More on the Courageous Restraint Award

Jules Crittenden has more to say about the Courageous Restraint Award on his blog at In particular, he notes:

Given that there is nothing to bar higher command from recognizing truly heroic acts in defense of civilians, it raises the question of why they would want to expand that as a philosophy, to the point, the underlying discussions indicate, of commending soldiers who ignored dire threats and died.

Looking at the criteria for U.S. combat awards, honorees must distinguish themselves conspicuously with acts of courage and gallantry in action against the enemy, but there is no requirement that those acts result in piles of enemy bodies or a even single shot fired. Case in point, Wikipedia notes the first female recipients were four nurses for their actions evacuating a field hospital at Anzio in 1944.

While acts of courageous restraint may indeed be heroic or valorous, there are already a sizable number of military awards that could likely fit the bill, whether it is a Bronze Star or the Soldiers Medal, which under the guidelines set forth in AR 600-8-22 is “awarded to any person of the Armed Forces of the United States or of a friendly foreign nation who, while serving in any capacity with the Army of the United States, distinguished himself or herself by heroism not involving actual conflict with an enemy.”

One thought on “More on the Courageous Restraint Award

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