’s
military to attack enemy frogmen).
See U.S. Dep’t of Navy, U.S. Navy Marine Mammal Program, http://www.spawar.navy.mil/sandiego/technology/mammals (last visited Oct. 23, 2006)
(describing the U.S. Navy programs to employ marine mammals in a variety of combat roles including: mine hunting, force protection, object recovery,
fleet support, and enemy swimmer interdiction). Sea mammals reportedly have superior sensory capabilities that make them well-suited for the enemyswimmer interdiction missions. Id.; see also Donna Leinwand, Sea Lions Called to Duty in Persian Gulf, USA TODAY, Feb. 17, 2003, at A7, available at

See, e.g., R. Norman Moody, Florida-Based Military Dogs Do Heroic Work In War Zone, FLA. TODAY, May 9, 2005, available at
http://www.floridatoday.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20050426/NEWS01/504260331/1006 (last visited Mar. 28, 2006) (describing how a MWD
apprehended two men in southern Iraq who were attempting to avoid capture). According to an Israeli Defense Force (IDF) website, the IDF has employed
MWDs against enemy combatants during counter-terrorism missions in the Occupied Territories and Lebanon. See The Israeli Special Forces Database, Unit
Oket’z Attack Palga, at http://www.isayeret.com/units/land/special/7142/attack.htm (last visited Mar. 18, 2004) (on file with author) (providing an overview
of Unit 7142’s history and operational capabilities).


See, e.g., Frey, supra note 44.


See U.S. DEP’T OF ARMY, FIELD MANUAL 27-10, THE LAW OF LAND WARFARE para. 33.a (18 July 1956) [hereinafter FM 27-10].


See Hague Convention (IV) Respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land, Annexed Regulations art. 22, Oct. 18, 1907, 36 Stat. 2277, T.S. No. 539
WAR DOCUMENTARY SUPPLEMENT 152 (2006). The Army’s field manual on the laws of land warfare notes that HR IV is “declaratory of the customary law
of war,” and is therefore applicable to all States. FM 27-10, supra note 48, para. 6; see also FRITS KALSHOVEN & LIESBETH ZEGVELD, CONSTRAINTS ON
THE WAGING OF WAR: AN INTRODUCTION TO INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW 41 (2001) (noting that the underlying principle of HR art. 22 was
reaffirmed in Resolution XXVIII of the Twentieth International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent (Vienna, 1965) and subsequently, in 1968, in
Resolution 2444 (XXIII) of the United Nations General Assembly).

See FM 27-10, supra note 48, para. 33.b.


See DOD DIR. 2311.01E, supra note 5, para. 5.3.1 (prescribing to the head of the DOD components that “qualified legal advisers are immediately
available at all levels of command to provide advice about law of war compliance during planning and execution of exercises and operations. . .”); see also



Judge advocates must provide commanders with legal advice regarding the legality of employing a particular means of
warfare based on applicable LOW principles and binding international treaty obligations.52 The first LOW principle
requires that commanders refrain from employing weapons that are calculated to cause superfluous or unnecessary injury.53
The second principle requires that commanders refrain from using a weapon that would cause suffering beyond what is
required by military necessity.54 The third LOW principle reflects the belief that commanders shall only employ weapons or
weapon systems at valid military objectives.55 If a means of warfare does not cause unnecessary suffering, and is only
calculated for use against enemy combatants, then JAs should consider whether there are any treaty-based prohibitions or
restrictions on using a particular weapon or tactic. 56
A. Unnecessary Suffering
The first LOW principle for consideration prohibits the employment of weapons that are calculated to cause unnecessary
suffering.57 This prohibition is recognized as a reflection of customary international law;58 however, there is no universally
agreed upon test for determining whether a particular weapon causes unnecessary suffering.59 The LOW acknowledges that
some amount of suffering is an acceptable consequence resulting from lawful combatants engaging in legitimate forms of
warfare.60 A weapons review should view a weapon’s characteristics in light of its ability to inflict injury in excess of the
military advantage expected to be gained from the weapon’s use.61 A JA would therefore determine whether employing a
[hereinafter FM 90-40]. The Army field manual states, in relevant part:
Nonlethal methods and capabilities may include the use of common materials and existing systems that were not designed as nonlethal weapons, but they can achieve the desired result of minimizing fatalities, permanent injury to personnel and undesired damage
to property and the environment.
FM 90-40, supra, at V-1.



HR IV, supra note 49, art. 23(e) (forbidding the “employment of arms, projectiles, or material calculated to cause unnecessary suffering”) (emphasis
added); see also Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and Relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed
Conflicts art. 35(2), adopted June 8, 1977, 1125 U.N.T.S. 3 [hereinafter AP I] (prohibiting the employment of weapons, projectiles and material and methods
of warfare of a nature to cause superfluous injury or unnecessary suffering) (emphasis added). Additional Protocol I, Article 35(2), essentially restates HR
IV, art. 23(e), but adds the requirement forbidding the use of certain “methods” of warfare while simultaneously dropping the element of intent reflected in
the term “calculated.”

See, e.g., Parks, ACR Program Weapon Review, supra note 17, at 19 (explaining that the LOW requires that commanders refrain from using weapons that
are calculated to induce suffering “beyond that required by military necessity”).
See Major Geoffrey Corn, Int’l and Operational Law Note, Principle 2: Distinction, ARMY LAW., Aug. 1998, at 36 (explaining that the LOW principle of
distinction is not articulated in either the HR or the Geneva Conventions (GC), but rather AP I, art. 48); see also AP I, supra note 53, art. 48. Additional
Protocol I states,

In order to ensure respect for and protection of the civilian population and civilian objects, the Parties to the conflict shall at all times
distinguish between the civilian population and combatants and between civilian objects and military objectives and accordingly shall
direct their operations only against military objectives.

See MCO 3430.7 supra note 10, para. 4a; see also AFI 51-402, supra note 10, para. 1.2.2.


See HR IV, supra note 49 (citing art. 23c and the prohibition on employing arms calculated to cause unnecessary suffering); see also MCO 3430.7, supra
note 10, para. 4.a (stating that nonlethal weapons must also “prevent the infliction of unnecessary suffering”).

(noting agreement amongst nation States that any weapon whose employment causes suffering that serves no military purpose violates this rule of customary
international law); see also Parks, Joint Combat Shotgun Weapon Review, supra note 17, at 18 (arguing that while the term “superfluous injury” is often
substituted for “unnecessary suffering,” the former is a more authentic translation of the French text―“propres a causer des maux superflus,” which is used
in art. 23(e), HR IV).
HENCKAERTS & DOSWALD-BECK, supra note 58, at 240 (noting the difference in views “on how it can actually be determined that a weapon causes
superfluous injury or unnecessary suffering”).

See Parks, Joint Combat Shotgun Weapon Review, supra note 17, at 19 (noting that the LOW prohibition against causing unnecessary suffering is an
acknowledgement that the LOW “recognizes as legitimate necessary suffering in combat”).


See Major Geoffrey Corn, Int’l & Operational Law Note, Principle 4: Preventing Unnecessary Suffering, ARMY LAW., Nov. 1998, at 50-52 (explaining
that the principle of unnecessary suffering must be balanced against the principle of military necessity); see also Memorandum, Office of the Staff Judge
Advocate, United States Air Force, to the Judge Advocate, Army Material Command, subject: Requested Legal Review of the M26 Advanced Taser, at 5 (8
Jan. 2002) [hereinafter M26 Advanced Taser Weapons Review] (stating that a weapon may cause unnecessary suffering if the injury or death to combatants
is disproportionate to the military advantage to be gained from using the weapon) (copy on file with author). The memorandum states that the M26
Advanced Taser Weapon review was coordinated with the Staff Judge Advocate to the Commandant of the Marine Corps and the Offices of the Judge
Advocates General of the Army and Navy. Id.



MWD like a non-lethal weapon to apprehend an enemy combatant might result in an injury or suffering that would be
disproportionate to the military advantage expected to be gained by the dog’s use.62
A MWD can perform an apprehension by the less forceful method of finding and barking at an individual’s location or
by finding and biting an individual until the MWD handler commands the dog to release the individual.63 If a MWD is
employed using the “bite and hold” method of apprehension, then the dog should bite only once to establish a firm grip on
the individual the dog is apprehending.64 If the detainee attempts to break the MWD’s bite-grip, then the dog likely would
attempt to reestablish its hold by biting the detainee again.65 This second scenario increases the likelihood that a MWD might
inflict multiple bite wounds on the detainee. While the infliction of multiple bite wounds may cause some concern about the
infliction of unnecessary suffering to effect an apprehension, there are other legitimate weapon systems that also cause
multiple wounding effects when employed against valid military objectives (e.g., the combat shotgun, fragmentation grenade,
and claymore mine).66 Thus, it appears that if a MWD were employed like a non-lethal weapon against a valid military
object, then a MWD is not likely to cause suffering beyond what is militarily necessary to apprehend an enemy combatant.
B. Military Necessity
The second LOW principle requires commanders to refrain from employing methods, tactics, and means of warfare that
are deemed to be unnecessary.67 As discussed in the previous section, military commanders must inflict only that measure of
suffering required by military necessity to achieve a valid military objective.68 Justification for using a weapon requires a
valid military purpose or necessity for employing the weapon.69 Military commanders should be cautioned that the military
necessity principle does not excuse taking actions or employing a means of warfare that would otherwise violate the LOW.70
Additionally, a JA should also take into account the stated or proposed necessity for using a weapon and compare it with
other comparable weapons already in use on the battlefield.71


See also HENCKAERTS & DOSWALD-BECK, supra note 58, at 240 (noting that many States follow the rule that determining whether a means of warfare
causes unnecessary suffering or superfluous injury requires “that a balance be struck between military necessity, on the one hand, and the expected injury or
suffering inflicted on a person, on the other hand, and that excessive injury or suffering, i.e., that which is out of proportion to the military advantage sought,
therefore violates the rule”).

See United States Department of Justice (DOJ) and International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP)_ Recommendations on Police Service Dogs,
http://www.policecanines.com/documents/doj.htm (last visited Apr. 25, 2006) [hereinafter Justice Department Memo] (providing a recommendation to the
City of Cincinnati, OH, and Prince George’s County, MD, that each police agency should adopt a “find and bark” policy over “bite and hold”). But see
Charlie Mesloh, Excerpts from An Overview of Canine Apprehension Methodologies and Their Relationship to Bite Ratio (Apr. 17, 2003), available at
http://www.k9fleck.org/biteratios.htm (last visited Oct. 23, 2006) (arguing that canines that are trained to “find and bark” are less likely to look to their dog
handlers for control while executing an apprehension).

See also Jack L. Stump, MD, FAAEM, FACEP, Animal Bites, eMEDICINE, http://www.emedicine.com/emerg/topic60.htm (last visited Oct. 23, 2006)
(noting that the bite of a dog can yield between 150-450 pounds of pressure per square inch, depending on the dog and its training).

See, e.g., Douglas U. Rosenthal, When K-9s Cause Chaos―An Examination of Police Dog Policies and Their Liabilities, 11 N.Y.L. SCH. J. HUM. RTS.
279, 280 (1993-1994) (providing a survey of several U.S. court cases examining whether using a dog to apprehend an individual constitutes an excessive use
of force).


See Parks, Joint Combat Shotgun Weapon Review, supra note 17, at 21 (noting that various lawful fragmentation munitions, including the shotgun and
fragmentation grenade, are used throughout the world’s armies).

See, e.g., Burrus M. Carnahan, Lincoln, Lieber and the Laws of War: The Origins and Limits of the Principle of Military Necessity, 92 AM. J. INT’L L.
213, 216 (1998) (noting that Article 14 of the Lieber Code authorized Union Army commanders during the U.S. Civil War to use, “those measures which are
indispensable for securing the end of the war, and which are lawful according to the modern law and usages of war.”).

See JEAN PICTET, HUMANITARIAN LAW AND THE PROTECTION OF WAR VICTIMS 32 (1975) (observing that, “[T]he old rule of war ‘do as much harm to
your enemy as you can’ has been replaced by the new law: do not inflict more harm on your enemy than the purpose of the war demands.”); see also FM
27-10, supra note 48, para. 2(a) (noting that one of the fundamental purposes of the Law of War is to protect "both combatants and noncombatants from
unnecessary suffering).
See AP I, supra note 53, art. 52(2) (defining a military objective as, “[T]hose objects which by their nature, location, purpose or use make an effective
contribution to military action and whose total or partial destruction, capture, or neutralization, in the circumstances ruling at the time, offers a definite
military advantage.”).
See FM 27-10, supra note 48, para. 3(a) (providing that, “[m]ilitary necessity has been generally rejected as a defense for acts forbidden by the customary
and conventional laws of war inasmuch as the latter have been developed and framed with consideration for the concept of military necessity.”). Thus,
military necessity does not provide justification for conducting warfare that is considered illegal by universally recognized standards of customary
international law or binding treaty law.
See, e.g., Parks, Joint Combat Shotgun Weapon Review, supra note 17, at 19 (stating that the balancing test necessary to determine a weapon’s legality
requires that the weapon’s effects must be compared to other comparable weapons already in use on the battlefield and the military necessity for the weapon
under consideration).



The requirement to conduct combat operations in urbanized areas significantly increases the likelihood of lethal
encounters with non-combatants.72 During cordon and search operations, like those regularly being conducted in Afghanistan
and Iraq, close quarters combat is being conducted in populated areas.73 When these operations are conducted in populated
areas, it is not unusual for U.S. forces to witness several individuals running away from the designated military objective.74
Due to errors in human judgment or unfortunate circumstances, it is possible for a fleeing civilian to be mistaken for a
suspected enemy combatant.75 Providing military commanders with a non-lethal force option to capture or detain an enemy
combatant will likely mitigate the risk of an accidental or mistaken shooting of a non-combatant. Using a MWD team to
apprehend an enemy combatant gives commanders a viable, non-lethal option for apprehension and validates a legitimate
military necessity for their employment.76
Using a MWD team is arguably more efficient and effective than other comparable weapons that could be employed to
apprehend an enemy combatant.77 Commanders currently have the capability of employing less-than-lethal munitions and
weapons systems to effect an apprehension.78 A conventional weapon, like a combat shotgun, can be employed using nonlethal munitions. However, even the use of non-lethal munitions may result in the infliction of permanent injury or death.79
Another alternative to using lethal force is the employment of a non-lethal weapons system like the M26 Advanced Taser.80
The M26 taser is a non-lethal weapon system capable of delivering 50,000 volts of electricity onto a person’s body in order to
temporarily incapacitate the targeted individual.81 The M26 taser operates by shooting two needle-tipped prongs twenty-one
feet through the air to reach the intended target.82 The M26 taser is capable of being fired only once; so, if the shooter misses
the intended target, there is no mechanism to immediately rearm the taser so that it may be fired again.83 There is also the
potential for a taser to trigger cardiac arrest and death.84 In contrast, a MWD has no such limitations. The MWD will go
farther than the twenty-one foot restriction of the M26 taser and does not pose the same lethality concerns as employing nonlethal munitions from less than twenty feet.85 Another advantage the MWD team has is that once a MWD is released to

See FM 90-40, supra note 51, at I-2; see also COUNCIL ON FOREIGN RELATIONS, NONLETHAL WEAPONS AND CAPABILITIES 2 (2004) [hereinafter
NONLETHAL WEAPONS AND CAPABILITIES REPORT] (stating that nonlethal weapons are particularly appropriate for stability and support operations like
those in Iraq and describing how a U.S. Soldier shot and killed the chairman of the U.S. appointed municipal council in Sadr City as a debacle).

See, e.g., Lessons Learned: Infantry Squad Tactics in Military Operations in Urban Terrain During Operation Phantom Fury in Fallujah, Iraq (Feb. 12,
2005), available at http://www.blackwaterusa.com/btw2005/articles/041805aar.html (last visited Oct. 23, 2006) (reprinting a collection of first person
interviews of several Marine infantrymen who participated in close quarters battle during Operation Phantom Fury in Fallujah Iraq). The article was
produced as part of the U.S. Marine Corps Lessons Learned (MCLL) program.
The slang term “squirters” has entered into the military’s lexicon to describe individuals who attempt to run away from a military objective as it is being
sealed off by security elements during cordon and search operations. (The individuals are attempting to “squirt” off of the objective as the security cordon
encircles around it.). See, e.g., Max Boot, Reconstructing Iraq: With the Marines in the South and 101st in the North, WKLY. STANDARD (15 Sept. 2003),
available at http://www.weeklystandard.com/Utilities/printer_preview.asp?idArticle=3078&R=ED861C8 (last visited Oct. 23, 2006) (describing how “Force
Recon Marines, riding in two Humvees, were supposed to conduct the raid. Three light armored vehicles went along to “sanitize” the perimeter and deal
with any “squirters”).

See, e.g., NONLETHAL WEAPONS AND CAPABILITIES REPORT, supra note 72, at 10 (observing that during combat operations in Iraq, insurgents would
purposely immerse themselves into the civilian population knowing that U.S. military commanders were reluctant to respond with overwhelming lethal force
due to the risks of killing innocent non-combatants).
See, e.g., AR 190-12, supra note 20, para. 4-4.b (declaring that patrol dogs can detect a fleeing person that a human could not detect and, if necessary,
pursue, attack, and hold the fleeing person); see also U.S. DEP’T OF ARMY, REG. 190-14, CARRYING OF FIREARMS AND USE OF FORCE FOR LAW
ENFORCEMENT AND SECURITY DUTIES para. 3.1.b.(5) (12 Mar. 1993) (listing MWDs as a measure of non-lethal use to be employed prior to the use of
deadly force); MCO 3430.7, supra note 10, para. 4.c (noting that non-lethal weapons provide commanders an alternative for taking military action where
“the use of deadly force is not the preferred option”).
See, e.g., NONLETHAL WEAPONS AND CAPABILITIES REPORT, supra note 72, at 2 (stating that nonlethal weapons are particularly appropriate for use in
stability and support operations like those being conducted in Iraq). The report goes on to argue that a military force “using nonlethal weapons and
capabilities has the potential of achieving combat and support goals more effectively than would a force employing only lethal means.” Id.
See, e.g., FM 90-40, supra note 51, at V-2, tbl. V-1 (noting that the combat shotgun can employ non-lethal munitions such as the twelve-gauge bean bag
round and twelve-gauge rubber bullet round).

Id. (warning that less-than-lethal munitions should not be employed at ranges less than twenty feet due to their potential for producing a fatality).


See M26 Advanced Taser Weapons Review, supra note 61, at 2 (describing the capabilities of the M26 Advanced Taser).






Id. However, the M26 Advanced Taser can be configured like a stun gun which would likely permit multiple uses if the user is able to press the electrical
probes against the targeted individual’s body. Id. at 3.
See, e.g., Amnesty International, Excessive and Lethal Force? Amnesty International’s Concerns About Deaths and Ill-treatment Involving Police Use of
Tasers (Nov. 30, 2004), available at http://web.amnesty.org/library/index/engamr511392004 (last visited Oct. 23, 2006) (providing an overview and
discussion of several instances where taser use resulted in the death of an individual being apprehended).

