First Presidential “Debate” Features MilJus – A Glaring Factual Inaccuracy About MilJus. But MilJus All the Same
[First I know it wasn’t a debate, so don’t hit send on that hate mail you are drafting]
From the Republican Presidential candidate, per NPR (here):
The Pentagon has to set up a “court system within the military,” . . . One today “practically doesn’t exist … Right now, part of the problem is nobody gets prosecuted. You have reported and — the gentleman can tell you, you have the report of rape and nobody gets prosecuted. There are no consequences. … Look at the small number of results. I mean, that’s part of the problem.”
So what the heck has the Mil Jus system been doing for the last five years? Because all I see them doing is dealing with the issue of sexual assault.
So this post squarely falls into the category of “Rants” because I just can’t take the fact that we have a Presidential candidate that has absolutely no accountability for rolling out a blatant falsehood. The Republican candidate is the political equivalent of Tommy Flanagan on this issue. It is not like the numbers aren’t available either. See here and here and here . . . and that’s just 2015 numbers, you get the point. So here are the numbers:
Of the 6,083 initial complaints filed last year, about 1,500 were “restricted,” meaning the victim was a service member who reported the assault but refused to participate in any criminal investigation and only sought healthcare and victims’ support services.
In 2015, military criminal investigators reviewed 4,584 “unrestricted” reports from victims who were willing to participate in a potential prosecution. . . .
After completing investigations, 2,783 cases were sent to military commanders.
. . . .
Commanders launched court-martial proceedings against the alleged perpetrator in 926 cases. Among those, 159 were closed because the alleged perpetrator resigned from the military, and 111 were closed because the case was dismissed in pretrial proceedings.
Of the 543 cases that ultimately went to court-martial, 130 resulted in not-guilty verdicts.
Of the 413 troops convicted at court-martial, 161 resulted in charges unrelated to sex assault.
In 254 cases, a service member as convicted of a sexual assault-related offense.
[edit: So if the candidate is going to lob out this “nobody gets prosecuted” statement, what’s his solution? That’s what campaigns are about.] Let’s look at what the conservative Heritage Foundation and friend o’ CAAFlog, Cully Stimson, said about removing command authority as a way to achieve better success in sexual assault cases in the military:
The facts also do not support this argument. None of our allies has a caseload as large as the armed forces of the United States. Despite this caseload, our current U.S. system remains more effective than those of our allies. For example, the Army installation at Fort Hood alone has a higher conviction rate than Canada Defense Forces and is equal to the Israeli Defense Force in courts-martial for sexual assault offenses. Most of America’s allies reported that removing the authority to prosecute from the chain of command has slowed prosecutions, and they saw no increase in the number of convictions under the new system.
Article here. Is that what this candidate is proposing? Please someone hold this candidate accountable when he just speaks untruths or at least force him to posit a solution to the problem.