"In a way, it's surprising that there aren't more bodies piling up at military bases all over this nation"
- The Fayetteville Observer
In May, I wrote about the surge in rapes against U.S. military women, a story, like so many on the underbelly of the military today, that had gained little to no national media attention. Now comes a report from Truthout.org that there has been a dramatic surge in domestic violence, and even murder, against U.S. military women in North Carolina. Over the last 9 months, 4 military women have been murdered near Fort Bragg and Camp LeJeune. Back in 2002, 4 military spouses were murdered by their special forces husbands near Fort Bragg, as well. Reports of rape and domestic violence have also spiked. The Fayetteville Observer, which serves the base, recently editorialized about the link between domestic and state-sponsored violence:
"It's an old argument. We train men, and now women, to wage war, then we are baffled when they do that to each other. It is driven in times of war by a national culture that can extol violence, conflating it with patriotism. And don't overlook the general population raised on a steady diet of malevolence disguised as entertainment. In a way, it's surprising that there aren't more bodies piling up at military bases all over this nation. We are certain, nevertheless, that the demonstrators (at the gates of Fort Bragg) were on to something that we as a community need to address. This may become an epidemic that threatens us all. It is a problem we, as a community, military and civilian, can't ignore. It is also a problem that we have not, so far, effectively solved."The editorial concluded:
The Observer editorial acknowledged, "The Army has made a good-faith effort to provide programs and services to prevent domestic violence and save lives. But it's not enough. The effort must be redoubled, the violence studied more carefully, and the intervention waged even more aggressively ... the recent spate of murders underscores the fact that domestic violence remains a significant problem here. Whatever preventive action is being taken at Fort Bragg, it isn't enough."Add to this terribleness, another dirty little secret in the U.S. military that has failed to break the public consciousness: suicide rates within the military are stratospheric.
What the fuck, people!!?? This is shameful. It underscores the very real damage inflicted upon human beings when you turn them into killing machines and send them off to war. We are sensitive creatures and war messes people up. One need only survey military memoirs from across the 20th century and beyond to understand this fact. And, if we are going to send people off to kill in our name, then the nation better damn well be ready to provide ALL the resources necessary to take care of them when they return. I'm not talking about doing the minimum necessary, but rather the MAXIMUM necessary to help these veterans out. If we can find trillions to fight the war... If we can find trillions to bailout corrupt CEOs in our nation's financial system... Then we sure as hell can find the resources to take care of those who have given themselves up for our nation. That is the very LEAST we can do for them.
Shame on us...