This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
Christian extremist General Patraeus bears much responsibility under the title ‘Covered up: More Than 1/3 of American Women Soldiers Raped’ To watch the Guardian exposé on General Patraeus ties to organized torture centers and death squads in Iraq, click
This is about much more than rape, it is about covering up corruption associated murders and, of course, corruption. Moreover, anyone who pursued a close study of events in Iraq and Afghanistan could arrive at a reasonable conclusion the United States military generally, and David Patreaus particularly, had engaged in a world class deceit concerning the course of both conflicts. In Iraq, the ‘surge’ credited with reducing the violence there is a patent ‘bait and switch’ perpetrated on public opinion. In fact the surge upped the violence dramatically during the course of combat operations and it was the subsequent rapid withdrawal of the American soldiers to their bases that dropped the violence. In fact it was the first time since the invasion the Americans had been taken out of exposure by largely restricting them to their bases. The military used the ‘spin’ the ‘surge’ had accomplished the reduced violence when in fact nothing could be further
from the truth. In Afghanistan, Patreaus upped the special operations night raids & drone strikes dramatically while disingenuously calling for reining in air strikes .. all the while keeping the special operations forces independent of NATO command and oversight. The increased night raids were a godsend to the Taliban recruiting effort and strengthened the American and allied opposing force considerably. The war in Afghanistan has gone downhill since. A new article in ‘The American Conservative’ about the near absolute impunity of American generals in relation to corruption caused me to re-post the following under the new title. Our military suffers under a pervasively criminal leadership and there is no better example than how our women soldiers, particularly those who come too close to corruption, are raped and often murdered out of hand** September 2008 | WASHINGTON (CNN) – A congresswoman said Thursday that her “jaw dropped” when military doctors told her that four in 10 women at a veterans hospital reported being sexually assaulted while in the military. A government report indicates that the numbers could be even higher.Rep. Jane Harman, D-California, spoke before a House panel investigating the way the military handles reports of sexual assault.
“My jaw dropped when the doctors told me that 41 percent of the female veterans seen there say they were victims of sexual assault while serving in the military,” said Harman, who has long sought better protection of women in the military. “We have an epidemic here,” she said. “Women serving in the U.S. military today are more likely to be raped by a fellow soldier than killed by enemy fire in Iraq.” As of July 24, 100 women had died in Iraq, according to the Pentagon. In 2007, Harman said, only 181 out of 2,212 reports of military sexual assaults, or 8 percent, were referred to courts martial. By comparison, she said, 40 percent of those arrested in the civilian world on such charges are prosecuted. But when it came time for the military to defend itself, the panel was told that the Pentagon’s top official on sexual abuse, Dr. Kaye Whitley, was ordered not to show up despite a subpoena. Rep. John Tierney, the panel’s chairman and a Democrat from Massachusetts, angrily responded, “these actions by the Defense Department are inexplicable.” “The Defense Department appears to be willfully and blatantly advising Dr. Whitley not to comply with a duly
authorized congressional subpoena. but not all. commanders . “At the 14 installations where GAO administered its survey. Maria Lauterbach. base in Korea when she worked with the American Red Cross. and the onus was on “Maria to connect the dots. a 20-year-old pregnant Marine who was killed in December. 103 service members indicated that they had been sexually assaulted within the preceding 12 months.” Another woman. the military didn’t seem to take her seriously. “I was raped while I slept. The committee also heard from Mary Lauterbach. “I believe that Maria would be alive today if the Marines had provided a more effective system to protect the victims of sexual assault. In the months after her daughter filed the rape claim.S.” she said. she said.” she said. described being raped on a U. including that “most. Of these. 52 service members indicated that they did not report the sexual assault.” Tierney said. the mother of Lance Cpl.” the GAO said. Ingrid Torres. The office found that the military and Coast Guard have established policies to address sexual assault but that the implementation of the programs is hampered by an array of factors. allegedly by a fellow Marine.
org should cross-reference in any study: It will be the same exclusionary male hierarchal religious attitudes which permit both rape and other forms of discrimination by “Born Again” Christian males and by officers particularly. In this case. However if it were non-Christian males committing rape. .000 strong “Officer’s Christian Fellowship” component in the USA military’s officer corps will continue in a position of power to shield their fellow soldiers from rape prosecutions. I predict a study addressing the wider issues of faith in the military relating to or inclusive of rape will draw distinctions related to their exclusionary theology.” “Left unchecked. This is the missing component: Fundamentalism = rape in male hierarchal culture that teaches women are dirty and inferior. the information developed at militaryreligiousfreedom.” My take on this is the fundamentalist Christian military commanders will not address rape.” the GAO said. these challenges can discourage or prevent some service members from using the programs when needed. Until the proper information is developed and addressed.support the programs. this aspect of the exclusionary “Christian Dominion” of the 15. This fundamentalist Christian attitude will not allow rape punishments to be prioritized (too many far more important things they will wish to busy themselves with) in the case of “Born Again” Christian males raping women.