See supra note 79.



conduct an apprehension, the MWD handler can immediately halt and redirect the dog if necessary. Neither the M26 taser or
the employment of non-lethal munitions offers the advantage of calling off the use of force once it has been put in motion.
The effect of employing a MWD team to apprehend and detain enemy combatants will not be excessive in relation to the
anticipated military advantage that will be gained by the team’s utilization. As noted above, using a MWD is arguably more
efficient and effective at capturing and detaining an enemy combatant than any other available means. The MWD is trained
so that its effects are neither per se superfluous nor unnecessary when used to apprehend an enemy combatant. Indeed, a
MWD’s injurious effects are relatively minor compared to those of other available non-lethal weapons like the M26 taser or
the use of non-lethal munitions.
C. Distinction
The third LOW principle requires military commanders to refrain from launching attacks that cannot be directed towards
a military objective.86 In a study of customary international humanitarian law, the International Committee of the Red Cross
(ICRC) asserts that “the use of weapons which are by nature indiscriminate is prohibited.”87 The ICRC further suggest that
the measure for determining whether a weapon is indiscriminate is based on two criteria.88 The first criterion requires that a
weapon be capable of being targeted at a military objective.89 The second criterion requires that a weapon’s effects must be
capable of limitation as required by international law.90 Judge advocates should also consider whether a MWD is capable of
being targeted at enemy combatants and whether the MWD can be controlled or limited so as not to be indiscriminate in its
A MWD satisfies the first ICRC indiscriminate weapon criterion because a MWD is capable of being directed to
apprehend only an enemy combatant that has been designated by a dog handler. The MWD undergoes special training to
reinforce the proper response from the dog so that it will only apprehend an individual after being instructed to do so on
command.92 A MWD relies on the dog handler’s visual and verbal commands to properly identify and designate an
individual targeted for apprehension.93 Since the MWD would be released only by a trained handler, operating under
appropriate release guidelines, at a legitimate military objective, it is unlikely that a MWD would be used indiscriminately to
attack non-combatants.


See, e.g., Corn, supra note 55, at 35 (noting that the application of destructive military force is limited to the greatest extent possible to only those people,
places, or things categorized as legitimate targets as the result of the existence of a state of hostilities).


See HENCKAERTS & DOSWALD-BECK, supra note 58, at 3 (claiming that state practice establishes the LOW principle of distinction as applicable in both
international and non-international conflicts). Doctor Jakob Kellenberger, President, International Committee of the Red Cross, states, in his foreword to the
Henckaerts and Doswald-Beck study, the ICRC’s belief that the work presented by the authors is an “accurate assessment of the current state of customary
international humanitarian law.” Id. at xi; see also AP I, supra note 53, art. 51(4) (prohibiting the use of weapons that are “of a nature to strike military
objectives and civilians or civilian objects without distinction”); Michael J. Matheson, Remarks at the Sixth Annual American Red Cross-Washington
College of Law Conference on International Humanitarian Law: A Workshop on Customary International Law and the 1977 Protocols Additional to the
1949 Geneva Conventions, 2 AM. U.J. INT’L L. & POL’Y 419, 420 (1987), reprinted in INT’L & OPERATIONAL LAW DEP’T, THE JUDGE ADVOCATE
GENERAL’S SCHOOL, U.S. ARMY, LAW OF WAR DOCUMENTARY SUPPLEMENT 385 (2006) (expressing the view that Article 51’s prohibition against
attacking or threatening violence against civilian populations or individuals reflects international customary law). Mr. Matheson clarifies that the United
States does not support those portions of Additional Protocol I, within Articles 51 and elsewhere, that prohibit the use of reprisals because an outright ban on
the use of reprisals does not reflect customary international law. Id. At the time of his remarks, Mr. Matheson served as the Deputy Legal Advisor, U.S.
Department of State. Id.

See HENCKAERTS & DOSWALD-BECK, supra note 58, at 247.
Id. (stating that the first criterion is articulated in AP I art. 51(4)(b), prohibiting the use of weapons that cannot be directed at a specific military objective).


Id. (stating that the second criterion is articulated in AP I art. 51(4)(c), prohibiting the employment of weapons “the effects of which cannot be limited as
required by the Protocol”).
See M26 Advanced Taser Weapons Review, supra note 61, at 6 (suggesting that determining whether a weapon is capable of being controlled so as to be
directed against a lawful target must be addressed in any weapons review). But see AFI 51-402, supra note 10, para. 1.2.2 (requiring only that a weapon
review include, as a “minimum,” a discussion on the relevant aspects of international law).

See AFI 31-202, supra note 20, para. 8.1 (noting that MWDs, “seek, detect, bite and hold, and guard suspects on command during law enforcement patrol
activities”); see also DA PAM. 190-12, supra note 27, para. 1-10 (stating, “[p]atrol dogs also are trained to apprehend suspects at or near a crime scene, stop
those who may attempt to escape, and to protect their handlers from harm”).

See DA PAM. 190-12, supra note 27, para. 3-12.b (providing a description of how a dog handler employs a MWD to apprehend an individual).



Under the second ICRC indiscriminate weapon criterion, the effects of the MWD can be sufficiently controlled or
limited so as not to violate international law. Current Army and Air Force doctrine cautions dog handlers that due care must
be given when a MWD is released to apprehend an individual.94 The U.S. Air Force adds a further safeguard by directing
dog handlers not to unleash a MWD until the handler has verified that the MWD correctly recognizes the target to be pursued
and apprehended.95 Similarly, the U.S. Marine Corps cautions dog handlers to exercise caution when using a MWD to search
an area where innocent persons may be present.96 While there are employment considerations that may influence how an
MWD is employed in a given situation, there is no evidence to suggest that a MWD would be as likely or more likely to bite
noncombatants under appropriate release criteria.97 The military commander who chooses to employ MWD teams to
apprehend and detain enemy combatants can establish employment guidelines or restrictions to minimize the risks to civilians
during combat operations.98 Once unleashed, a MWD does not become an independent force that can no longer be controlled
by the dog’s handler.99 On the contrary, the duration and intensity of an apprehension applied by a MWD to an enemy
combatant can be regulated by a dog handler so as to not be indiscriminate.
D. International Treaty Obligations
In the final part of the legal analysis, JAs should survey the body of binding international treaty law to determine
whether the United States is a party to any treaty that would prohibit the use of MWDs as means of non-lethal force to detain
suspected enemy combatants.100 Determining the impact of treaty law on a particular means of warfare arises from the
understanding that binding international treaty obligations “must be observed by both military and civilian personnel with the
same strict regard for both the letter and spirit of the law which is required with respect to the Constitution and statutes
enacted in pursuance thereof.”101 A survey of applicable treaty law reveals that the United States is not a party to any treaty
that prohibits the use of animals or MWDs as a means of warfare.102 Likewise, there are no prohibitions imposed on the
United States by international treaty law that restrict using MWDs as a non-lethal weapon to apprehend enemy combatants.103
Therefore, there should be no objection based on any binding treaty obligations to the employment of MWDs during
offensive combat operations.
IV. Conclusion
During combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, enemy combatants will purposely immerse themselves into the
civilian population knowing of U.S. military commanders’ reluctance to respond with overwhelming lethal force when
innocent non-combatants may be killed. As a result, commanders will seek ways to neutralize the enemy’s advantage while
minimizing the potential for alienating a local populace. Employing a MWD to apprehend an enemy combatant may provide
commanders with a non-lethal alternative to the use of lethal force in difficult situations where the risk to non-combatants is
high. Judge advocates have a duty to conduct a thorough legal analysis before a MWD is employed to apprehend an enemy
combatant. Conducting a legal analysis based on relevant LOW principles and international treaty law will enable the
Id. para. 202.b (warning MWD handlers to consider the presence of “innocent” people who may inadvertently become the subject of an attack); see also
AFI 31-202, supra note 20, para. 3.2.1 (warning that a MWD should only be released after it has identified the same target as the handler).

See AFI 31-202, supra note 20, para. 3.2.1.


See MCWP 3-34.1, supra note 26, at E-4 (suggesting that a MWD should not be used to search an area until there is relative certainty that the area is clear
of innocent people).

See, e.g., Charles Mesloh, An Examination of Police Canine Use of Force in the State of Florida, at 59 (2003), available at
http://www.uspcak9.com/training/florida_study.pdf (comparing canine employment methods and demonstrating that working dogs are capable of being
trained to look to their handler for guidance on what to do after they are unleashed). A MWD could be similarly trained to regulate the duration and
intensity of a “bite and hold” as directed by the dog handler.

See, e.g., DA PAM. 190-12, supra note 27, para. 2-6.b.2 (instructing that prior to releasing a dog inside building or enclosed area, handlers should provide
a warning that the dog may attack without warning and cautioning handlers to maintain voice control over the MWD throughout the search).


See id. para. 3-12 (listing the critical training requirements for ensuring a MWD only employs controlled aggression).


See, e.g., M26 Advanced Taser Weapons Review, supra note 61, at 4-5 (describing the lack of prohibition on tasers imposed by customary international
law and discussing whether the weapon falls within the scope of several U.S. treaty obligations).

FM 27-10, supra note 48, para. 7.b (explaining that under the U.S. Constitution, article VI, clause 2, treaties to which the United States is a party,
“constitute part of the supreme Law of the Land”).

The Department of State maintains a list of all treaties to which the United States is a party. See, e.g., Treaties in Force: A List of Treaties and Other
International Agreements of the United States in Force as of January 1, 2006, available at http://www.state.gov/s/l/treaty/treaties/ (last visited Oct. 18,





commander to make an informed decision about the limitations of using a MWD during offensive combat operations. After
conducting a thorough analysis of the relevant LOW principles and binding treaty law, the JA should be able to recommend
using a MWD as a lawful means of non-lethal force to apprehend an enemy combatant.



Operation Hammurabi Information Technology: Metrics Analysis Report for Baghdad Courts
Lieutenant Colonel William McQuade1
As part of the effort to modernize Iraqi court facilities after the war, Multi-National Division – Baghdad (MND-B)
supplied local courts in the Baghdad area with computers, Internet service, and computer training for court personnel as part
of its Operation Hammurabi project. This project began during Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) II when the First Cavalry
Division (1CD) was a part of MND-B. The project was expanded during OIF III after the Third Infantry Division (3ID)
replaced 1CD. To gain insight into the efficacy of Operation Hammurabi, during OIF III the MND-B Governorate Support
Team (GST) Justice Section, which has spearheaded much of Operation Hammurabi’s information technology effort, began
obtaining metric data to determine the impact the Operation Hammurabi information technology effort is having on the Iraqi
court system in the Baghdad area. The GST accomplished this by having Iraqi attorneys who are working for the GST visit a
majority of the courts in the Baghdad area to obtain the desired metric data and provide it to the GST Justice Section for
analysis. Trends from five sets of data obtained over a six month period (July-December 2005) indicate that Operation
Hammurabi is achieving a positive effect.

Operation Hammurabi is a Rule of Law project formulated and operated by MND-B.2 Part of Operation Hammurabi
included installing computers and providing Internet service, computer maintenance, and facility upgrades at several
Baghdad area court facilities beginning in late 2004.3 Multi-National Division – Baghdad also began providing computer
training to judges and court staff personnel beginning in the spring of 2005. The Department of State’s International
Narcotics and Law Enforcement division and MND-B Commander’s Emergency Response Program (CERP) provided
funding for this Iraqi court effort.4 Multi-National Division – Baghdad’s project intent is to help facilitate achieving desired
division-level Rule of Law effects such as creating a more stable governance environment, facilitating local citizens’ access
to the courts, and marginalizing the insurgency.5 In addition, the project is intended to be the first step toward the
International Narcotics and Law Enforcement division’s Iraq Justice Integration Project, which envisions connecting the
court, police, and prison facilities by the use of computers, Internet access, and case tracking software so that an individual
can be tracked throughout the entire system, from arrest until release from custody or confinement.6 It is noteworthy that
International Narcotics and Law Enforcement division funding for Internet service and computer maintenance at the court
facilities terminated as of 1 November 2005 with the expectation that the Higher Juridical Council, which is the body
governing the courts, would sustain this effort with their own resources.7 As will be discussed below, the Higher Juridical

Leader, Team 6, 174th Legal Support Organization, 81st Regional Readiness Command. The author served with the 3rd Infantry Division Office of the
Staff Judge Advocate (OSJA) as the Chief, Justice Section, Governorate Support Team, Multi-National Division – Baghdad during Operation Iraqi Freedom
III. Original work on Operation Hammurabi, of which the subject matter of this article is based, was initiated under Operation Iraqi Freedom II, when the
Multi-National Division – Baghdad Justice Chief was Major (MAJ) Jeffrey Spears (OSJA, 1st Cavalry Division). Significant assistance in all aspects of the
Operation Hammurabi court metrics project was provided by First Lieutenant Jason Wong (OSJA, 3ID). The project was under the direction and guidance
of Colonel (COL) William Hudson, SJA, 3ID. The nine Iraqi liaison attorneys who assisted with this project were instrumental in obtaining the necessary
data to analyze the success of the operation. Their identities are, however, undisclosed for their safety. Much of the information contained in this article is
based on the author's recent professional experiences as the Chief, Justice Section, Governorate Support Team, Multi-National Division – Baghdad during
Operation Iraqi Freedom III, from January 2005 – January 2006 [hereinafter Professional Experiences].

Operation Hammurabi began under 1CD with efforts by MAJ Jeffrey Spears, the 1CD GST Justice Chief, but was substantially expanded when 3ID
replaced 1CD in February 2005. This project is part of an overarching Rule of Law program established as part of the reconstruction of Iraq after the recent
The fourteen court facilities include Khark, Rusafa, Khadimiya, Bayaa, Karada, New Baghdad, Sadr City (Al Thawra), Adhamiya, Al Zahoor,
Mahmudiya, Abu Ghraib, and Medain.
Donated computer hardware was installed during OIF II, and 1CD selected contractors to provide computer maintenance, Internet service, and computer
training using International Narcotics and Law Enforcement funding (contract #s JCCI/PCO W914NS-04-M-9080 (maintenance/Internet service) and
JCCI/PCO W91GY0-06-M-0006 (computer training)). Commander’s Emergency Response Program funds have been used to supplement and expand upon
the original scope of the project.
Multi-National Division – Baghdad’s Operation Hammurabi implemented a portion of the International Narcotics and Law Enforcement division's 1994
Rule of Law Framework Working Document (ROLFWD), which provided a general scheme for developing the overall rule of law strategy for Iraq.

The Iraq Justice Integration Project essentially formalized the ROLFWD as incorporated by an interagency and joint US-Iraqi working group.


See Professional Experiences, supra note 1 (recalling contract JCCI/PCO W914NS-04-M-9080 and discussions between 3ID GST and Department of State
personnel in the fall of 2005).



Council does not seem to have provided any funds to sustain Internet service or computer maintenance at the various court
facilities in Baghdad.
Each court facility contains a variety of court types. These types include Family, First Instance (Civil), Criminal
Investigative, Misdemeanor, and Felony courts.8 Two court facilities also have appellate courts co-located with the lower
level courts.9 As a means of determining the success of the project and to provide information regarding future allocation of
effort and resources, MND-B Office of the Staff Judge Advocate decided to begin tracking certain metrics that will provide
insight into the effect Operation Hammurabi is having on the Iraqi court system in Baghdad.10 Because of the slowly
evolving court system in the current Iraqi environment, it was further decided that metric data need only be collected
approximately once per month.11 Nine Iraqi liaison attorneys who were Department of State contractor employees assigned
to work with the GST Justice Section collected the metric data. The attorneys were generally assigned to conduct
observations in different courts, although in a few cases two attorneys assist with the same court complex due to the high
level of activity at the court facility. The attorneys were given two weeks to conduct their observations.12 Three courts were
considered too dangerous for the attorneys to conduct observations due to insurgent activities. These courts, therefore, were
deleted from the list of courts to be scrutinized.13
The data collection task was developed in June 2005 and ready for implementation by July 2005. The first set of data
was obtained in mid-July 2005; the second set in late August―beginning September 2005; and the third through fifth sets in
mid-month for October - December 2005 (totaling a six month period). The data was based on in-person court visits by the
Iraqi attorneys. The attorneys were directed to visit each court and view cases for at least three hours. They were further
directed to follow-up their observations with interviews of the judges and court staff to obtain anecdotal information. They
recorded their data on worksheets, which was then entered by GST Justice Section personnel onto Microsoft Excel computer
spreadsheets to facilitate later review, comparison, and analysis.14
The following analysis does not address all of the data collected by the attorneys. Further, much of the discussion in this
article is based upon an analysis of the aggregate data from the courts because the intent of this report is to cover some of the
most important areas that can provide general trends regarding the Operation Hammurabi’s overall effectiveness in the Iraqi
court system. Because a review of the data spreadsheets for the various courts can provide more detailed information
regarding each individual court, as well as provide additional data not included in this report, future studies may be able to
use the data for a more targeted analysis.15 Finally, a summary of the numerical data addressed in this article is included in
Appendix A. The computer spreadsheet data is the source of the summary, which is the basis for the graphs referenced in
this article.

Information Technology
A snapshot of the status and trends in the computer technology area can be seen in Figure 1. The figure depicts in
graphical form eight of the most important metrics that provide insight into information technology (IT) development and
progress. As seen from the graph, there is a general positive overall trend in all areas, including computer training, computer

According to members of the Iraqi Bar Association, who serve as liaison attorneys to the GST, New Baghdad, Adhamiya, and Al-Zahoor court facilities do
not have felony courts. A thorough history and description of the Iraqi judiciary can be found in Judicial System in Iraq. JUDGE MEDHAT MAHMOUD,
JUDICIAL SYSTEM IN IRAQ (Baghdad, 2004) (Judge Medhat Mahmoud is the President of the Iraqi Council of Judges and Chief Justice of the Iraqi Supreme

These two courts include the Khark and Rusafa court complexes.


This decision followed extensive discussions between the GST Justice Chief and the MND-B Staff Judge Advocate (COL William Hudson) in the
spring/early summer of 2005.



The author formulated the overall data collection and analysis plan, which was approved by the OIF III MND-B Staff Judge Advocate, COL William
Hudson. The author developed the plan in close coordination with the Iraqi liaison attorneys who worked with the GST Justice Section
A determination to eliminate the courts was made following discussions between the GST Justice Chief and the GST Iraqi liaison attorneys. The
following three courts were deleted from the list: Abu Ghraib, Medain, and Mahmudiya. One liaison attorney offered to call court personnel at the
Mahmudiya facility each month to obtain the information, but since such information was not based on personal observations, it was not included in the
statistical analysis for this project.

Data collection procedures, data sheets (in the form of questionnaires to be used by the Iraqi liaison attorneys during their court observations), and
spreadsheets to incorporate the data were developed by the author, 1LT Jason Wong, and COL William Hudson and his OSJA staff in the spring of 2005.
Although the older data worksheets were destroyed to save file space, all of the data has been captured on the spreadsheets, which are located with the
primary court metrics file in the GST Justice Section office in Baghdad, Iraq, and are available for review.



and Internet capability, and computer and Internet usage. A sudden drop in Internet capability, however, in the December
data can be attributed to the expiration of an MND-B contract to provide Internet service and computer maintenance. In
addition, the Higher Juridical Council stated its intent to provide only select courts with Internet service in the foreseeable
future.16 The information regarding manual court administration methods was added to enable a comparison to the number of
courts using computers to assist with court administration.
As seen in Figure 1, there was a tremendous increase in the number of judges and clerks who reported having received
computer training through Operation Hammurabi. This increase can be partly attributed to the on-going training effort
throughout OIF III under a computer training contract.17 Another likely reason for the substantial jump in trained personnel
is because the Iraqi Chief Judge (currently Judge Medhat Mahmoud) and the Chief Appellate Judges (currently Adnan and
Amer) recently directed the lower court judges to take the training opportunity more seriously and ensure as many personnel
as possible attend. This direction by the judges resulted from a meeting the GST Justice Section had with the judges in which
they were notified that the training contractor reported that many court personnel failed the training classes due to absences.18
Regarding the use of information technology equipment for court business, Figure 1 shows that although the number of
courts using computers to draft documents and assist with court administration and using the Internet for research and other
court business is still small, the overall increases since the first set of data was recorded is impressive. The number of courts
using computers to draft documents increased by 650% (from two to thirteen), and the number of courts using computers to
assist with court administration increased by 375% (from four to fifteen). The number of courts using the Internet to conduct
court business improved by 800% (from one to eight) through November of 2005 until Internet service was disrupted. Iraqi
courts still have a long way to go since, over forty courts are included in the project, but the trend is quite favorable. The
results indicate that court personnel increasingly recognize the value of using computers and the Internet for court work. The
data in Figure 1 concerning the number of courts using a manual court administrations method (averaging thirty-three over
the five sets of data) provides a reference to compare with the number of courts using computers to assist with court



July 2005 (36 courts)



Sep 2005 (31 courts)

Oct 2005 (38 courts)

Nov 2005 (42 courts)

Dec 2005 (43 courts)




Judge Op.

