Professor of Gender and War. University of Sydney

Study Finds that Masculine Military Culture Contributes to Culture of Assault

SUMMARY: Research from the Department of Veterans Affairs surveyed more than 20,000 men and women who served during the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, and found that 41% of women and 4% of men experienced sexual harassment during their time in the military. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that 1 in 5 US women and 1 in 71 men (entire population) report being raped at some point in their lifetime. The Veterans Affairs research data was collated from a health survey of recent veterans during 2009 and 2011, however the follow-up clinical screenings conducted to assess the extent of possible sexual trauma was not used in the eventual publication. Dr Daniel Grossman, a separate researcher at IBIS Reproductive Health and the University of California stated, “we heard that certain aspects of military culture, including widespread sexism and the fact that men often outrank women, contributed to an environment that was conducive to sexual trauma.”

SOURCE: Lisa Rapaport, August 27 2015, ‘Two in Five military women endure sexual trauma during service,’Reuters,

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