Strong Bonds is now an evangelistic Christian program operating under the guise of a pre-deployment and post-deployment family wellness and marriage training . which was a collaboration between the Army Public Health Nurses and the Chaplain Corps. 28 September 2008: Malalai Kakar. Relevant to this.org lawsuit fighting the Christian religious extremist takeover of out military.S. special forces sweeps of villages. was assassinated by the Taliban in Kandahar.org lawsuit interesting. is a militaryreligiusfreedom. proven program called Building Strong and Ready Families (BSRF). I think my women’s advocate and feminist friends might find this part of the militaryreligiousfreedom.S. Afghanistan for her advocacy of women’s rights. A Christian program emphasizing sexual integrity to the women (in the military where 50 of 100 women soldiers interviewed state they did not report a sexual assault) I don’t guess they are concerned with the men’s sexual integrity. “The Army “Strong Bonds” Program. Who are the Taliban? The dark ages fundamentalists of that regions Islam which mirror the dark ages extremists of Christianity in the United States military special operations forces night raids who are indiscriminately murdering women in Afghanistan as well. police woman and women’s advocate. Government funded Strong Bonds program replaced a decade old.Sunday. with the attitude Muslims are sub-humans while shooting in the back children and women who flee from U. The present U.
program. Strong Bonds eliminated the public health nurses and health education aspects that were a large part of BSRF. These retreats are typically held at ski lodges. titled. the Prevention and Relationship Enhancement Program (PREP). The materials authorized by the Army for Strong Bonds are not religious. the authorized material are completely eliminated. In some cases. “Fighting the battle within. Florida from February 29. In other cases. However. titled. the following material was distributed to attendees: A camouflage box. is being replaced by chaplains with CPREP. created a program run entirely by chaplains who facilitate almost exclusively of Christian religious retreats. and other attractive vacation spots. leaving the remaining mandatory training hours open for other materials selected by the chaplains. and phrase. the Christian version of this program. website (http://www.com/). “Every Soldier’s Battle Kit. 2008.newlife. beach resorts. “The Life Recovery Bible. these authorized materials are only required to be used for a minimal number of the training hours. 200B. At a “Strong Bond” program in Orlando. a secular program on the list of materials authorized for Strong Bonds.” and four volumes by Shannon Ethridge (website .” and imprinted with the name. their phone number. New Life Ministries. and the retreats are overtly Christian.” The box contained: * A Bible. to March 2.
” (a “daily devotional” of Bible verses to support the reader in a quest for “sexual integrity”) I’d like to see women somehow fighting back. Other than the Military Religious Freedom Foundation. and Bible verses to “Discover God’s plan for sexual and emotional fulfillment. in cases of women soldiers who’d come too close to corruption at the command level somehow ended up dead: U.com/) * “Every Woman. Military Is Keeping Secrets About Female Soldiers’ . * “Every Woman’s Battle Promise Book.shannonethridge.http://www.S.” (365 Christian readings and sermons about “sexual purity”). Every Day. no one is holding the military’s feet to the fire on the issue of fundamentalism of our Officer Corps which covers up crimes against women and pushes the USA’s wars as crusades.”). * “Every Woman’s Battle.” (a book of Christian sermons. Where is the American leadership on these issues of wide spread and patent criminal activity in the United States armed forces? Note: this following documentation includes murders of women under General Patreaus’ tenure as Commanding General in Iraq.
seven in the Army Reserve. Fourteen U. six British and one Ukrainian military women and 13 U.S. three of Asian-Pacific descent and one Native American). military women have died in Iraq — three in noncombat-related incidents. Keisha Morgan. 28.S. 41 were women of color (21 African-Americans.” the deaths of two more U. military women who have been killed in Iraq died in “noncombat-related incidents. Both “suicides” are disputed by the families of the women. five more U. military women. Since April 2008. Posted September 10. 41 of the 99 U. seven in the Marine Corps. 2008.. death of 25-year-old Spc. Since I posted on April 28 the article “Is There an Army Cover Up of the Rape and Murder of Women Soldiers. 2007. Army women in Iraq and Afghanistan have been listed as suicides — the Sept. Ann Wright. 2008. Ninetynine U. . 22. nine in the Army National Guard. According to the Department of Defense. Truthdig. as well as probably hundreds of thousands of Iraqi women and girls. military women killed in the Iraq theater.‘Suicides’ By Col. 64 were in the Army active component. female civilians have been killed in Iraq. including five in the Army. military women.S.” Of the 99 U. death of 30-year-old Spc. 16 Latinas.S. Kuwait and Bahrain. Ciara Durkin and the Feb.S.S.S. nine in the Navy and three in the Air Force. Of the 99 U.S.
