Education on Insubordination Term Paper

  • Length: 5 pages
  • Subject: Military
  • Type: Term Paper
  • Paper: #74591699

Excerpt from Term Paper :

military practices based on the concept of insubordination. The paper will incorporate various examples from real life situations and military cases that the world history has witnessed so far in order to highlight the right as well as the inaccurate and unjustified practices in the name of insubordination. The Works Cited six sources in MLA format.

Education on insubordination

Just like other realms of society, military or armed forces also have their well-defined codes of ethics in order to strengthen the entire armed force and to promote discipline and order. These laws and regulations form the basis on which rests the foundation of the military and command various aspects of the lifestyle of military men (Marple). Military society is that part of our society that is devoid of emotions and therefore its laws and rules are rigid and remain constant without subject to any change. Thereupon, every soldier is expected to reflect the moral, ethical and social values that this institution works hard on to incorporate in its people (Marple). Thus, the autocratic institution of military exists "with a built in moral compass to avoid change of that nature. If the military did not have that moral compass, then any order that came down would be obeyed despite the morality of the order" (Marple). For instance, Nazi Germany is considered to be a nation devoid of humanity or a nation with a military force functioning without a built in moral compass. This is because their armed forces did not hesitate even in taking away precious and most of all innocent human lives. These military members made Christianity and Judaism their target thereby reflecting their indifference towards and disrespect of other religions. Similarly, "Japan during World War II had no problem setting up comfort women stations, especially pertinent to a discussion on rules on sexual immorality, and mistreating POWs. Because there was no moral compass, there was no limit on the orders that might find acceptance among the members of the institutions" (Marple). This aspect is what makes American military successful in winning their public's confidence for they well comprehend the significance of the priceless human lives and respect the instructions as well as the code of ethics as put down by their military.

Nevertheless, the military history has witnessed uncountable incidents of disobedience, disloyalty and breach of the military code of ethics. Consequently, military insubordination that is "failure or refusal to recognize or submit to the authority of a superior" (American Heritage Dictionary) has been observed though not frequently, proving the gradual but alarming weakness of the disciplined institution.

Thus, insubordination may be defined as "resistance to or defiance of authority, disobedience, refusal or failure to obey reasonable and lawful instructions, insolence, cheekiness, rudeness and rebellious or mutinous behavior resulting in an actual work stoppage" (Insubordination). In general, "the characteristics present in insubordination would be a willful, verbal refusal of instructions, willful disregard of management authority, disrespect, rudeness, rebelliousness or disobedient gestures, manner or attitude, dismissive gestures, walking away... And using abusive language" and so on and so forth (Insubordination). On the same account, insubordination or failure to obey superior's orders and to follow instructions disintegrate the military discipline and order and disturb the equilibrium that the members of military are supposed to take care of. Example of the deterioration as an aftermath of Revolutionary American militia reveals the significance of discipline and order in armed forces (Marple). Furthermore, why insubordination and related issues of discipline are so vital to the military of a country can be gauged from the cardinal role played by control in times of war and peace (Marple).

Moreover, "discipline and order have their foundation in an authoritarian system, the military, tempered and enhanced by religious, ethical, and moral standards. In order to hold the military to a higher standard of self-discipline than the public at large, the military must have tougher standards of morality" (Marple). This is the reason insubordination is seldom excused or tolerated and is almost always punished. For example, George Washington discharged Lieutenant Gotthold Fredrick Enslin when Enslin was once again found guilty of homosexuality after an early trial wherein he was pressed with similar charges. In the last court-martial, the court found the defendant "guilty of sodomy and perjury (probably for the first trial) and Washington ordered him to be "dismiss'd with Infamy...[as he-Washington] approves the sentence and with Abhorrence and Detestation of such Infamous Crimes orders Lieutt. Enslin to be drummed out of the Camp" (Marple). Another example comes as a result of the 1982 coup. The 1982 coup is considered as "a double-edged sword, for while it halted what many observers called the imminent breakdown of the army's hierarchical chain of command under the corrupt and incompetent Lucas Garcia regime, it also set an example of effective insubordination by lower ranking officers" (Rudolf, Chapter 4- A). The first year of Rios Montt also experienced a good few coup attempts and the related rumors of such rebellious acts. Out of the many, the documents report that one included "Sisniega and other individuals of the extreme rightwing political parties who retained their loyal following among a group of junior officers opposed to the young officers in power" (Rudolf, Chapter 4- A). However, this is not the end. There are various other rebellious acts in the armed forces pertaining at times to the injustices of the system and at times to the moral weaknesses of the military members. "Another coup attempt, in October 1982, allegedly involved Colonel Gordillo, the ousted junta member, who was subsequently arrested and discharged from the army. Outside observers estimated that a total of 50 to 200 officers were relieved of their duties during the year" (Rudolf, Chapter 4-A).

Nonetheless, insubordination, over the years has been badly misunderstood by various superiors who misused the concept and irrationally as well as unjustifiably punished their subordinates who served the military army for eons- at times in the name of insubordination, often in the name of valued democracy. A case in hand is of Dominican Republic military chief Juan Bautista Rojas Tabar (Around the world, p. 21 A). President Leonel Fernandez terminated this chief of military staff in the year 1996 only because Rojas Tabar requested the new President to eliminate the army constituting outspoken and daring generals. The honored President explained his irrational act through media on Friday on national television in the following words: "In this government, democracy will not perish, " Mr. Fernandez said. "But it will be a democracy with order, with authority and with respect" (Around the world, p. 21 A). However, the news reveals some astonishing facts about this President and his dual standards when it is common knowledge that he "already had forced into retirement 24 of the nation's 61 generals" (Around the world, p. 21 A).

Still and all, the worst example of pressing unjustified insubordination charges and sentencing on the same is yet to be taken into consideration. Statistics that are based on extensive research and thorough analysis of the situation reveal that there are over four hundred victims who suffer the blow of unjustified insubordination charges each year (Greece: Alternative service: Second time round). Most of them are "conscientious objectors" including many coming from the religion, followers of whom are termed as "Jehovah's Witnesses" (Greece: Alternative service: Second time round). According to the religious teachings of these people, they are forbidden to take part in the armed forces be it in any capacity. Since disobeying institutionalized authorities because of their religious convictions, these individuals end up remaining in jails and the government and military authorities make sure that they remain deprived of several important facilities without which they cannot possibly live a healthy and a successful life. Up to four hundred people every year are made prisoners for the…

Cite This Term Paper:

"Education On Insubordination" (2003, January 29) Retrieved January 20, 2017, from

"Education On Insubordination" 29 January 2003. Web.20 January. 2017. <>

"Education On Insubordination", 29 January 2003, Accessed.20 January. 2017,