May 28, 2010:
The U.S. Marine Corps recently discharged 13 recently commissioned 2nd lieutenants, for cheating on a land navigation test. With GPS available for over two decades, young officers going through their post-commissioning training frequently cheat on the navigation field test (using compass, maps and dead reckoning to find ammo cans in a wilderness). One of the 13 lieutenants, a recent Naval Academy graduate, said that the cheating was actually more widespread than this incident would indicate.
Marine commanders point out that GPS can be jammed, and officers have to be ready to do without it. Moreover, the land navigation test also demonstrates how well new lieutenants are at decision making and problem solving in the field. Cheating at these tests is a major offense, because it demonstrates that the officer is unreliable, and not willing to follow orders. Reliability and following orders is critical for battlefield success. The marines expect more from their officers.