"...do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic..."

"For the good of the Air Force, for the good of the armed services and for the good of our country, I urge you to reject convention and careerism..."
- Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, Maxwell AFB, April 21, 2008

"You will need to challenge conventional wisdom and call things like you see them to subordinates and superiors alike."
- Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, United States Air Force Academy, March 4, 2011

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Military Gives Lt Col Stuart Scheller a Likely Unlawful Gag Order & Arrests Him

According to Lt Col Scheller's Facebook page, he was given the following order:

“Effective immediately upon your receipt below, you are hereby ordered to refrain from posting any and all material, in any form without exception, to any social media.  In this context, the term 'social media' shall be construed very broadly to include any medium by which you may share information with groups of people.  It includes more traditional forms of social media (e.g., Facebook, Youtube, LinkedIn) as well nontraditional methods one might use to circumvent established social media (e.g., mass emails, group text messages, electronic bulleting boards).  You are also prohibited from communicating through third parties or proxies.”

When the Lt Col continued to communicate on "social media" the military arrested him for violating the gag order according to sources such as Task & Purpose.

That gag order, ladies and gentleman, is likely an unlawful order that violates the First Amendment.  Of course it is certainly true that the courts give the military broad leeway to restrict speech and see the arena as separate from the civilian playing field.  That being said, the breadth of this gag order is so overwhelmingly broad that my guess is the courts would rule it was unlawful.  No social media at all?  On any topic?  No mass emails or text messages?  No coordinating in a family reunion thread?  No answering a hypothetical group text message from lawyers or doctors?  No group message from your child's teacher to you and your wife?  The breadth is staggering and clearly covers so much protected free speech that this order, in my view, would be unlikely to be held lawful in a court of law.

It is interesting that the order does not attempt to curb any specific speech or type of speech (for example, political speech or criticism of superiors) and that makes the order content neutral which would be a point for the order being lawful were this a non-military case, since the order didn't attempt to infringe on any particular viewpoint.  This actually plays against the military though.  The military typically is given more leeway to restrict viewpoints and content (as opposed to non-military First Amendment tests) but in this case the military chose not to tailor its order with any rational tailoring that demonstrates any kind of military necessity.  This increases the problem of the military's gag order being overly broad.

The military might argue the order was given due to military necessity and would need to in a court of law.  Perhaps they would argue the broad reach of Lt Col Scheller's criticisms was making military leadership look bad and causing dissension within the ranks.  Of course this argument comes at a time when many if not most Americans have a deservedly poor opinion of military leadership and the Biden Administration.  In the larger context of an embarrassing withdrawal from Afghanistan and news that the top military officer, General Mark Milley, literally committed treason by providing aid and comfort to China and overriding the military chain of command in the event the President sought to strike China (thereby making them an enemy by definition) it is difficult to lay the poor morale of service members at the feet of Lt Col Scheller and his social media.

It is a real sign of the times here in Made-In-China-America that our military has arrested a courageous military officer expressing truthful views out of fear he might endanger good order and discipline, when it has done nothing to General Mark Milley who contacted China and made plans to subvert the potential order of the Commander In Chief.  General Milley is asked by Senator Tom Cotton why he hasn't resigned, and Milley says to do so would be an act of political "defiance" and said that civilian control of the military was absolutely vital.  So says the same traitor general, who worked hand in hand with China to circumvent the President of the United States and our military apparatus, as some odd excuse for not resigning.

Our nation is inverted and its tools of violence are pointed inward at the American people.  Those tools of violence have "made in China" stamped on them.  And so it goes.

January 6th protestors locked up, Julian Assange locked up, Edward Snowden in exile, Kyle Rittenhouse facing charges and now this.  At some point we have to admit that America does not exist anymore.  It has been subverted from the inside by Chinese propaganda and money, made possible by plastic made-in-China Americans such as those found throughout our society and throughout our military.

According to Task & Purpose:

(...the Marine Corps confirmed that Scheller is accused of the following offenses under the UCMJ: Article 88: Contempt toward officials, Article 90: Willfully disobeying superior commissioned officer, Article 92: Failure to obey an order, and Article 133: Conduct unbecoming an officer and a gentleman.)

The reality of our situation has been evident and logically progressing for quite some time now.  That being said, Lt Col Scheller has my respect and gratitude for his sincere service to the few of us actual Americans who still live in this nation and I hope he can find solid legal counsel.  My thoughts are with him.  And with us all.

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