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Thu Jan 24, 2013, 08:30 PM

Gen Dempsey: Sex assault and combat ban are linked.

Dempsey: Sex assault, combat ban on women linked
Source: AP



WASHINGTON (AP) — The nation’s top military officer says he believes the rise in sexual assaults in the military is linked to a longstanding ban on women serving in combat roles — a ban the Pentagon is now eliminating.

Gen. Martin Dempsey is chairman of the Joint Chiefs. He said Thursday the assault problem is due partly to the military’s separate classes of personnel — male ‘warriors’ versus the rest of the force, including women.

Dempsey says the sexual assault problem is more complicated than that, but he indicates the disparity between the roles of men and women in the military has created a psychology that lends itself to disrespect for women.

Treating the genders equally, he says, is more likely to lead people to treat each other equally.

-30-

Read more: http://www.salon.com/2013/01/24/dempsey_sex_assault_combat_ban_on_women_linked/

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Reply Gen Dempsey: Sex assault and combat ban are linked. (Original post)
riderinthestorm Jan 2013 OP
Kalidurga Jan 2013 #1
riderinthestorm Jan 2013 #4
obamanut2012 Jan 2013 #2
riderinthestorm Jan 2013 #3
dsc Jan 2013 #32
libdem4life Jan 2013 #5
TwilightGardener Jan 2013 #6
libdem4life Jan 2013 #10
Matariki Jan 2013 #7
LiberalLoner Jan 2013 #8
riderinthestorm Jan 2013 #9
LiberalLoner Jan 2013 #18
Matariki Jan 2013 #21
LiberalLoner Jan 2013 #22
Matariki Jan 2013 #23
LiberalLoner Jan 2013 #24
libdem4life Jan 2013 #12
Matariki Jan 2013 #15
libdem4life Jan 2013 #17
Matariki Jan 2013 #19
libdem4life Jan 2013 #25
LiberalLoner Jan 2013 #20
libdem4life Jan 2013 #26
LiberalLoner Jan 2013 #27
libdem4life Jan 2013 #28
The Blue Flower Jan 2013 #29
libdem4life Jan 2013 #30
auntsue Jan 2013 #31
polly7 Jan 2013 #11
Spazito Jan 2013 #13
ellisonz Jan 2013 #14
Recursion Jan 2013 #16

Response to riderinthestorm (Original post)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 08:39 PM

1. He has a good point there.

But, the only way to find out if the theory has merit is after some time of women being in combat is to see if rape rates have dropped. I think they might, if the numbers of women in the service were more equal to the number of men.

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Response to Kalidurga (Reply #1)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 09:25 PM

4. I posted some stats for the IDF which actually has equal numbers of women and men. Good point nt

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Response to riderinthestorm (Original post)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 08:40 PM

2. k&r

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Response to riderinthestorm (Original post)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 08:42 PM

3. According to IDF military stats (they have full combat gender equality) sexual harassment rates @ 3%

that is not a typo.

3%

I got that figure by looking at the number of active duty IDF forces (easily found on Wiki) at 177,000 (rounded)

Divided by the stats on sexual harassment reported to the Knesset and found in a Haaretz article

According to Haaretz, there were 445 reports of sexual harassment claims. That means about 3% of Israeli military women are being sexually harassed - a far cry from OUR 33% +/-.



http://www.haaretz.com/news/national/female-idf-officer-accuses-major-general-of-sexual-harassment-1.459512

Last paragraph:
In 2009 there were 445 complaints, compared to 363 in 2008 and 318 in 2007. Most of the allegations related to incidents on base and concerned physical harassment.

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Response to riderinthestorm (Reply #3)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 11:06 PM

32. there are an awful lot of layers between

a woman who has been sexually harassed and the Knesset. I would be a little wary of accepting a figure that low without knowing how transparent the IDF has been historically about these issues.

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Response to riderinthestorm (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 12:06 AM

5. I think it's more...military men away from girlfriends and wifes, lonely, needy companionship and

that has been traditionally the local girls ... in the bars and other places. The sexual urge not only does not go away, but the heightened stress brings it front and center. Our military women that are right there, speak the same language, obey the same rules, are easier to get to know...and the same for women. Kind of like a communal dating service. Soldiers don't become Monks and Nuns...far from it.

