The House version of the current National Defense Authorization bill for 2022 contains a provision barring a service member being discharged over his refusal to take the Wuhan Vaccine from being given any other form of discharge than honorable. The Biden-Harris administration strongly opposes the provision.
The Pentagon, according to Fox News, has described the vaccine mandate as a “lawful order” that must be obeyed.
The Biden-Harris administration added
To enable a uniformed force to fight with discipline, commanders must have the ability to give orders and take appropriate disciplinary measures.
Certainly. However, whether the order, or the mandate in general, is lawful has yet to be established.
In any event, anything less than an honorable discharge is vast overkill for something as minor as disobeying an order to get a particular vaccine. Dishonorable discharges are handed down for crimes like sexual assault, murder, desertion, sedition. Refusing an order to get vaccinated hardly fits with those.
Assuming an order to get vaccinated is lawful, there are much more appropriate penalties: nonjudicial punishment and fines come to mind.
Insisting on a DD over such a minor act is nothing but an exercise in power for the sake of exercising power—petty ego by the authority doing the exercise.