New Defense Department Manual Allows Journalists To Be Held As 'Unprivileged Belligerents' | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

New Defense Department Manual Allows Journalists To Be Held As 'Unprivileged Belligerents'

New Defense Department guidelines allow commanders to punish journalists and treat them as "unprivileged belligerents" if they believe journalists are sympathizing or cooperating with the enemy.

The Law of War manual, updated to apply for the first time to all branches of the military, contains a vaguely worded provision that military commanders could interpret broadly, experts in military law and journalism say. Commanders could ask journalists to leave military bases or detain journalists for any number of perceived offenses.

"In general, journalists are civilians," the 1,180 page manual says, but it adds that "journalists may be members of the armed forces, persons authorized to accompany the armed forces, or unprivileged belligerents."

A person deemed "unprivileged belligerent" is not entitled to the rights afforded by the Geneva Convention so a commander could restrict from certain coverage areas or even hold indefinitely without charges any reporter considered an "unprivileged belligerent."
The manual adds, "Reporting on military operations can be very similar to collecting intelligence or even spying. A journalist who acts as a spy may be subject to security measures and punished if captured." It is not specific as to the punishment or under what circumstances a commander can decide to "punish" a journalist.

Defense Department officials said the reference to "unprivileged belligerents" was intended to point out that terrorists or spies could be masquerading as reporters, or warn against someone who works for jihadist websites or other publications, such as al-Qaida's "Inspire" magazine, that can be used to encourage or recruit militants.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is so anti-First Amendment, and such a sickeningly "slippery slope" when it comes to persecuting reporters for perhaps telling the truth, rather than providing a cover for recruiting "militants", I hardly know where to begin, and I hope that it gets challenged, and immediately, all the bloody way up to the Supreme Court.

And to anyone in the DOD who might not know; I am a Methodist and Christian pacifist. That means that I never, EVER advocate violence; I advocate logic and and thoughtful response to resolving a problem.

So then, if I calmly point out a moment in the thinking of this government that is illogical,and both ham-fistedly and pig-headedly wrong, in terms of this government actually doing right by the people it allegedly represents, does that make me a "terrorist"?!?

Apparently, according to the DOD, the answer is yes.

Welcome to 21st century Amerika, my friends, where logic and truth ....have become criminalized.

At 66, I do not recognise the United States of America anymore, and that is a very painful realization for someone who very much cares about her country.

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