I have mixed feelings ... if a woman wants to enlist and go into combat, she should be able to. But there are many issues that arise from this social mixture that do not so easily conform to military standards.

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Response to libdem4life (Reply #5)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 12:35 AM

6. It's more than that--they are not respecting their female colleagues, and not maintaining

discipline. This is a massive failure of leadership. Commanders and policy makers have to set the proper tone and implement VERY harsh penalties, while fully protecting the career and safety of the victim--this is a serious morale issue.

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #6)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 12:12 PM

10. I understand that as does our family...from a military women's point..lots of things in the military

need to be fixed. I wonder how many women would enlist for combat...which is better pay...if they had opportunities and equal pay and ditto your comments, with which I agree. Our culture has not evolved to the level of equal pay for equal work and we have to have literally, an act of Congress, to define "violence" and "rape". The military is light years behind in these issues...due to the millennial and historical nature of war.

Men of color and economic need and would-be immigrants enlist for job opportunity as well, yet can't get jobs when they return...in varying states of physical and mental health. The VA is woefully inadequate, particularly for mental issues. The domestic job opportunities lag far behind..perhaps intentionally.

So now it's a choice and I fully support that choice, but my cynical side says it acts to provide more war fodder, more war investment (by family loss), a greater and deeper pool of our young and healthy, the numbers of which are useful for future wars of convenience. It will, perhaps unintentionally, free up the higher income males to pursue their stateside careers uninterupted rather than putting in a couple of years of duty.





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Response to libdem4life (Reply #5)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 12:37 AM

7. people don't rape because they're lonely and need companionship!!!

Last edited Fri Jan 25, 2013, 01:16 AM - Edit history (1)

!!!

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Response to Matariki (Reply #7)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 09:21 AM

8. Thank you. The fellow soldier who raped me already had a girlfriend

He was having sex with every week. You could hear them together in our co-Ed trailer because there was no soundproofing. That was part of the reason I let my guard down around him and thought he would not try anything with me.

I was wrong. Oh, and it wasn't about sex obviously. It was about showing disrespect to me, humiliating and hurting me because I was female and in a non-traditional role for females. It was a way to put me in my place.

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Response to LiberalLoner (Reply #8)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 11:28 AM

9. I really hope you've found some peace in your heart about this terrible crime.

I believe the military isn't doing nearly enough to prevent the violence against women in the military. The culture is rife with problems.



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Response to riderinthestorm (Reply #9)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 02:41 PM

18. Thank you. I file it under the "no big deal" section of my memories to be honest. It does bother

me a lot other women went through this though.

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Response to LiberalLoner (Reply #8)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 02:57 PM

21. I'm sorry that happened to you. I hope, but don't really expect, that the guy was punished?

And thank you for your military service.

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Response to Matariki (Reply #21)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 02:59 PM

22. Thank you! No, never reported it. Read my post below for my explanation....

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Response to LiberalLoner (Reply #22)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 03:07 PM

23. I read that. It really sucks.

What do you think of General Dempsey's assessment about ending the combat ban for women having a direct impact on reducing sexual assault?

It seems to me anyway that it's a respect issue. Certainly NOT loneliness, stress, or even horniness.

I expect there will be sexist idiots that won't respect women no matter how much the military treats them as equals. But I suspect that over time the dinosaurs will die out. As dinosaurs do.

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Response to Matariki (Reply #23)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 03:58 PM

24. I think he is right on the mark about needing increased respect

That is what it boils down to. I hope this redefining of roles will bring more respect but with the war on women gaining steam nationwide I am pessimistic.

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Response to Matariki (Reply #7)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 12:50 PM

12. Please. The biggest problem is consensual sex.

And it's shrill in reaction to what I wrote. Soldiers, away from home, hormones surging from an ugly battlefield, not knowing if they will return alive, lonely, discouraged, injured, many very human reasons. Deep, emotional relationships necessarily form in this environment. The military has deep-seated problems with gay...or temporarily gay situations ... when it was all male, often for these very reasons. It has been the Elephant in the Military's Living Room. Soldiers ... single or married ... do not suddenly become monks...or nuns especially under these circumstances. Some do, some don't.