Clerk Op.

Computers in



Use Internet for
Court Business

Manual Court
Admin Method

Assisted Court

Although Figure 1 shows the number of courts that reported having computers increased over the three-month period,
many of the courts have only a few computers to serve many personnel. In fact, Iraqi courts have an average of only three
computers that are shared by all employees, and some courts have only one computer or no computers at all.19 Court staff
made many anecdotal comments, which are included in the data worksheets, expressing an interest in using computers for
court duties but currently being unable to do so because of an insufficient number of computers in the courts. As a result, if
additional computers are provided to the courts, the numbers of courts using them for court-related business will likely
increase. Anecdotal comments obtained during the December 2005 observation period indicated that at least a few courts
have begun obtaining some additional computers but not nearly enough to ensure easy computer access for all employees.

See supra note 7.


See Professional Experiences, supra note 1.


The author, along with Department of Justice personnel, met with Baghdad-based Iraqi judges on a routine basis to discuss a variety of current judicial
The lack of computers was determined by data obtained during court observations and discussions with court personnel conducted by GST Iraqi liaison



Figure 1 also appears to indicate a monthly variation in the number of courts having Internet service. In fact, as noted
above, all of the courts had Internet service until November 2005. However, even during the period in which MND-B
provided Internet service, there were still occasional service disruptions due to equipment difficulties. The fluctuations in
Internet service observed in Figure 1 for July to November of 2005 likely indicate the number of courts experiencing service
difficulties at the time the observations were made. In discussions between the GST Justice Chief and Chief Judge Medhat,
the Iraqi Chief Judge of the Higher Juridical Counsel, Chief Judge Medhat indicated that he currently has additional funds to
expend for information technology purposes but will limit Internet service to only a few courts because of his perception that
the Internet is not used much for court purposes.20 It is expected that future MND-B Office of the Staff Judge Advocate
personnel will meet with Chief Judge Medhat to recommend that he continue Internet service to all courts because many were
just beginning to use the service for court-related purposes when the service was terminated.21
Finally, as with all the data comparisons noted in this report, it should be remembered that a partial reason for differences
in monthly data can be attributed to a fluctuation in the number of courts reporting during each observation period. During
the first period, thirty-six courts reported data; during the second period, the number of courts reporting fell to thirty-one;
during the third period, the number of courts reporting increased to thirty-eight; during the fourth period, the number of
courts reporting increased to forty-two; and during the fifth period, the number of courts reporting reached forty-three. These
fluctuations were due to the following: (1) difficulties some of the attorneys had in receiving court permission to obtain the
data from a specific judge; (2) confusion among the attorneys regarding who was responsible for obtaining data for each
court; and (3) visiting only one of multiple court buildings for a given court facility. Over time these problem areas were
resolved so that the December 2005 data represents virtually all courts readily accessible to the observers. Eliminating
reporting obstacles should result in a more stable number of courts reporting in the future, as indicated by the similarity in the
numbers obtained between the fourth and fifth data sets.

Court Facilities
In addition to obtaining data regarding information technology, GST Justice Section also obtained a variety of data about
the court facility. This data included anecdotal information from court personnel regarding court buildings, utilities, office
equipment, and other items of concern. Figure 2 shows a graphical representation of the areas of concern about court
facilities expressed by the judges and staff.

Number of Courts Reporting Problems in Each Area




July 2005 (36 courts)
Sep 2005 (31 courts)


Oct 2005 (38 courts)

Nov 2005 (42 courts)

Dec 2005 (43 courts)

Unreliable Electrical


Bldg Structure
Problems (Size,
Damage, Needs


Need Additional Office
Equip (Computers,
Printers, Copiers)

Need Furniture, AC,
Office Supplies and/or
Miscellaneous Items

Two primary areas of continued concern for the court infrastructure are unreliable grid electricity and the lack of
working generators. As seen in Figure 2, problems in these areas are being remedied. The number of courts complaining of
a lack of reliable power declined from thirty-one to four (an eighty-seven percent decrease) over the three-month period,
The author and Department of Justice personnel met often with Chief Judge Medhat to discuss judicial matters of common interest, including Operation
Hammurabi. As the Iraqi Chief Judge, Medhat approved implementation of Operation Hammurabi and requested periodic feedback on its progress. He also
provided support to Operation Hammurabi through directives to the lower courts to cooperate with GST Justice Section personnel and their Iraqi liaison
Due to the transition between 3ID and 4th Infantry Division in the December 2005 through January 2006 timeframe, GST Justice Section personnel were
unable to review the final findings with Chief Judge Medhat. During discussions with replacement personnel, the author recommended they meet with Chief
Judge Medhat to discuss thoroughly the results of the metrics analysis and to recommend that he support funding Internet access to all Baghdad courts.



while the number of courts reporting either a lack of a generator or a need for generator repair declined from fourteen to nine
(a thirty-six percent decrease). These declines are likely due to the following: (1) a combination of Coalition efforts to
improve grid electrical power; (2) a decrease in electrical power requirements as air conditioning demands decreased due to
seasonal temperature drops; and (3) efforts by the MND-B and the High Juridical Council22 to assist courts in obtaining
generators. Note, however, that generator problems began resurfacing during November and December of 2005. This
increase was likely attributable to maintenance requirements and fuel issues, the latter becoming more prominent as the cost
of fuel spiked significantly over the period.23
Another area that formerly represented a significant problem in the Iraqi court system was computer and Internet
maintenance. Although the Coalition had a contractor providing computer maintenance and Internet service for Iraqi courts
until 31 October 2005,24 the GST Justice Section received continuous complaints by court personnel about computer and
Internet problems.25 It was not until mid-November 2005; however, that the contractor actually stopped providing the
Internet service to the courts. As seen in Figure 2, computer complaints dropped dramatically over the first four-month
period (from seven to zero complaints). This drop in computer equipment complaints was likely due to continued pressure
on the maintenance contractor to comply with the contract, as well as court personnel knowing how to remedy minor
computer and Internet equipment problems themselves after having received computer training. In addition, no complaints
about Internet service were reported during that three-month period. In December, however, twenty courts reported losing
Internet capability and two reported computer maintenance problems. Complaints about Internet capability will likely
continue unless the Higher Juridical Council makes a serious effort to provide the requested services or some other outside
entity (e.g., MND-B) again provides it for the courts.
It is instructive to note that there has been a significant increase in the demand for more information technology
equipment. As seen in Figure 2, such requests jumped from six in July to twenty-four in October before dropping to twelve
in December. This spike may be partially due to court personnel becoming more familiar with computers and their
advantages. As the employees’ familiarity increases, they would logically demand more equipment to enhance their
information technology capability. As noted earlier, this notion is supported by the anecdotal data from many court staff
personnel, who noted that while they are enthusiastic about using computers, they are unable to use computers to do their
office work because of computer shortages at the courts. In addition to a request for more computers, many courts also
reported a desire to obtain photocopiers and additional scanners and printers. Further anecdotal evidence obtained by the
GST Iraqi liaison attorneys during their court observations confirms that the Higher Juridical Council did in fact place
additional computers in some courts. This is the likely cause of the decrease in requests for additional computer hardware
over the last two reporting periods.
Finally, as essential services, such as electricity and certain basic office equipment, become more available, it is logical
for the court staff to adjust their focus to secondary needs such as better furniture and air conditioning systems and more
office supplies. This change in focus is reflected in Figure 2.

Sep 2005 data (38 courts)


AverageNumber of Cases Per Court



Oct 2005 data (42 courts)


Nov 2005 data (43 courts)




No. Cases Rec'd in Prior Month

No. Cases Completed in Prior Month

No. Cases Partially Completed in Prior Month

The High Juridical Council is an independent ministry level government agency that governs the Iraqi court system, including the disbursement of funds
to the various courts for approved projects. As head of the High Juridical Council, Chief Judge Medhat has tremendous influence on the judiciary budget
and is, therefore, the main contact between the GST and the Iraqi judiciary for such matters.
During the fall and winter of 2005, the Iraqi government took steps to increase the price of petroleum-based fuels by reducing government subsidies. See,
e.g., Minister goes in Iraq Oil Crisis, BBC NEWS, Dec. 30, 2005, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/4569360.stm.

See Professional Experiences, supra note 1.


Court personnel contacted the GST Iraqi liaison attorneys to forward their complaints to the author, who served as the Contracting Officer's Technical
Representative (COTR) for the contract.



Case Processing Data
The first set of court case processing data gathered by the GST Iraqi attorneys was obtained in October 2005. The
attorneys gathered additional court case processing data for the last two reporting periods. This data is graphically
represented in Figure 3. The data is based on a review of court records for the calendar month prior to the attorney’s visit.
The data is limited to the following three categories: (1) the number of cases logged into the court for the prior month; (2)
the number of cases the court completed during the prior month; and (3) the number of cases the court partially completed
during the prior month. As can be seen in Figure 3, there is some variance in the sets of data, but it is likely that the
Operation Hammurabi tools have not had any discernible impact to date.
The Iraqi liaison attorneys obtained the data from the written court records provided to them by court personnel. A study
of the underlying data, however, indicates that some of the data is suspect. This conclusion is based on the reasonableness of
some of the numbers obtained by the attorneys. For example, looking at the September data, the Karkh Family Court
reported receiving 380 cases, while the New Baghdad court reported receiving 817. As another example, while the Karada
Investigative Criminal Court reported completing 167 cases during September, the Bayaa Investigative court reported
completing 2,308. Such disparities bring into question the accuracy of some of the reported data. One reason for the
unusually high numbers obtained from some courts, however, could be explained by an additional use of the case processing
data: it is provided each month to the Iraqi Judicial Review Committee, which uses the data to assess each judge’s
performance for that month. It is also possible that some judges may be exaggerating their data to improve the appearance of
their court’s performance.26 As more sets of case management data are received and the GST Iraqi liaison attorneys continue
to try to verify the accuracy of the source data, it may be possible to sift through the data to eliminate the more suspect data
and thereby obtain a more accurate view of case processing. As the case processing data becomes more accurate, it may be
possible to better gauge the impact the Operation Hammurabi project is having on the court system case processing, even
before court administration software is introduced to the courts pursuant to the Department of State’s International Narcotics
and Law Enforcement division’s sponsored Iraq Justice Integration Project.

Based upon the five sets of data obtained to date from an average of thirty-eight Baghdad area courts per set (at nine
court facilities), several conclusions can be drawn. First, Operation Hammurabi is providing a distinct and positive impact on
the courts, thereby facilitating the Rule of Law effort in Iraq. This positive impact furthers MND-B Office of the Staff Judge
Advocate’s goal of affecting the division’s Rule of Law battle space by achieving such desired effects as creating a more
stable governance environment and facilitating local citizens’ access to the courts, which achieves more support for the
current government and marginalizes the insurgency. Successfully modernizing the court system aids in achieving these
desired effects.
Second, it is evident from the data that there is still substantial work to be done before achieving the desired end-state of
preparing the court facilities and personnel for the Iraq Justice Integration Project. But the success achieved to date for the
Operation Hammurabi project indicates that the court system will soon be able to move to the next step in integrating the
courts, police, and prisons. As of this date, the next planned step is to obtain a court administration software program and
establish a pilot program using the court administration software in a court facility in Baghdad to prove its capabilities and to
begin training court personnel in its usage.
Third, as Coalition forces begin to reduce funding for these Rule of Law projects, relying instead on Iraqi funding,
MND-B must continue to monitor and assist the courts to ensure continued success. For that reason, it is necessary to
continue conducting the observations, which will provide a means of gauging whether the Iraqi’s are successfully funding
and managing the projects. For example, during Operation Hammurabi Coalition forces ceased funding court computer
maintenance and Internet service on 1 November 2005 due to direction from the Department of State. However, by
continuing the court observations, MND-B was able to observe that the Higher Juridical Council has not yet successfully
taken over funding and managing those services. This issue should continue to be a topic of discussion between MND-B
Judge Advocates and Iraqi judges, including Chief Judge Medhat and Chief Appellate Judges Adnan and Amer. In addition,
future metric data will provide insight as to whether the Higher Juridical Council favorably addresses the various court
requests for additional office equipment, furniture, and other items noted during the observations.
According to the GST Iraqi liaison attorneys, the court case processing records provided to them are handwritten and the information contained therein has
historically been suspect. Additional sources of error may be inadequate recordkeeping quality control practices and a non-uniform practice of what data is
to be included in each category. These discrepancies make a fair comparison of the data among the various courts difficult. There is currently no means to
verify the accuracy of the court records provided to the liaison attorneys.



Finally, although MND-B will transfer some project management and funding to the Higher Juridical Council, it will
continue to play a significant role in other court-related projects. To succeed in those projects, it is critical to continue the
court observations. Future data analysis will enable MND-B Office of the Staff Judge Advocate to discern whether changes
need to be made in implementing those projects as well as to provide insight regarding how resources should be allocated.



Anatomy of a Random Court-Martial Panel
Lieutenant Colonel Bradley J. Huestis1
Chief, United States Army Claims Service, Europe
Mannheim, Germany
Lieutenant General (LTG) Ricardo S. Sanchez selected a random court-martial panel for V Corps on 10 January 2005.
This court-martial panel utilized a pool of 100 members who were selected using Article 25’s best qualified criteria2 but were
randomly seated according to a unique, case-specific random number sequence (RNS).
Under the automatic replacement system, currently in use throughout the U.S. Army, the convening authority selects a
standing court-martial panel that hears cases over a set period of time, for example six months.3 The panel consists of
primary and alternate members. Prior to each trial, the convening authority may excuse members for operational needs or
any other reason.4 Excused members are automatically replaced by alternate members. The alternate members always sit in
the same designated order that was set by the convening authority when the panel was originally selected. Under this system,
the same members tend to sit case after case.5
The V Corps randomly seated panel builds upon the automatic replacement system but eliminates the distinction between
primary and alternate members. Instead, the convening authority selects a single pool of members. Prior to each trial, the
convening authority excuses members in the same manner as described above.6 The difference is that the remaining
members sit according to an order, which is set at random, for each specific case. Under this system, different members sit in
different combinations on every case.
This article discusses the policy and legal background pertaining to random panels, explains why the V Corps
Commanding General chose to select a random court-martial panel, examines the mechanics used to select and seat this
panel, reviews the trial judge’s ruling in the first case tried before the random panel, and recounts the discussions that took
place during the in-progress review of the new system. This article does not argue that the randomly seated panel is the best
forum before which to try all military cases.7 Rather, this article encourages judge advocates (JAs) to consider the V Corps
method as a workable alternative to the automatic replacement system.

Judge Advocate, U.S. Army. LL.M., 2001, The Judge Advocate General’s School, U.S. Army, Charlottesville, Virginia; J.D., 1995, Cum Laude,
University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona; B.S., 1989, Distinguished Military Graduate, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona. Presently assigned as
Chief, United States Army Claims Service, Europe. This article was submitted for publication while the author was assigned as the Chief, Military Justice
Division, Multi-National Corps – Iraq. The idea of seating a random court-martial panel grew out of the author’s assignment at The Judge Advocate
General’s Legal Center and School where he was a military justice professor and taught pretrial procedures. The idea was refined while brainstorming with
his Senior Trial Counsel at V Corps, Major (MAJ) Chris Graveline, who had argued United States v. Wiesen, discussed infra note 31, for the government at
the appellate level.
UCMJ art. 25(d)(2) (2005) (“When convening a court-martial, the convening authority shall detail as members thereof such members of the armed forces
as, in his opinion, are best qualified for the duty by reason of age, education, training, experience, length of service, and judicial temperament.”).
See Craig S. Schwender, One Potato, Two Potato . . . A Method to Select Court Members, ARMY LAW., May 1984, at 12; Karen V. Johnson, In His
Opinion—A Convening Authority's Guide to the Selection of Panel Members, ARMY LAW., Apr. 1989, at 43.

MANUAL FOR COURTS-MARTIAL, UNITED STATES, R.C.M. 505(c) (2005) [hereinafter MCM].


See Schwender, supra note 3, at 12.




There are many outstanding academic articles that debate the best method to select and seat court-martial panels. See, e.g., Major Christopher Behan, In
Defense of Convening Authority Selection and Appointment of Court-Martial Panel Members, 176 MIL. L. REV. 190 (2003) (providing a comprehensive list
of academic writings in this controversial area at footnote 25).



Criticism of the military’s justice system is not new and can be especially harsh when military procedure diverges from
civilian practice.8 When the U.S. Congress enacted the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ)9 in 1951, it required the
President to prescribe rules of procedure and evidence at courts-martial, “which shall, so far as he considers practicable,
apply the principles of law and the rules of evidence generally recognized in the trial of criminal cases in the U.S. district
courts, but which may not be contrary to or inconsistent with this chapter.”10
Congress chose not to mirror U.S. district court practices when it prescribed the method to convene, or call together,
members for court-martial duty. In enacting Article 25, UCMJ, Congress mandated that convening authorities personally,
rather than randomly, select panel members. Article 25 specifically requires convening authorities select only those members
who, in the convening authority’s opinion, are best qualified by virtue of their “age, education, training, experience, length of
service, and judicial temperament.”11 Predictably, this divergence from civilian practice has generated heated debate.12
Military case law illustrates that convening authorities retain broad discretion in how to adhere to Article 25, UCMJ,
when selecting the best qualified members. For example, “a commander is free to require representativeness in his courtmartial panels and to insist that no important segment of the military community—such as blacks, Hispanics, or women—be
excluded from service on court-martial panels.”13
When reviewing a convening authority’s selection of members, military courts look to the motivation of the convening
authority in the court-martial selection process. The selection will not be disturbed by appellate courts unless the selection is
based on rank;14 based on non-Article 25 criteria, which was used as an unauthorized shortcut to exclude potential
members;15 or made with a view of achieving a particular result or a harsh sentence.16
The relevant military case law on the subject condones the use of randomly seated court-martial panels. The Court of
Military Appeals (CMA), the predecessor to the military’s highest court, which is now called the Court of Appeals for the
Armed Forces (CAAF), has issued two published opinions relating to random panels. In United States v Smith,17 the CMA
stated in dicta:
We are aware that at times there have been experiments in the armed services with some form of random
selection of court-martial members. In view of [United States v.] Crawford, it would appear that even this
method of selection is permissible if the convening authority decides to employ it in order to obtain
representativeness in his court-martial panels and if he personally appoints the court members who have
been randomly selected.18
In United States v. Yager,19 the CMA dealt directly with the issue of a randomly selected military panel. In Yager, the
accused was tried before a random panel. The defense challenged the categorical exclusion of Soldiers in the grade of E-3
and below and non-citizens of the United States as potential members for the panel. The CMA affirmed the case and, in

See, e.g., Arthur E. Farmer & Richard H. Wels, Command Control—Or Military Justice?, 24 N.Y.U. L.Q. REV. 263, 264 (1949).


10 U.S.C.S. §§ 801-946 (LEXIS 2006).


UCMJ art. 36(a) (2005).


Id. art. 25.


See, e.g., Kenneth J. Hodson, Courts-Martial and the Commander, 10 SAN DIEGO L. REV. 51 (1972-1973) (advocating the removal of commanders from
the court-martial member selection process and substituting random selection based on the American Bar Association Standards for Criminal Justice); see
also Major Guy P. Glazier, He Called for His Pipe and He Called for His Bowl, and He Called for His Members Three—Selection of Juries by the
Sovereign: Impediment to Military Justice, 157 MIL. L. REV. 1 (1998).


United States v. Smith, 27 M.J. 242, 249 (1988).


United States v. Daigle, 1 M.J. 139 (1988).


United States v. Crawford, 35 C.M.R. 3 (C.M.A. 1964).


