Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Why Military Protocol is Important

It seems that life in the military is dictated by rules, regulations and more rules.  It is true what they say that when you sign on the line and join the military, Uncle Sam owns you.  When you hear about some rules that the military has in place you might just think, why on earth would they make a rule like's common sense.  And then there are those rules that you know why they have them.

This past week, one of those rules was not followed and it was not a good result.  I'll tell you about that in a minute, but let's take a refresher course of military 101.

One thing that the military stresses, especially to families is OPSEC.

What is OPSEC? 

Operations Security, or OPSEC, is keeping potential adversaries
from discovering our critical information. As the name suggests,
it protects our operations – planned, in progress, and those completed.
Success depends on secrecy and surprise, so the military can accomplish
the mission faster and with less risk. Our adversaries want our information,
and they don’t concentrate on only soldiers to get it. 
They want you, the family member.

Protecting Critical Information

Even though information may not be secret, it can be what we call
“critical information.” Critical information deals with specific facts about military intentions, capabilities, operations or activities. If an adversary knew this detailed information, our mission accomplishment and personnel safety could be jeopardized.It must be protected to ensure an adversary doesn’t gain a significant advantage. By being a member of the military family, you will often know some bits of critical information. Do not discuss them outside of your
immediate family and especially not over the telephone.

Now let's talk about what happened this past week.
Since my husband is a chaplain, he has been trained to provide support when a family member is notified of a casultyrecieved a text message from another spouse of a soldier in her husband's unit.  Then it was posted on facebook....all before the spouse was ever notified by the Army.

Folks, this is NOT RIGHT!!!  This should NOT have happened. No spouse should ever find out that their soldier died because of a post on facebook or a text message.  You can read more information about this horrible mistake at the following news link.
                                                      WSAV of Savannah
As military spouses, we really need to be extremely careful about what we are posting, texting, and saying about the things we know. 
For a military family guide on social media, visit Blue Star Families. 

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