We're still defining what rape is, as a domestic culture. And there is no place more detrimental to the reporting of a "sexual incident" as a victim, as the military particularly in combat/war time. The culture is like night and day to the civilian culture/struggles, such as needing an Act of Congress to define the Violence Against Women Act. The the depth of the events around Patraeus are the norm, not the exception, and the fact that it is not acknowledged openly sets the stage for the fact it's not going to change anytime soon.

If this is a woman's choice, sobeit, but then I abhor war as social policy and for both genders. My definition of turning swords into plowshares is providing equal job opportunity, equal pay, jobs programs, veterans programs, mental and physical health care as domestic nation building. Ironically, it's what most of our allies and conquered nations do so we can be Number 1.

(I had two nieces in the service)

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Response to libdem4life (Reply #12)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 02:04 PM

15. I can't untangle what you are trying to say here.

What is a 'shrill' reaction to what you wrote? My assertion that RAPE isn't committed because of a lack of companionship?

Do you have a habit of calling women who disagree with you "shrill"?

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Response to Matariki (Reply #15)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 02:23 PM

17. Consensual sex does not equal rape Jumping to the rape conversation makes it even harder to define

That our domestic culture as a whole is having a hard time even determining what rape is...it is much more difficult in the military...and a lot longer in achieving the elusive "equality". If a female teenager, today, asks me about enlisting in the military this is what I'm going to tell her. This is current reality. The choice, is hers. Maybe in 50 years, although I doubt it, but if I care about her, she needs to know the truth about her chances and not what "ought to be".

I've already had to listen and grieve with earlier family members.

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Response to libdem4life (Reply #17)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 02:54 PM

19. Rape is NOT 'hard to define'. It's when a person says NO.

Or isn't in a condition to be able to say yes or no. Sheesh.

I can barely tell what you are trying to communicate. It *sounds* like you are trying to explain the epidemic numbers of sexual assault and harassment against women in the military as 'male soldiers needing companionship'. Which is both offensive and ridiculous.

If that's NOT what you're saying then please correct my misunderstanding.

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Response to Matariki (Reply #19)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 04:21 PM

25. I am anti-war as it is aberrant for humans. War is rape carried out on an entire culture

without reference to gender, age or permission. When women willingly place themselves in this culture that depends on the actions or reactions of hormonal testosterone and may be hostile to human life, it will be dangerous.

Further, in this context, the circumstance and actuality of just saying "no" in a formerly consensual request for sexual favors, is more likely to go unnoticed, unprotected and unlitigated. Until recently, military women paid out-of-pocket for their abortions...apparently unwanted pregnancies and unrelated to the easily identifiable sperm donor. I am not defending it...just stating that it is so.

Put differently, women have absolutely no business in the combat foxholes at all... most especially with men who have been deprived of their normal conjugal rights with wives or weekend rights with "others". It's not about companionship...it's a defining difference between testosterone and estrogen...to be blunt. And no, it's not all military men yet the circumstances seem to prevail.

But them I'm one of the old feminists who believe that women should be informed, empowered yet not willingly place themselves in dangerous positions and expect the culture...male or female...to rescue them. And from the experiences of my military nieces, not much has changed.

I detest that women (in addition to men) as war casualities has become a test of Political Correctness...after all these years.







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Response to libdem4life (Reply #17)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 02:55 PM

20. Wait a minute are you saying rape doesn't happen in the military and it's all consensual? WTF?

I can tell you I know very well what the difference is between sex I wanted and sex I did NOT want.

The fellow Lieutenant who raped me used the fact that we lived in a co-ed trailer in the Sinai as cover to rape me. He knew I would not report it or cry out because to do so would mean me being repatriated to the US for psychiatric care and thus ending my career. I took the rape because I did not want to end my career that I had worked so hard for.

I spent a couple of weeks worrying and sweating it out wondering if I was pregnant. Thankfully I wasn't.

But I can assure you that the sex was unwanted, I told him to stop and fought against him but he was much stronger than me. He knew it was not consensual too.