S. Several more military women have died with unexplained “noncombat” gunshot wounds (U. Four military women of color (three African-Americans and one Latina) have been killed in Afghanistan. who was shot five times by a fellow soldier who then killed himself) and two Navy women in Bahrain (MASN Anamarie Camacho and MASN Genesia Gresham. Army Sgt. 2003: gunshot to the abdomen. Juana Arellano. one British military woman and six U. April 8. 2006: gunshot wound to the head while in a “defensive position”). The deaths of 14 U. both shot by a male sailor who then shot. but did not kill. a victim of vehicular homicide.one in the Army National Guard. Kamisha Block.S. Kuwait or Afghanistan have been classified as suicides. military women in Afghanistan died in noncombat-related incidents.S. and Pfc. military (13 Army and one Navy) women and one British military woman who served in Iraq. two in the Army Reserves.S. Most of the deaths of women who have died of noncombat gunshot wounds have been classified as suicides. Hannah Gunterman McKinney. four U. civilian women have been killed in Afghanistan.S. three in the Air Force. rather than . Melissa Valles. including one now classified as a suicide. forces in Afghanistan) and one in the Marine Corps. Marine Lance Cpl. two in the Navy (on ships supporting U. himself) have died at the hands of fellow military personnel. Two Army women in Iraq (Pfc. According to the Department of Defense. July 9.
Iraq). Iraq). DeniseLannaman (Kuwait). the deaths of 13 Army women and one Navy woman in Iraq and Afghanistan (including Kuwait and Bahrain) have been classified as suicides (numbers confirmed with various media sources): 2008 — Spc. 1st Lt. Gina Sparks (it is unclear where in Iraq she was injured. La. Debra Banaszak (Kuwait). unmarried junior enlisted troops were the most likely to commit suicide. From 2003 until August 2008. but she died in the Fort Polk. according to the report. Pfc. Ciara Durkin (Bagram. Jeannette Dunn (Taji. the only military service to release annual figures on suicides. white. Of the 115 Army suicides. According to Army figures. Sgt. reported that 115 soldiers committed suicide in 2007. Maj. Lavena Johnson (Balad. Capt. USN MA1 Jennifer Valdivia (Bahrain) 2004 — Sgt. Amy Duerkson (Taji. The report lists five Army women as having committed suicide in 2007. 2005 — Pvt. Sgt. Iraq) 2006 — Pfc. Young. Iraq) 2007 — Spc. 32 soldiers committed suicide in Iraq and four in Afghanistan. (medical doctor) Roselle Hoffmaster (Kirkik.homicides. Iraq). Iraq).. Keisha Morgan (Taji. Afghanistan). The Army. hospital) . Gloria Davis (Baghdad). Tina Priest (Taji. 93 were in the Regular Army and 22 were in the Army National Guard or Reserves.
Two were found dead at Camp Taji. Texas. 35. Sgt. during basic training). Duerkson. Two were found dead at Balad. being between the ages of 30 and 47. Iraq)The demographics of those Army women who allegedly committed suicide are as intriguing as the circumstances of their deaths: Seven of the women.2003 — Spc. Two had been raped (Priest. . Sparks. Lannaman. 11 days prior to her death. 32. and were found dead at Camp Taji. Iraq. were older than the norm (Davis. Dunn. and Morgan). Five were noncommissioned officers (Lannaman. Lannaman. Banaszak. (Most military suicides are in their 20s). Dunn. Valles and Valdivia). Iraq (Dunn. Alyssa Peterson (Tal Afar. 46. Five were women of color (Morgan. Priest. 11 days apart (Priest and Duerkson). Johnson. Valles). 47. Four were from units based at Fort Hood. Iraq (Johnson and Valles). Three were officers: a major (Davis). Hoffmaster. a captain and medical doctor (Hoffmaster) and a first lieutenant (Banaszak). Sparks. 30). Melissa Valles (Balad. 44. Davis. and Durkin. Duerksen. 32. Iraq).
both of whom have had a long . Three had expressed concerns about improprieties or irregularities in their commands (Durkin’s concerns were financial. Davis. the night she died). From the day their daughter’s body was returned to them. the parents.” 19-year-old Army Pvt. Two were lesbians (Lannaman and Durkin). Priest. and her death was characterized by the Army as suicide from an M-16 rifle gunshot. Iraq. Two had children (Davis and Banaszak). Lavena Johnson was found dead on the military base in Balad. Peterson was concerned about methods of interrogation of Iraqi prisoners).One other was probably raped (Johnson. Several had been in touch with their families within days of their deaths and had not expressed feelings of depression (Morgan. Johnson). in July 2005. Durkin. The Death of Lavena Johnson As discussed in my article “Is There an Army Cover Up of Rape and Murder of Women Soldiers?. Davis had given a seven-page deposition on contracting irregularities in Iraq the day before she died. Two of the women were allegedly involved in bribes or shakedowns of contractors (Lannaman and Davis).
association with the Army — the father. through the Freedom of Information Act and congressional offices. in those calls. worked for the Department of the Army — harbored grave suspicions about the Army’s investigation into Johnson’s death and the Army’s characterization of her death as suicide. David Woods. hiding burns on one of her hands. a medical doctor. Dr. Over the next two and a half years. is what deepened Dr. “Lavena was clearly happy and seemed in very good health both physically and emotionally. too. As she had been in charge of a communications facility. relentlessly and meticulously requested documents concerning Lavena’s . But the gluing of military uniform white gloves onto Lavena’s hands.” In viewing his daughter’s body at the funeral home. Johnson was able to call home daily. she gave no indication of emotional problems or being upset. As an Army veteran and a long-time Army civilian employee who had counseled veterans. Dr. is an Army veteran and worked 25 years as a Department of the Army civilian and the mother. The hole in Lavena’s head appeared to be more the size of a pistol shot rather than an M-16 round. Johnson’s commanding officer. John Johnson was concerned about the bruising on her face. He was puzzled by the discrepancy in the autopsy report on the location of the gunshot wound. Johnson’s concerns that the Army’s investigation into the death of his daughter was flawed. In a letter to her parents after her death. Capt. Johnson and their family and friends. wrote. he was mystified how the exit wound of an M-16 shot could be so small. and Mrs.
