The Fort Dix Military Reservation is a United States Army post located in a predominantly rural area of central New Jersey. Its primary mission is to provide basic combat training for newly inducted Army personnel. Accordingly, most of its 55 square miles are devoted to military training activities. The Federal Government exercises exclusive jurisdiction over the entire area within Fort Dix, including the state and county roads that pass through it.[1] Civilian vehicular traffic is permitted on paved roads within the reservation, and civilian pedestrian traffic is permitted on both roads and footpaths. Military police regularly patrol the roads within the reservation, and they occasionally stop civilians and ask them the reason for their presence. Signs posted on the roads leading into the reservation state: "All vehicles are subject to search while on the Fort Dix Military Reservation" and "Soliciting prohibited unless approved by the commanding general." The main entrances to Fort Dix are not normally guarded, and a sign at one of the entrances says "Visitors Welcome." Civilians are freely permitted to visit unrestricted areas of the reservation.

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This case presents the question, not fully answered in Hamling v. United States, 418 U. S. 87 (1974), whether the *189 standards announced in Miller v. California, 413 U. S. 15 (1973), are to be applied retroactively to the potential detriment of a defendant in a criminal case. We granted certiorari, 424 U. S. 942 (1976), to resolve a conflict in the Circuits.[1]

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Appellee Howard Levy, a physician, was a captain in the Army stationed at Fort Jackson, South Carolina. *736 He had entered the Army under the so-called "Berry Plan,"[1] under which he agreed to serve for two years in the Armed Forces if permitted first to complete his medical training. From the time he entered on active duty in July 1965 until his trial by court-martial, he was assigned as Chief of the Dermatological Service of the United States Army Hospital at Fort Jackson. On June 2, 1967, appellee was convicted by a general court-martial of violations of Arts. 90, 133, and 134 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, and sentenced to dismissal from the service, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and confinement for three years at hard labor.

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The respondents, a major metropolitan newspaper and one of its reporters, initiated this litigation to challenge the constitutionality of ¶ 4b (6) of Policy Statement 1220.1A of the Federal Bureau of Prisons.[1] At the time that the case was in the District Court and the Court of Appeals, this regulation prohibited any personal interviews between newsmen and individually designated federal prison inmates. The Solicitor General has informed the Court that the regulation was recently amended "to permit press interviews at federal prison institutions that can be characterized as minimum security."[2] The general prohibition of press interviews with inmates remains in effect, however, in three-quarters of the federal prisons, i. e., in all medium security and maximum security institutions, including the two institutions involved in this case.

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