'U.S. military tells recruiting centers to step up security,' by (among other things) closing blinds

|The Volokh Conspiracy |

A memorial at the Armed Forces Career Center in Chattanooga, Tenn. (Tami Chappell/Reuters)

So reports the Wall Street Journal (Dion Nissenbaum) about action taken in the wake of Mohammod Youssef Abdulazeez's attack on the Chattanooga recruiting center, which killed five:

Adm. Bill Gortney, head of the U.S. Northern Command, which oversees security for military facilities in the U.S., issued a directive Sunday night that calls for modest new security measures while the Defense Department considers more substantive steps to address threats to the facilities, officials said.

The security boost doesn't authorize recruiters to carry weapons in the centers—a move that would require higher-level action. Instead, officials said they are directing hundreds of recruiting and reserve centers and ROTC facilities to increase surveillance and take basic steps such as closing blinds at the offices.

I don't want to overstate the importance of symbolism, and it may be that my perception of the symbolism here is idiosyncratic. But symbolism is important, whether in fighting a war generally or in military recruiting in particular. And the symbolism of disarmed service members closing the blinds so that it's slightly harder for the enemy to shoot them through the windows strikes me as pretty poor—and pretty unlikely to yield a winning environment for recruiting future service members. Just my lay opinion; I'd love to hear yours.

Thanks to InstaPundit for the pointer.

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