The official Army investigation did not mention a fire.death from the Department of the Army. KBR Women Employees Raped in Iraq The fact that Lavena Johnson’s body was discovered in a KBR tent raises questions. April 3.” The Nation. Brown & Root (KBR). under a wooden bench with an aerosol can nearby. Brown & Root LLC (KBR). another piece of evidence about Johnson’s death emerged. he saw a body. nor that Johnson’s body had been pulled from the fire. an employee of the defense contractor Kellogg. he found a KBR tent on fire. Two female employees of KBR who were raped while in Iraq have testified before Congress. A witness. 2008). Many KBR women employees have been raped in Iraq. When he looked into the tent. “Another KBR Rape Case. sexual harassment or retaliation complaints against Halliburton and its former subsidiary Kellogg. as well as against the Cayman Islandbased Service Employees International Inc. Gradually. On her fourth day in . stated that he heard a gunshot and when he went to investigate. One law firm in Houston has 15 clients with sexual assault. with the Army’s response to each request for information. a KBR shell company (Karen Houppert. The military criminal investigator’s initial drawing of the death scene revealed that Johnson’s M16 was found perfectly parallel to her body. The investigator’s sketch showed that her body was found inside a burning tent..
Contractors in Iraq”. but both departments ignored the requests and even refused to contact Poe for the next two years. where she was placed into an empty shipping container under KBR armed guard for almost 24 hours without food or water or the ability to communicate with anyone. Jones was rescued shortly thereafter and quickly left Iraq. July 28. Jamie Leigh Jones was gang-raped by seven fellow KBR employees at Camp Hope in Baghdad. Jones reportedly was taken back to the KBR area. The military doctor who examined her turned over the “rape kit” photographs and statement to KBR. who then called the State Department in Iraq and demanded her immediate release. Jones was drugged. before the House Judiciary Committee on “Enforcement of Federal Criminal Law to Protect Americans Working for U.Iraq. Her father promptly called their Texas congressional representative. 2007. and the injuries she suffered were so severe that she had to have reconstructive surgery on her chest. which she made to her father. 2005. Jones persuaded a guard to allow her a phone call. Congressman Poe again contacted the State Department and the Department of Justice in an effort to launch an investigation. Ted Poe. The “rape kit” and the photographs of and statement from Jones taken by a military doctor disappeared. . Jones testified Dec.S. raped and beaten. 17. Jones’ rape occurred nine days after Lavena Johnson was found dead in a KBR tent at Balad Air Base.
2008). soldier in January 2008 while a KBR employee forced his penis into her mouth. Dawn Leamon was another civilian contractor employed by KBR who was raped allegedly by KBR employees.” The Nation. the Jamie Leigh Jones Foundation. The Army finally complied after a . Johnsons’ Quest Continues in Daughter’s Death After two years of requesting documents. a base near Basra in southern Iraq.S.S. “Another KBR Rape Case. April 3. She was the sole medical provider at Camp Harper. contractor employees alleging that they are the victims of sexual assault or sexual harassment on the job and that Halliburton. She says she was told to keep quiet by her KBR supervisor and by the military liaison officer. Leamon reported being raped anally by a U. Johnson requested the CD itself. before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in the hearing “Closing Legal Loopholes: Prosecuting Sexual Assaults and Other Violent Crimes Committed Overseas by American Civilians in a Combat Environment”. has been contacted by 40 U.The nonprofit foundation Jones created after her ordeal. the family of Lavena Johnson received a set of papers from the Army that included a photocopy of a compact disk. KBR and Service Employees International Inc. Dr. Wondering why the copy was among the documents. Her laptop computer was seized within hours after she e-mailed a civilian lawyer. have not helped them or have obstructed their claims (Karen Houppert. She testified on April 9. 2008.
The photographs of her disrobed body showed bruises. One unit member walked with . One elbow was distended. When Dr. Lavena was found completely dressed in the burning tent. There was a blood trail from outside the contractor’s tent to inside the tent. barely five feet tall and weighing less than 100 pounds. The back of her clothes contained debris.congressman intervened. scratches. teeth imprints and burns on her body. Despite the bruises. The photographs revealed that Lavena. A corrosive liquid had been poured into her genital area. apparently from a flammable liquid poured on her and then lighted. She apparently had been dressed after the attack and her attacker had placed her body in the tent before setting it on fire. perhaps a weapon stock. had been struck in the face with a blunt instrument. Johnson viewed the CD. The right side of her back as well as her right hand had been burned. he was shocked to see photographs taken by Army investigators of his daughter’s body as it lay where her body had been found. Photographs of her genital area revealed massive bruising and lacerations. probably to destroy DNA evidence of sexual assault. Investigator records reveal that members of her unit said Johnson had told them she was going jogging with friends on the other side of the base. Her nose was broken and her teeth knocked backward. scratch marks and teeth imprints on the upper part of her body. as well as other photographs of her disrobed body taken during the investigation. indicating she had been dragged.
