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Do We Have to Carry-out a Bad Order If It Endangers Our Lives?

Sent to attack a Japanese-held island, a group of B-24s are ordered to fly at the same flight level en route to the target.

It is a dangerous order, as the crews well know, because enemy fire can destroy more planes if those planes are flying at the same, not staggered, altitudes.

However, a military order is an order which must be carried-out by the individuals to whom the order is given. That means these air crews are putting themselves at risk when they know a different plan would keep them safer.

When they are within range of anti-aircraft fire, the airmen’s worst fears come true. Enemy ground fire is damaging many of the planes.

Did the air crews have a choice to obey or disobey the direct order to fly at the same altitude? Why, or why not?

Do we have to carry-out a bad order if it endangers our lives?  Explain your answer.

Would your answer be different if the bad order was not a military-issued order? Why, or why not?

Is there ever a time when you could justify disobeying a bad order which endangers your life?


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