UCMJ – United States Code of Military Justice


10. Punitive Articles

(a) Any person subject to this chapter who engages in unnatural carnal copulation with another person of the same or opposite sex or with an animal is guilty of sodomy. Penetration , however slight, is sufficient to complete the offense.

(b) Any person found guilty of sodomy shall be punished as a court-martial may direct.

26 Comments for this entry

  • Marc

    If Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell has been repealed, how can this rule still be enforced?

    • Nathan Myers

      Actually, it can’t be enforced and the new Defense bill passed recently fepaled it. Now soldiers can have sex with who or whatever they want.

      • Politically Agnostic

        Have to disagree with the comment “Now soldiers can have sex with who or whatever they want.”

        PETA would disagree with you rather strongly in your assertion that copulation with animals is permitted as your statement impilies. (For once I’m in agreement with PETA??!!–now I know for sure the world is in the fast lane to hell).


      in the case of rape or molestation

    • SGT

      Because it says same or opposite sex. DADT wouldn’t apply.

    • Johansson

      The rules would still apply. Usually anal would not apply it covers more of forced sodomy, which would also fall under the rape category.

  • Marine

    According to this link: http://www.sldn.org/content/pages/the-uniform-code-of-military-justice-ucmj, the National Defense Authorization Act includes the removal of Article 125 from the UCMJ. As of December.1.2011, Senate approved the NDAA (93-7 votes). As long as President Obama does not veto the act, LGB service members will be free to their own will without NJP/Discharge worries.

  • Eric

    Article 118(4) needs amending to match the new language of Article 125.

  • William Lee

    With the NEW Defense authorization bill, this whole section has been changed. If you doubt me check out page 174 of the new bill.
    Compare what’s above with what the law NOW says.

  • Edward Vierheller

    Article 125, as clarified by the Manual for Courts-Martial, makes fellatio, cunnilingus, and anal copulation – normal sexual practices for heterosexuals and, in part, for homosexuals – violations, indeed court-martial violations, of the UCMJ, effectively mandating, for persons subject to the UCMJ, vaginal copulation only for heterosexuals and no copulation for male homosexuals. Although the article isn’t, I’m sure, applied in the case of consenting adults, now fortunately including male homosexual adults, it’s nonetheless shocking to find such perverse language in a 21st century code of laws.

  • Concerned Citizen

    Actually, the recent HASC version struck repeal of this article. It’s provision is not related to DADT because regardless of who perpetrates or under what circumstances the act occurs it is reprehensible, unhealthy, unnatural, and uncivilized and thus should be illegal.

  • retired senior citizen

    Wouldn’t it be great if our Politicans were to read the bill(s) they’re passing on the rest of us & not wait until its the law. ex.The Healthcare bill among others.

  • Airman

    Really? Reprehensible? Unnatural? Simply, if you don’t like it, don’t do it. Humans are not the only animals on the planet that engage in homosexual sex nor the only ones that have oral and anal sex. As long as the participants are consenting, I don’t care if they want to shoot each other with hard-boiled eggs from a potato gun while swinging from a rope dressing Jell-O outfits. it doesn’t affect anyone else, let it be.

  • Carl

    This is still in The UCMJ. It was reinstalled. You can be gay, if you want. This remains for good reason. It is wrong for normal soldiers, as well. I question the political motivations for allowing openly gay people. It is clearly a health issue, as one of the reasons, as well as a moral issue. Just don’t do it.

  • coptrnr1

    This code has not been repealed as a matter of law but cannot be charged to CONSENTING ADULTS which is the key. It CAN STILL be charged if the aforementioned sexual acts were committed during the commission of an otherwise unlawful act such as in addition to a rape or sexual conduct with a minor where the military has jurisdiction etc. This section is no longer applicable to consenting gay/bi/straight members of the military as long as it was under consenting circumstances excluding beastiality which there is no lawful “consent” defense. Just sayin’ to clarify that this is comparable to when the US Supreme Court overturned Texas sodomy laws a few years ago which effectively ended prosecution of homosexuals primarily for consensual acts. Peace officers can still charge sodomy or “crime against nature” laws when it involves children or non consensual sex.

  • joenavy

    actually it can be enforced, even with the repeal of the dont ask dont tell. as a former corrections counselor i can honestly say that this law was being enforced for everyone for years straight or gay. i had wives and girlfriends who turned in their spouses and boyfriends for things they did in bed the night before. once they are arrested and charged it goes to the convening authority for a decision on whether it goes to court martial. every case i observed wound up in a conviction.

  • seargeant disappointed

    Goodbye sweet America. We are on our way to the punishment of Sodom and Gamora now that we as a nation officially approve sodomy

  • kelly kafir

    And GOATS too!!

  • Pierced Rooster

    This is rediculous! The government should not be allowed to regulate what goes on between consenting adults in the privacy of their own homes. What is so wrong about fellatio or cunnilingus? To call it a “crime against nature” is to tread dangerously close to religious dogma that was developed thousands of years ago which has no place in the governing body of the United States military.


    Here is the deal! Forget Don’t Ask Don’t tell. This Article (125)sodomy still can be used or added to other charges if a soldier has rapped someone of age or underage a soldier. They will not totally do away with this article.

  • Joe Veteran

    This is why I love being a veteran.

    All the oral and anal that I want.

    Funny, but I learned to be more of a freak during active duty. Sad as I was never given a UCMJ guide that would’ve spelled out what I couldn’t do.

  • scaloni

    Homosexuality and sodomy are sins, reprehensible in the eyes of the living God, so no matter what man says is “ok” to do, remember that you will pay a price, in your own body, and with your soul, for practicing this – there is forgiveness if you repent

  • James F

    The article does not apply solely to same-sex activity, it also equally restricts the sexual activity between opposite gender persons, as well that with animals. Moreover, regardless of sexual preference, military members are held to higher moral standards–for instance, see article prohibiting adultery (i.e. extra-marital affair), which is not illegal in the civilian sphere. Engaging in “unnatural carnal copulation” is still dishonorable and degrading to both human dignity and that of the U.S. Armed Forces, regardless of whether the precautions of DADT are still active or not.

  • "Seargeant Disappointed" is a dumbass

    Haha can’t even spell “Sergeant.” It really convinces me that you are one. What are you searing??

  • "Seargeant Disappointed" is a dumbass

    hahaha at “Seargeant Disappointed.” Can’t even spell “Sergeant” correctly. Really makes me believe that you are one. What are you searing??

  • Old MP

    This article is verbatim the old “common law” definition. If you know much about common law, many times the elements of the crime must be looked up in other references such as the Manual for Courts Martial, case law, and other applicable laws and regulations.

    New military regulations have essentially eliminanted any consentual sexual act between adults (including homosexual)as unlawful.

    Sodomy (or any sexual penetration other than penis-vagina) will remain on the book primarily for non-consentual applications.

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