James Caruso — states much more in its opinion section: The 19 year old female. Three weeks later. a decision apparently was made by higher officials that the investigators would stop the homicide inquiry and classify her death a suicide. Cmdr. showing no indication of personal emotional problems. The unit member said she was in good spirits. where she bought a soda. 2005 by associate medical examiner Lt.S. a final autopsy report from the U. The exit wound was located on the left side of the head. The entrance wound was inside the mouth and injuries to the lips and oral mucosa were a direct result of the discharge of the weapon. 13. Lavena Johnson. Armed Forces Institute of Pathology. and then. Johnson went on by herself to meet friends and to exercise. No bullet or bullet fragments were recovered. However. The investigative information made available indicates that this was a self- . The Army investigators initially concluded that Pvt. autopsy at Dover Air Force Base and signed on Aug.her to the post exchange. died as a result of a gunshot wound of the head that caused injuries to the skull and brain. the autopsy report — written after the July 22. Edward Reedy and by chief deputy medical examiner Cmdr. 2005. in her Army workout clothes. 9. However. dated Aug. said the cause of death was an intraoral gunshot wound to the head and the manner of death was a suicide. 2005. Johnson’s death was a homicide and indicated that on their paperwork. Toxicology was negative for alcohol and other screened drugs.
. The subject handled/discharged a firearm that deposited a significant number of gunshot residue particles on the hand. The Aug. Ga. report from the U.S. The subject did not handle/discharge a firearm. and they did not offer comments on what caliber of bullet would have made the entry and exit wounds. stated: The characteristic gunshot residue particle indicated on Exhibit 5 (Gunshot residue kit (Item 9. the particles were reduced to insignificant numbers. or other activity. the number is considered insignificant. wiping. the report concludes that the following possibilities exist. . 2005. they stated that no bullet or bullet fragment was recovered.inflicted gunshot wound. but the report makes no conclusion: a. The subject handled/discharged a firearm but an insignificant number of gunshot residue particles were deposited on the hands. Doc 775-05). They did not address what caliber of bullet entered her body — in fact. due to washing. Based on these results. 25. With the information surrounding the circumstances of the death that is presently available the manner of death is determined to be suicide.” not from medical evidence. The medical examiners revealed that they were basing their determination of suicide on “investigative information made available indicat[ing] that this was a self-inflicted gunshot wound. c. b. however. Army Criminal Investigation Laboratory in Forest Park.
C.b. 2005. Murder of Three Women in North Carolina Some of the circumstances surrounding Lavena Johnson’s death in Iraq three years ago are similar to those of other American servicewomen who died in recent months. He called for an ambulance and secured the scene. Johnson’s parents flew from their home in St. D. The Johnsons are asking for a congressional hearing that would force the Army to further investigate their daughter’s death. They again went to Washington. but when the family had gloves that had been glued onto her hands cut off by the funeral home employees in Missouri. In the . The medical examiners who did the autopsy on Johnson’s body did not mention any burns on her body. including parts of the body.. The Army briefers maintained that her death was a suicide and were unable to answer Dr. and further examination showed her back was burned. they found her hands had been burned. in July 2008 and were briefed by Army investigators and the military medical examiner who conducted the autopsy on Lavena. 2008. states: “The witness [name redacted] … found the victim under the bench and verified there were no signs of life … related he saw the M16 lying across the victim’s body … he didn’t know what setting the weapon was on … he related everything was smoking. Louis for meetings with members of Congress and their staff.” On April 9. A witness statement taken on July 19. John and Linda Johnson’s long list of questions.
Maria Lauterbach had been raped in May 2007 and protective orders had been issued against the alleged perpetrator. 2008. 2008. two mega-bases in North Carolina.S. Marine Lance Cpl. A married male soldier whom she knew in Germany has since been arrested. where he was captured by Mexican authorities. Holley Wimunc has been arrested in her death and the burning of her body. Cesar Laurean. The estranged Marine husband of Army 2nd Lt. Laurean fled to Mexico. Lauterbach’s mother testified before Congress on July 31. three U. He is currently awaiting extradition to the United States to stand trial. fellow Marine Cpl. that the Marine Corps ignored warning signs that Laurean was a danger to her daughter (testimony of Mary Lauterbach to the National Security and Foreign Affairs Subcommittee of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee). Megan Touma was seven months pregnant when her body was found inside a Fayetteville hotel room June 21. a rape test was not performed on the body of . Two of the women were in the Army. Spc.six months from December 2007 to July 2008. The burned body of Lauterbach and her unborn baby were found in a shallow grave in the backyard of Laurean’s home in January 2008. Two Women Sexually Assaulted Before Their Deaths Remarkably. military women were killed by military males near the Army’s Fort Bragg and the Marine Corps’ Camp Lejeune.
