S. 2885 (112th): A bill to amend title 10, United States Code, to provide for the award of the Purple ...

...Heart to members of the Armed Forces who are killed or wounded in a terrorist attack perpetrated within the United States.

112th Congress, 2011–2013. Text as of May 08, 2012 (Introduced).

Status & Summary | PDF | Source: GPO

II

112th CONGRESS

2d Session

S. 2885

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

May 8, 2012

(for himself, Mrs. Hutchison, Mr. Cornyn, Mr. Pryor, and Mr. Boozman) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Armed Services

A BILL

To amend title 10, United States Code, to provide for the award of the Purple Heart to members of the Armed Forces who are killed or wounded in a terrorist attack perpetrated within the United States.

1.

Award of Purple Heart to members of the Armed Forces killed or wounded in terrorist attacks within the United States

(a)

Findings

Congress makes the following findings:

(1)

The Final Report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (commonly known as the 9/11 Commission Report) recognizes that there is a certain ideology that gives rise to terrorism.

(2)

This ideology that gives rise to terrorism can even influence citizens and residents of the United States to perpetrate attacks within the United States against members of the Armed Forces.

(3)

Two such attacks have already occurred within the United States, one at a recruiting station in Little Rock, Arkansas, on June 1, 2009, and one at Fort Hood, Texas, on November 5, 2009.

(4)

According to investigative reports released by the Committee on Homeland Security of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs of the Senate at least 33 threats, plots, and strikes related to domestic terrorism against United States military communities have been uncovered since September 11, 2001.

(5)

These threats, plots, and strikes demonstrate that members of the Armed Forces are at risk of terrorist attack not only when deployed overseas, but also while stationed within the United States.

(6)

The Department of Defense has recognized the threat posed by terrorist attacks, including those perpetrated by a member of the Armed Forces, by issuing revised regulations, including Army Regulation 381–12 regarding the Military Intelligence Threat Awareness and Reporting Program, to require reporting of potential terrorist insider threat activity, including when a member of the Armed Forces is advocating the use of unlawful violence or force to achieve goals that are political, religious, or ideological in nature.

(b)

Sense of congress

It is the sense of Congress that the Secretary of Defense (and the Secretary of Homeland Security with respect to the Coast Guard) should duly honor those members of the Armed Forces who are killed or wounded in terrorist attacks within the United States that are inspired by the ideology that gives rise to terrorism, as defined by the Final Report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (commonly known as the 9/11 Commission Report).

(c)

Award of purple heart

(1)

Award required

Chapter 57 of title 10, United States Code, is amended by inserting after section 1129 the following new section:

1129a.

Purple Heart: members killed or wounded by terrorist attacks perpetrated within the United States

(a)

For purposes of the award of the Purple Heart, the Secretary concerned shall treat a member of the armed forces described in subsection (b) in the same manner as a member who is killed or wounded in action as the result of an act of the enemy of the United States.

(b)
(1)

A member of the armed forces described in this subsection is a member who the Secretary concerned determines was killed or wounded in a terrorist attack within the United States perpetrated by an individual or individuals expressing a political, religious, or ideological obligation to engage in unlawful violence directed against United States military operations or foreign policy, as described in Army Regulation 318–12 of October 2010 regarding the Military Intelligence Threat Awareness and Reporting Program.

(2)

In this subsection, the term terrorist attack means the calculated use of violence or threat of violence to inculcate fear intended to coerce or to intimidate governments or societies in the pursuit of goals that are generally political, religious, or ideological, as described in the Army Regulation referred to in paragraph (1).

(3)

In implementing this section, the Secretary concerned shall make no distinction between international terrorism and domestic terrorism, as those terms are defined in section 2331 of title 18.

(4)

If a terrorist attack referred to in paragraph (1) includes, as victims, members of more than one armed force, the determination required by such paragraph shall be made jointly by the Secretaries of the armed forces concerned.

(c)

Subsection (a) shall not apply to a member of the armed forces whose death or wound is the result of the willful misconduct of the member.

(d)

Nothing in this section shall be interpreted—

(1)

to affect the designation of any individual alleged to have perpetrated an attack referred to in subsection (b)(1) as an enemy combatant for any purposes under law; or

(2)

to preempt or otherwise affect any legal proceedings relating to such an attack.

.

(2)

Clerical amendment

The table of sections at the beginning of chapter 57 of such title is amended by inserting after the item relating of section 1129 the following new item:

1129a. Purple Heart: members killed or wounded by terrorist attacks perpetrated within the United States.

.

(3)

Retroactive effective date and application

(A)

Effective date

The amendments made by this subsection shall take effect as of January 1, 2009.

(B)

Review of certain previous incidents

The Secretaries of the military departments (and the Secretary of Homeland Security with respect to the Coast Guard) shall undertake a review of each death or wounding of a member of the Armed Forces that occurred within the United States between January 1, 2009, and the date of the enactment of this Act under circumstances that could qualify the death or wounding as being the result of a terrorist attack within the United States to determine whether the death or wounding does qualify as a death or wounding resulting from a terrorist attack within the United States for purposes of section 1129a of title 10, United States Code, as added by this subsection.

(C)

Actions following review

If the death or wounding of a member of the Armed Forces reviewed under subparagraph (B) is determined to qualify as a death or wounding resulting from a terrorist attack within the United States for purposes of such section 1129a, the Secretary of the military department concerned (or the Secretary of Homeland Security with respect to a member of the Coast Guard) shall take appropriate action under such section to award the Purple Heart to the member.