According to a recent Newsweek magazine’s shocking headliner expose – “The Military’s Male-Rape Secret” – the DADT policy in place since 1993 has included not only gays but, it would seem, an alarming number of straight males.
Hey, Sarge! Hey, Cap! Hup two! Don’t ask. Don’t tell which Alpha Male screwed which new recruit, boot-camp trainee, shy foreign-born enlistee, for reasons of pulling rank, brute power, ethnic dislike, mean-spiritedness, macho perversity. Whatevuh!
Tell it to the Marines. Who’d believe you any way? 100 percent straight male! (Don’t bottom, ever! That’s what women do. If you’re a top it’s OK. You’re still straight. Get that! Still straight. Wipe that smile off your face, Pvt. Ivanovbitch. Bend over. This is A-mare-ree-cah!)
Newsweek’s heretofore hush hush report – shades of Sodom & Gommorah revisited – is all about straight male on straight male rape. (Time for fundamentalist Bible thumpers to take another look at Genesis 19. Homos to blame? More than likely OT straights bent on showing Lot who the hell’s boss around Old Sodom City. Lot’s daughters’ bootie or no. Power, Yahweh, baby! Power!)
Setting the record straight, so to speak, I can remember a time when guys – rough trade, straight men, horny types whose girlfriends or wives wouldn’t perform oral or anal sex – not then a Cosmopolitan mag topic – believed they weren’t the least bit gay, even if they had homo sex, as long as they were the active not passive partner. In some cultures it’s still the norm today. Insertee, yes. Deep throater, no.
How serious is the U.S. military problem probes Newsweek? Very. According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, “last year nearly 50,000 male veterans screened positive for ‘military sexual trauma,’ up from just over 30,000 in 2003.”
The article doesn’t report on what DVA defines as ‘military sexual trauma,’ but adds, “last year more than 110 men made confidential reports (to the Defense Department) of sexual assault by other men, nearly three times as many in 2007.”
It wasn’t until 1992 – one year before implementation by President Clinton’s troubling DADT policy – that the Defense Department even acknowledged sexual assault as an egregious offense, and then only for female soldiers as victims.
Of these female victims, by the way, Newsweek comments, “In fact, it is the high victimization rate of female soldiers – women in the armed forces are now more likely to be assaulted by a fellow soldier than killed in combat – that has helped casting light on men assaulting men.”
Military experts and outside researchers cited are clear that the perpetrators of male-on-male rape are not gay or ‘closeted’ soldiers but straights. “Like in prisons and in other predominantly male environments, male-on-male assault is motivated not by homosexuality, but power, intimidation, and domination.”
Mic Hunter, author of “Honor Betrayed: Sexual Abuse in America’s Military,” is quoted. “One of the reason people commit sexual assault is to put people in their place, to drive them out. Sexual assault isn’t about sex. It’s about violence.” Typical victims are young, low ranking, targeted for vulnerability. Both men and women.
There’s a possibility that history – as it unfortunately does, if lessons of the past are not learned – is here repeating itself. This time ancient history. The Genesis 19 tale of Sodom & Gommorah. You know: Lot, offering hospitality to three guests – angels stopping by for tea and crumpets – finding his suburban condo besieged by butch males who want to ‘know’ the angels.
Lot instead offers his – pardon the pun, buddy boy – comely daughters. “Not good enough. No deal, Lotto. We want to show these strangers who’s boss around here. Show who’s in charge. We gonna pluck a few feathers. Just a bit uh bunk house fun. Give da’ wives a little break. A guy thing, Lottie! Screw thou.”