WASHINGTON — Following a rash of whistleblowing that senior leaders have called "annoying," "unacceptable," and even "treasonous," the Army has announced a stopgap order banning all whistles on its bases. Whistles are no longer authorized for use, and remaining stockpiles will be gathered and disposed of in burn pits during the coming weeks.
"Blowing whistles while your fellow soldiers need their help — defying the chain of command — that is clearly not a way to live the Army's core value of, uh, whatchamacallit? Integrity!" said Army Deputy Chief of Staff G-1 Personnel, Lt. Gen. James C. McConville, when making the announcement.
The Army has fended off numerous whistleblowers in the past, and there seems to be no end in sight. Most recently, Col. John Hope has had to seek Congressional assistance after releasing a report highly critical of a $43 million gas station project in Afghanistan.
Sources familiar with the case revealed that the Hope gained access to a secured-supply annex, where he was able to find and use an unauthorized whistle to draw public attention. The Army hopes to prevent future embarrassment by removing whistles altogether.
"It was just so damned annoying," according to Joe Catalino, Hope's primary "officer evaluation report" rater. "It was, like, 2 AM and he's out on the parade ground, blowing his whistle, and yelling 'Gas station! Gas station!' I mean, get a life, dude."
“Fighting whistleblowers is kind of like fighting terrorists,” said Army Chief of Public Affairs Brig. Gen. Malcolm B. Frost. “You either make yourself a hardened target by avoiding actions that will generate public outcry, or you attack the infrastructure and support system of the enemy. And one’s a helluva lot easier than the other.”
The Army has chosen to run with the latter approach. Army officials expressed hope that removing the whistles would prevent future whistleblowers from spreading knowledge of improper activities to the general public. “Where can they do if we take away their whistles?” one colonel joked. “You can't tweet without a whistle, right?”