United States v. Lewis, 46 M.J. 338 (1997).


27 M.J. 242 (1988).


Id. at 249 (citation omitted).


7 M.J. 171 (1979).



doing so, the 1st Infantry Division and Fort Riley’s random jury program.20 Unfortunately, the opinion sheds little light on
the mechanics used by the 1st Infantry Division to seat its random panel.21
In 1998, Congress directed the Secretary of Defense (SECDEF) to study alternate methods of panel selection.22 This
mandate required the SECDEF to develop and report on a random selection method of choosing members to serve on courtmartial panels. The Department of Defense General Counsel requested that the Joint Service Committee (JSC)23 conduct a
study and prepare a report on random selection.24 The JSC sought opinions from each service and reviewed random courtmartial panel selection practices in Canada and the United Kingdom. After considering six alternatives, the JSC reported that
the current practice “insures fair panels of court-martial members who are best qualified” and that there is “no evidence of
systematic unfairness or unlawful command influence.”25
In 2001, to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the UCMJ, the National Institute of Military Justice (NIMJ)26
sponsored a commission to write a report on the state of military justice. Senior Judge Walter T. Cox, III, chaired this
effort.27 The commission’s report is directly at odds with the JSC’s conclusions on panel selection. The commission stated
bluntly, “[t]here is no aspect of military criminal procedures that diverges further from civilian practice, or creates a greater
impression of improper influence, than the antiquated process of panel selection.”28 The commission concluded, “[t]here is
no reason to preserve a practice that creates such a strong impression of, and opportunity for, corruption of the trial process
by commanders and staff judge advocates.”29 The commission called on Congress to immediately strip convening authorities
of their authority to select panel members. The commission recommended that members of courts-martial “should be chosen
at random from a list of eligible servicemembers prepared by the convening authority, taking into account operational needs
as well as the limitations on rank, enlisted or officer status, and same-unit considerations currently followed in the selection
of members.”30
Five years have passed since the Cox Commission Report was sent to Congress, and there has been no legislative
change. Does this mean that the policy considerations that might drive a change in this area are dormant or dead? Two
recent cases from the CAAF indicate the opposite conclusion.


Id. at 173.


In the opinion, the Yager court makes the following statement:
This appeal involves the validity of a random jury selection program established by the convening authority, 1st Infantry Division and
Fort Riley, Fort Riley, Kansas. In accordance with procedures promulgated by a local directive . . . names for a list of prospective
jurors were selected from personnel data files and placed on a “Master Juror List” and thereafter screened by having each individual
whose name appeared on the list complete a questionnaire regarding qualifications to serve as a court-martial member. Upon
completion of the screening process and the elimination of unqualified and exempt personnel, the remaining persons were considered
“Qualified Jurors,” and they were eligible for selection, at random, for court-martial duty. In cases involving enlisted accused who
wished to have enlisted court members, the directive provided that each panel of jurors would be comprised of at least one-third
enlisted personnel.

Id. at 171.

See Strom Thurmond National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1999, Pub. L. No. 105-261, § 1, 112 Stat. 1920 (1998).


UCMJ art. 146 (defining the composition and role of the code committee); see also U.S. DEP’T OF DEFENSE, DIR. 5500.17, ROLE AND RESPONSIBILITIES
at A26 (2005) (designating the role and responsibilities of the Joint Service Committee).


COURT-MARTIAL (1999) [hereinafter JCS REPORT] (on file with the Office of The Judge Advocate General, U.S. Army).

Id. at 45.


The National Institute of Military Justice (NIMJ) is a private non-profit organization based in Washington, D.C.
http://www.nimj.com (last visited Sept. 6, 2006).

The NIMJ website is at


Judge Cox was the Chief Judge of the CAAF. An Army veteran, he was a judge on the South Carolina Circuit Court and an Acting Associate Justice of
the Supreme Court of South Carolina, before being appointed to the COMA, the predecessor to the CAAF. COX COMMISSION REPORT, infra note 19, at 4-5.


(2001), available at http://www.badc.org/html/militarylaw_cox.html [hereinafter COX COMMISSION REPORT].






In United States v. Wiesen,31 the military’s highest appellate court used an implied bias theory to reverse a case where the
senior officer on the panel supervised six of the ten members.32 The three-judge majority concluded that “[w]here a panel
member has a supervisory position over six of the other members, and the resulting seven members make up the two-thirds
majority sufficient to convict, we are placing an intolerable strain on public perception of the military justice system.”33 The
court held that “the military judge abused his discretion when he denied the challenge for cause against [the senior officer on
the panel].”34 Finding prejudice, the court reversed the Army Court of Criminal Appeals and set aside the findings and
By finding that the public would objectively view command relationships among members as unfair, the Wiesen court
certainly expanded the doctrine of implied bias to include inter-panel chain-of-command issues. Some, however, view
Wiesen as a direct attack on commanders’ discretion to select panels. For example, in a spirited defense of the status quo,
MAJ Chris Behan wrote:
There should be no doubt that the Wiesen majority intended to strike a blow at the convening authority's
discretionary ability to appoint court-martial panel members. In the penultimate sentence of its per curiam
denial of the government's petition for reconsideration, the majority wrote, “The issue is appropriately
viewed in the context of public perceptions of a system in which the commander who exercises
prosecutorial discretion is the official who selects and structures the panel that will hear the case.” The
Wiesen majority's true policy concern, then, hearkens back to the objections that Congress heard and
considered when enacting the UCMJ over fifty years ago. Viewed in that context, Wiesen is a prime
example of an activist appellate court arrogating to itself the power to change constitutionally sound
legislation with which it does not agree.35
United States v. James36 was similar to Wiesen in that the CAAF ruled on a voir dire issue that encroached upon the
convening authority’s responsibility and discretion to select panel members. The issue in James was whether the liberal
grant mandate for causal challenges should apply equally to the government and defense.37 The James court reasoned,
“[u]nlike the convening authority, who has the opportunity to provide his input into the makeup of the panel through his
power to detail ‘such members of the armed forces as, in his opinion, are best qualified for the duty,’ . . . the defendant has
only one peremptory challenge at his or her disposal.”38 The court again relied on an implied bias theory announcing that the
“liberal grant rule protects the ‘perception or appearance of fairness of the military justice system. . . . Given the convening
authority's broad power to appoint, we find no basis for application of the ‘liberal grant’ policy when a military judge is
ruling on the Government’s challenges for cause.”39 Like Wiesen, James was more an erosion rather than a direct attack on
Article 25’s dictate that commanders personally select military panel members. The court’s implied bias theory certainly
legitimizes the need to view the military system from the vantage point of civilian notions of due process and fundamental

Change from Within
What motivated V Corps to randomly seat an Article 25 selected panel? First, the Staff Judge Advocate (SJA), Colonel
(COL) Michele M. Miller, and the Commanding General, LTG Ricardo S. Sanchez, believed that the change would benefit
Soldiers. At a minimum, by adapting a random seating system that more closely mirrored the popular American notion of


56 M.J. 172 (2001).


Id. at 177. Implied bias is an appearance test viewed through the objective eyes of the public, whereas actual bias is a credibility test viewed through the
subjective eyes of the trial judge. In other words, implied bias equates to a military appellate court’s objective estimate about the public’s perception of the
military justice system. See, e.g., United States v. Minyard, 46 M.J. 229 (1997).

Id. at 175.


Id. at 172.


Behan, supra note 7, at 275.


61 M.J. 132 (2005).


Id. at 139.







how a fair trial should work, Soldiers’ impressions of the military justice system would improve.40 Second, by doing this
from within, V Corps could control the details of execution and fine-tune the new process over time.
Negative media coverage and recent international developments in military law have the potential to fuel Congressional
interest and could result in wholesale reform imposed from above. In the recent past, the popular media has paid
considerable attention to the military justice system.41 For example, in a U.S. News and World Report cover story, the author
went far beyond focusing on the facts of sensational cases and commented on the mechanics of how the military handles
justice.42 In particular, the article gravitated to pretrial procedures, such as convening authority discretion to select panels,
refer cases to the courts they select, bind the government to pretrial agreements, and take final action on the findings and
sentences.43 The recent past has also seen significant international developments in military law that may influence domestic
developments.44 Beginning in 1992, there have been major military justice reforms in both the United Kingdom45 and
Canada.46 These changes were compelled by a series of cases in the European Court of Human Rights47 and decisions of the
Canadian Supreme Court and Court-Martial Appeal Court.48 As a result, both nations have switched to randomly selected
military court-martial panels.
In Canada’s first random panel case, a central military office in Ottawa generated panel member lists from a world wide
database. 49 One of the randomly selected members was stationed in Australia. To prosecute a relatively small barracks
larceny case that was tried in Ottawa, the Canadian military had to fly the member half-way around the world to participate in
the proceedings. No consideration was given to the specific member’s geographic location or duty requirements. By cutting
the command completely out of the panel selection and seating process, affected Canadian commanders could not exempt
members of their commands from court-martial duty. While this system appeased civilian critics of the Canadian military
justice system, it did not recognize the unique needs of a worldwide organization. By proactively making sensible changes
from within, the United States military can avoid such illogical outcomes.
By testing the panel seating system within the framework of Article 25, V Corps sought to modernize military pretrial
procedures while preserving the best aspects of the system―the commanding general or general court-martial convening
authority (GCMCA) selection of a venire50 of best qualified members and flexible rules for convening authority excusal of
members for operational reasons or other good cause.51 It was feared that turning a blind eye to the issues related to panel
selection and seating might result in drastic changes forced upon the military without the luxury of fine-tuning the random
selection process incrementally over time.52

The belief was that the proposed change would not impact the results of courts-martial because the automatic replacement system in use was being
implemented in a fair manner. The big gain sought was to improve Soldiers’ perceptions about the fundamental fairness of the military justice system.
See, e.g., Beth Hillman, Chains of Command: The U.S. Court-Martial Constricts the Rights of Soldiers—And That Needs to Change, LEGAL AFFAIRS,
May/June 2002, at 50-52.

Edward T. Pound, Unequal Justice, U.S. NEWS & WORLD REP., Dec. 16, 2002, at 19-30.




Eugene R. Fidell, A World-Wide Perspective on Change in Military Justice, 48 A.F. L. REV. 195 (2000) (discussing world-wide changes in various
military justice systems and suggesting that the UCMJ fall in with major world trends).


Armed Forces Act 1996, ch. 46 (Eng.), available at http://www.opsi.gov.uk/acts/acts1996/1996046.htm (last visited Sept. 6, 2006).


Act of Dec. 10, 1998, S.C. 1998, c. 35 (Can.), proclaimed in force, Stat. Inst. No. 99-74, 133 C. GAZ. 1959 (1999).


Findlay v. United Kingdom, 24 Eur. Ct. H.R. 221 (1997) (invalidating the role of the convening authority in the British military justice system as a
violation of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms guarantee of an independent and impartial tribunal).

R. v. Genereux, [1992] S.C.R. 259 (invalidating role of convening authority in Canadian military justice system as a violation of the Canadian Charter of
Rights and Freedoms guarantee of an independent and impartial tribunal).


The details of this case were told to the author by the Canadian member of the 50th Judge Advocate Officer Graduate Course, Lieutenant Colonel Robert
Holland, who prosecuted Canada’s first random panel case.

Venire refers to the common law process by which jurors are summoned to try a case. See BLACK’S LAW DICTIONARY 862 (7th ed. 1999).


MCM, supra note 5, R.C.M. 505 (c).


Memorandum, MAJ Bradley J. Huestis, Chief, Criminal Law Division, V Corps, U.S. Army, to COL Michele M. Miller, Staff Judge Advocate, V Corps,
U.S. Army, subject: Article 25 Randomly Seated Panel (29 Oct. 2004) (on file with author).



The V Corps Random Panel System
Lieutenant General Sanchez, the V Corps GCMCA, selected the random panel members from nearly 500 nominees
submitted to him by his subordinate commanders. His randomly seated court-martial panel was memorialized in CourtMartial Convening Order (CMCO) Number 3.53 The panel had 100 members whom LTG Sanchez personally assigned a
number, from 1 to 100. In selecting this panel, LTG Sanchez made the following statement:
I have selected these members using the selection criteria of Article 25, UCMJ. I selected panel members
who were, in my opinion, best qualified for the duty based on their age, education, training, experience,
length of service and judicial temperament, and no other criteria. I did not exclude soldiers of particular
ranks from consideration, nor did I exclude anyone based upon gender or ethnic background.
I have selected a large pool of panel members, both officer and enlisted, from which panels for particular
courts-martial will be randomly selected. This large pool of panel members ensures that more soldiers are
actively involved in the military justice system, and that the military justice system in V Corps is as
representative of the community as possible, while still adhering to the high standards of having the best
qualified panel members under Article 25, UCMJ.54
In describing how this panel would be assembled, LTG Sanchez issued the following directive:
I have assigned each of the members that I have personally selected a number; officer members (1-50) and
enlisted members (51-100). Before I review a case for possible referral to either a GCM or [special courtmartial], the Staff Judge Advocate (SJA) will provide me a unique, case specific random number sequence
(RNS). This 100 number RNS will be attached to the SJA’s Article 34, UCMJ, pretrial advice.
General courts-martial will be assembled with ten members, and SPCM will be assembled with eight
members. The first ten or eight officer members randomly selected by RNS order will sit as panel
members, unless excused. The remaining officers will be available in RNS order as alternate members.
If enlisted members are required for a court-martial, the same process outlined above will be utilized, with
the following variations. Using RNS order, the first five officer members and the first five enlisted
members will sit as panel members for GCMs, the first four officer members and the first four enlisted
members will sit as panel members for SPCMs, unless excused. All other officer and enlisted members
will be available as alternate members in RNS order.55
When recommending a case for referral to the random panel, COL Miller, the V Corps SJA, provided LTG Sanchez with
a unique, case specific 100-digit RNS. Colonel Miller logged on to Random.org56 and generated a 100-number RNS. She
printed, dated, and signed the two page printout in the presence of witnesses. She listed the document as an enclosure to her
pretrial advice to the GCMCA, and included the following language:
Per your Selection of Court-Martial Panel Members for the V Corps Jurisdiction Memorandum, dated 10
January 2005, I have generated and enclosed the one, and only one, unique Random Number Sequence
(RNS) for this case. I generated this RNS using the Random.org random number generator evaluated for
use by the V Corps Science Advisor.57


Headquarters, V Corps, Heidelberg, Germany, Court-Martial Convening Order Number 3 (26 Jan. 2005) (on file with author).


Memorandum, LTG Ricardo S. Sanchez, Commanding General, V Corps, U.S. Army, to COL Michele M. Miller, Staff Judge Advocate, V Corps, U.S.
Army (Jan. 10, 2005) (on file with the author).



Random.org: True Random Number Service, http://random.org/. The Random.org website offers true random numbers, in real time, to anyone on the
internet free of charge. It was built and is being maintained by Dr. Mads Haahr, Ph. D., Department of Computer Science, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland.

Memorandum, COL Michele M. Miller, Staff Judge Advocate, V Corps, U.S. Army, to LTG Ricardo S. Sanchez, Commanding General, V Corps, U.S.
Army, subject: Advice on Disposition of Court-Martial Charges (5 Apr. 2005) (on file with author).



In his selection memorandum, LTG Sanchez had not specified how COL Miller should generate the RNS. Colonel
Miller relied upon the recommendation of the V Corps science advisor, Mr. Robert Nestor, in selecting Random.org as her
RNS generator. The RNS is at the heart of the V Corps randomly seated panel. The goal was to develop a transparent,
simple, and truly random system to generate unique, case-specific RNS. Mr. Nestor stated:
A standard problem of courts at all levels is the selection of a panel of potential jurors from a jury pool,
which is a list of people who are eligible to serve as jurors. The problem is to select N people out of the M
possible people in a fair way. The V Corps Staff Judge Advocate (SJA) Office proposes to utilize the RNG
[random number generator] located at internet website of “Random.com” to generate a group of N people
out of the M people selected by the CG in accordance with Article 25 parameters. . . .
For the purpose of seating a jury panel from within a jury pool that was selected by the Commanding
General (CG) of the V Corps, the use of the Random.org true RNG appears to be appropriate.
Random.org is a true RNG that is nonlinear. It is not generated from a computer code. Access for
generating a random sequence is publicly available and outside of the control of the authority responsible
for selecting the jury pool. Each of the members in the jury pool can be given a number. This list can
serve as the sample size. Using the “Randomized Sequence” option from the website, a series of randomly
generated numbers can be produced that represent both the primary and alternate members of the jury
The RNS seating method is not unlike the standard primary or alternate member automatic replacement system used
throughout the U.S. Army.59 In fact, V Corps’ random panel is based upon the automatic or “bump-up” model of seating
members. Below is a comparison of the automatic replacement system and the random system (differences are listed in
Automatic Replacement System

Random Seating System

CA Requests Nominees
CA Selects Primaries IAW Art 25
CA Selects Alternates IAW Art 25
Charges Preferred
SJA Art 34 Advice
CA Refers Case
Accused Enters Plea/Forum
Members Request Excusal
Members Viced & Alternates Sit
Voir Dire & Challenges

CA Requests Nominees
CA Selects a Pool of Members IAW Art 25
Charges Preferred
Art 34 Advice and Random Number Sequence
CA Refers Case
Accused Enters Plea/Forum
Members Request Excusal
Members Viced & Others Sit Based on RNS
Voir Dire and Challenges

The V Corps random panel was designed to be a UCMJ-compliant system that comes, as close as possible to the
American ideal of due process and justice. This novel system sought to adhere to the high standards of Article 25, UCMJ,
while at the same closely mirroring trial procedures used in Federal district courts.60 Lieutenant General Sanchez and COL
Miller hoped to benefit V Corps Soldiers by implementing a system that was not only fair in practice, but also appeared on its
face to be fair. The die was cast. The next step was to refer a case to trial before the random panel.


Memorandum, Mr. Robert Nestor, V Corps Science Advisor, to COL Michele M. Miller, Staff Judge Advocate, V Corps, U.S. Army, subject: Evaluation
of “Random.org” Random Number Generator (15 Jan. 2004) (on file with author).


See Schwender, supra note 4, at 12; Johnson, supra note 4, at 43.


This objective complies with the explicit statutory goal that trial by courts-martial mirror trial in civilian court as closely as possible. Congress expressed
this goal in 10 U.S.C. § 836, by charging the President with prescribing rules for courts-martial that, “shall, so far as he considers practicable . . . apply the
principles of law . . . generally recognized in the trial of criminal cases in the United States district courts[.]” 10 U.S.C.S. § 836 (LEXIS 2006).