2006. 4th Infantry Division from Fort Hood. while very upset about the rape.Lavena Johnson although bruising and lacerations in her genital area indicated assault. with a correspondingly short arm length. Mrs. The Army now says Tina used her toe to pull the trigger of the weapon that killed her. He was . 11 days after the rape. Priest and by the 800 pages of materials provided by the Army itself. Another family that does not believe their daughter committed suicide in Iraq is the family of Pfc. of a self-inflicted M16 shot. Texas. The Army reportedly never investigated Tina’s death as a homicide. Priest continues to challenge the Army’s 800 pages of investigative documents with a simple question: How could her five-foot-tall daughter. was not suicidal. The Army said Priest was found dead in her room on March 1. lst Brigade Combat Team. of Smithville. who was reported raped by a fellow soldier in February of 2006 on a military base known as Camp Taji. According to Tina’s mother. Mrs. Texas. Joy Priest. rape charges against the soldier whose sperm was found on Tina’s sleeping bag were dropped a few weeks after her death. Priest’s mother. only as a suicide. Tina Priest. disputes the Army’s findings. have held the M16 at the angle which would have resulted in the gunshot? The Army attempted several explanations. 20. Priest was a part of the 5th Support Battalion. but each was debunked by Mrs. Priest said she talked several times with her daughter after the rape and that Tina.
She had gotten off work 90 minutes earlier and was found lying near a chapel on Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan. was found dead on Sept. 19-year-old Army Pfc. The person Duerkson identified in her diary as the rapist was charged by the Army with rape after her death. 28. Durkin had called her brother just hours before she died. Army Spc. In previous . leaving an upbeat happy birthday message on his telephone. Many who knew her did not believe she shot herself. Ciara Durkin.” The Army claimed that she. had committed suicide. In the room where her body was found. from a gunshot wound to the head. too. On May 11. Women Had Concerns About Job Irregularities Three women whose deaths have been classified as suicides had expressed concerns about improprieties or irregularities in their military commands. Amy Duerksen was found dead at the same Camp Taji. investigators reportedly discovered her diary open to a page on which she had written about being raped during training after unknowingly ingesting a date-rape drug. 30. 2007. 2006. 10 days after Tina Priest was found dead. but there is no evidence of a homicide investigation by the Army. 30 days’ restriction to the base and 45 days of extra duty.convicted of failure to obey an order and sentenced to forfeiture of $714 for two months. a Massachusetts National Guard payroll clerk. Duerksen died three days after she suffered what the Army called “a self-inflicted gunshot.
mother and grandmother.” Members of her unit have refused to describe the specific interrogation techniques to which Peterson objected. self-inflicted weapons discharge. Ky. She died on Sept. In June 2008. Gloria Davis. assigned to C Company. 2003. 2003. Peterson had reportedly objected to the interrogation techniques used on prisoners in Iraq and refused to participate after only two nights working in the unit known as “the cage. After refusing to conduct more interrogations. was an Arabic linguist who reportedly was very concerned about the manner in which interrogations of detained Iraqis were being conducted. Iraq. Fort Campbell. Army investigators concluded she shot and killed herself with her service rifle on the night of Sept. was found dead of a gunshot wound on . where she monitored Iraqi guards. a noncombat. Peterson was assigned to guard the base gate. 15. 47. Durkin told her sister that she had discovered something in the finance unit that she did not agree with and that she had made some enemies over it. 101st Airborne Division. in what the Army described as a gunshot wound to the head. Alyssa Renee Peterson. or suicide. Family members challenge the Army’s conclusion. She told her sister to keep investigating her death if anything happened to her.conversations. 27. 15.. near Tal Afar. The military says that all records of those techniques have now been destroyed. Army interrogator Spc. the Army declared her death a suicide. Maj. 311th Military Intelligence Battalion. She was also sent to suicide prevention training. an 18-year Army veteran.
operate and maintain warehouses in Iraq where weapons. Davis’ mother. Washington said her daughter was right-handed and would have had a hard time holding the weapon in her left hand and shooting herself on the left side of her head (telephone conversation between Ann Wright and Annie Washington.Dec. Reportedly included in the documents was a seven-page statement by an Army investigator who questioned Maj. Aug.000 bribe from Lee Dynamics. July 2008). the day after she reportedly talked at length to an Army investigator about corruption in military contracting. 2007.000 Davis is alleged to have taken. 2006. “U. 12. officers in Iraq and Kuwait in 2004 and 2005 to get contracts to build.S. Annie Washington. over allegations that the company paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to numerous U. 2007). She had been accused of accepting a $225. Federal court documents show that the Army suspended Lee Dynamics from contracting on July 9. told the author that military investigators have never located any of the $225. The deposition has apparently been used in ongoing federal cases on corruption in military contracting. Davis the day before she was found dead in her quarters. a defense contractor that provided warehouse space for the storage of automatic weapons in Iraq (Eric Schmitt and James Glanz.S. The author attempted to obtain a copy of Davis’ statement from the . Says Company Bribes Officers for Work in Iraq. 31.” New York Times. uniforms and vehicles for the Iraqi military were stored.