It was rape. He raped me because deep down he hated women and wanted to hurt me, especially because I was a female in the Army and an Army Officer to boot, which he thought was wrong. His belief was that women should be subservient to all men and be at home, barefoot and pregnant.

So he raped me to put me in my place.

Kind of like how the deep south used lynching to keep blacks in their place.

You wanna try to tell me what happened was consensual? Was a result of loneliness or horniness or the stress of being in a hardship assignment?

Please proceed....

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Response to LiberalLoner (Reply #20)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 04:51 PM

26. No. If you deduce this from my many posts above, I'll try again. I absolutely respect you

and your horrendous experience.

It is clear what the military culture is, particularly away from home or abroad...through history and even through the "feminism" culture and apologetics of Western Europeans. Stateside and in the foxhole are two different situations. Women need to know this...not be lured into thinking it's some walk in the park with extra pay.

Let me be more clear...the weekend destinations of the military male on leave are not characterized by proponents of feminism. The military female just makes it more convenient...consensual or not.

Just saying "No" is only as effective as the sociological culture protecting (and successfully prosecuting) that right to say "No". If I go to a local bar in my neighborhood, some guy hits on me, doesn't take the hint, and I am forced to loudly express my disapproval, he's likely to be asked to leave. But if I go to the "other side of town" (in whatever context that may be) and some guy hits on me, I'm taking my chances.

Should it be this way? No. Is it? Yes. It took more than 100 years just to affirm the rights that being a woman is not an accident of birth...and it's still in process..witness the Act of Congress it took to validate the Violence Against Women here at home. Will the military female ultimately be accepted as an equal human being amongst the testosterone challenged? Perhaps, but not likely in this generation.

And I am so very sorry for your experience and please know that I understand...just the responses are different. My gay neice was raped...she only told me years later...for her it was a double rape. And due to circumstances unique to the military...and she was in Germany in peacetime...there was absolutely nothing she could do. Report it? She didn't even know who did it to her as she was hooded. But they knew she was gay.

Yes, the military is unique and should be assesed as such before enlisting.

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Response to libdem4life (Reply #26)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 05:05 PM

27. I agree that I don't recommend young women enlist. Or become Officers. I hope it gets better but..

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Response to LiberalLoner (Reply #27)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 05:19 PM

28. Again, thank you for your service.

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Response to libdem4life (Reply #5)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 05:28 PM

29. Rape is a violent act that's about power and domination

It is not about being sad, lonely, and in need of TLC.

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Response to The Blue Flower (Reply #29)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 05:36 PM

30. We agree ... the military excels in power and domination. That's my point.

Many soldiers ...male and female ... are sad and lonely in wartime...it's just how it manifests. Yet this emotion and often gender-laden burden in a war zone lacks official relevance...that is the difference. These are emotions and events that have no investment in warfare...modern or ancient.

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Response to libdem4life (Reply #5)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 11:03 PM

31. These noble warriors

need to see the enlisted women as "sisters-in-arms" not as "chicks". AND even if you find someone "hot" it doesn't mean you can just take her. It's called self control. See how simple than is, guys?

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Response to riderinthestorm (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 12:23 PM

11. I'd agree with that.

If a woman (or anyone) hasn't got official equal rights and status which 'should' automatically demand equal respect and treatment ... violence, or any illegal act towards her, is less likely to be taken seriously by primitives who function best on control and fear. It's a shame there has to be a connection, but I believe it will help. imho.

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Response to riderinthestorm (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 01:01 PM

13. I completely agree with him...

"Dempsey says the sexual assault problem is more complicated than that, but he indicates the disparity between the roles of men and women in the military has created a psychology that lends itself to disrespect for women."

Kudos to General Dempsey.

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Response to riderinthestorm (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 01:21 PM

14. I completely agree with General Dempsey...

...it is without a doubt a contributing factor. People commit crimes because they believe they can get away with it, and having such a hierarchy bolsters that belief.

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Response to riderinthestorm (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 02:05 PM

16. This is an excellent point, and I definitely saw some of that

Glad to see a general getting it. For all the awfulness of Iraq and Afghanistan, at least we now have flag officers who understand combat operations firsthand.

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