The Test Case: United States v. Beatty61
On 5 April 2005, LTG Sanchez accepted the recommendation of COL Miller to refer the charges and specifications
against Private (PVT) E-2 Christopher L. Beatty, Jr., to trial by Special Court-Martial convened by CMCO Number 3. On 1
June 2005, the detailed trial judge, COL Denise Lind, heard motions in the case in Hanau, Germany. In a defense motion to
dismiss for want of jurisdiction, the defense argued that the randomly seated panel lacked jurisdiction to try the accused
because the court was improperly convened.62 The government argued that the GCMCA had complied with Article 25,
UCMJ, in convening the randomly seated panel.63 In ruling that the court-martial convened by CMCO Number 3 was
properly convened and had jurisdiction to try the accused,64 COL Lind made fifteen distinct findings.
Colonel Lind stated that LTG Sanchez personally selected the 100 members listed on CMCO Number 3, in accordance
with Article 25. Colonel Lind referred to LTG Sanchez’s 10 January 2005 memorandum in which he instructed the SJA to
provide him a unique, case specific RNS.65 The SJA was to attach the RNS to the Article 34 pretrial advice. In the same
memorandum, LTG Sanchez set forth procedures for seating of members using the RNS sequence, excusals, and replacement
of excused members.66
Colonel Lind noted that although LTG Sanchez did not direct the SJA, COL Miller, to use Random.org or any other
specific random member selection method, COL Miller was nevertheless following the GCMCA’s instructions when she
logged on to Random.org, selected the numbers 1 to 100 as a range, and executed the launch option, generating a two-page
printout of 100 numbers in random order. In the presence of witnesses, COL Miller wrote “U.S. v. Beatty M. Miller” and “5
April ‘05’” on the two-page RNS document. She enclosed the RNS document, CMCO Number 3, and the science advisor’s
evaluation with her Article 34, UCMJ, pretrial advice.67
Colonel Lind gave weight to the V Corps science advisor’s examination of the website and written opinion concluding
that the random sequence option from the website could produce a series of randomly generated numbers to randomly
sequence the 100 members selected by LTG Sanchez. Colonel Lind found that LTG Sanchez did not delegate panel member
selection to the SJA by utilizing the RNS process because LTG Sanchez had selected all 100 members on CMCO Number 3
using Article 25 criteria. Finally, COL Lind noted that prior to assembly, LTG Sanchez had the authority, under Article 25,
to excuse any of the 100 selected panel members participating in this case. The vice order in United States v. Beatty was
strikingly simple. The order simply excused all but the eight listed members who were randomly selected through the RNS
After making her findings of fact, COL Lind announced, “the government has demonstrated by a preponderance of the
evidence that LTG Sanchez properly referred this case to a panel of qualified members detailed in accordance with Article
25, Rule for Court-Martial 503(a), and applicable case law. Accordingly, the defense motion to dismiss for want of
jurisdiction is denied.”69

United States v. Beatty was the first case tried before the V Corps random panel convened by CMCO Number 3, dated 26 January 2005. The V Corps
GCMCA referred fourteen courts-martial to trial before the first V Corps random panel court-martial. These fourteen cases include United States v. Coursen
referred on 28 June 2005; United States v. Rodriguez, United States v. Gulick, United States v. Kiezle, and United States v. Jones referred on 15 July 2005;
United States v. Johnson, United States v. Rodriguez, and United States v. Swan referred on 25 July 2005; United States v. Post referred on 11 August 2005;
United States v. Brown referred on 13 September 2005; United States v. Smith and United States v. Walker referred on 20 October 2005; and United States v.
Wiesemann referred on 10 November 2005.
Defense Motion to Dismiss for Want of Jurisdiction, CPT William M. Helixon, Senior Defense Counsel, Region VII, U.S. Army, to COL Denise R. Lind,
Military Judge, Fifth Judicial Circuit, U.S. Army (May 25, 2005) (on file with author).

Government’s Response to Defense Motion to Dismiss for Want of Jurisdiction, CPT Christopher B. Buchanan, Senior Trial Counsel, V Corps, U.S.
Army, to COL Denise R. Lind, Military Judge, Fifth Judicial Circuit, U.S. Army (May 31, 2005) (on file with author).


United States v Beatty (V Corps Aug. 15, 2005) [hereinafter Beatty Record of Trial]. Record of Trial authenticated by COL Denise R. Lind, Military
Judge, Fifth Judicial Circuit, U.S. Army (Aug. 15, 2005) (on file with the Office of the Staff Judge Advocate, V Corps).








Id.; see also MCM, supra note 5, R.C.M. 505(c)(1)(A), “[b]efore the court-martial is assembled, the convening authority may change the members of the
court-martial without showing cause.” Under the V Corps system, the GCMCA also delegated one-third excusal authority to the SJA.


Beatty Record of Trial, supra note 75.



At trial, PVT Beatty faced four specifications of larceny for allegedly stealing postal money orders.70 He pleaded guilty
to the lesser included offense of wrongful appropriation on each specification.71 Private Beatty selected members for the
sentencing phase of the court-martial. The members sentenced PVT Beatty to reduction to the grade of E-1, forfeiture of
$335.00 pay per month for six months, confinement for 179 days, and a reprimand.72

Deployment to Iraq and an In-Progress Review
Throughout 2005, V Corps was focused on preparing to deploy as the nucleus of the Multi-National Corps – Iraq (MNCI) in January 2006. Prior to the deployment, one of the many legal issues needing resolution was how to best set up GCMCA
jurisdictions in both Iraq and Germany. The designated rear-area SJA held an in-progress review of the V Corps random
panel system as a preliminary step in determining the best way to convene and assemble courts-martial panels.73
The rear-area SJA who joined V Corps in the summer of 2005, wanted to know why the random panel was instituted.
He also wanted to know the goals of putting the random panel into place. The answers ranged from idealistic to pragmatic.
First and foremost, the rear-area SJA was told that it was simply the right thing to do—conform panel selection as nearly as
possible to civilian practice, while remaining within the requirements of Article 25. The random system exposes more
members to the experience of participating in the military justice system. Random seating gives all of the selected members
an opportunity to serve on courts-martial. Under the traditional system of maintaining a primary list and alternate list, the
members near the bottom of the alternate list rarely sit as members.74
On the practical side, it was explained that a large pool of members relieves the primary panel members of the duty of
sitting on every case and spreads the responsibility amongst a large pool of eligible members. This sharing of responsibility
helps avoid panel burnout that is experienced by a small group of primary members who are called upon, case after case.
Due to the fact that statistically members would only sit on about one in ten cases, the GCMCA might have to select a panel
only once a year. The GCMCA could also select his primary staff and commanders without fear of overtaxing his best and
brightest with an onerous, time-consuming additional duty.75
Focusing on results, the rear-area SJA then asked for the top three positives and negatives that stemmed from the
implementation of the random panel. Judge advocates and paralegals who had worked with the new system had differing
views on the pros and cons of the randomly seated panel.76
As the current Chief of Military Justice, the author responded:
The V Corps random panel brought the military system more in line with the American ideal of justice. It
relieved panel members of the duty of sitting on every case by spreading the responsibility amongst a pool
of eligible members. It gave more members the experience of participating in the military justice system.
On the down side, it created an increased logistical burden on the legal office. For example, there was a
need to collect 100 questionnaires instead of 10 primary and 15 alternate questionnaires. There were also
more members to track for excusals. We needed to litigate motions at trial in order to defend using a novel


UCMJ art. 121 (2005).


Beatty Record of Trial, supra note 75.




The goal of the in-progress review was to capture observations from the military justice managers, trial counsel, and paralegals who implemented the
random seating system. Participants included the author, who was the chief of justice; the senior trial counsel, CPT Christopher B. Buchanan; trial counsel
who had tried cases before traditional and random panels, CPT Gray B. Broughton and CPT Thomas E. Brzozowski; and the Criminal Law Division
NCOIC, SFC Daryl Daniels and Pretrial NCOIC, SGT Chevaughn Gilbert.
E-mail from CPT Gray B. Broughton, Trial Counsel, V Corps, U.S. Army, to LTC Norman F.J. Allen, III, Deputy Staff Judge Advocate, V Corps, U.S.
Army (Dec. 6, 2005) (on file with author).








The senior trial counsel felt that there was no opportunity for panels to develop a reputation as harsh or lenient. There
was broader exposure of members to military justice. The senior trial counsel pointed out that V Corps had received
endorsement at the trial court level. The negatives, however, included more difficulty with implementation, because the vice
orders were done closer to trial. With 100 members, V Corps had incomplete receipt of member questionnaires. This made
it more difficult for counsel to prepare for voir dire. Finally, due to the random nature of the seating, junior panels heard
serious felony cases.78
Two attorneys who tried cases before traditional and random panels observed that there was a larger variety of panel
members who had a fresh start on each case. It seemed that the panel was less likely to burn out, and the random system
exposed more Soldiers to the military justice system. These attorneys also noted, however, that the panels were too junior.
Logistically, they stated that the collection of member questionnaires required more paralegal work, and the process of
notifying panel members and processing excusals caused vice orders to come in at the last minute. Initially member
questionnaires were not being filled out in advance, but this improved over time.79
The paralegal noncommissioned officers charged with the behind-the-scenes management of the random selection
system stated that they had a bigger pool of personnel to choose from to hear cases. One paralegal noted that the different
combinations of members, who bring something different to the cases, meant that V Corps did not have the same members
sitting for all general and special court-martials. Rather, V Corps now has the ability to seat panels for more than six months,
without wearing out the primary panel members. The other paralegal was more specific about the logistical hurdles, finding
that it was not easy to deal with 100 people, all with different personalities and different questions about mileage and lodging
reimbursement. In addition, she noted the difficulty in having to repeatedly explain that the randomly selected panel
members were personally selected for court-martial duty by the V Corps Commanding General, not the Judge Advocate
General’s office, and how important this duty is to good order and discipline within the Corps. Finally, both
noncommissioned officers believed that the random selection process required more work to complete because once the
computer randomly selected the order in which the panel members were to be called, the pretrial paralegal had to do a case
specific roster. This process allowed more room for mistakes and, if the wrong panel members hear a case, such a mistake
could invalidate a guilty finding.80
The officer in charge of the Darmstadt Legal Center, who opposed selecting another random panel, made the following
Random panels are much more junior than with the regular selection and the more junior a panel, I believe
the more defense friendly it will be. So, I actually find it highly ironic that the defense would object. Any
time you have a first lieutenant as the board president, the government should be concerned. . . . I do think
a junior panel is more like the civilian world, but I have concerns about violating Article 25. I do not think
junior panels which have 1LTs, CW2s, and E5s, have the experience, age, education, length of service or
judicial temperament to sit as best qualified members. They have simply not been around long enough.81
The rear-area SJA was concerned about the limited number of field grade panel members serving on the courts-martial
tried in the four months he had been with V Corps.82 He was specifically concerned that by using a random seating system,
the GCMCA surrendered the ability to ensure a senior officer would serve as the president of each panel. In addition, based
on the large number of deploying personnel, the rear-area SJA feared that the rear-area would not have a large enough pool of
qualified personnel available from which to nominate and select a random panel.83










By rank CMCO Number 3 had the following composition: eight colonels, seven lieutenant colonels, eleven majors, twelve captains, four first lieutenants,
one chief warrant officer-five, one chief warrant officer-four, four chief warrant officer-threes, two chief warrant officer-twos, three command sergeants
major, five sergeants major, two first sergeants, eight master sergeants, fifteen sergeants first class, fifteen staff sergeants, and two sergeants, In future
panels, the “juniorness” issue cited by the rear-area SJA could be addressed with more GCMCA focus on experience or other Article 25 criteria that favor
selecting more senior members. This, however, cuts against the representativeness that LTG Sanchez sought in selecting his panel. As it stood, it was
statistically possible for a V Corps random panel to seat with no member above the grade of first lieutenant or staff sergeant.

Discussion with LTC Norman F.J. Allen, III, Acting Staff Judge Advocate, V Corps, U.S. Army, in Heidelberg, Germany (Dec. 19, 2005).



Based in part on the discussions generated by the in-progress review and in part on the limited number of rear-area
personnel available for selection as members, the rear-area SJA recommended that the convening authority select a standing
panel with an automatic replacement system for the rear-area.

By testing a randomly seated panel system, LTG Sanchez took a calculated risk to benefit his command. By using a pool
of qualified members and the RNS seating system, he was able to seat random panels while still adhering to the high
standards of having the best qualified panel members in accordance with Article 25, UCMJ. By selecting a large pool of
panel members from which panels for particular courts-martial were randomly seated, LTG Sanchez actively involved more
of his Soldiers in the military justice system. These courts-martial panels were also more representative of the V Corps
community. By taking this risk and implementing a new method of seating panels, LTG Sanchez and COL Miller were able
to move the V Corps panel selection and seating systems closer to the American ideal of fairness and due process without
adversely impacting the Corps’ good order and discipline or military mission.
New methods always involve some risk, but with military justice, the rewards accrue to the Soldiers and commanders
who deserve the very best legal system possible. While the debate about the best way to select and assemble panels is sure to
continue, V Corps has blazed a possible way ahead. In the final analysis, if JAs and convening authorities are not willing to
test the UCMJ with new ideas that promote fairness and justice, who will?84

Many thanks to the V Corps Commanding General, LTG Ricardo S. Sanchez, and the Staff Judge Advocate, COL Michele M. Miller, for taking a
calculated risk in seizing the opportunity to improve the administration of military justice. Thanks also to the V Corps Deputy Staff Judge Advocate, LTC
Richard C. Gross, the V Corps Senior Trial Counsel, MAJ Christopher G. Graveline, and to all the trial counsel and paralegals who enthusiastically
supported this project. Thanks are also in order for the Acting Rear-area SJA, LTC Norman F.J. Allen, III, whose rational, analytical approach to sorting out
the best course of action for seating panels in the rear is a model for all JAs to follow. Finally, the author gratefully thanks CPT Allison M. Tulud for editing
early drafts of this article.



Setting Conditions for Success: Seven Simple Rules for New Staff Officers
Lieutenant Colonel Mike Ryan1
Far and away the best prize that life has to offer is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.
―Theodore Roosevelt2
In my article Azimuth, Distance and Checkpoints: Thoughts on Leadership, Professionalism, and Soldiering for Judge
Advocates (JAs), I offered ten simple rules designed to help new JAs become better leaders.3 This article follows the same
general format, offering seven rules with accompanying thoughts and suggestions to help new JAs become more effective
staff officers.
The information presented in this article is not doctrine nor is it revolutionary. If you have served as a staff officer for
any length of time, you probably have already learned many of these lessons. As with the Azimuth article, my intent is to
share lessons learned with fellow Soldiers. I hope the ideas and information in this article are helpful and that they make
your life as a staff officer and a military professional a little bit easier.

Seven Simple Rules for Staff Officers
Rule #1: Understand, and Be Proud of, Your Role as a Staff Officer
While there are a number of important leadership positions in the Judge Advocate General’s Corps (JAGC), there are
only three genuine command billets for active duty JAs.4 Thus, as a JA, you will likely spend your entire career as a staff
officer.5 Because of this, it is essential that you approach your duties from the right premise: there is nothing wrong with
being a staff officer.
This notion is not easy for everyone to accept. Indeed, some staff officers seem almost apologetic about being a part of
the Army.6 To some extent, this attitude is understandable. Most Soldiers prefer to be where the action is, and military
culture is rife with jokes and derisive comments about “pencil pushers” and “staff weenies.” While this attitude may be
prevalent, that does not mean you have to buy into it. Like every Soldier, you play an important role in the success of the
Army. No matter what you do, your position is unique; a position that can only be filled by someone with your particular
mix of training, education, and experience. Your work as a staff officer sets conditions for the ultimate success of the
organization. Be proud of your role, and never apologize to anyone for the special expertise you bring to the fight.

Director, Future Concepts, The Judge Advocate General’s Legal Center and School, Charlottesville, Virginia. The author wishes to thank the following
individuals for their assistance and insights during the preparation of this article: Colonel (Retired) David Graham, Colonel Pete Cullen, Lieutenant Colonel
Mike Lacey, and Major Carlos Santiago.

Theodore Roosevelt, Speech at Syracuse, New York (Sept. 7, 1903), available at http://kenfran.tripod.com/teddy.htm.

Lieutenant Colonel Mike Ryan, Azimuth, Distance, and Checkpoints: Thoughts on Leadership, Professionalism, and Soldiering, ARMY LAW., Aug. 2005,
at 40.

Command billets for active duty JAs include the following: Commander, U.S. Army Legal Services Agency; Commander, U.S. Army Claims Service;
and Commander, The Judge Advocate General’s Legal Center and School.

Even so-called “line” officers will spend the majority of their careers as staff officers. For example, a combat arms officer will be lucky if, during a
twenty-year career, he spends a year as a platoon leader, two years as a company commander, and two years as a battalion commander. Only a select few
officers will serve as Brigade Commanders; fewer still will be promoted beyond the rank of colonel and serve in command billets as general officers.
As the Senior Observer/Controller at The Joint Readiness Training Center from 2000 through 2003, I directly observed JAs during twenty-one rotational
exercises. A number of these officers were relatively new to the Army and many seemed markedly uncomfortable with their role as the lawyer on the battle
staff. Often, their unease manifested itself in various forms of self-deprecation.



Rule #2: Be Brief, Be Brilliant, Be Gone
To be an effective staff officer, you must understand that you are one of several people whose job it is to present
information to the commander and other key decision-makers each day. It is imperative, therefore, that you learn to say what
you need to say—both in writing and in person—in as succinct a manner as possible. There is an old Army adage that says,
to be a successful staff officer, you must learn to do three things: be brief, be brilliant, and be gone.
This concept is sometimes difficult for JAs—especially those who recently graduated from law school. From the outset,
law students are told by professors that the student’s conclusions are rarely important. What matters on a law school test is
the student’s ability to spot issues and to explain (often in great detail) how they arrived at their conclusions. It is no surprise
then that when asked to prepare written products, many new JAs write lengthy dissertations discussing not only the
applicable law, but also the litany of potential issues involved in the matter. Likewise, because they have been trained to be
zealous oral advocates, new JAs can sometimes turn simple oral briefs into prolonged oral arguments.
If you are a new JA, try to guard against these tendencies. When preparing briefings or written products, remind
yourself to be direct. Identify the specific issue or problem you have been asked to address, briefly discuss the facts or law
bearing on the problem, and give a recommendation. If you are preparing a formal, written product, comply with relevant
provisions of Army Regulation (AR) 25-50.7 If the person you prepared the product for is forced to focus on the minutia of
spacing and punctuation, he cannot concentrate on the substantive content of your product.
Whether you are presenting a briefing or drafting a written review, keep it short and simple. To cut to the heart of the
matter, many staff officers find it useful to follow the bottom line up front (BLUF) methodology.8 Commanders and
supervisors are busy people. Most have neither the time nor the inclination to read or listen to a detailed discussion of issues.
Be prepared to discuss how you reached your conclusions, but do not go into detail unless you are asked to do so. As a staff
officer, your job is to provide the commander with the information necessary for him to make a decision. Providing
information in a straightforward and efficient manner will best assist the commander or supervisor whom you are advising.
Rule #3: Develop and Follow a Standard Briefing Methodology
Briefings are the stock-in-trade of the staff officer. At the risk of overstating the obvious, when presenting a briefing, be
brief! Your task is not to impress your listeners with your oratory skills―it is to present them with information that either
enhances their understanding of a situation (an information briefing) or allows them to make an informed decision (a decision
briefing).9 To be brief and brilliant, you should develop and follow a simple briefing methodology—a format for presenting
the material and a set of guidelines to which you adhere when presenting the briefing.
There are numerous sources that provide briefing formats.10 Some organizations also have their own formats. The
suggestions in the following section are by no means the official school solution; rather, they are simply tactics and
techniques that have proven successful for me in a variety of situations.

Suggested Briefing Format
Briefing Purpose
Begin with an introduction stating the purpose of the briefing. For example, “Good Morning, Sir, this is an information
briefing. The purpose is to provide you with information regarding . . .” or “Good afternoon, Ma’am, this is a decision brief.
I will present you with recommended courses of action (COAs), and at the end of the brief, I will ask you to choose one.”




When using this approach, the briefer or author lists the essential conclusion in one short sentence in the first part of a briefing or as the initial line of a
written product.




For the best official source for Army officers, see U.S. DEP’T OF ARMY, FIELD MANUAL 5-0, ARMY PLANNING AND ORDERS PRODUCTION app. B (Jan.