S. because of poor record keeping it was unclear what happened to 110.S. military cannot account.supplied weapons — 110.Department of Justice. including more than 800 machine guns. Ted Westhusing.000 AK-47s and 80.S. Westhusing became one .000 steel helmets had been issued by September 2005. military acknowledged that it had lost track of an additional 12.000 AK-47 assault rifles and 80.-Iraqi training command had no centralized records on weapons provided to Iraqi forces. Col. In 2005. with DoJ public affairs officer). 44. at the time the highestranking officer to die in Iraq. allegedly committed suicide after reportedly becoming despondent about the poor performance of private contractors who were training Iraqi police. A July 2007 Government Accountability Office report said that until December 2005 the U.000 AK-47 rifles. After graduating third in his West Point class and serving as the honor captain for the entire academy his senior year. 2008.000 pistols intended for Iraqi security forces for which the U. The Lee Dynamics warehouses were part of a circle of corruption involving military personnel and contractors throughout Iraq and the disappearance of 190.000 pistols. for which he was responsible. In December 2007. the U. but a DoJ public affairs officer said the statement is not yet in the public domain and intimated that it is being used in other ongoing DoJ investigations into contracting fraud (telephone conversation on July 28.000 weapons.000 sets of body armor and 140. and although 185. 170. 215.000 pistols and more than half the armor and helmets.S.000 U.
Many of Westhusing’s professional colleagues question the Army’s ruling of suicide. three members of the U. in a four-page anonymous letter. Westhusing was found dead of a gunshot wound. The letter also revealed two incidents in which USIS contractors allegedly had witnessed or participated in the killing of Iraqi civilians. a private security contractor. despite the note found in his quarters. Two of them were women. Col.S. Marshall Gutierrez. They also question why the USIS company manager who discovered Westhusing’s body was not tested for gunpowder residue. Army who had been part of a contracting and logistics group in Kuwait and Iraq were accused of taking bribes from contractors and allegedly committed suicide. Gloria Davis and Sgt.of the Army’s leading scholars on military ethics and was a professor at West Point. Denise Lannaman. and the third was Lt. which had contracts worth $79 million to train a corps of Iraqi police to conduct special-operations missions. that USIS deliberately shorted the Iraqi government on the number of trainers it provided in order to increase its profit margin. In January 2005 Westhusing began supervising the training of Iraqi forces to take over security duties from the U. Westhusing was upset about allegations.S. In the space of three months in 2006. Maj. He oversaw the Virginia-based USIS. They point out that Westhusing did not have a bodyguard and was surrounded by the same contractors he suspected of wrongdoing. military. After an angry counseling meeting with the contractor. In August 2006 Gutierrez was arrested at a restaurant in .
with an empty bottle of prescription sleeping pills and an open container of what appeared to be antifreeze. and her supervisor said that her oversight eliminated misuse of funds by 36 percent. Army spokesman Lt. In September 2007. Iraq. He was allowed to return to his quarters and was found dead on Sept.400 bribe. She was found in a jeep dead of a gunshot later that day. but he said he could not say whether . She received excellent performance ratings. had completed one tour in Tikrit. Denise A. Col. according to the family member. 2006. 46. The Army has classified Lannaman’s death as a suicide. She had attempted suicide four times in her life. 2006. Lannaman. Gutierrez and was reportedly told by that officer that she was implicated in the contracting fraud and would be leaving the military in disgrace. The second woman soldier who was allegedly involved with bribes and allegedly committed suicide was New York Army National Guard Sgt. Lannaman. A member of her family said that Lannaman had a history of psychiatric problems but somehow been allowed to enlist in the military. Col. Kuwait. William Wiggins told the family that Lannaman had not been the subject of any contract investigations. in 2005. In December 2005 she decided to volunteer to stay in Iraq longer and took an assignment at a desk job at a procurement office in Camp Arifjan. On Oct. that purchased millions of dollars in supplies. 4. 1.Kuwait and was accused of shaking down a laundry contractor for a $3. Lannaman was questioned by a senior officer about the death of Lt.
Selph helped the company owner. she eventually returned the trailer. “Letter from America: Journey from New York to Kuwait. 19.S. pleaded guilty to bribery and conspiracy. Lannaman’s family said that because of her pre-existing mental state.” for which she was given a trailer valued at $20. a key person on Gen. 2007). She admitted disclosing to the owner of Lee Dynamics International confidential bidding information about a $12million contract for building and operating U.000 bribe. and the contractor then gave her $4.000. 2008. Col.Lannaman had been threatened by a superior officer with dismissal from the service (Jim Dwyer. a former Army pay clerk. valued at about $5. Levonda Joey Selph. David Petraeus’ team that was training and equipping Iraqi security forces in 2004 and 2005.S.” New York Times. Davis a $225. Selph has since agreed to pay the U. Soldiers Convicted of Bribery In June 2008 four persons plead guilty in bribery and kickback scandals concerning military contracts in Iraq. On June 11.000. military warehouses in Iraq that stored automatic weapons and other equipment. recently retired Army National Guard Col.000 and could serve a prison . the threat that the superior officer made to send her home in disgrace could have caused her to take her life. government $9. to submit “fake bid packages on behalf of six companies he controlled to create a false sense of competition. and Suicide. Sept. Lee Dynamics International is the same company that reportedly gave Maj.000 in cash and paid for air fare and accommodations for a trip to Thailand in October 2005.
