A-8694, DECEMBER 23, 1925, 5 COMP. GEN. 443

A-8694: Dec 23, 1925

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AGAINST POSSIBLE ATTACK BY CHINESE WARRING FACTIONS IS. IS NOT ENTITLED TO RENTAL ALLOWANCE. 1925: THERE IS BEFORE THIS OFFICE FOR CONSIDERATION THE QUESTION AS TO WHETHER CAPT. IS ENTITLED TO RENTAL ALLOWANCE CLAIMED FOR THE PERIOD FROM SEPTEMBER 9 TO OCTOBER 22. WERE LANDED AT SHANGHAI. THAT WHILE ON THIS DUTY THE OFFICERS AND MEN WERE FURNISHED QUARTERS WITHOUT EXPENSE TO THEM BY THE MUNICIPAL AUTHORITIES. WHILE HE IS ON FIELD OR SEA DUTY. CAPTAIN RICHARDS WHILE ON SEA DUTY WAS ASSIGNED TO A TEMPORARY DUTY ON SHORE DURING SAID PERIOD. THE QUESTION PRESENTED IS WHETHER THIS TEMPORARY DUTY WAS FIELD DUTY WITHIN THE MEANING OF SAID ACT OF MAY 31. IRREGULAR OPERATIONS CONSIST OF ACTIONS AGAINST UNORGANIZED OR PARTIALLY ORGANIZED FORCES ACTING IN INDEPENDENT OR SEMI INDEPENDENT BODIES. * * * APPARENTLY THE DUTY OF THIS LANDING FORCE WAS TO PROTECT AND DEFEND BY FORCE OF ARMS IF NECESSARY THIS INTERNATIONAL SETTLEMENT AGAINST POSSIBLE ATTACK BY THE CHINESE WARRING FACTIONS.

A-8694, DECEMBER 23, 1925, 5 COMP. GEN. 443

QUARTERS, RENTAL ALLOWANCE - MARINE CORPS OFFICER ON FIELD DUTY AN OFFICER OF THE MARINE CORPS, WITHOUT DEPENDENTS, WHO AS A MEMBER OF A MARINE DETACHMENT ON BOARD A NAVAL VESSEL SERVED WITH A LANDING FORCE TO PROTECT AND DEFEND THE INTERNATIONAL SETTLEMENT AT SHANGHAI, CHINA, AGAINST POSSIBLE ATTACK BY CHINESE WARRING FACTIONS IS, WHILE PERFORMING SUCH DUTY, ON "FIELD DUTY" WITHIN THE MEANING OF SECTION 6 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 10, 1922, AS AMENDED BY THE ACT OF MAY 31, 1924, 43 STAT. 251, AND IS NOT ENTITLED TO RENTAL ALLOWANCE.

DECISION BY COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL, DECEMBER 23, 1925:

THERE IS BEFORE THIS OFFICE FOR CONSIDERATION THE QUESTION AS TO WHETHER CAPT. WILLIAM P. RICHARDS, UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS, HAVING NO DEPENDENTS, IS ENTITLED TO RENTAL ALLOWANCE CLAIMED FOR THE PERIOD FROM SEPTEMBER 9 TO OCTOBER 22, 1924.

IT APPEARS THAT PURSUANT TO VERBAL ORDERS OF THE COMMANDER IN CHIEF OF THE ASIATIC FLEET, CAPTAIN RICHARDS, ONE OTHER OFFICER, AND 69 MEN OF THE MARINE DETACHMENT OF THE U.S.S. HURON, WERE LANDED AT SHANGHAI, CHINA, AS A PART OF THE AMERICAN LANDING FORCE, TO GUARD THE BOUNDARIES OF THE INTERNATIONAL SETTLEMENT OF SHANGHAI DURING FIGHTING IN THE VICINITY BETWEEN TWO OPPOSING CHINESE FACTIONS; THAT THIS MARINE DETACHMENT RETURNED TO THE U.S.S. HURON ON OCTOBER 23, 1924, AND THAT WHILE ON THIS DUTY THE OFFICERS AND MEN WERE FURNISHED QUARTERS WITHOUT EXPENSE TO THEM BY THE MUNICIPAL AUTHORITIES.

SECTION 6 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 10, 1922, AS AMENDED BY THE ACT OF MAY 31, 1924, 43 STAT. 251, PROVIDES THAT NO RENTAL ALLOWANCE SHALL ACCRUE TO AN OFFICER, HAVING NO DEPENDENTS, WHILE HE IS ON FIELD OR SEA DUTY.

CAPTAIN RICHARDS WHILE ON SEA DUTY WAS ASSIGNED TO A TEMPORARY DUTY ON SHORE DURING SAID PERIOD, AND THE QUESTION PRESENTED IS WHETHER THIS TEMPORARY DUTY WAS FIELD DUTY WITHIN THE MEANING OF SAID ACT OF MAY 31, 1924.

THE EXECUTIVE ORDER OF AUGUST 13, 1924, ISSUED UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF THE ACT OF MAY 31, 1924, DEFINES THE TERM "FIELD DUTY" AS FOLLOWS:

(C) THE TERM "FIELD DUTY" SHALL BE CONSTRUED TO MEAN SERVICE UNDER ORDERS, WITH TROOPS OPERATING AGAINST AN ENEMY, ACTUAL OR POTENTIAL.

THE UNITED STATES NAVY LANDING FORCE MANUAL, 1920, PROVIDES:

1095. LANDING AND EXPEDITIONARY OPERATIONS IN THE NAVAL SERVICE PARTAKE LARGELY OF THE NATURE OF MINOR WARFARE. * * *

1088. MINOR WARFARE EMBRACES BOTH REGULAR AND IRREGULAR OPERATIONS.

REGULAR OPERATIONS CONSIST OF MINOR ACTIONS INVOLVING SMALL BODIES OF TRAINED AND ORGANIZED TROOPS ON BOTH SIDES.

1089. IRREGULAR OPERATIONS CONSIST OF ACTIONS AGAINST UNORGANIZED OR PARTIALLY ORGANIZED FORCES ACTING IN INDEPENDENT OR SEMI INDEPENDENT BODIES. * * *

APPARENTLY THE DUTY OF THIS LANDING FORCE WAS TO PROTECT AND DEFEND BY FORCE OF ARMS IF NECESSARY THIS INTERNATIONAL SETTLEMENT AGAINST POSSIBLE ATTACK BY THE CHINESE WARRING FACTIONS. WHETHER IT WAS ACTUALLY NECESSARY TO USE FORCE IS IMMATERIAL. OPERATIONS AGAINST AN ENEMY, ACTUAL OR POTENTIAL, MAY BE OFFENSIVE OR DEFENSIVE.

THE SAID SERVICE HAVING BEEN PERFORMED UNDER ORDERS, WITH TROOPS OPERATING AGAINST A POTENTIAL ENEMY WAS "FIELD DUTY" WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE LAW AND REGULATIONS MADE IN PURSUANCE OF LAW, AND THEREFORE NO RIGHT TO RENTAL ALLOWANCE ACCRUED TO CAPTAIN RICHARDS WHILE ON THIS DUTY.