Background and Context
After your introduction, provide some background or context to the brief. Such background or context may include a
chronology of the events that precipitated the briefing or a restatement of the original tasking.
Relevant Information
Consider this the body of the brief—where you discuss the details of the issue, problem, or situation at hand. Your
discussion should be framed with a view toward your ultimate purpose—informing the listener or helping him make a
decision. In a decision brief, you should discuss proposed COAs for solving the problem. The key to this section is to stay
focused on only those things that the person you are briefing needs to know.
Recommendations and the Way Ahead
After presenting the relevant information, bring the brief to a close. If it is a decision brief, then you should offer
recommendations. If you have presented various COAs, then recommend the one you think is best and explain why. If you
presented your COAs in order of preference, then list a few of the pros and cons of each COA. Explaining why you are
recommending a certain COA is the most important part of the briefing. Whether you are presenting a decision or an
information brief, you should outline the way ahead by listing upcoming events, milestones, or activities that directly affect
the issue you just briefed.
Conclusion and Questions
Always end your briefing with a short conclusory statement, such as “Subject to your questions or guidance, Sir, this
concludes my brief.” This will be a clear signal to your listener that you are finished. It will also provide the listener an
opportunity to ask questions, make decisions, and offer guidance.
Review Guidance, Directions, or Due-Outs
Once the person you are briefing has made a decision or issued guidance, make sure you conduct a quick review while
he is still present. It only takes a moment, and it may save you hours of wasted time. You do not need to rehash the
briefing―simply review your notes and restate the decision or guidance you received: “To recap, Sir, here is what I
understand you want me to do. . . .”
Miscellaneous Briefing Tips
Practice Your Briefing Out Loud
Always practice important briefings out loud before presenting them. Practicing will give you a feel for how long the
briefing will take and help you get comfortable with your material. Similarly, when possible you should watch experienced
staff officers brief and learn from their techniques.
Know Your Briefing Material
No matter who you are briefing, never try to wing it. Along the same lines, never tap dance when confronted with a
tough question. If you don’t know the answer, then tell the questioner that you will research the issue and provide him an
answer later.
Number Your Slides
This simple tip will help you immensely. When your slides are numbered it is much easier to focus the listener and
guide him through the brief. Most importantly, numbered slides help you get back on track after questions or digressions.



Never Read SlidesVerbatim
Rather than reading directly from your slides, determine in advance one or two key points or takeaways from each slide.
As you brief, direct the listener’s attention to the slide number and state your point accordingly. For example, “Sir, slide
number 6 shows you key facts bearing on the problem; the important point here is. . . .”
Put Detailed Information in Back-Up Slides
Do not overwhelm your listener with too much information. Unless they are absolutely necessary, place charts,
numbers, spreadsheets, or similar information in back-up slides at the end of the briefing. If necessary, the person you are
briefing can look at the back-up slides later. If questions arise during the briefing, then you can direct the questioner to the
appropriate back-up slides.
Interact with Your Listener
Being a military professional does not require you to be an automaton. Whether you are briefing a lieutenant colonel or
a lieutenant general, be yourself and interact with your listener. Try to relax, look your listener in the eye, and speak in
simple terms. You can even smile when appropriate. A word of caution; however, is to never get cute. Trying to be funny
during a briefing is rarely, if ever, a good idea.
Rule #4: Coordinate and Synchronize Your Efforts with Other Staff Sections
A staff is a team. The team’s goal is mission success. Accordingly, everything you do as a staff officer should be
directed toward the success of the team as a whole. Failing to coordinate your efforts with your teammates is not only
counterproductive; it is a breach of military protocol. It is, therefore, absolutely imperative that you learn to properly
synchronize your efforts with the efforts of the other staff sections.
How do you do this? The first step for new JAs is to learn what the other staff sections do. Your supervisor and your
more experienced co-workers can help you with this; however, the best way to learn their missions is to visit the other staff
sections and talk to the people who work there. Ask people in these sections to explain to you what they do and how their
section contributes to the organization’s mission. You might be surprised by how enthusiastic most people are when it comes
to talking about their work. With your supervisor’s and your co-workers’ help and through personal relationships you build
with people from other staff sections, it will not be long before you develop a good sense of what actions need to be
coordinated with the personnel assigned to the various staff sections within your particular organization.
As a general rule, when in doubt; coordinate. If the appropriate individuals in the other staff sections have no comment
or no input relevant for your action, they will concur and move on. Conversely, if you fail to coordinate an action that is in
another staff section’s lane, then you are guaranteed to ruffle feathers and create bad will.
On this subject, another good rule of thumb is to never depend solely on e-mail to coordinate important actions unless it
is absolutely unavoidable. Hitting the send button does not mean an action is coordinated or completed. One of the
commanders for whom I worked had a list of ten commandments for the Regiment. Among the ten commandments was to
never assume e-mail is read. This commandment is a key point for staff officers to remember. Keep in mind that, in most
cases, “I sent an e-mail” is not an appropriate response when you are asked for the status of an action. As was mentioned
above, if you are working an action or a project that requires input or participation from others, take the time to talk to them
face-to-face or, at a minimum, by telephone. This practice not only makes for a better work product; it helps build better
working relationships with your teammates in the long run.
Rule #5: Do Not Bring a Decision-Maker a Problem Without a Proposed Solution
It is the responsibility of your supervisor, your commander, and other key leaders to offer guidance and direction to the
organization. In large measure, they will do this by resolving problems and making decisions. To facilitate this process, try
not to bring your decision-maker a problem without also providing a recommended solution.



This rule is particularly important for JAs. As discussed in rule number one, lawyers are formally trained to spot issues
and identify problems. As staff officers, however, we must learn to take the extra step of offering proposed solutions to the
issues or problems we spot. It does no good, for example, to simply tell the commander that an action is illegal or contrary to
regulations. What he needs to know is whether there is a way to legally, morally, and ethically accomplish his goal or to get
to “yes.” If not, he needs to know if there are other acceptable alternative courses of action. In short, no matter how big or
how small the problem, the ethics and ethos of the military profession demand that an officer do more than simply identify
the problem. You owe it to your leaders to—as the saying goes—“be part of the solution.” Finally, before proposing a
solution, make sure you adhere to rule number 4. Whatever course of action you recommend, ensure it has been coordinated
in advance with the appropriate staff section(s).
Your responsibility does not end when your recommended solution is adopted. When the leadership of your
organization decides to pursue a course of action that you have recommended, it is incumbent upon you to monitor the
situation and ensure the details are implemented in accordance with the decision maker’s intent. If the solution involves a
long-term project, then you should plan on providing periodic updates (often called in progress reviews or IPRs) that outline
the project’s progress. When IPRs will be necessary, make sure your proposed solution includes a proposed IPR schedule.
Rule #6: Attitude Is Everything
Staff work can sometimes be frustrating. There will be times when you work diligently on a briefing or project, only to
have it cancelled at the last minute. You may work for a supervisor who gives you vague guidance or who is constantly
changing the organization’s focus. Last minute projects, “hot” missions, and short suspense dates are all part of the day-today life of a staff officer. As elementary as it may sound, the best way to deal with these frustrations is to keep a positive
outlook. For the staff officer, attitude is everything.
Maintaining a positive outlook starts with remaining flexible. Change is an immutable characteristic of staff work, and
you will be much happier if you accept and embrace this fact. Second, try not to become too emotionally attached to
projects. While your work is important, it should never determine your attitude about life; nor should it negatively affect
your relationships with your co-workers. If you get upset or take things personally when a superior makes changes or gives
you a new priority, then you are destined to be unhappy at work.
More often than not, people get angry or upset about work-related issues when they invest ego and emotion in their
work. If you see yourself headed in this direction, then consider the following advice of the former Chairman of the Joint
Chiefs of Staff, General Colin Powell: “Avoid having your ego so close to your position that, when your position falls, your
ego goes with it.”11 Finally, keep your sense of humor. Humor is a critical “safety valve” in stressful situations, and the
ability to laugh at things, especially yourself, is a key component of a positive attitude.
Rule #7: Pay Attention to Detail
The last rule is simple, but critically important: pay attention to detail. As a staff officer, this concept must be your
lodestar. By its very nature, staff work is detail oriented, and making sure the i’s are dotted and the t’s are crossed is one of
the things you get paid to do as a staff officer. It is not glamorous, but it is undeniably necessary. The commander and other
important decision-makers that you work for will be counting on you to attend to the small details so that they can make the
big decisions.
Does this mean you should expect to be perfect? Certainly not. Everyone makes mistakes; you will, too. Rather than
striving for perfection, your goal should be to minimize your mistakes by committing yourself to paying attention to detail.
Small mistakes such as spelling or typographical errors in written products or briefing slides may seem like no big deal, but,
when repeated often enough, they will damage your professional credibility. Similarly, it is extremely embarrassing when
your supervisor finds a mistake in correspondence you have prepared for his signature.
While these kinds of mistakes are awkward when they happen to you personally, their effects are magnified manifold
when they put your commander or your supervisor in a bad position. If you are preparing products for someone else’s
signature or materials they will use to brief, then pay extremely close attention to their contents. Never set your superiors up
for failure or embarrassment by providing them with products that contain mistakes or inaccuracies.




There are a variety of techniques to help you avoid most mistakes: always have someone else proofread important
products; if it is a high-profile project, have two or three people look it over. Use your computer’s spelling and grammar
check features. Some even find it helpful to read key documents or important briefing slides out loud to ensure they make
sense. If you are dealing with numbers and arithmetic, then use a calculator. Finally, if you routinely use certain computer
programs, such as (Excel or PowerPoint), for your job, take the time to learn their capabilities. All the jokes about
“Powerpoint Rangers” aside, the truth is you can be more effective to your organization and, ultimately, can contribute more
to mission accomplishment when you are able to create and present accurate, professional-looking products that clearly
communicate important ideas and concepts.

Every Soldier has a job to do. As a staff officer, yours is to use your intelligence and initiative, coupled with your unique
mix of education, training, and experience to help your organization succeed. Be proud of your role, and approach your
duties as a staff officer with a positive, professional attitude. If you do, you will help set conditions for the success of your
organization and ultimately, for the success of the Army as a whole.



Book Review
Now the country is run by a bunch of kids, and this is regrettable.1
The Iranian nation will not accept for one moment any bullying, invasion and violation of its rights.2
I. Introduction
It was an otherwise typical morning on 4 November 1979 at the American Embassy in Tehran, the capital city of Iran.3
State Department officials, Central Intelligence Agency [CIA] officers, and members of the various branches of the Armed
Forces were preparing for yet another day of work in the tumultuous country.4 Despite the continuing specter of Iranian
unrest, the rising tide of anger toward America, and President Jimmy Carter’s prescient question to his staff in October
concerning what he should do if the embassy was overrun and taken hostage, neither the embassy staff nor anyone else in the
Iranian or American governments, knew what was about to happen.5 A small band of revolutionaries driven by zealous
idealism—mostly students from various universities in Iran calling themselves “Muslim Students Following the Imam’s
Line”—would incite a riot and storm the American Embassy.6 This group would hold fifty-two Americans hostage for more
than a year and take center stage in a global standoff between the United States and Iran.7
Compiled from an impressive collection of official government documents, first-person interviews, news coverage,
personal letters, diary entries, and memoirs of the events, Guests of the Ayatollah: The First Battle in America’s War With
Militant Islam8 chronicles the 444 days that these Americans were held hostage in Iran.9 Although it is certainly not the first
book about the Iran hostage crisis, Guests of the Ayatollah provides a comprehensive description of the events that unfolded
during those 444 days.10 While the book is lengthy and laden with the author’s palpable disdain for the Iranians involved in
the incident, Guests of the Ayatollah is a superb account of the crisis and provides valuable insight into the experiences of the
hostages, the mindset of the extreme Islamic fundamentalists responsible for the seizing them, and the difficulties in
diplomatic dealings with a country with such a militant Islamic faction. Published at a time when Iran is making headlines
for its tough talk, its bid to pursue nuclear technology, and its continued religious extremism, Mark Bowden’s timing is


Judge Advocate, U.S. Army. Presently assigned as a student, 55th Judge Advocate Officer Graduate Course, The Judge Advocate General’s Legal Center
and School, United States Army, Charlottesville, Virginia.


Minister Mehdi Barzagan during the hostage crisis).


Dafna Linzer, Iran Defies Deadline on Nuclear Program; U.S. to Press U.N. to Impose Sanctions, WASH. POST, Sept. 1, 2006, at A1 (quoting current
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in 2006).


BOWDEN, supra note 1, at 16–27.




Id. at 19.


Id. at 9–13.


Id. at 5.




Id. at 643–56.


The Source Notes indicate the author relied on fifty books, publications, and film documentaries. See id. at 643–46. The crisis was also the subject of two

See, e.g., Ahmadinejad Calls for University Purge, CNN, Sept. 5, 2006, http://www.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/meast/09/05/iran.universities.ap/index.html;
Linzer, supra note 2, at A1; Iran President Refuses to Budge, CNN, Sept. 1, 2006, http://www.cnn.com/WORLD/meast/09/01/iran.deadline/index.html;
Molly Moore & Thomas E. Ricks, Iranian Leader Warns U.S. of Reprisal; Khamenei Is Defiant Ahead of U.N. Report, WASH. POST, Apr. 27, 2006, at A1.



II. Two Governments, an Ayatollah, Sixty-Six Hostages, and Their Captors
Touted as a “master of narrative journalism,”12 author Mark Bowden covers every imaginable aspect of the crisis
between 4 November 1979 and 21 January 1981, describing the actions, thoughts, and emotions of the hostages, their
families, the captors, the Iranian leadership, and many in the United States government. The comprehensive approach of
Guests of the Ayatollah is the most remarkable aspect of this book. The author’s purpose is stated clearly at outset—he is
seeking to explain why the crisis happened and why it unfolded as it did.13 In this respect, Bowden is quite successful.
Through impressive research and a journalist’s touch, he artfully explores the causes of the embassy invasion, the plight of
the hostages, the personality of the captors, the nature of their cause, and the struggle to resolve the crisis and bring the
hostages home safely.
The volume of sources the author consulted is significant and an indicator of the overall quality of this work. Most
commendable, perhaps, are his efforts to find and interview the Iranian actors in the saga. Mark Bowden very easily could
have relied on previously published materials and interviews with those hostages still living; however, he appears to have
made a significant effort to gather material from those directly involved in the crisis. As a result of this effort, Guests of the
Ayatollah includes material from interviews with at least twenty-one Iranians.14 Thanks to the quality of the research, Guests
of the Ayatollah effectively explains the root causes of the rift between Iran and the United States, the motives behind the
embassy seizure, and the myriad of factors that led to the standoff between the United States and Iran. What emerges is the
United States striking inability to anticipate such an event. According to the author, “In retrospect, it was all too
predictable.”15 Bowden describes the almost negligent failure of those in the United States government to grasp the unrest in
Iran, the threat to the embassy, and the need for caution.16 He correctly asks, “[H]ow could they have been so blind?”17
Predictably, the focus of Guests of the Ayatollah is on the hostages, and the author’s goal—“reconstruct[ing] their
experiences”—is artfully achieved.18 When anger and scorn failed to dissuade the overwhelming mass of invaders,19 the
Americans at the embassy quickly found themselves at the mercy of their captors, facing interrogations, assaults, threats,
mock executions, discomfort, injury, isolation, boredom, and illness.20 Bowden’s vivid description of their ordeal is
captivating. Using graphic descriptions and even a bit of humor, the author conveys the appalling story of these hostages
with tremendous power.21
In describing the hostages’ experiences, the author colorfully emphasizes the naiveté of their student captors. The
hostages had the upper-hand in nearly all of the interrogations and were often shocked at the ineptitude of the Iranians they
encountered.22 Though unable to escape, the hostages were able to resist interrogations, steal weapons, hide radios,


Linda Robinson, The Fugitive, N.Y. TIMES, June 17, 2001, sec. 7, at 18 (reviewing Mark Bowden, Killing Pablo: The Hunt for the World’s Greatest
Outlaw (2001) (book review). Mark Bowden’s other books include Our Finest Day (2002), Finders Keepers (2002), Black Hawk Down: A Story of Modern
War (1999), Bringing the Heat (1994), and Doctor Dealer (1987).


BOWDEN, supra note 1, at 5.


Id. at 644. Conspicuously absent, though, is an interview with current Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. After his election in June 2005, several
former hostages identified President Ahmadinejad as one of their captors. See 5 Americans Say Iran's New Chief Was '79 Captor, N.Y. TIMES, June 30,
2005, at A6. Although President Ahmadinejad denies involvement, Bowden concludes that “Ahmadinejad was one of the central players in the group that
seized the embassy and held hostages.” BOWDEN, supra note 1, at 615.


BOWDEN, supra note 1, at 4.


For example, the CIA cell at the embassy had only three officers, none of whom spoke Farsi. Id. at 17. In addition, it can be argued that the embassy
should have been closed prior to admitting the Shah into the United States, a move many knew would be unpopular in Iran. Id. at 190, 213–14.

Id. at 313 (summarizing the thoughts of hostage John W. Limbert Jr., an embassy official).


Id. at 597 (stating, “My goal was to reconstruct their experience as they lived it.”).


See, e.g., id. at 32 (quoting hostage Barry Rosen as saying to the invaders, “You have no right to set foot in here, any of you. You are violating diplomatic
immunity. It is totally illegal.”).

See id. at 235, 282–83, 347–51, 383–84, 603.


See, e.g., id. at 320 (describing the actions of Marine Sergeant Billy Gallegos during an interrogation).


Id. at 312.



effectively communicate, tease the guards openly, and demand comforts.23 By contrasting the naïve zealotry of the captors
with their world-savvy hostages, the author makes the injustice of the hostage crisis readily apparent.24
Finally, Guests of the Ayatollah describes the thoughts and actions of yet another hostage of the crisis. President Carter
lost the 1980 election to President Ronald Reagan in large part because of the crisis and the failed Delta Force rescue mission
in April 1980, and he is an easy scapegoat.25 Mark Bowden, however, effectively explains the complexity of the situation
that President Carter faced, the grave consequences of his many options, and the vigor of the proponents and opponents of
each option. In negotiating with a country like Iran at this point in their history, one can only commiserate with President
Carter when he said, “My political future might well be determined by irrational people on the other side of the world over
whom I have no control.”26 While President Carter’s patience, willingness to delay military action until all other options
were exhausted, and willingness to bargain with the leadership of Iran ultimately made him look weak, especially when
compared with the fiery rhetoric of President Reagan, he was ultimately successful and able to secure the safe return of all of
the hostages.27 All in all, the author’s portrayal of President Carter is remarkably fair.

III. Negative Aspects of Guests of the Ayatollah
Despite these highlights, a few issues detracted from the overall value of the Guests of the Ayatollah. Mark Bowden is a
journalist, and this book appears to be intended to be a good read rather than a strictly historical text.28 His use of quotes and
his citation format severely limit the scholarly value of this book. Bowden selected an endnote format and includes in each
endnote a list of the sources from which his passages originated. This style makes it extraordinarily difficult to discern the
source of many of the quotations. In numerous instances throughout the book, the author reports an exchange of dialogue
using quotations, and many times this dialogue is reconstructed from interviews and memoirs.29 By using quotes without
direct citations, the reader frequently has to wonder whether a particular quote is what was actually said, what an individual
remembers being said, or what the author has concluded was said based on his research.30 As such, the scholarly value of the
text is limited.
Mark Bowden also sacrifices some credibility and deflates some of the power of this story in the epilogue. The last
section of the book provides additional information about several important individuals after the crisis concluded. However,
in three chapters titled, The Land of the Bordbari, The Gerogan-Girha, and Yeah George Bush!, the author almost seems to be
trying to promote anti-Iranian sentiment. In The Land of the Bordbari, Bowden describes his trip to Iran and provides his
assessment on the present state of affairs in an effort to discern whether the 1979 revolution was successful.31 Addressing
infrastructure, traffic, governance, population, and the hostage crisis itself, Bowden paints a dim view of the present state of
Iran.32 While the purpose of this chapter in the epilogue is clear, it unfortunately comes across as an irrelevant diatribe.

Id. at 207, 321, 490, 507, 525, 530 (describing the playful theft of a guard’s six-shooter, the use of a secret stolen radio, the passing of notes between
hostages, the colorful names that some Marines called their captors, hostage Kathryn Koob’s demand for undergarments, and the hostages’ demands to go

See, e.g., id. at 305, 312. Bowden’s account of a conversation between hostage Bill Daugherty and Nilufar Ebtekar, a female English-speaking
revolutionary, is remarkable. See id. at 310; see generally id. at 160-61, 246 (providing background information on Ebtekar).

Id. at 464, 596.


