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Even though there is ample evidence that both male and female solders are being systemically preyed upon by superior officers and enlisted using their positions of power to rape.

The panel is fine with victims of a violent demeaning crime having to report to their boss the incident instead of law enforcement personnel trained to investigate. This leaves victims with no where to turn if that commander decided for reasons not based on evidence to not pursue the criminal complaint. We have seen this scenario repeat ad nauseum for decades as commanders choose to honor the good old boys environment higher than the needs of the Nation, never mind unit cohesion.

“The evidence does not support a conclusion that removing such authority will increase confidence among victims of sexual assault about the fairness of the military justice system or reduce their concerns about possible reprisal for making reports of sexual assault,” said Barbara Jones, a former judge for the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, who chairs the subcommittee.

The lone dissenter among the four subcommittee members was Elizabeth Hillman, professor of law at University of California Hastings College of Law. Hillman said she firmly believes the authority to prosecute rape and sexual assault should be vested “in the same people on whom federal, state and many respected military criminal systems rely: trained, experienced prosecutors.”

“Although commanders must lead the way in changing military culture, they are neither essential nor well-suited for their current role in the legal process of criminal prosecution,” Hillman said. “An impartial and independent military justice system that operates beyond the grasp of command control would help restore faith that military service remains an honorable, viable choice for all.”

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