Sunday, January 04, 2015

Sexual crimes and the military pt. 2

There's a quite disturbing (trigger warning) article in GQ on male-on-male rape in the US military. I don't know what the figures are for Canada, but most of the attention is on women. Still, my own experience suggests that men might also face issues. A couple of incidents come to mind.

It was 20 years ago now, but one instructor I had would get visible erections when he ran soldiers (mostly male) through endless 'change parades', a stress technique that requires soldiers to change into different orders of dress within very short time limit (seconds or minutes). Failure to meet the timing was punished by push-ups or being required to adopt very painful and uncomfortable stress positions. I have no idea what happened to this man.

In another instance I know of, an instructor ordered male subordinate soldiers into the shower and required they lather and rinse repeatedly in front of him until he was satisified they were clean. This man eventually seriously injured a soldier in another private powertrip and his career was thankfully ended.

There were rumours of rapes targetting men, or stories of things that happened in other armies, but most of us dismissed those. Now, I wonder and I'm sure others have stories.

Power resulting from hierarchical organisation (militaries, police, workplaces, government/public nowadays) results in abuse because humans are imperfect that way. Hierarchy is an ancient method of organisation, and one that I think has seen its day as society runs into ecological and social crises resulting, fundamentally, from a few people able to control others.


West End Bob said...

Jeez, Boris, that GQ article is eye-opening, depressing, sobering and well-worth the read.

Thanx . . . .

e.a.f. said...

did men think it only happened to women? well you see rape isn't about sex, its about power. to exercise power some men rape. they don't care who they rape, as long as they get to "exercise" their power.

male on male rape is not often discussed because it has been swept under the carpet and many take it to mean the victim is less than male/manly.

once this gets out into the public "domain" you can rest assured there will be thousands of reports on the subject. We have only to look at how sexual abuse of children in hockey finally came out into the open.

opit said...

I'm sure there is lots more. There is little better testimony to the perverseness of our inner nature - something priests used to harp on before they got caught abusing the choir - than an epic study on authority and torture.