A shocking report claims that the sexual abuse of boys in Afghanistan was rampant, and U.S. soldiers were asked to look the other way when local military committed the disturbing crimes.
In a scathing report, the New York Times indicates the practice of sexually abusing boys by Afghan’s rural military commanders is more common than many would think. As a matter of fact, the well-known behavior has a name, bacha bazi — which translates into “boy play.”
Court records and interviews show U.S. soldiers have been instructed to ignore the sexual abuse of boys in Afghanistan, even if it occurs on American bases across the country. For many, it was impossible not to do something, and some have had to live with what they heard and saw these local commanders do to defenseless children.
It’s troubling in many instances that the United States was training and putting into power these abusers and asking its soldiers to look the other way when they came across sexual abuse of boys in Afghanistan. Moreover, American’s hands were tied by the implicit agreement not to intervene.
As previously reported by the Inquisitr, former Special Forces captain Dan Quinn — who served with distinction — was kicked out of the military for an incident in which he confronted an American-backed commander who had raped a boy in 2011.
“The reason we were here is because we heard the terrible things the Taliban were doing to people, how they were taking away human rights. But we were putting people into power who would do things that were worse than the Taliban did — that was something village elders voiced to me.”
Quinn and another U.S. soldier — Sgt. First Class Charles Martland — physically confronted and beat the Afghanistan commander who they say was sexually abusing a 10-year-old child. After the incident, the Army removed Quinn from his post and pulled him from Afghanistan. He has since left the military, and Martland is fighting his ejection from the Army.
His case has reached California Republican Representative Duncan Hunter, who hopes to save Sergeant Martland’s career and wrote to the Pentagon’s inspector general to appeal the veteran’s case last week. Martland said he couldn’t in good conscience keep looking away in the face of the abuse.
The spokesman for the American command in Afghanistan, Col. Brian Tribus, wrote in an email, after being asked about American military policy.
“Generally, allegations of child sexual abuse by Afghan military or police personnel would be a matter of domestic Afghan criminal law.”
“… there would be no express requirement that U.S. military personnel in Afghanistan report it.”
The father of Lance Corporal Gregory Buckley Jr. — who was shot dead in 2012 by one of several young boys kept on the base and told his father of the disturbing incidents he saw on his last phone call — believes the policy of looking away from sexual abuse in Afghanistan was a reason in his son’s death.
It is unclear where the orders to look the other way in cases of sexual abuse of boys in Afghanistan comes from.
[Photo by Joe Raedle / Getty Images]