John Cockerham. Army Maj. June 25. Diana Morgan. 2008. 43. In .sentence of up to two years (Eric Schmitt. and records found in his home indicated he expected to get $5. Just days before her February 22. death. 25. The Death of Spc. Fort Hood. while his wife could face up to 20 years in prison (Dana Hedgpeth. she called her mother. June 11. The Army reportedly told Keisha’s mother that Keisha was on antidepressants and may have overdosed. also pleaded guilty to money laundering. pleaded guilty last January to bribery. Assigned to the Fourth Infantry Division. while they cooperated with investigators. After having been in military custody since July 2007.” Washington Post. Keisha Morgan Army Spc.4 million more. Keisha reportedly suffered two seizures in her barracks at Camp Taji and died in a military hospital in Bagdad. 2008). 2008). Texas. and happily told her that she had reenlisted. Her mother said that Keisha wanted to be a nurse and planned to fulfill that ambition after she got out of the Army. conspiracy and money laundering in awarding illegal contracts for supplies such as bottled water. Their plea bargains were kept under federal court seal until June 25. “Guilty Plea Given in Iraq Contract Fraud. “2 Plead Guilty to Army Bribery Scheme. He had received more than $9 million in bribes from at least eight defense contractor companies. Cockerham faces up to 40 years in prison. Keisha Morgan. Cockerham’s wife. Melissa Cockerham. was on her second tour in Iraq. 2008.” New York Times.
the age group most taking prescribed drugs in the Army. about 12 percent of combat troops in Iraq and 17 percent of those in Afghanistan are taking prescription antidepressants (such as Prozac and Zoloft) or sleeping pills (such as Ambien) to help them cope.S. troops taken in the fall of 2007. In 2007. Jessica Lynch. However. the Army reportedly frequently prescribes antidepressants to soldiers with anxiety from effects of war. according to an anonymous survey of U. with about 50 percent taking antidepressants and 50 percent taking prescription sleeping pills.S. Deception or Just Incompetence? It’s now well known that there was deception by the U. The Army’s fifth Mental Health Advisory Team report indicates that. Food and Drug Administration expanded the warning on antidepressants that the drugs may increase the risk of suicide in children and young adults ages 18 to 24. the U. . Keisha’s mother said her daughter had never mentioned being on antidepressants. But there are many other cases of deception and of misinformation given to families. military in the friendly fire death of Pat Tillman and the decision to make a heroic character out of Pvt.S. and one of the known side effects of some of the depressants is seizures. The Army should question whether there is a link between the increased use of the drugs by military troops in Iraq and Afghanistan and the rising suicide rate.a blog. which is now double the Army’s suicide rate in 2001.
27. He actually died in an accident when a branch fell on a tank in which he was riding and set off an unmanned gun. Karen Meredith had to request the report on the May 30. she met with Secretary of the Army Francis Harvey and asked him to promise that soldiers’ families would promptly be told the truth about casualties. death of her son. . 1st Lt. On Sept. 2005. She had to request through the Freedom of Information Act a copy of the incident report. On Sept. Ken Ballard. through the Freedom of Information Act. After relentless pressure on the Army for a copy of the autopsy. 2004.After much pressure from the families for more information on the deaths of their sons in 2004. Ballard did not die in a firefight with insurgents as she was originally told. 9. Andre Tyson were finally told by the Army two years after the death of their sons that they were not killed by insurgents but by Iraqi army recruits with whom they were training and patrolling. Jesse Buryj were initially told their son died in an accident. The parents of Spc. which states he was killed by friendly fire from coalition Polish troops. Patrick McCaffery and 1st Lt. the parents of Army Spc. 2005. his mother read that Buryj had died of a gunshot wound. Meredith met with an Army colonel in the Pentagon and received a letter of apology from the Army for its misinformation on her son’s death. And later a soldier from Buryj’s unit came to her home and told her he had been killed by “one of our own troops”.
Army’s shabby treatment of Kamisha Block’s parents and others who cared for her. the Army first told her parents that it was an accidental death due to friendly fire.” A few days later. Texas. a man who had physically assaulted her three times. His unit had disciplined him once but kept him in the same unit where he assaulted Block two other times before he murdered her by firing five shots into her and then killing himself in the same barracks room. “There is no excuse for the U. editorial. Block’s mother noticed her daughter had a wound to her head. It was a standard murdersuicide. the Army changed its story and told the parents of Spc. 2008. the parents finally received a 1.As the Beaumont. Six months later. Texas. after numerous phone calls to the Army and enlisting help from Congressman Kevin Brady. At the funeral home in Vidor.S.200page investigation that gave the name of the murderer [end] . Block that their daughter had been murdered by a shot to the chest. who had been harassing her. Her commanders knew right away that she had been killed by a fellow soldier in Iraq. After many attempts. not mentioned by the Army. Incredibly. newspaper the Enterprise stated in its June 20. Block’s family was told by the Army that she had been murdered by a fellow soldier in her unit.
This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
We've moved you to where you read on your other device.
Get the full title to continue reading from where you left off, or restart the preview.