Opinion


The Green Light to Rape:

What Happens When We Fail to
Prosecute the Rapist

 

 

Jennifer McClendon
OpEdNews.com
June 1, 2012

 

 

The difference between what happens to a rapist and a rape victim has shocked the senses of the American public since US Congressional Representative Jackie Speier (D-CA) began in 2011 sharing the personal accounts of military rape victims to other members of the House of Representatives in a weekly address to the House.

I do not like the term “Military Sexual Trauma.” Rape is a horrible and gut-wrenching event that destabilizes the family and the community and shocks the victim. Military Sexual Trauma is a watered-down term for a horrendous human rights violation that is too often dismissed by military legal authorities.

Rape shocks the victim. A victim in shock is given several psychiatric labels that may threaten the victim’s perceived job readiness. Military and Department of Veteran’s Affairs doctors will bend over backwards to label what was once called Rape Trauma Syndrome and is now considered a form of or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) as Bipolar or Borderline Personality Disorder. This is a form of psychiatrically sanctioned victim-blaming and a way of denying benefits to veterans that were traumatized by rape.

 

To read Jennifer McClendon’s full article at the OpEdNews.com web site, click here.

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I Served My Country and
Lost My Privacy

 

 

Carey D. Lohrenz
First Female F-14 Fighter Pilot
Huffington Post
May 14, 2012

 

Women have been flying military aircraft since 1942. The WASPs, or Women’s Airforce Service Pilots, ferried 12,650 fighter and bomber planes all over the US, Canada and overseas when needed. They also instructed Air Corps pilots and towed practice targets for combat pilots.

However, women were limited to noncombat roles.

Over the course of time, the nature of warfare has changed. Women have become an integral part of the armed forces.

The Persian Gulf War, in 1990-1991, demonstrated how integral women had become to U.S. airpower. Female pilots flew various helicopters, reconnaissance, refueling and supply aircraft deep into Iraqi airspace. They loaded weapons onto fighters and directed Air Force pilots from AWACS planes.

But the final frontier for female aviators was to fly the coveted combat fighter jets and bombers.

To read the full story at the Huffington Post, click here.

 

The Dark Side of the Prestigious
Marine Barracks

 

Col. Ann Wright
truthdig.com
May 8, 2012

According to Marine Corps lore, semper fidelis, a Latin phrase for “always faithful,” commands Marines to remain a “brotherhood, faithful to the mission at hand, to each other, to the Corps and to country, no matter what. Becoming a Marine is a transformation that cannot be undone and once made, a Marine will forever live by the ethics and values of the Corps.”

The Marine Barracks in Washington, D.C., is the official residence of the commandant of the Marine Corps. It is the home of the Marines who are the ceremonial guard for the president during official U.S. government functions and the security force for the White House and Camp David. The Marine Band, also located at the Barracks, is known as “The President’s Own.” The Barracks is the showplace of the Marine Corps with its Silent Drill Platoon giving weekly military precision performances for the public during the busy summer tourist season.

But the Marine Barracks has its dark and ugly side. It is also the home of officers and enlisted men of the Marine Corps who have been accused of sexually harassing, assaulting and raping female Marine officers and enlisted and civilian women who work there.

To read the full article at the truthdig.com web site, click here.

The Pentagon Is Camouflaging the Truth About Rape in the Military

 

Nancy Parrish
Huffington Post
April 20, 2012

On Friday of last week, the Department of Defense issued its Annual Report on Sexual Assault in the Military. First conducted in 2004, this report has helped shine a light on the severity and scope of the crisis of rape in the US military. The disturbing statistics that have been reported include the stunning estimate that, in FY 2010, there were 19,000 sexual assaults among Active Duty personnel.

The 2011 report validates our worst fears. The data shows that the military’s handling of sexual assaults is getting worse, much worse. Charges, courts-martial and convictions plummeted, but there is absolutely no indication that sex crimes decreased.

But while the report is extremely troubling, of even greater concern is the Pentagon’s determined effort to confuse and misinform the public about its own findings.

To read the full piece at the Huffington Post, click here.

 

To reach for web site archive of  the Department of Defense Annual Reports on Sexual Assaults in the Military, click here.

 

 

Nancy Parrish is the President of Protect Our Defenders.

 

Click here to learn more about how the organization is working to “honor, support and give voice to the brave women and men in uniform who have been raped or sexually assaulted by fellow service members. “

I’m a Slut; But as a Military Veteran, I’ve Known This for Decades

 

RoseWeaver
Daily Kos
March 7, 2012

 

It’s been difficult for me to express how I’ve been feeling this past week, until I read this diary which began:

I am a slut.

Before this week, I didn’t know I was a slut. But Rush Limbaugh set me straight:

I’m a slut, too. But I’ve known this for decades. I knew it since I first enlisted in the Active Duty Air Force in 1984, and I was never allowed to forget it.

I’m also a whore, hysterical, and completely incapable of working on communications equipment.

I shouldn’t have even been in the military.

Because I’m a woman.

 

To read the full story at the Daily Kos web site, click here.

 

 

See Threat Limbaugh Poses

 

Stars and Stripes
Letters to the Editor
March 12, 2012

Rush Limbaugh has continually crossed a clear line in railing over the airwaves with crude, sexist remarks about women.

American women and many Limbaugh show sponsors (reportedly 50) and affiliates believe the nation’s culture has progressed too far to permit Limbaugh’s remarks about Sandra Fluke, the Georgetown Law student, to stand or his voice to continue to be heard, let alone respected.

Michigan Democrat Carl Levin, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, believes American Forces Network needs to pull Limbaugh’s radio show but, understandably, he will not legislate the issue. Pentagon leaders must step up to the plate and make this decision for the following reasons:

The 21st century in America is not the America of the 1960s when I joined the Navy and the force was only 2 percent women, with major restrictions on women’s service. The roles and influence of military women mirror those across the nation today. Women now represent 17 percent of the force and opportunities for, as well as attitudes about, military women have dramatically changed, including combat roles.

Limbaugh has been able to get away with his misogynistic remarks for decades, but not now. Women have come too far to allow such slanderous remarks as he used against Fluke. His recent comments are the culmination of years of his negative rants about “those feminazis” and thorough disrespect of the female gender.

Americans are for the First Amendment and free speech, but Limbaugh’s remarks are exponentially more serious than just a pundit making a fool of himself. He influences many people who listen to his show, including young military men and women.

Five times a week AFN, funded by taxpayers, airs Rush Limbaugh’s radio show, a show popular among the troops; juxtapose this fact with another: For many years military-politico leaders have been deeply concerned about high rates of sexual assault on and rape of women in the services by their male counterparts.

A policy decision by the Department of Defense tacitly to endorse Rush’s form of talk by broadcasting his show on a closed network, paid for by taxpayers and with minimal competing viewpoints, demands immediate reconsideration. To permit someone on AFN who consistently calls women feminazis, who uses disparaging language that [some believe] encourages discrimination and violence against women is both wrong and unacceptable. It is unacceptable to the military, its standards and ethical values, and unacceptable to the nation and its vision for equality and opportunity for women. Needless to say, to correct this problem should inherently be a nonpartisan decision.

High statistics regarding sexual assault against our military women constitute sufficient cause alone for DOD to remove Rush Limbaugh’s show without delay. Any justification for the U.S. military not to take a strong stand opposing this type of broadcasting is purely political.

 

Cmdr. Beth F. Coye (retired)
Ashland, Ore.

To read this letter at the Stars and Stripes web site, click here.

Military Sexual Predators Lawsuit

 

Ana Kasparian and Cenk Uygur
The Young Turks Network
March 11, 2012

 

 

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