Phil “My Liege” Cave calls my attention to this article reporting that The Invisible War has been nominated for an Academy Award.

10 Responses to “The Invisible War nominated for an Oscar”

  1. k fischer says:

    It’s funny how the Article credits the film for creating a tougher stance on sexual assault in the military only after the SecDef watched it.  When did the changes to Article 120 come out?  When did the Army start it’s SVP program?  It was well before 2012.
    And has anybody seen this article?  
    Civil Rights Commission Urges Audit of Sexual Assault Cases in Military:  http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/01/11/16469177-civil-rights-commission-urged-to-order-audit-of-military-sex-assault-cases?lite
    They should absolutely do an audit and look at each and every of the 2,353 reports of sexual assault that were closed as reported in the 2011 SAPR report comprising all of the services.  They should appoint a blue ribbon panel to audit each case using Dr. Charles McDowell’s criteria for determining whether the allegation was false.
    They should look at each of the 349 cases that were UNFOUNDED by the Military Criminal Investigation Office.  They should also ask why Army CID comprised all of the 349 unfounded investigations and NCIS and AFOSI comprised none of the unfounded allegations.
    Then they should audit every one of the 482 cases that did not go forward because of insufficient evidence, statute had run, or the accuser did not want to participate.
    Then they should audit the 47 cases that were unfounded by the command before charges were preferred.
    Then they should audit the 198 cases where the Servicemember had charges preferred on non-sexual misconduct, but the sexual allegations were not pursued.
    This doesn’t even take into account the cases where the charges were recommended dismissed after the Article 32 investigation for lack of probable cause, acquittals, etc.
    Once they are finished, and assuming the 1,076 cases were properly closed because they were false allegations, then they should ask themselves why the military has a 45% false allegation rate when the national average is 2%, 5.9% or 10% according to Dr. Lisak, as opposed to the much maligned Dr. Eugene Kanin and Dr. Charles McDowell who ironically place the false allegation rate in the 40% range.
    Then, I would like to find the State jurisdiction with the supposed best sexual assault investigation and prosecution rate and compare their stats with the military’s statistics because I cannot imagine a system that bends over backwards to protect and supports accusers by thoroughly investigating and prosecuting their claims to the detriment of the accused than the military.  I think that giving the US military the stigma of an organization that does nothing for victims, i.e. a 2% conviction rate when there are 20,000 Servicemembers who are sexually assaulted each year, is intellectually dishonest.
     
    And kudos to Bridget Wilson for having the courage to speak the truth with that audience. 
     

  2. rob klant says:

    I join your kudos to Bridget (and other women like Beth Hillman and Diane Mazur) who take the issue of sexual assault in the military seriously, but work tirelessly to convince those outside the military that any effective solution to the problem must take into the account the real differences between the civilian and military communities.
    The very differences which make people more vulnerable to sexual assault in the military can also make actual victims of sexual assault more vulnerable to being disbelieved, especially when sincere but misguided attempts to assist them wind up being perceived as giving rise to secondary gains sufficient to motivate a false allegation.
    The effect, I believe, is not too dissimilar to the the perverse but unintended effects of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”, when the law was still in effect.  The mere mention of its mandatory processing for separation provision was often enough in itself to result in an acquittal of charges of forcible sexual assault.  (See e.g. Judge Effron’s dissent in US V Phillips, 52 MJ 268).

  3. Phil Cave says:

    Ms. Parrish specifically raised the Klay case in her remarks.  She had her facts wrong about how the case was decided.  Dwight “My Liege Sullivan” corrected that in his remarks.
    You will recollect DMLS’s initial evaluation of TIW included a comment that we only have one side of the litigants story.  Because the litigation is . . . well . . .  it is not certain how much of the story may be exposed, if at all.
    However, take this for what it is worth and make your own evaluation.
    Quote] “The problem arose when Haytham Faraj secured an acquittal for an officer who was accused by a female officer of rape. She was proved to be a liar. The transcript can be read here. That woman used her political contacts to make an HBO film about her allegations and sued the DOD.” [Unquote
    He links to the direct and cross examination of a complaining witness who we are invited to think of as Ms. Klay.  Here is his link to the transcript.  I’m assuming the redactions were of names, although not all names are redacted.
    http://www.farajlaw.com/documents/Mrs-Klay-s-Trial-Testimony-(REDACTED).pdf
     
     

  4. Some Army Guy says:

    The Maine Sunday Telegram won’t be winning any Pulitzers for their reporting.
     
    I’ve read that article four times and don’t know what category they were nominated for.  Best Makeup and Hairstyling?  Best Sound Editing?

  5. JJhd says:

    Does anyone here think k Fischer’s point regarding the McDowell checklist credible? Or his computation of false reports as accurate?

  6. k fischer says:

    JJhd,
     
    I was advocating for an audit of the 1,076 dismissals.  It might very well be that the audit shows that those cases were improperly dismissed and they weren’t false allegations.  The 45% rate I computed was assuming that they were false because in my experience, even the most highly questionable cases makes their way to preferral of charges.    However, we simply don’t know because there hasn’t been an audit.  
     
    By the way, if the redacted transcripts above that Phil provides a link to on Mr. Faraj’s website are in fact Mrs. Klay’s CM transcripts where she was an accuser and she is one of the main victims in the Invisible War, then I have little doubt that the panel made the right call in acquitting the accused in that case of raping Mrs. Klay.  The fact that she is one of the main figures in The Invisible War is all the more telling.  
     
    What is your opinion about the McDowell checklist?  Do you think that my computation of 45% cases dismissed prior to preferral based on the 2011 report is in error?

  7. Dwight Sullivan says:

    k fisher, the court-martial that considered 1stLt Klay’s allegations was military judge alone.  Neither the IO nor the military judge found her to be a credible witness.

  8. Matt McConnell says:

    One of the items that should be sorted out when doing an “audit” of these cases and looking into statistics is solidifying the definition of “false report.” It seems that there are cases where a supposed victim fabricates an event and makes an accusation.  That is clearly a “false report” by anyone’s standard.  However, it seems that there are far more cases where the alleged victim actually thinks that he or she was sexually assaulted, but they are incorrect as to the law or standard of what constitutes a sexual assault.  In other words, a service member may report an assault because they had consumed some amount of alcohol before the event.  That person may ACTUALLY BELIEVE that they were assaulted when in fact the investigation process, Art 32, Court-martial would show that not to be the case.  Many service members (and lawyers) may call this a “false report” since the accused will undoubtedly say, “she/he consented to sex and now they are falsely accusing me of assault.” 

  9. k fischer says:

    MM,
     
    I agree.  False allegations don’t mean that the accuser is consciously lying.  It just means that it is not true, such as mistaken identity and mistaken belief about incapacity and consent, i.e. one drink equals too incapacitated to consent.   It’s still false, though, regardless of whether a lie or a mistake is involved.  
    Now, what about the mistake of fact where female truly was blacked out but appeared to have the capacity to consent, but the man did not know she was blacked out?  There you have actual incapacitation and a mistake of fact.  Probably shouldn’t chalk that up as a false allegation.

  10. Anon says:

    k fischer,
    Blacked out does not equate to incapacitation.  It only means the person could not remember what happened later.  I would categorize those as false allegations as well, i.e. I don’t remember consenting and I was intoxicated, so I must not have consented.  False.