Id. at 556.


Id. at 563. On the day after President Reagan’s inauguration, President Carter stated the following: “Our nation acted as a great nation ought to act, not
only with justified outrage at a despicable and illegal act, not only with courage and conviction, but with constant purpose and constant restraint in the face
of severe provocation.” Art Harris, Jimmy Carter Ends His Presidency with a Flurry and a Flourish; Coming Home to Plains, Graciously, WASH. POST,
Jan. 21, 1981, at A28.
See Guests of the Ayatollah: The First Battle in America’s War with Militant Islam Webpage, http://www.theguestsoftheayatollah.com/grove_atlantic_
authorbio.html (last visited Sept. 17, 2006).
See, e.g., BOWDEN, supra note 1, at 319, 652 (providing an example of dialogue that is apparently reconstructed from a discussion among Marines). See
generally id. at 647–56 (containing the references for the various quotes used throughout the book).
This technique is apparently a characteristic of this author’s writing and was praised by a reviewer of another one of his books. See Robinson, supra note
12 (reviewing Killing Pablo: The Hunt for the World’s Greatest Outlaw).

BOWDEN, supra note 1, at 605.





In The Gerogan-Girha, Mark Bowden describes his interviews with several key individuals involved in the seizure of the
embassy.33 The point of this chapter is to report the present feelings about the event in Iran.34 Unfortunately, Bowden’s
manner appears confrontational, and he seems to be bragging about his verbal sparring matches with several of the Iranians
he interviewed.35 In the final chapter, the author concludes by recounting a story about his recent visit to the grounds of the
former American Embassy where several Iranian soldiers tasked to guard the former embassy approach him and say through
a translator, “Yeah George Bush!”36 The inclusion of this encounter is obviously a reflection of Bowden’s own nationalism
and is also of questionable relevance. Taken together, these chapters are laden with Bowden’s obvious disdain for the Iranian
government and those involved in the hostage crisis. While understandable, Bowden’s viewpoint unfortunately detracts from
the power of his description of the hostage crisis and the weight that the incident has on its own merits. Throughout the bulk
of the text, the author provides numerous examples of irony, naiveté, and hypocrisy during the course of the ordeal, enabling
readers to divine the injustice and criminality of this incident without Bowden’s personal commentary at the end. By so
bluntly stating his negative personal opinions about the country and the cause behind the embassy takeover in an epilogue,
the author compromises the overall value of his work and reveals that his chronicle may not be as objective as it may initially

IV. Importance for the Global War on Terror
Despite these shortcomings, Bowden’s re-telling of this saga provides several lessons at a time when the United States
finds itself in nearly constant conflict with extreme Islamic fundamentalism. First, Guests of the Ayatollah provides
remarkable insight into the blind zealotry and internal discord of one extreme Islamic fundamentalist movement. An
understanding of the power of these forces is critical to dealings between the United States, Iran, and other Islamic countries.
Guests of the Ayatollah demonstrates that, in some cases, the hatred against the United States is based on propaganda and
misinformation, and these opinions are not easily changed.37 Second, this book demonstrates the vital role of special
operations forces in the modern world. During the crisis, the only real military option for President Carter was a special
operations rescue mission, and the United States lacked capabilities on par with British and German special operation
commands.38 Despite extensive planning and rehearsal, the failure of the rescue mission tied President Carter’s hands
diplomatically and gave Iran a massive morale windfall. 39
Third, Guests of the Ayatollah shows that restraint and diplomacy are still effective means of resolving issues of this
magnitude. Although the United States made many painful concessions to resolve the crisis, President Carter’s measured
approach ultimately worked and not one hostage was killed.40 Fourth, Bowden’s work offers a compelling case study of
human behavior in captivity. Servicemembers can benefit from an understanding of not just how one might behave when in
the hands of unpredictable captors, but also how United States detainees might think and behave. Finally, Bowden’s
thorough coverage of the crisis allows a critical analysis of the actions of President Carter, embassy chargé d’affaires Bruce
Laingen, Delta Force commander Colonel James Beckwith, and the leadership of Iran. This was indeed a crisis, with
tremendously complex issues and numerous lives at stake. Leaders at all levels confronted uncertainty, risk, and failure
throughout the ordeal. By enabling the reader to study the thoughts and actions of the various players in the crisis, Guests of
the Ayatollah offers a bounty of lessons.

V. Conclusion
Mark Bowden’s Guests of the Ayatollah is not the first study of this event and with the twenty-seventh anniversary of the
hostage crisis approaching, one might wonder why the author chose to revisit an incident that occurred so long ago. The title
itself provides that answer—it was America’s first battle against militant Islam; a war that continues today. In this first

See id. at 615–31. “Gerogan-Girha” is the Farsi term for “hostage takers.” Id.


See id. at 616.


See, e.g., id. at 618.


Id. at 636–37.


See, e.g., id. at 305, 312, 399, 501.


Id. at 113.


Id. at 479, 550.


Id. at 576–77, 595.



battle, America found itself surprised, unprepared, and naïve in dealing with Iran. As the United States continues to face
conflict with Islamic fundamentalism, Guests of the Ayatollah is a vivid documentary of that first battle. Throughout the
book, the author provides valuable insight into the mindset of the extreme Islamic fundamentalists responsible for the seizure
of the embassy and the difficulties in dealing with militant Islam, either in true battle or in diplomacy. While the book is
more journalistic than scholarly and is colored by the author’s obvious feelings about the captors and their cause, Guests of
the Ayatollah is a compelling chronicle of the hostages’ 444 days and the challenges America faced in confronting the crisis.
As Iran continues to appear in headlines around the globe, Guests of the Ayatollah is truly a worthwhile and timely read.



CLE News
1. Resident Course Quotas
a. Attendance at resident continuing legal education (CLE) courses at The Judge Advocate General’s Legal Center and
School, U.S. Army (TJAGLCS), is restricted to students who have confirmed reservations. Reservations for TJAGSA CLE
courses are managed by the Army Training Requirements and Resources System (ATRRS), the Army-wide automated
training system. If you do not have a confirmed reservation in ATRRS, attendance is prohibited.
b. Active duty service members and civilian employees must obtain reservations through their directorates training
office. Reservists or ARNG must obtain reservations through their unit training offices or, if they are non-unit reservists,
through the U.S. Army Personnel Center (ARPERCOM), ATTN: ARPC-OPB, 1 Reserve Way, St. Louis, MO 63132-5200.
c. Questions regarding courses should be directed first through the local ATRRS Quota Manager or the ATRRS School
Manager, Academic Department at 1 (800) 552-3978, extension 3307.
d. The ATTRS Individual Student Record is available on-line. To verify a confirmed reservation, log into your
individual AKO account and follow these instructions:
Go to Self Service, My Education. Scroll to Globe Icon (not the AARTS Transcript Services).
Go to ATTRS On-line, Student Menu, Individual Training Record. The training record with
reservations and completions will be visible.
If you do not see a particular entry for a course that you are registered for or have completed,
see your local ATTRS Quota Manager or Training Coordinator for an update or correction.
e. The Judge Advocate General’s School, U.S. Army, is an approved sponsor of CLE courses in all states that require
mandatory continuing legal education. These states include: AL, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, FL, GA, ID, IN, IA, KS, KY,
and WY.

2. TJAGLCS CLE Course Schedule (June 2006 - October 2007) (http://www.jagcnet.army.mil/JAGCNETINTER
NET/HOMEPAGES/AC/TJAGSAWEB.NSF/Main?OpenFrameset (click on Courses, Course Schedule))

Course Title



55th Graduate Course
56th Graduate Course

14 Aug 06 – 24 May 07
13 Aug 07 – 22 May 08


171st JA Officer Basic Course

22 Oct – 3 Nov 06 (BOLC III) Ft. Lee
3 Nov 06 – 31 Jan 07 (BOLC III) TJAGSA


172d JA Officer Basic Course

4 – 16 Feb 07 (BOLC III) Ft. Lee
16 Feb – 2 May 07 (BOLC III) TJAGSA


173d JA Officer Basic Course

1 – 13 Jul 07 (BOLC III) Ft. Lee
13 Jul – 26 Sep 07 (BOLC III) TJAGSA


38th Methods of Instruction Course

26 – 27 Jul 07


196th Senior Officers Legal Orientation Course
197th Senior Officers Legal Orientation Course
198th Senior Officers Legal Orientation Course
13th RC General Officers Legal Orientation Course

26 – 30 Mar 07
11 – 15 Jun 07
10 – 14 Sep 07
14 – 16 Feb 07




37th Staff Judge Advocate Course

4 – 8 Jun 07


10th Staff Judge Advocate Team Leadership Course

4 – 6 Jun 07


2007 JAOAC (Phase II)

7 – 19 Jan 07


2007 JAG Annual CLE Workshop

1 – 5 Oct 07


2007 JA Professional Recruiting Seminar

17 – 20 Jul 07

(Phase 2)
(Phase 2)
(Phase 2)
(Phase 2)
(Phase 2)

Paralegal Specialist BNCOC

28 Jan – 2 Mar 07

Paralegal Specialist BNCOC

2 Apr – 4 May 07

Paralegal Specialist BNCOC

2 Apr – 4 May 07

Paralegal Specialist BNCOC

11 Jun – 13 Jul 07

Paralegal Specialist BNCOC

13 Aug – 14 Sep 07

(Phase 2)
(Phase 2)
(Phase 2)

Paralegal Specialist ANCOC

28 Jan – 2 Mar 07

Paralegal Specialist ANCOC

11 Jun – 13 Jul 07

Paralegal Specialist ANCOC

13 Aug – 14 Sep 07


18th Legal Administrators Course

2 – 6 Apr 07


8th JA Warrant Officer Advanced Course

16 Jul – 3 Aug 07


14th JA Warrant Officer Basic Course

29 May – 22 Jun 07


2007 Sergeants Major Symposium

5 – 9 Feb 07


22d Court Reporter Course
23d Court Reporter Course
24th Court Reporter Course

29 Jan – 30 Mar 07
23 Apr – 22 Jun 07
30 Jul – 28 Sep 07


8th Court Reporting Symposium

29 Oct – 3 Nov 07


18th Law for Paralegal NCOs Course

26 – 30 Mar 07


16th Senior Paralegal Course

18 – 22 Jun 07




9th Chief Paralegal/BCT NCO Course

5 – 9 Mar 07


6th Advanced Law of Federal Employment Course

17 – 19 Oct 07


61st Law of Federal Employment Course

15 – 19 Oct 07


60th Legal Assistance Course
61st Legal Assistance Course

7 – 11 May 07
29 Oct – 2 Nov 07


31st Admin Law for Military Installations Course

19 – 23 Mar 07


25th Federal Litigation Course

30 Jul – 3 Aug 07


5th Ethics Counselors Course

16 – 20 Apr 07


2007 USAREUR Legal Assistance CLE

22 – 26 Oct 07


2007 USAREUR Administrative Law CLE

17 – 21 Sep 07


2007 USAREUR Claims Course

15 – 19 Oct 07


157th Contract Attorneys Course
158th Contract Attorneys Course

5 – 13 Mar 07
23 Jul – 3 Aug 07


76th Fiscal Law Course

30 Apr – 4 May 07


3d Operational Contracting Course

14 – 16 Mar 07


6th Contract Litigation Course

9 – 13 Apr 07


2007 USAREUR Contract & Fiscal Law CLE

13 – 16 Feb 07


2007 Distance Learning Fiscal Law

6 – 9 Feb 07


Comptrollers Accreditation Fiscal Law Course
(Washington, DC)
Comptrollers Accreditation Fiscal Law Course
(Yuma, AZ)
Comptrollers Accreditation Fiscal Law Course
(Ft. Monmouth, NJ)

16 – 19 Jan 07


22 – 26 Jan 07
5 – 8 Jun 07


50th Military Judge Course

23 Apr – 11 May 07


27th Criminal Law Advocacy Course
28th Criminal Law Advocacy Course

5 – 16 Feb 07
10 – 21 Sep 07




10th Advanced Advocacy Training

29 May – 1 Jun 07


2007 USAREUR Criminal Law CLE

29 Jan – 2 Feb 07


3d Advanced Intelligence Law Course

27 – 29 Jun 07

48th Operational Law Course

30 Jul – 10 Aug 07


88th Law of War Course

9 – 13 Jul 07


2d Information Operations Course

16 – 20 Jul 07


7th Domestic Operational Law Course

29 Oct – 2 Nov 07


47th Operational Law Course
48th Operational Law Course

26 Feb – 9 Mar 07
30 Jul – 10 Aug 07

3. Naval Justice School and FY 2007 Course Schedule
Please contact Jerry Gallant, Registrar, Naval Justice School, 360 Elliot Street, Newport, RI 02841 at (401) 841-3807,
extension 131, for information about the courses.
Naval Justice School
Newport, RI

Lawyer Course (020)
Lawyer Course (030)
Lawyer Course (040)

22 Jan – 23 Mar 07
4 Jun – 3 Aug 07
13 Aug – 12 Oct 07


BOLT (020)
BOLT (020)
BOLT (030)
BOLT (030)

26 – 30 Mar 07 (USMC)
26 – 30 Mar 07 (NJS)
6 – 10 Aug 07 (USMC)
6 – 10 Aug 07 (NJS)


Reserve Lawyer Course (010)
Reserve Lawyer Course (020)

7 – 11 May 07
10 – 14 Sep 07


Law of Naval Operations (Reservists) (010)
Law of Naval Operations (Reservists) (020)

14 – 18 May 07
17 – 21 May 07


SJA/E-Law Course (010)
SJA/E-Law Course (020)

29 May – 8 Jun 07
6 – 17 Aug 07


Law of Military Operations (010)

11 – 22 Jun 07


Advanced SJA/Ethics (010)
Advanced SJA/Ethics (020)

26 – 30 Mar 07 (San Diego)
16 – 20 Apr 07 (Norfolk)

National Institute of Trial Advocacy (020)

14 – 18 May 07 (San Diego)

Senior Officer (020)
Senior Officer (030)

8 – 12 Jan 07 (New Port)
12 – 16 Mar 07 (New Port)


Course Title



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Senior Officer (050)
Senior Officer (060)

7 – 11 May 07 (New Port)
23 – 27 Jul 07 (New Port)
24 – 28 Sep 07 (New Port)


Estate Planning (010)

23 – 27 Jul 07


Prosecuting Trial Enhancement Training (010)

22 – 26 Jan 07


Family Law/Consumer Law (010)

16 – 20 Apr 07


Litigating National Security (010)

5 – 7 Mar 07


Naval Legal Service Command Senior Officer
Leadership (010)

20 – 31 Aug 07


Defense Trial Enhancement (010)

8 – 12 Jan 07


Computer Crimes (010)

21 – 25 May 07 (Norfolk)


Military Law Update Workshop (Officer) (010)
Military Law Update Workshop (Officer) (020)



Effective Courtroom Communications (020)

26 – 30 Mar 07 (San Diego)


Defending Complex Cases (010)

16 – 20 Jul 07


Prosecuting Complex Cases (010)

9 – 13 Jul 07


Senior Officer (Fleet) (050)
Senior Officer (Fleet) (060)
Senior Officer (Fleet) (070)
Senior Officer (Fleet) (080)
Senior Officer (Fleet) (090)
Senior Officer (Fleet) (100)
Senior Officer (Fleet) (110)
Senior Officer (Fleet) (120)
Senior Officer (Fleet) (130)

12 – 16 Feb 07 (Pensacola, FL)
26 – 30 Mar 07 (Pensacola, FL)
2 – 6 Apr 07 (Quantico, VA)
9 – 13 Apr 07 (Camp Lejeune, NC)
23 – 27 Apr 07 (Pensacola, FL)
23 – 27 Apr 07 (Naples, Italy)
4 – 8 Jun 07 (Pensacola, FL)
9 – 13 Jul 07 (Pensacola, FL)
27 – 31 Aug 07 (Pensacola, FL)


Continuing Legal Education (EUCOM) (020)

23 – 24 Apr 07 (Naples, Italy)


Legal Assistance Paralegal Course (010)

16 Apr – 20 Apr 07


Legalman Course (010)
Legalman Course (020)

16 Jan – 30 Mar 07
16 Apr – 29 Jun 07


Senior Legalman Leadership Course (010)

23 – 27 Jul 07


Reserve Legalman Course (Phase I) (010)

9 – 20 Apr 07


Reserve Legalman Course (Phase II) (010)

23 Apr – 4 May 07


Reserve Legalman Course (Phase III) (010)

7 – 18 May 07




LN/Legal Specialist Mid Career Course (020)

17 – 28 Sep 07


Military Law Update Workshop (Enlisted) (010)
Military Law Update Workshop (Enlisted (020)
Paralegal Research & Writing (010)
Paralegal Research & Writing (020)
Paralegal Research & Writing (030)

19 – 30 Mar 07 (Newport)
7 – 18 May 07 (Norfolk)
16 – 27 Jul 07 (San Diego)


SJA Legalman (020)

29 May – 7 Jun 07 (Newport)


Senior Enlisted Leadership Course (080)
Senior Enlisted Leadership Course (090)
Senior Enlisted Leadership Course (100)
Senior Enlisted Leadership Course (110)
Senior Enlisted Leadership Course (120)
Senior Enlisted Leadership Course (130)
Senior Enlisted Leadership Course (140)
Senior Enlisted Leadership Course (150)
Senior Enlisted Leadership Course (160)
Senior Enlisted Leadership Course (170)
Senior Enlisted Leadership Course (180)

21 – 23 Feb 07 (Norfolk)
20 – 22 Mar 07 (San Diego)
28 – 30 Mar 07 (Norfolk)
25 – 27 Apr 07 (Norfolk)
24 – 26 Apr 07 (Bremerton)
1 – 3 May 07 (San Diego)
23 – 25 May 07 (Norfolk)
17 – 19 Jul 07 (San Diego)
18 – 20 Jul 07 (Great Lakes)
15 – 17 Aug 07 (Norfolk)
28 – 30 Aug 07 (Pendleton)

Naval Justice School Detachment
Norfolk, VA

Legal Officer Course (040)
Legal Officer Course (050)
Legal Officer Course (060)
Legal Officer Course (070)
Legal Officer Course (080)

5 – 23 Mar 07
30 Apr – 18 May 07
4 – 22 Jun 07
23 Jul – 10 Aug 07
10 – 28 Sep 07


Legal Clerk Course (040)
Legal Clerk Course (050)
Legal Clerk Course (060)
Legal Clerk Course (070)
Legal Clerk Course (080)

5 – 16 Mar 07
2 – 13 Apr 07
4 – 15 Jun 07
30 Jul – 10 Aug 07
10 – 21 Sep 07


Senior Officer Course (030)
Senior Officer Course (040)
Senior Officer Course (050)
Senior Officer Course (060)
Senior Officer Course (070)

26 Feb – 2 Mar 07
2 – 6 Apr 07
25 – 29 Jun 07
16 – 20 Jul 07 (Great Lakes)
27 – 31 Aug 07


Military Justice Course for SJA/Convening
Authority/Shipboard Legalmen (030)

18 – 29 Jun 07

Naval Justice School Detachment
San Diego, CA

Legal Officer Course (040)
Legal Officer Course (050)
Legal Officer Course (060)
Legal Officer Course (070)
Legal Officer Course (080)

26 Feb – 16 Mar 07
7 – 25 May 07
11 – 29 Jun 07
30 Jul – 17 Aug 07
10 – 28 Sep 07






Legal Clerk Course (050)
Legal Clerk Course (060)
Legal Clerk Course (070)
Legal Clerk Course (080)
Senior Officer Course (030)
Senior Officer Course (040)
Senior Officer Course (050)
Senior Officer Course (060)
Senior Officer Course (070)
Senior Officer Course (080)

2 – 13 Apr 07
7 – 18 May 07
11 – 22 Jun 07
30 Jul – 10 Aug 07
12 – 16 Feb 07 (San Diego)
2 – 6 Apr 07 (San Diego)
23 – 27 Apr 07 (Bremerton)
4 – 8 Jun 07 (San Diego)
20 – 24 Aug 07 (San Diego)
27 – 31 Aug 07 (Pendleton)

