Archive for the ‘veterans rights for military rape incidents’ Category

Veterans Rights for military rape incidents !

November 8, 2006

Since 1970 I kept the fact that I was raped during my less than a year in military service-to my self. I have been ashamed of my failure in the Navy…and yet , the failure was not mine , but has always been my feelings. I have felt tremendous other things about myself because of the rape and sexual assaults. I define them that way because the night of new years 1970 was the actual rape occourence-and I suppose the rest of the times despite my succombing to pressure can only be refered to as sexual assaults. I am not going to try to explain that any further-they were all unwanted…all of it , so I guess in that-they are all rapes.

But the issue is’nt just me. I have come to learn by looking in the internet that there are thousands of men just like myself that have endured the silence because of the stigma and the shame of being a male rape survivor…but you see I must say also that rape is a genderless crime upon a persons body-a theft of a persons entire self , and there are men and women that have experienced rape and sexual assault while doing service to their country and are going untreated because of the fears related to this type of crime and many-like myself-that did not know treatment was available. Another thing I did not know was the possabilty of financial benifits….I  never saw a monitary price that could erase my past-but once it was mentioned to me I admit my ears became open to the idea. I’ve lived in the pits all of my adult life because of this , yes-I could accept some help. No , I don’t think it is all wrong.

In 1969 times were tumultuous and draft aged men were running north to Canada instead of enlisting as a volunteer-or being drafted , to escape being sent to Viet Nam. Some found refuge in college classrooms , but many of us went in on our own accord. I did-I was 17 years old and enlisted before I had a draft card. I tried to enlist in the Marines-later I can tell you I am glad I did not-more at the convinceing of the recruiter , who I returned after boot camp and thanked. I wanted to be in uniform.

My circumstances as everyone of ours was different-why I went to barracks D was all a mistake. It all does’nt matter in relevence to this-what does matter is that each of us that has experienced this crime while in service have had one more thing taken from us-the knowledge that we have a right to help…and a right to be heard and we need to be heard.

When the Abu Grahib scandel happened it was appalling to me that they awarded the guys the soldiers abused and made a big stink about it and even convicted the soldiers involved. I have’nt seen the photographs-it would’nt matter because none of it was right. They had no right to do that to anyone….but it angered me personally that when I was raped the only thing I got from anyone was the laugh the navel intelligence officer gave me the day of the rape along with the advice to get used to it. The prisoners that were in that prison in Iraq were given compensation? I really felt one more let down in that what took place in my life 36 years ago…no one was ever punished for the abuse I took-only me. Yet it sickens me that they made such a case about that poor England girl and the others….sure , they might deserve punishment of some degree , but it is confused justice.

I’m pretty sure the veterans administration would rather we go on and be silent. But there are too many of us who wanted to do the right thing and were doing good jobs of it and in return the damage to our bodies and spirits was all we got. I would have gone to Viet Nam. I willingly walked into the Marine recruiters-it was him that said the Navy was better fit for me…and I went into that office on my own too. I would have gone to Viet Nam for the Navy too if that was the call-I would have …and was doing the right thing. There are those of you that were to. We stepped up to the plate and someone interfered with our life-for most of us…permanantly.

I am telling my personal story-the history of my life in and out of the Navy as the need as a survivor has demanded that I do so before this entire thing poisons me completely because it is my hope another one like me will see it and say they too are tired of being silent and want the justice…or just the satisfaction we deserve. I want to purge myself of all that I can to explain the way this has disabled me and how it worked to seperate me from my family and from things people take for granted day after day….and I am not wanting this just for myself-I want this for each of us. I want our veterans administration to step up like we stepped up and offer us help sensitive to the needs of our injuries and our mental health. I am sick of the system that is in place where we have to apply for help to some person in sneakers and a ball cap with the back ground of a fish wrapper who might be a champion at pushing government paper….but has no business hearing the nature of our stories. We are veterans. We signed up to go where they would have to send us-we did’nt slink away from our duty….we went forward. We deserve better-just as much as any veteran…but not every veteran has had a piece of thier soul removed in the way we have ( but God knows that all combat veterans have left something behind on the field of battles) . I had to tell my details to a fish wrapper-it made me want to vomit…it made me feel violated again. I know that I am not alone-we are many.

Come forward. Contact someone at the Miles Foundation ( 203-270-7861) and ask for direction and offer up complaint as well. Write to Congress….yeah,I don’t trust them much either-but write them regardless.

We should not remain silent any longer-much of the cases alive today in the military are treated wrongly and this must change. Theres a story in the book of Joshua in the Bible how the soldiers followed Joshua to surround the city of Jerico and God had warned them to stay silent until He gave the word….so they marched around that city for seven days and that seventh day God said for all Joshua’s soldiers to yell as loud as they could. Thats how the walls of Jerico fell. We need to YELL brothers and sisters-we are special and we need to be heard.