This video from the USA says about itself:
Former Indiana National Guard Recruiter, Eric Vetesy, 39, pleaded guilty to ten charges of sexual battery, official misconduct and corrupt business influence last week. He admitted to groping and forcing sexual acts on as many as seven high school girls he recruited in Hamilton County. In exchange for the plea, a rape charge was dropped.
From Associated Press:
8 Women File Lawsuit, Accuse Military Of Having ‘High Tolerance For Sexual Predators In Their Ranks’
By Eric Tucker
WASHINGTON — Eight current and former members of the U.S. military allege in a new federal lawsuit that they were raped, assaulted or harassed during their service and suffered retaliation when they reported it to their superiors.
The lawsuit, filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Washington, accuses the military of having a “high tolerance for sexual predators in their ranks” and fostering a hostile environment that discourages victims of sexual assault from coming forward and punishes them when they do. The suit claims the Defense Department has failed to take aggressive steps to confront the problem despite public statements suggesting otherwise.
The eight women include an active-duty enlisted Marine and seven others who served in the Navy and Marine Corps. Seven women allege that a comrade raped or tried to sexually assault them, including in a commanding officer’s office after a pub crawl in Washington and inside a Naval Air Station barracks room in Florida. The eighth says she was harassed and threatened while deployed to Iraq, only to be told by a superior that “this happens all the time.”
“There (are) no circumstances under which women who are brave enough and patriotic enough to stand up and defend this nation should have to be subjected to being called `slut, whore, walking mattress,'” said Susan Burke, a lawyer representing the women. “This is the year 2012. This kind of conduct is not acceptable.”
The women say they’ve suffered depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder because of the assaults. One woman says she tried to commit suicide after being raped inside her home by a senior officer and his civilian friend.
A similar lawsuit was filed last year in federal court in Virginia. But the case was dismissed after the government argued in part that the judiciary had to defer to military decisions on command and discipline. That decision is being appealed.
Klay, a former Marine Corps officer and plaintiff who says she was raped in August 2010, said the military avoids scrutiny for its handling of these accusations by projecting a warrior culture immune to questioning and because the public doesn’t want to believe these crimes and cover-ups are occurring among service members.
“A noble cause is a great vehicle for corruption because nobody wants to look and nobody is going to look,” Klay told the AP.
After serving in Iraq, Klay was recruited to Military Barracks Washington in the nation’s capital, where she says she was falsely accused of adultery, taunted as a “slut” and “whore” and told to “deal with it” by a superior. She said the situation became so uncomfortable that she requested a deployment to Afghanistan, but that request was denied because she was told she was too critical to the command.
Klay alleges she was raped inside her row house near the barracks on the morning of Aug. 28, 2010, by an officer who said he planned to humiliate her and by his civilian friend. She said she reported the rape and left the barracks, but endured retaliation and became so despondent that she attempted suicide.
Haytham Faraj, a lawyer for the officer, denied that any rape occurred and said that his client and Klay were instead involved in a consensual sexual relationship. His client was found not guilty of the sexual assault allegations after a court-martial and was convicted instead of the lesser offenses of adultery and indecent language.
Another plaintiff, Elle Helmer, who says she was told she obtained a public affairs position at the Marine Barracks because she was considered the “prettiest,” reported being sexually assaulted by a commanding officer following a St. Patrick’s Day pub crawl in Washington’s Capitol Hill in 2006. She says she was discouraged from submitting to a rape kit and medical examination and was told she needed to toughen up. The lawsuit says the military initially refused to investigate, and Helmer says she found herself investigated for public intoxication and conduct unbecoming. She says left the military soon after.
“It took approximately 72 hours for the victim to become the accused in this example, and that was really the beginning of the Spanish Inquisition,” Helmer said.
“Are they saying we’re all lying? Are they saying it doesn’t happen? Hiding behind their rhetoric of zero tolerance is entirely cowardly and misleading and they know it,” Helmer said.
See also here.
Betrayal of Trust? Allegations of rape at West Point, Annapolis: here.
US Army Pioneer Says Male Superiors Mistreated Her Because She’s a Woman: here.
Military Has Not Solved Problem of Sexual Assault, Women Say: here.
Ending military rape: The crusade of “The Invisible War”: here.
“The Invisible War” is a groundbreaking investigation into the epidemic of rape in the U.S. military: here.
Britain: Join the call demanding immediate inquiry into Air Force’s shocking sex abuse scandal: here.
- Power and Violence in the Safe Zones: ‘The Invisible War’ (Review) (popmatters.com)
- Is rape victim anonymity sufficiently well-enforced? (thefword.org.uk)
- Memo to Republican men: Please shut up about rape (salon.com)
- Panetta Sued Over Military Rapes (thedailybeast.com)
- GOP fundraiser accused of rape out on bail (fox13now.com)