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Robert W. Grow Court-Martial: 1952

Parts Of Diary Published, Grow Is Charged, Debate On The Classification Of The Diary, Suggestions For Further Reading

Defendant: Robert W. Grow
Crimes Charged: The compromising of classified security information by failing to provide adequate security for the protection of a personal diary
Chief Defense Lawyer: Robert E. Joseph
Presiding Officer: John S. Dwinell
Court: Hubert D. Hoover and seven other court members
Place: Washington, D.C.
Date of Trial: July 23-29, 1952
Verdict: Guilty on five counts

SIGNIFICANCE: The Robert Grow trial was the first high-profile court-martial under the new Uniform Code of Military Justice and demonstrated that despite attempts to eliminate it, command influence still affected court-martial proceedings.

Major General Robert W. Grow was a veteran army officer who had commanded an armored division in World War II and had been instrumental in implementing early Cold War containment policy in Iran. In 1950 he became senior U.S. military attache to Moscow. In 1952 he made a mistake that resulted in his court-martial, and became an international cause celebre. East German agents photographed Grow's personal diary while he was in West Germany attending a conference. While in Frankfurt he stayed at a U.S. Army guest house that employed German personnel, and which was later found to have woefully lax security. Grow was charged with displaying poor judgment by keeping a diary that contained classified information without taking proper precautions to secure it.

Additional topics

Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationNotable Trials and Court Cases - 1941 to 1953