The Washington Post reports today that women in the National Guard and Reserves suffer sexual assault or harassment in disproportionate numbers — we’re talking 60% versus 27%. And 11% of women have been victims of rape or attempted rape, versus 1.2% for men. These statistics are the product of a report requested by Congress in 1999, completed in 2003, and withheld until now. It also found that these rates of sexual assault are similar in active duty forces.
Through all the solutions of better counseling and health care, the author doesn’t ask the most obvious question: why are we placing these women in harm’s way? If you’ve followed her work in the last year, Post reporter Ann Scott Tyson seems to be the in-house women-in-combat booster. Questioning women’s new role in the military is verboten. And the Bush administration seems similiarly unwilling to address these emerging problems, George Neumayr explained in the spring.