Sunday, March 25, 2007

Are Women Soldiers Inherently Less Valuable?

So few people seemed moved enough to comment on the "Murdered Woman Soldier" post and I am disturbed. Very few in the blogosphere, the left blogosphere mind you, have bothered to post this tragic, powerful story; A young female soldier found battered and sexually abused in her tent with a bullet hole through her head is called "suicide" by the army and they refuse to re-open the case. What more needs to be said here? Is it an underlying bias toward women in the military? Do women who choose to serve their country just automatically 'get what they deserve' when they are raped? I have posted a number of stories about the unprecedented abuse women in the military have endured since the inception of the "war on terror." The posts go virtually unnoticed. And guess what? The newest terrorists are us. Al-Qaeda ain't got nothin' on the Pentagon.

Male US military persons are raping and killing their fellow female soldiers. Military policy downrange requires that females go places in pairs while in the presumed safety of their own bases. The danger is from male soldiers and no one seems to give a shit. Women are dying of dehydration from not drinking as to avoid having to go to the toilet. I guess I didn't realize how deep the misogyny runs in the left side of the pool.

At least one man has taken this incident seriously and not only posted on it but has begun a petition to send to the Senate Armed Services Committee to force the re-opening of the investigation. Give Philip Baron of Waveflux your thanks and support by signing the petition and perhaps the family and friends of PFC LaVena Johnson may rest a bit easier. Missouri TV news report of LaVena's story.

18 comments:

Naj said...

Hope, they are not. all this raping is done in spirit of justice and equality. They just want to show what liberation of women is supposed to mean, for all the oppressed women of the middle east!

Wouldn't it be discriminatory and racist if they just rape Iraqi girls, and not the fellow american ones?

( forgive my cynical mood! I feel dark!)

HopeSpringsATurtle said...

I understand your cynicism Naj. I was just at your place and had to stop reading my cynicism is so high...I shall return though, to finish your excellent in-depth posts.

HopeSpringsATurtle said...

And of course Naj, the misogyny is female not racial. I want the soldiers that harm ANY woman, man or child for that matter to be punished--severely.

Eli said...

Someone needs to explain to me again why gays in the military would destroy morale...

HopeSpringsATurtle said...

Teh Gays would undermine the raping odf the female soldiers Eli...duh.

Brother Tim said...

It is indeed a sad state of affairs, Hope. However, when partaking in an illegal, immoral, un-Godly, unnecessary war, nothing is considered taboo. King George and his Court of Neo-con Jesters are leading by example. Really, what else is to be expected?

Mary said...

Thank you for your work on this story Hope (petition signed). How devastating for her family to have not only the loss, but the sense of betrayal from the Military to whom they entrusted their lovely child.

The officer corps seems so removed from responsiblity, from devotion to their soldiers who are sacrificing so much.

I'm hoping and praying for answers and peace for her family, but they will always have a huge whole in their lives.

op99 said...

In my casual reading of history, it seems that rape and pillage of the conquered civilian populace was commonplace throughout history. The practice eventually seemed to have lost its veneer of official acceptance, for example, in the Napoleanic wars, but still happened while the commanders looked the other way.

We have heard tales of rapes of Vietnamese women in our subjugation of that population, and now of rapes of Iraqi women and children. What has changed is that repression of the news of the practice is rigorously surpressed in the military command structure that allows it, since it is now considered (as it was not historically) unacceptable by the society from which the military is drawn.

That this same mentality extends to the despised and resented female personnel in our own ranks surprises me not at all, nor that the story is surpressed and minimized. And you are correct that if more of us don't get mad and get loud, it will never change.

op99 said...

Oh, duh.

In my above comment,

"What has changed is that repression of the news of the practice is rigorously surpressed in the military command structure that allows it, since it is now considered (as it was not historically) unacceptable by the society from which the military is drawn."

should read

"What has changed is that the news of the practice is rigorously supressed in the military command structure that allows it, since it is now considered (as it was not historically) unacceptable by the society from which the military is drawn."

newtonusr said...

Mostly I think of my sisters being victimized like this, and how off-the-deep-end angry and frustrated I'd be.
These lies are only going to spike, as folks find out the next "real story" of the death of Pat Tillman and other troops. May it be the end of these perps.
Peace be with this family.

Eli said...

I think the first connection we're all making is that the brutalizing nature of war itself is turning troops into psychopaths - but isn't it also true that the military is a lot more willing to enlist people who are psychopaths to begin with in order to meet their recruiting goals?

To revisit my previous comment from a less snarky direction: Psychopaths and criminals Good, gays Bad.

I don't know why gays (or anyone other than right-wing crazies, young people desperate for money/education, and people who just want to kill) would want any part of this madness.

op99 said...

Eli said:

I don't know why gays (or anyone other than right-wing crazies, young people desperate for money/education, and people who just want to kill) would want any part of this madness.

If I had no higher education and few other opportunities to improve my life, I would consider a game of high-stakes Russian roulette with a, what, less than 1% chance of death, and maybe 5% chance of permanent disability (for which I probably won't be compensated). That's not counting PTSD and other mental illnesses, but I don't imagine the recruiters mention those. And I'm sure the recruiters are sincere when they tell me that I am unlikely to be deployed to Iraq, nuh-uh.

That's how regular people on the wrong side of a haves/have nots economy wind up in the insanity, and once they've got you, there is no exit.

shoephone said...

And George Bush, War Criminal Extraordinaire, had the audacity to continually repeat one of the big "reasons" we just had to go and invade Iraq: to save the women and girls from Saddam Hussein's "rape rooms!"

Uh-huh. Is there even one real, live journalist in the D.C. Press Corps who's willing to stand up and ask Bush about the utter hypocrisy of that rationale? Not to mention, that Clinton, who put together a NATO force for ousting the Serbian regime, reminded us that rape is, indeed, a war crime. And that it was a tactic commonly employed by the Serbs. Hey, that reminds me... we didn't lose one soldier in the Bosnian War. Isn't that something.

Great work, Hope. I pray for the day you don't have to follow stories like this one.

MarcLord said...

finally signed the petition, thanks for putting it up Hope. I'm not excusing the men who terrify, molest, rape, and apparently kill women on bases. I'm not excusing the commanders who put those men and women into a lose-lose situation, either.

Unfortunately misogyny can be quite specifically racial in ideology and practice. As op99 says, it's a story which runs all through the history of conflict. To the victor go the spoils. And as shoephone points out, the only way to restrain troops in a war zone is to make rape a war crime, and to enforce it as such.

HopeSpringsATurtle said...

Bravo to all the comments and thanks to all that signed the petition. Yes, rape should be a war crime. Race and gender aside, How can your comrades in arms ever be considered "spoils of war"? You will have to explain that one to me Marc. These women and Gays, and POC do go into the military for all the same reasons young, white guys do. Many times though it is an opportunity out of poverty. It is unconscionable that one soldier would rape and kill another soldier in the same unit. It is criminal behavior plain and simple with the added special circumstance of being surrounded by hostilities from without. This incident sickens me to my core and I will not rest until the man/men that did it are brought to justice.

Psychomikeo said...

It wasn't that long ago that girl baby were thrown in to rivers or were just left to die as they weren't worth as much as boy babys....hell I'm bet it still goes on but I'm only guessing

op99 said...

I left a message with my Senator Hillary Clinton, who is on the Senate Armed Services Committee. Should her people ever see fit to get back to me, I will make my report here. (not holding my breath - I will try her DC office tomorrow)

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