• kevin-rahe

    California congresswoman Jane Harman has said that military women are more likely to be raped by a fellow soldier than killed by enemy fire in Iraq. Several studies indicate that as many as a third of military women report rape or attempted rape during their military service.


    Umm, perhaps I’m being too logical, but wouldn’t this suggest that perhaps we should re-evaluate the wisdom of allowing women in the military?  At the very least, arguing over access to abortion without addressing the atrocities that lead to the supposed demand for them is irresponsible.

  • beenthere72

    So it’s the women’s fault for being present in the military for getting raped?   The men shouldn’t take any responsibility and say maybe RESPECT women? 


    I’ll say it again, Kevin:  Seriously?  GTFO.  Seriously.

  • mechashiva

    My ex, a Navy veteran, made that argument when I brought this issue up with him. His opinion was that because we can’t expect the men to not rape their comrades-in arms, women should be in segregated units or simply not allowed to serve in the military. His pseudo-feminist argument was that we live in a culture that propogates beliefs about sex and gender that encourage rape, and this is even more true in the military sub-culture. Men in the military (and elsewhere, imo) tend to resist programs designed to discourage sexual harassment, assault, and rape, so the only way for there to be real change is to just wait until our mainstream culture addresses the issue. Until then… this is just one of the many reasons women don’t belong in the military, according to him.


    Of course there’s one big problem… our culture isn’t going to change if we just take a “wait and see” approach. Additionally, the above thinking suggests that men can’t (and therefore shouldn’t) be held accountable for rape. They can’t help it if they rape someone, it’s just the culture/stress of war! It suggests that rape is a normal/expected behavior, considering the environment. To me, that means we need to change the environment, and not by removing women. We need to foster an environment that would support soldiers seeking psychological care (the stresses of war do contribute to rape), for one thing. We also need to hold soldiers accountable for sexual misconduct.


    My ex’s argument against providing abortion services on military bases was centered on a warped version that idea of accountability. In combat areas, soldiers are not supposed to be having sex. Seriously, that’s a rule. Here’s where some fucked-up shit comes in. First, the ex claims that women in the military who become pregnant just “cry rape” so that they won’t be punished for having had sex in a war zone (just like they get pregnant on purpose so they can be transferred to a better/safer location, then they “just have abortions” and stay at a new cushy command). Furthermore, he believes consensual sex in a war zone is so threatening to combat operations that it should be discouraged in any way possible. That means no providing contraception and no providing abortion… so that soldiers will be dissuaded from having sex with each other. Of course, his claim is that it would be much easier to solve the problem by just disallowing women in the military to begin with. Gay men can stay, though, because they keep quiet about the sex they have and don’t let it emotionally compromise them during missions (not like those hysterical women or the heterosexual men who might actually care about them, those pussies).


    Notice a pattern? His solution to all problems that women in the military might face is to keep women out of the military. Underneath all the bullshit excuses, he really just has an attitude of disdain for women… particularly military women. If he’s to be believed, his perspective is par for the course among men in the service. I find this highly disturbing. How on earth do you go about changing attitudes like those?


    In any case, it needs to be done without compromising women’s rights. Military service offers many benefits, and women should have equal access. It certainly wouldn’t send the right message to take a backwards step by removing women from military service. It would be like kicking blacks out due to all the racism.

  • colleen

    Umm, perhaps I’m being too logical, but wouldn’t this suggest that perhaps we should re-evaluate the wisdom of allowing women in the military?

    Because men cannot help but rape women and it’s just too much trouble to collect the DNA and hold them accountable? Because it’s OK if American soldiers rape the women of occupied nations?

  • katwa

    Maybe since it’s the men raping, we should re-evaluate the wisdom of allowing men in the military?

  • kevin-rahe

    Certainly my first point is debatable, as you’ve ably shown.  My second remains quite valid, however.  While I don’t have time to read the 536-page report the story links to, it would be interesting know if the military has a hypothesis as to why the sexual assault rate in the military is at least twice what it is in the civilian population.  If there’s any truth at all to what your ex said about women claiming rape when their pregnancy was actually the result of consensual sex, however, then there are going to be some who will push for access to abortion but be less than enthusiastic about getting to the bottom of the excessive number of sexual assaults.

  • mechashiva

    From the conversations I’ve had with military women who came to the clinic I worked at for abortions (and from some less douchey military men), the claims about “crying rape” are complete bunk (just like they usually are in the civillian world). I really don’t get why you think pro-choicers wouldn’t be interested in getting to the bottom of the rape issue, though. The only organizations I have seen fighting to improve conditions for female soldiers are progressive reproductive health non-profits… which are all pro-choice.

  • squirrely-girl

    … goes to YOU! 

    Umm, perhaps I’m being too logical, but wouldn’t this suggest that perhaps we should re-evaluate the wisdom of allowing women in the military? 

    What, couldn’t find a way to blame them for what they were wearing


    You may post some douchey stuff around here, but this statement takes the cake. On so many levels, one of which includes me having actually served my country, I am truly offended. Please don’t try to back peddle on that one either because the hole you’ll dig yourself will require a backhoe to get you out.




  • squirrely-girl

    … if it’s he said – she said, well of course we need to err on the side of believing him. She was probably a total whore sleeping with all teh men folks. And didn’t you know all women are (not so) secretly bewitching Sirens around whom men just can’t be expected to control their sexual urges. I mean… think of it as us protecting teh little womenz. 


    //end snark

  • squirrely-girl


    the claims about “crying rape” are complete bunk



  • crowepps

    Personally, I think we should reevaluate having rapists in the military.  It doesn’t seem to me to make a lot of difference whether they’re raping fellow service members or the civilian population where they’re stationed, they should be booted.

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