Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Commentary: "Rape Hobbles Bush Administration Policies"

(The following is both an expression of understanding of this Truthout article by Ann Wright and a critical response to the first comment posted below the article.)

While it would have been nice to have a little more of a breakdown of the progressive rapes and sexual assaults of Japanese women and girls by U.S. servicemen, that must not be taken to detract from the terrible fact that it is even occurring. There should be NO attacks occurring.

Similarly, the eventual dropping of charges in that one case, and the claim of lack of evidence in the other, DOES IN NO WAY MINIMIZE the fact that the attack happened in the first place. There are legal wranglings and political pressures on the Japanese courts by U.S. interests unfortunately, yet inevitably, involved, and it is small comfort to have the accused servicemen prosecuted or suicidal years after the fact for repeat offenses on American women -- after being allowed to retire or be dishonorably discharged for the previous offense in Japan.

The fact remains that women around the world -- whether civilians or servicewomen; abroad or at home -- are needlessly and thoughtlessly put in danger without access to fair and adequate legal and medical recourse. The fact remains that the culture of the U.S. military (and by extension, facets of U.S. society) accepts sexual assault as part of the lay of the land -- part of a boys will be boys mentality.
That mentality is not acceptable in the grade school classroom and is certainly not acceptable in what is supposed to be one of the noblest and most representative institutions of our nation.

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