Victims of Military Rape Deserve Justice


Rep. Jackie Speier
Special to CNN
February 8, 2012

Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta has announced new initiatives to curtail what he calls “the epidemic” of rape and sexual assaults in our armed forces. In 2010, an estimated 19,000 service members were raped or sexually assaulted by other service members. Clearly, more resources devoted to counseling for victims and training for prosecutors and judges will help.

But the incidence of unpunished rapes will continue and so will the damaging effects these illegal acts have on troop morale and preparedness. This epidemic requires an overhaul of the military justice system.

To read the full piece on CNN, click here.

Additional Reporting:

DoD Seeks to Crack Down on Sex Assaults in Ranks,  Reuters,  Jan. 18, 2012

Panetta: Could be 19,000 Military Sex Assaults Each Year,, Jan 18, 2012


To view Rep. Speier’s speeches to the House on the issue of military rape, click here.

Rep. Speier is the honorary chair of Protect Our Defenders, an organization that supports women and men in uniform who have been raped or sexually assaulted by fellow service members. Those who wish to share their stories can do so at Protect Our Defenders.