(He's fer it). No one in the comments section brought up the touchy and delicate issue I would like to address. Any candid discussion of women in the military must focus on some key problems.
What about the barracks rooms designated for anonymous sex where females can try to get knocked up so they don't have to deploy? What about the females in Iraq who are running prostitution rings, charging money for sex with the male soldiers? What about the females who are making pornography and posting it on the internet? What about the females who have boasted that their goal is to sleep with every officer on the FOB? What about the females who lure married men to their beds and then threaten to expose their adultery? What about the frightening power a junior enlisted soldier has when she's sleeping with the first sergeant?
All of these scenarios I describe have happened in our brigade. I know of families that have been destroyed because of both real and imagined infidelities during a deployment. I've heard stories about ruthless female soldiers that make me ashamed of my gender. If we are going to discuss the effects of women in combat, we do need to discuss all that Smink brought up: performance, sexual harrassment, etc. But we also need to address the nasty effects of taking thousands of males away from their families and bunking them with a handful of women for a year. Yeah, I bet a lot of times it's the males' fault, but I've heard enough stories to make me wonder if the females haven't brought some of it on themselves.
You raise some serious questions there. What should be done, or how should those situations be handled/prevented?
Great continuation of an interesting discussion.
Posted by: JACK ARMY at July 31, 2005 01:02 PM (L20+G)
You know I was just all set to write an indignant blog entry about this very issue. Someone posted a link on a board I read to pics of a woman deployed in Iraq, buck naked with an automatic weapon between her legs. That discussion focused on 'what you do on your own time is your business' But what about the fact that the woman in question was wearing a US uniform?
You make good points that should be discussed. Prostitution is illegal and should be prosecuted. A man or a woman who's married and cheating on their spouse knows it's wrong Now if they are being blackmailed because of it, that's illegal.
But don't make the guys seem like boy scouts. Just because they're deployed doesn't mean that they don't have to accept personal responsibility for their actions. When I hear of women acting like you described it makes me ashamed of my gender, and angry that their behavior could have the effect of setting back women's rights gains.
I also have to wonder if some of these problems would be an issue if the US weren't deployed to Muslim countries where fraternizing with the indigenous women is a no no.
Posted by: Mare at July 31, 2005 06:13 PM (0CpxG)
You're kidding, right?
How about punishment for those men AND women that commit a crime (prostitution and the solicitation of prositution). And if this is on going, it more reeks of a failure of command.
Are we going to whine that a man can't resist such temptation? That's why they make women where bhurkas for heaven's sake! Insist on self control.
If husbands are cheating on their wives (here or there) -- this is just the woman's fault? Self control.
"Lure married men to their beds"?? The married man didn't have a clue? Hypnotized? Drugged? Stupid? You can't be lured -- you have to be a willing participant.
Women soldier don't need male soldiers to get pregnant to avoid deployment -- any sperm donor will do -- on or off the base. The barrracks is just convenient -- not a necessity.
Sleep with every officer? There are few officers that have invested that much time, effort and sacrifice that would be willing to lose their marriage, career, and self-esteem to sleep with an enlisted soldier who claims to want to sleep with every officer on the FOB?? (FOB groupies??) but again, the officer's not an idiot -- he has to be a willing participant.
This is not an issue of women in the military. This is the species as it always has been. And by my reckoning, there is a WHOLE LOT MORE rape and sexual assault perpetrated on women soldiers by male soldiers that those evil women soldiers luring men to their "doom".
Posted by: Not Kidding at July 31, 2005 06:19 PM (pHSgP)
As I stated in the comments on Jack Army's blog, I am not saying the men are saints...I'm just saying that the women provide their fair share of nasty. The original post at Smink's absolved women of any role in the military's problems with sexual harrassment.
Posted by: Sarah at August 01, 2005 01:27 AM (qPy3t)
I sooo did not have the balls to bring this up, glad you did!!
Posted by: ArmyWifeToddlerMom at August 01, 2005 01:28 AM (R/Ouj)
i've read your site for some time and have enjoyed it. congratulations on your husband returning home. i have heard nothing but great things about his division and heard recently that one of cpt simms' soldiers may be up for the medal of honor... ssg bellavia may be the most decorated solider in the war... was he one of your husbands soldiers? that kid is outstanding he killed six terrorists by himself in a house and i read that he was forced to use hand to hand fighting... i wanted to mention right quick that your apology to sgt fitts was very big of you. we that have never been in combat can never know what it is like. is that your husband shooting that rpg next to his tank? amazing. can you ask him what he was shooting at? vehicles, houses... action shots like that are amazing. why didn't he use the tank gun... was it damaged in fighting... anyway.. this site is great
Posted by: douglas at August 01, 2005 02:54 AM (qVsTR)
is your husband going back soon... know that my church and family are covering you and him and all our soldiers with prayers
Posted by: douglas at August 01, 2005 02:57 AM (qVsTR)
Isn't INTEGRITY valued in all our military services?
Integrity: the courage to do what is right even when no one is looking.
I find this discussion humerous. Everyone seems so concerned about the promiscuity in the war zone.
What about promiscuity in the USA?
War is just another excuse to engage in immoral behaviour.
Posted by: Bec at August 01, 2005 03:53 AM (lzFux)
I've seen both sides of it. Went through co-ed Basic and AIT, was in an MOS that some say is as high as 50% female (96B - Intel Analyst). That means I served with females from the day I started Basic to the day I ETSed. A good soldier is a good soldier and I worked with some very good female soldiers ... but I also saw a lot of sex-related drama happen around female troops, including abuse of double standards and sex discrimination policies. Also saw male troops 'lose their military bearing' (lose their minds, more like it) around female troops. I couldn't imagine NOT serving with female soldiers, at least in my old MOS, but it's definitely not a problem-free arrangement.
Posted by: Eric at August 01, 2005 05:40 PM (CTgpx)
wow. ok. I served 8 years in the Navy. I heard the horror stories too. Women who got stationed at Diego Garcia and made a dandy sum prostituting. It exists. So does rape among the MEN. There is a problem but lets not lay a blanket of blame over men vs women (or the other way around). You have some bad apples in the Service, period. Removing women from the Military won't get rid of the problem.
I remember a friend who went on a 6 month world cruise on his boat. He was a lowly supply petty officer. Oh the stories he told. His boat had NO women. They still had problems. Lets not even discuss when they hit port. He said that the people you thought would surely cheat on their spouse didn't, and the ones you never imagined would....did. He said he was astonished to see the XO in line outside of medical to get checked for AIDS after a port call to Mombasa.
The answer is stricter rules and stricter punishments for disobeying. I am now in the Army National Guard. I am a very moral person and would hope that I never stoop to those levels.
Bottom line? It's like my Mama always said "If you go looking for trouble, your gonna find it."
Posted by: Sgt Lori at October 06, 2005 01:15 PM (k+MjU)
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