FORT DIX, N.J.—The court-martial of Pvt. Terry Klug is over. He is the GI who the Ft. Dix brass had singled out as the “ringleader” in the now famous stockade rebellion on that base last June.
The surprise verdict: Not Guilty on all counts.
The Ft. Dix command had seized upon this spontaneous revolt of 150 stockade inmates to come down on the political resistance on the base.
Klug, who was charged with riot, inciting to riot and aggravated arson, was singled out for court-martial along with Jeff Russell, Tom Catlow and Bill Brakefield. All were active in the Dix GI coffee house and members of the American Serviceman’s Union.
Russell and Catlow have already been found guilty in their trials. Russell received three years at hard labor and Catlow was discharged from the service for their supposed role as “riot leaders.” The real cause of the rebellion was the overcrowding, racism and general brutality of stockade life.
Klug was found not guilty because of the absolute inability of the prosecution to put together a case against him. According to Pvt. Andy Stapp (Ret.) head of the ASU this was because of “the growing solidarity among the enlisted men and officer oppression.” The Army could not get one enlisted man to testify against Klug.
Although Klug was acquitted, he will not be released from the stockade. He still has two years serve from an earlier conviction for refusal to go to Vietnam.
See Fifth Estate’s Vietnam Resource Page.