Military Justice Course for SJA/Convening
Authority/Shipboard Legalmen (010)

26 Feb – 9 Mar 07

4. Air Force Judge Advocate General School Fiscal Year 2007 Course Schedule
Please contact Jim Whitaker, Air Force Judge Advocate General School, 150 Chennault Circle, Maxwell AFB, AL
36112-5712, commercial telephone (334) 953-2802, DSN 493-2802, fax (334) 953-4445, for information about attending the
listed courses.
Air Force Judge Advocate General School
Maxwell AFB, AL
Course Title


Total Air Force Operations Law Course, Class 07-A

9 – 11 Feb 07

Homeland Defense Course, Class 07-A

12 – 16 Feb 07

Fiscal Law Course (DL), Class 07-A

12 – 16 Feb 07

Paralegal Craftsman Course, Class 07-02

13 Feb – 20 Mar 07

Judge Advocate Staff Officer Course, Class 07-B

20 Feb – 20 Apr 07

Paralegal Apprentice Course, Class 07-03

2 Mar – 13 Apr 07

Environmental Law Update Course (DL), Class 07-A

26 – 30 Mar 07

Paralegal Craftsman Course, Class 07-003

2 Apr – 4 May 07

Interservice Military Judges’ Seminar, Class 07-A

10 – 13 Apr 07

Advanced Trial Advocacy Course, Class 07-A

23 – 27 Apr 07

Paralegal Apprentice Course, Class 07-04

22 Apr – 5 Jun 07

Environmental Law Course , Class 07-A

30 Apr – 4 May 07

Reserve Forces Judge Advocate Course, Class 07-A

7 – 11 May 07

Reserve Forces Paralegal Course, Class 07-A

7 – 18 May 07

Operations Law Course, Class 07-A

14 – 24 May 07



Military Justice Administration Course, Class 07-A

21 – 25 May 07

Accident Investigation Board Legal Advisors’ Course, Class 07-A

4 – 8 Jun 07

Staff Judge Advocate Course, Class 07-A

11 – 22 Jun 07

Law Office Management Course, Class 07-A

11 – 22 Jun 07

Paralegal Apprentice Course, Class 07-05

18 Jun – 31 Jul 07

Advanced Labor & Employment Law Course, Class 07-A

25 – 29 Jun 07

Negotiation and Appropriate Dispute Resolution Course, Class 07-A

9 – 13 Jul 07

Judge Advocate Staff Officer Course, Class 07-C

16 Jul – 14 Sep 07

Paralegal Craftsman Course, Class 07-04

7 Aug – 11 Sep 07

Paralegal Apprentice Course, Class 07-06

13 Aug – 25 Sep 07

Reserve Forces Judge Advocate Course, Class 07-B

27 – 31 Aug 07

Trial & Defense Advocacy Course, Class 07-B

17 – 28 Sep 07

Legal Aspects of Sexual Assault Workshop, Class 07-A

25 – 27 Sep 07

5. Civilian-Sponsored CLE Courses
For addresses and detailed information, see the March 2006 issue of The Army Lawyer.

6. Phase I (Correspondence Phase), Deadline for RC-JAOAC 2008
The suspense for submission of all RC-JAOAC Phase I (Correspondence Phase) materials is NLT 2400, 1 November
2007, for those judge advocates who desire to attend Phase II (Resident Phase) at TJAGLCS in January 2008. This
requirement includes submission of all JA 151, Fundamentals of Military Writing, exercises.
This requirement is particularly critical for some officers. The 2008 JAOAC will be held in January 2008 and is a
prerequisite for most judge advocate captains to be promoted to major.
A judge advocate who is required to retake any subcourse examinations or “re-do” any writing exercises must submit the
examination or writing exercise to the Non-Resident Instruction Branch, TJAGLCS, for grading by the same deadline (1
November 2007). If the student receives notice of the need to re-do any examination or exercise after 1 October 2007, the
notice will contain a suspense date for completion of the work.
Judge advocates who fail to complete Phase I correspondence courses and writing exercises by 1 November 2007 will
not be cleared to attend the 2008 JAOAC. If you have not received written notification of completion of Phase I of JAOAC,
you are not eligible to attend the resident phase.
If you have any additional questions regarding attendance at Phase II (Residence Phase) or completion of Phase I writing
exercises, contact LTC Jeff Sexton, commercial telephone (434) 971-3357, or e-mail jeffrey.sexton@hqda.army.mil.
For system or help desk issues regarding JAOAC or any on-line or correspondence course material, please contact the
Distance Learning Department at jagc.training@hqda.army.mil or commercial telephone (434) 971-3153.



7. Mandatory Continuing Legal Education Jurisdiction and Reporting Dates

Reporting Month


31 December annually


15 September annually


30 June annually


1 February annually


Anytime within three-year period


Period ends 31 December;
confirmation required by 1 February if
compliance required; if attorney is
admitted in even-numbered year,
period ends in even-numbered year,


Assigned month every three years


31 January annually


31 December, every third year,
depending on year of admission


31 December annually


1 March annually


Thirty days after program, hours must
be completed in compliance period
1 July to June 30


10 August; completion required by
30 June


31 January annually; credits must be
earned by 31 December


31 July annually


30 August annually


15 August annually; 1 August to
31 July reporting period


31 July annually; reporting year from
1 July to 30 June


1 April annually


1 March annually

New Hampshire**

1 August annually; 1 July to
30 June reporting year



New Mexico

30 April annually; 1 January to
31 December reporting year

New York*

Every two years within thirty days after the
attorney’s birthday

North Carolina**

28 February annually

North Dakota

31 July annually for year ending
30 June


31 January biennially


15 February annually


Period end 31 December; due
31 January


Group 1: 30 April
Group 2: 31 August
Group 3: 31 December

Rhode Island

30 June annually

South Carolina**

1 January annually


1 March annually


Minimum credits must be completed
and reported by last day of birth month
each year


31 January annually


2 July annually


31 October Completion Deadline;
15 December reporting deadline


31 January triennially

West Virginia

31 July biennially; reporting period
ends 30 June


1 February biennially; period ends
31 December


30 January annually

* Military exempt (exemption must be declared with state).
**Must declare exemption.



Current Materials of Interest
1. The Judge Advocate General’s On-Site Continuing Legal Education Training and Workshop Schedule (20062007).


24-25 Feb 07

174th LSO
Buena Vista
(Orlando), FL

3-4 Mar 07

10th LSO
Ft. Belvoir, VA

Class: 006

10-11 Mar 07

63d RRC/78th
Anaheim, CA
Wisconsin NG
Fort McCoy, WI
90th RRC
Tulsa, OK

Class: 007

28-29 Apr 07

Indiana ARNG
Indianapolis, IN

Class: 009

4-6 May 07

213th LSO
Atlanta, GA

Class: 010

4-6 May 07

89th RRC
Kansas City, KS

Class: 014

19-20 May 07

139th LSO
Nashville, TN

Class: 011

19-20 May 07

91st LSO
Oak Brook, IL

Class: 012

22-24 Jun 07

94th RRC

Class: 013

17-18 Mar 07

20-22 Apr 07

Class: 005



International & Operational
Contract & Fiscal
Contract & Fiscal Law
Administrative & Civil
Law/Legal Assistance
Contract & Fiscal Law
Criminal Law

MSG Timothy Stewart
(305) 779-4022


TCAP; Ethics and
Deployment After Action

Class: 008

Criminal Law
Administrative & Civil
Law/Legal Assistance
Contract & Fiscal Law
Administrative & Civil
Law/Legal Assistance
International & Operational
Contract & Fiscal Law
Criminal Law; International
& Operational Law (law of
War, deployment
Contract & Fiscal Law
Criminal Law
International & Operational
Administrative & Civil
Law/Legal Assistance
International & Operational
Administrative & Civil
Law/Legal Assistance

2. The Judge Advocate General’s School, U.S. Army
(TJAGLCS) Materials Available Through The
Defense Technical Information Center (DTIC).
Each year, TJAGSA publishes deskbooks and
materials to support resident course instruction. Much of
this material is useful to judge advocates and government
civilian attorneys who are unable to attend courses in their
practice areas, and TJAGSA receives many requests each
year for these materials. Because the distribution of these

MAJ Arthur Kaff
(703) 588-6762
MAJ DeEtte Loeffler
(619) 241-6966
MAJ David Dziobkowski

LTC Baucum Fulk
(501) 771-8765
LTC Brian Dickerson
(317) 247-3491
LTC Robin Allen
(404) 562-9583
LTC Ismael Sanabria
(316) 681-1759, ext. 1341
LTC Kymberly Haas
(615) 256-3148
CPT Bradley Olson
(309) 782-3361
CPT Susan Lynch
(978) 784-3933

materials is not in its mission, TJAGSA does not have the
resources to provide these publications.
To provide another avenue of availability, some of
this material is available through the Defense Technical
Information Center (DTIC). An office may obtain this
material through the installation library. Most libraries
are DTIC users and would be happy to identify and order
requested material. If the library is not registered with the


DTIC, the requesting person’s office/organization may
register for the DTIC’s services.
If only unclassified information is required, simply
call the DTIC Registration Branch and register over the
phone at (703) 767-8273, DSN 427-8273. If access to
classified information is needed, then a registration form
must be obtained, completed, and sent to the Defense
Technical Information Center, 8725 John J. Kingman
Road, Suite 0944, Fort Belvoir, Virginia 22060-6218;
telephone (commercial) (703) 767-8273, (DSN) 4278273, toll-free 1-800-225-DTIC, menu selection 2, option
1; fax (commercial) (703) 767-8228; fax (DSN) 4268228; or e-mail to reghelp@dtic.mil.
If there is a recurring need for information on a
particular subject, the requesting person may want to
subscribe to the Current Awareness Bibliography (CAB)
Service. The CAB is a profile-based product, which will
alert the requestor, on a biweekly basis, to the documents
that have been entered into the Technical Reports
Database which meet his profile parameters. This
bibliography is available electronically via e-mail at no
cost or in hard copy at an annual cost of $25 per
profile.Contact DTIC at www.dtic.mil/dtic/current.html.
Prices for the reports fall into one of the following
four categories, depending on the number of pages: $7,
$12, $42, and $122. The DTIC also supplies reports in
electronic formats. Prices may be subject to change at any
time. Lawyers, however, who need specific documents
for a case may obtain them at no cost.

For the products and services requested, one may pay
either by establishing a DTIC deposit account with the
National Technical Information Service (NTIS) or by
using a VISA, MasterCard, or American Express credit
card. Information on establishing an NTIS credit card
will be included in the user packet.
There is also a DTIC Home Page at
http://www.dtic.mil to browse through the listing of
citations to unclassified/unlimited documents that have
been entered into the Technical Reports Database within
the last twenty-five years to get a better idea of the type of
information that is available. The complete collection
includes limited and classified documents as well, but
those are not available on the web.
Those who wish to receive more information about the
DTIC or have any questions should call the Product and
Services Branch at (703)767-8267, (DSN) 427-8267, or
toll-free 1-800-225-DTIC, menu selection 6, option 1; or
send an e-mail to bcorders@dtic.mil.

Contract Law
AD A301096

Government Contract Law
Deskbook, vol. 1, JA-501-1-95.

AD A301095

Government Contract Law Desk
book, vol. 2, JA-501-2-95.

AD A265777

Fiscal Law Course Deskbook,

Legal Assistance

Servicemembers Civil Relief Act
Guide, JA-260 (2006).

AD A333321

Real Property Guide—Legal
Assistance, JA-261 (1997).

AD A326002

Wills Guide, JA-262 (1997).

AD A346757

Family Law Guide, JA 263 (1998).

AD A384376

Consumer Law Deskbook, JA 265

AD A372624

Legal Assistance Worldwide
Directory, JA-267 (1999).

AD A360700

Tax Information Series, JA 269

AD A350513

Uniformed Services Employment
and Reemployment Rights Act
(USAERRA), JA 270,
Vol. I (2006).

AD A350514

Uniformed Services Employment
and Reemployment Rights Act
(USAERRA), JA 270,
Vol. II (2006).

AD A329216

Legal Assistance Office
Administration Guide,
JA 271 (1997).

AD A276984

Legal Assistance Deployment
Guide, JA-272 (1994).

AD A452505

Uniformed Services Former
Spouses’ Protection Act,
JA 274 (2005).

AD A326316

Model Income Tax Assistance
Guide, JA 275 (2001).



AD A282033

Preventive Law, JA-276 (1994).

Administrative and Civil Law
AD A351829

Defensive Federal Litigation,
JA-200 (2000).

AD A327379

Military Personnel Law, JA 215

AD A255346

Financial Liability Investigations
and Line of Duty Determinations,
JA-231 (2005).

AD A452516

Environmental Law Deskbook,
JA-234 (2006).

AD A377491

Government Information Practices,
JA-235 (2000).

AD A377563

Federal Tort Claims Act, JA 241

AD A332865

AR 15-6 Investigations, JA-281

3. The Legal Automation Army-Wide Systems XXI—
a. The Legal Automation Army-Wide Systems XXI
(LAAWS XXI) operates a knowledge management and
information service called JAGCNet primarily dedicated
to servicing the Army legal community, but also provides
for Department of Defense (DOD) access in some cases.
Whether you have Army access or DOD-wide access, all
users will be able to download TJAGSA publications that
are available through the JAGCNet.
b. Access to the JAGCNet:
(1) Access to JAGCNet is restricted to registered
users who have been approved by the LAAWS XXI
Office and senior OTJAG staff:
(a) Active U.S. Army JAG Corps personnel;
(b) Reserve and National Guard U.S. Army
JAG Corps personnel;
(c) Civilian employees (U.S. Army) JAG
Corps personnel;
(d) FLEP students;

Labor Law
AD A360707

The Law of Federal Employment,
JA-210 (2000).

AD A360707

The Law of Federal LaborManagement Relations,
JA-211 (2001).

(e) Affiliated (U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps,
U.S. Air Force, U.S. Coast Guard) DOD personnel
assigned to a branch of the JAG Corps; and, other
personnel within the DOD legal community.
(2) Requests for exceptions to the access policy
should be e-mailed to:
c. How to log on to JAGCNet:

Criminal Law
AD A302672

Unauthorized Absences
Programmed Text,
JA-301 (2003).

AD A302674

Crimes and Defenses Deskbook,
JA-337 (2005).

(1) Using a Web browser (Internet Explorer 6 or
higher recommended) go to the following site:
(2) Follow the link that reads “Enter JAGCNet.”

AD A274413

United States Attorney
Prosecutions, JA-338 (1994).

International and Operational Law
AD A377522

Operational Law Handbook,
JA-422 (2005).

* Indicates new publication or revised edition.
** Indicates new publication or revised edition pending
inclusion in the DTIC database.

(3) If you already have a JAGCNet account, and
know your user name and password, select “Enter” from
the next menu, then enter your “User Name” and
“Password” in the appropriate fields.
(4) If you have a JAGCNet account, but do not
know your user name and/or Internet password, contact
the LAAWS XXI HelpDesk at LAAWSXXI@jagcsmtp.army.mil.
(5) If you do not have a JAGCNet account, select
“Register” from the JAGCNet Intranet menu.
(6) Follow the link “Request a New Account” at


the bottom of the page, and fill out the registration form
completely. Allow seventy-two hours for your request to
process. Once your request is processed, you will receive
an e-mail telling you that your request has been approved
or denied.
(7) Once granted access to JAGCNet, follow step
(c), above.

4. TJAGSA Publications Available Through the
For detailed information of TJAGLCS Publications
available through the LAAWS XXI JAGCNet, see the
March 2006, issue of The Army Lawyer.

For students who wish to access their office e-mail
while attending TJAGLCS classes, please ensure that
your office e-mail is available via the web. Please bring
the address with you when attending classes at
TJAGLCS. If your office does not have web accessible email, forward your office e-mail to your AKO account. It
is mandatory that you have an AKO account. You can
sign up for an account at the Army Portal,
http://www.jagcnet.army.mil/tjagsa. Click on “directory”
for the listings.
Personnel desiring to call TJAGLCS can dial via
DSN 521-7115 or, provided the telephone call is for
official business only, use the toll free number, (800) 5523978; the receptionist will connect you with the
appropriate department or directorate. For additional
information, please contact the LTMO at (434) 971-3264
or DSN 521-3264.

5. TJAGLCS Legal Technology Management Office
6. The Army Law Library Service
The TJAGLCS, U.S. Army, Charlottesville, Virginia
continues to improve capabilities for faculty and staff.
We have installed new computers throughout TJAGLCS,
all of which are compatible with Microsoft Windows XP
Professional and Microsoft Office 2003 Professional.
The TJAGLCS faculty and staff are available through
the Internet. Addresses for TJAGLCS personnel are
available by e-mail at jagsch@hqda.army.mil or by
accessing the JAGC directory via JAGCNET. If you have
any problems, please contact LTMO at (434) 971-3257.
Phone numbers and e-mail addresses for TJAGLCS
personnel are available on TJAGLCS Web page at
http://www.jagcnet.army.mil/tjagsa. Click on “directory”
for the listings.

Per Army Regulation 27-1, paragraph 12-11, the
Army Law Library Service (ALLS) must be notified
before any redistribution of ALLS-purchased law library
materials. Posting such a notification in the ALLS
FORUM of JAGCNet satisfies this regulatory
requirement as well as alerting other librarians that excess
materials are available.
Point of contact is Mrs. Dottie Evans, The Judge
Advocate General’s School, U.S. Army, ATTN: CTRMO, 600 Massie Road, Charlottesville, Virginia 229031781. Telephone DSN: 521-3278, commercial: (434)
971-3278, or e-mail at Dottie.Evans@hqda.army.mil.



Individual Paid Subscriptions to The Army Lawyer
Attention Individual Subscribers!
The Government Printing Office offers a paid
subscription service to The Army Lawyer. To receive an
annual individual paid subscription (12 issues) to The Army
Lawyer, complete and return the order form below
(photocopies of the order form are acceptable).
Renewals of Paid Subscriptions
When your subscription is about to expire, the
Government Printing Office will mail each individual paid
subscriber only one renewal notice. You can determine
when your subscription will expire by looking at your
mailing label. Check the number that follows “ISSUE” on
the top line of the mailing label as shown in this example:
A renewal notice will be sent when this digit is 3.

ISSUE0003 R 1

The numbers following ISSUE indicate how many issues
remain in the subscription. For example, ISSUE001
indicates a subscriber will receive one more issue. When
the number reads ISSUE000, you have received your last
issue unless you renew.

You should receive your renewal notice around the same
time that you receive the issue with ISSUE003.
To avoid a lapse in your subscription, promptly return
the renewal notice with payment to the Superintendent of
Documents. If your subscription service is discontinued,
simply send your mailing label from any issue to the
Superintendent of Documents with the proper remittance
and your subscription will be reinstated.
Inquiries and Change of Address Information
The individual paid subscription service for The Army
Lawyer is handled solely by the Superintendent of
Documents, not the Editor of The Army Lawyer in
Charlottesville, Virginia.
Active Duty, Reserve, and
National Guard members receive bulk quantities of The
Army Lawyer through official channels and must contact the
Editor of The Army Lawyer concerning this service (see
inside front cover of the latest issue of The Army Lawyer).
For inquiries and change of address for individual paid
subscriptions, fax your mailing label and new address to the
following address:
United States Government Printing Office
Superintendent of Documents
ATTN: Chief, Mail List Branch
Mail Stop: SSOM
Washington, D.C. 20402

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

By Order of the Secretary of the Army:
General, United States Army
Chief of Staff


Administrative Assistant to the
Secretary of the Army

Department of the Army
The Judge Advocate General’s Legal Center & School
U.S. Army
ATTN: JAGS-ADA-P, Technical Editor
Charlottesville, VA 22903-1781



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