Code of Conduct
Members of the United States Armed Forces
Executive Order 10631
See source notes below.
I am an American, fighting in the forces which guard my country and our way of life. I am prepared to give my life in their defense.
[Article I amended by EO 12633 of Mar. 28, 1988, 53 FR 10355, 3 CFR, 1988 Comp., p. 561]
I will never surrender of my own free will. If in command, I will never surrender the members of my command while they still have the means to resist.
[Article II amended by EO 12633 of Mar. 28, 1988, 53 FR 10355, 3 CFR, 1988 Comp., p. 561]
If I am captured I will continue to resist by all means available. I will make every effort to escape and aid others to escape. I will accept neither parole nor special favors from the enemy.
If I become a prisoner of war, I will keep faith with my fellow prisoners. I will give no information or take part in any action which might be harmful to my comrades. If I am senior, I will take command. If not, I will obey the lawful orders of those appointed over me and will back them up in every way.
When questioned, should I become a prisoner of war, I am required to give name, rank, service number and date of birth. I will evade answering further questions to the utmost of my ability. I will make no oral or written statements disloyal to my country and its allies or harmful to their cause.
[Article V amended by EO 12017 of Nov. 3, 1977, 42 FR 57941, 3 CFR, 1977 Comp., p. 152]
I will never forget that I am an American, fighting for freedom, responsible for my actions, and dedicated to the principles which made my country free. I will trust in my God and in the United States of America.
[Article VI amended by EO 12633 of Mar. 28, 1988, 53 FR 10355, 3 CFR, 1988 Comp., p. 561]
See just the code, without notes.
Source [from the Federal Register]: The provisions of Executive Order 10631 of Aug. 17, 1955, appear at 20 FR 6057, 3 CFR, 1954-1958 Comp., p. 266, unless otherwise noted.
By virtue of the authority vested in me as President of the United States, and as Commander in Chief of the armed forces of the United States, I hereby prescribe the Code of Conduct for Members of the Armed Forces of the United States which is attached to this order and hereby made a part thereof.
All members of the Armed Forces of the United States are expected to measure up to the standards embodied in this Code of Conduct while in combat or in captivity. To ensure achievement of these standards, members of the armed forces liable to capture shall be provided with specific training and instruction designed to better equip them to counter and withstand all enemy efforts against them, and shall be fully instructed as to the behavior and obligations expected of them during combat or captivity.
[Second paragraph amended by EO 12633 of Mar. 28, 1988, 53 FR 10355, 3 CFR, 1988 Comp., p. 561]
The Secretary of Defense (and the Secretary of Transportation with respect to the Coast Guard except when it is serving as part of the Navy) shall take such action as is deemed necessary to implement this order and to disseminate and make the said Code known to all members of the armed forces of the United States.
[Third paragraph amended by EO 11382 of Nov. 28, 1967, 32 FR 16247, 3 CFR, 1966-1970 Comp., p. 691]
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