The Definition of a Sensitive Item

The definition of a sensitive item is a piece of equipment or an item that is potentially harmful or hazardous or is of high monetary value and easily converted to unauthorized use or disposal. In the military it is extremely important to keep up meaning take charge of and know the location of the item at all times. Never should a sensitive item be left unsecured or unsupervised, or placed in the hands or someone not authorized to care for such sensitive items. A Sensitive item is an item such as a weapon and any attachments such as PEQ-15 and ACOG. Sensitive items are often valuable high cost items. Failure to keep up with such sensitive items can result in many different possibilities including but not limited to; requirement for the individual to pay out of pocket for the item lost which on a soldiers pay could be very very costly and effect their life in a very negative way, Actions taken through uniform code of military justice such as general discharge, other than honorable discharge and even dishonorable discharge from the military. This could cost the individual the military benefits normally entitled to veterans, and tarnishing his or her future job possibilities. These actions are only a few of the possibilities for action when a soldier fails to keep up with his or her sensitive item.

When a soldier fails to keep up with his or her sensitive item it effects more than just that specific soldier, it affects any and all soldiers around them. If a soldier fails to keep up with his item it can result in serious injury even in some cases death to that soldier as well as other soldiers and civilians. For example; if while deployed in country a soldier places his or her weapon down walks away out of sight from it, and leaves it aimlessly lying unattended and unsupervised the weapon is now available for anyone to pick up. Then if the weapon were to be discovered by hostiles in that area (or even just by a passing child) that hostile (or child) now has the ability to cause harm to us military forces as well as surrounding civilians. This would mean that the unattended weapon left carelessly by the soldier would now be the cause of injury and death to innocent people, all due to a soldier’s irresponsibility to keep up with his or her sensitive item. It’s also important to note that sensitive items are not just weapon related; sensitive items even include a soldier or dependents military ID card as well as the soldiers dog tags. Dog tags list a soldiers name, birthday and social security number.

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Military ID cards no longer carry the soldiers social security number however many soldiers still retain the older version that do, regardless of the fact that they no longer hold the soldiers social security number military ID cards still hold vital personal information pertaining to soldiers. This information in the wrong hands could be devastating and could threaten OPSEC should the information held on an id card be used to falsify a terrorist’s identity. If a soldier cannot be trusted to keep up with sensitive items issued to him or her then how can a soldier be trusted with life or death decisions as is necessary in certain cases while deployed in country. Furthermore how can a soldier be trusted to do any job given to him or her making them worthless. It is a soldiers job to live by the army values ; loyalty, duty, respect, selfless service, honor, integrity, personal courage. If a soldier were to lose a sensitive item it would be a violation of the army values. Failure to keep up with a sensitive item violates the values of Duty, Integrity, and honor. The definitions of duty, integrity and honor as stated on are “Duty: Fulfill your obligations. Doing your duty means more than carrying out your assigned tasks. Duty means being able to accomplish tasks as part of a team. The work of the U.S. Army is a complex combination of missions, tasks and responsibilities — all in constant motion.

Our work entails building one assignment onto another. You fulfill your obligations as a part of your unit every time you resist the temptation to take “shortcuts” that might undermine the integrity of the final product… integrity: Do what’s right, legally and morally. Integrity is a quality you develop by adhering to moral principles. It requires that you do and say nothing that deceives others. As your integrity grows, so does the trust others place in you. The more choices you make based on integrity, the more this highly prized value will affect your relationships with family and friends, and, finally, the fundamental acceptance of yourself…Honor: Live up to Army values. The Nation’s highest military award is The Medal of Honor. This award goes to Soldiers who make honor a matter of daily living — Soldiers who develop the habit of being honorable, and solidify that habit with every value choice they make. Honor is a matter of carrying out, acting, and living the values of respect, duty, loyalty, selfless service, integrity and personal courage in everything you do.” Failure to keep up with a sensitive item violates duty because without the proper equipment you cannot perform your duties. You also let down your platoon and/ or squad by not knowing where your items are forcing them by association to fail to uphold their army value of duty as well; if you cannot do your duty then neither can your team. It violates integrity of the soldier by letting their platoon down.

A soldier’s platoon counts 100% of the time on them and their ability to make sure they know where all their items are. Violating any of the army values means that a soldier is also violating the army value of honor because honor is all about living life to the values. Not only does failing to keep up sensitive items violate the army values it also goes against the soldier’s creed. The soldier’s creed states “I am an American Soldier. I am a warrior and a member of a team. I serve the people of the United States, and live the Army Values. I will always place the mission first. I will never accept defeat. I will never quit. I will never leave a fallen comrade. I am disciplined, physically and mentally tough, trained and proficient in my warrior tasks and drills. I always maintain my arms, my equipment and myself. I am an expert and I am a professional. I stand ready to deploy, engage, and destroy, the enemies of the United States of America in close combat. I am a guardian of freedom and the American way of life. I am an American Soldier.” The creed plainly states “I will maintain my arms, my equipment and myself.”

Maintaining arms and equipment means not losing or misplacing sensitive items, soldiers also cannot stand ready to engage and destroy the enemy if they do not know where their weapon is. It is important that a soldiers team can count on them at all times, it is important that they trust and have faith in each other. If a soldier cannot be trusted to keep up with his or her sensitive items then how can that soldiers unit be able to rely on that soldier? If a soldier fails to uphold the army values and the soldiers creed how can the soldiers command and team look to that soldier with respect and value? if a soldier is discharged from the military with a dishonorable discharge how can that soldiers future employers consider that soldier to be a possible valuable employee? If all these people cannot count on and look to respect that soldier then how could that soldier look to him or herself with respect and dignity? The answer is simple a soldier failing to keep up with his or her sensitive items results in many detrimental possibilities.

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The Definition of a Sensitive Item. (2016, Jun 28). Retrieved from