Demilitarization Requirements

Certain items of military surplus must be "demilitarized," or rendered militarily harmless before they can be sold to the public. For example, machine guns are cut into many pieces to the point where they are only useful as scrap metal, an obvious case of demil logic. Less obvious would be electronic parts that include encryption or militarily sensitive communications technology, requiring their destruction or removal of the sensitive parts.

hmmwv 6.2l engine assembly with shipping and storage container, for sale at camp lejeune, nc by government, march 2007.  a complete hmmwv vehicle would be demil code d requiring destruction while the engine may be sold but requires an end-use certificate.
HMMWV 6.2L Engine Assembly with shipping and storage container, for sale at Camp Lejeune, NC by Government, March 2007. A complete HMMWV vehicle would be Demil Code D requiring destruction while the engine may be sold but requires an End-Use Certificate. Photo courtesy Government

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26 Sep 1944 Operation Market Garden ends; Field Marshal Montgomery conceals the full extent of the failure until a report to Gen. Eisenhower on 8 Oct.
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Government Surplus Sales: Demilitarization

Unfortunately for MV collectors, certain military vehicles have been subject to demil requirements. In particular, the M-151 series of 1/4 ton trucks (jeeps) and the HMMWV may not be sold to civilians due to non-compliance with Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations. Therefore, perfectly good vehicles have been crushed, cut up, or both to render them unusable and unrepairable. More about jeeps and HMMWV sales requirements is on the linked page.

Government Surplus Demil Codes

When property is sold by the U.S. Government, a Demil Code is assigned by the Federal Government to the property. The demil code identifies the level of required demilitarization for property previously used in the government sector before it is released into the public sector. As of 2007, the Demilitarization Codes are:

A Non-MLI/Non-CCLI - Demilitarization not required
B MLI (Non-SME) - Demilitarization not required. Trade Security Controls (TSCs) required at disposition.
C MLI (SME) - Remove and/or demilitarize installed key point(s), as prescribed in DoD 4160.21-M-1, or lethal parts, components and accessories.
D MLI (SME) - Total destruction of item and components so as to preclude restoration or repair to a usable condition by melting, cutting, tearing, scratching, crushing, breaking, punching, neutralizing, etc. (As an alternate, burial or deep water dumping may be used when coordinated with the DoD Demilitarization Program Office at HQ Defense Logistics Agency. The phone number for this office is DSN 427-1539 or 703-767-1539.
E MIL (Non-SME) - Additional critical items/materiel determined to require demilitarization, either key point or total destruction. Demilitarization instructions to be furnished by the DoD Demilitarization Program Office at HQ Defense Logistics Agency. The phone number for this office is DSN 427-1539 or 703-767-1539.
F MLI (SME) - Demilitarization instructions to be Furnished by the Item/Technical Manager.
G MLI (SME) - Demilitarization required - AEDA. Demilitarization, and if required, declassification and/or removal of sensitive markings or information, will be accomplished prior to physical transfer to a DRMO. This code will be used for all AEDA items, including those which require declassification and/or removal of sensitive markings or information.
P MLI (SME) - Security Classified Item - Declassification and any additional demilitarization and removal of any sensitive markings or information will be accomplished prior to accountability or physical transfer to a DRMO. This code will not be assigned to AEDA items.
Q CCLI - Commerce Control List Items - Demilitarization not required. CCLI are non-MLI and are controlled by the U.S. Department of Commerce through the Export Administration Regulations (EAR). On the Commerce Control List (CCL) each CCL entry is preceded by a four digit Export Control Classification Number ECCN). Those ECCNs ending in the letter "A" or "B" are defined as CCLI. These items are subject to Import Certification and Delivery Verification (IC/DV) control and other Trade Security Controls.

Munitions List Item (MLI) is property that is listed in the International Traffic in Arms Regulation, published by the U.S. Department of State.
SME is Significant Military Equipment.

Important: The Federal Government reserves the right to change the demil code on any given item at any time, even after the sale. It has been reported that some buyers have been contacted as much as a year after a sale and were required to return the items purchased, in one case some obsolete radar equipment. This is a risk of buying direct from the government, even when using Government or

End-Use Certificate (DLA Form 1822)

Some Demil Codes (eg, B or Q) require the purchaser to provide an End-Use Certificate. An End-Use Certificate (EUC), also called DLA Form 1822, must be completed when title for MLI and CCLI is being transferred as the result of sale or donation. This form notifies the recipient that if the intent is to export the property, an export license or letter of authorization is required from the Department of State or Department of Commerce. In signing this form, the recipient also agrees to cooperate with and permit authorized Government representatives to inspect and verify the existence and condition of the MLI/CCLI that has been acquired.

First time applicants for an End-Use Certificate with Government can expect to wait a minimum of 90 days for approval. Buyers who have been previously approved should expect to receive subsequent approvals within 3 weeks of submitting the End-Use Certificate application. has the details of their End-Use Certificate process here on the Surplus Terms and Conditions tab.

How to Get the Defense Demilitarization Manual

A copy of the Defense Demilitarization Manual, DOD 4160.21-M-1 may be downloaded from this link.

You may also request a copy (or ask questions) from the DLA Contact Center at 877-352-2255 (toll free).

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