Woman soldier assaulted at Fort Bliss refugee camp for Afghans

Woman soldier assaulted at Fort Bliss refugee camp for Afghans
AP Photo/Rahmat Gul

I’ll say up front that I support getting the Afghans who fought alongside the US out of Afghanistan. A lot of those people were facing a death sentence when the Taliban took over and I think we owed them the only measure of protection we could offer which was to remove them when we left. But it’s going to be hard to support bringing people here for settlement when there are reports like this:

The FBI is investigating the assault of a female Fort Bliss soldier by several male Afghan refugees at the Army’s Doña Ana Complex camp where thousands are currently being housed, officials told ABC-7 on Friday.

“We can confirm a female service member supporting Operation Allies Welcome reported being assaulted on Sept. 19 by a small group of male evacuees at the Doña Ana Complex in New Mexico,” said Lt. Col. Allie Payne, director of Public Affairs for Fort Bliss and the 1st Armored Division.

There are a couple of other details in the story. First, the soldier received medical treatment so this was apparently serious enough that she was hurt, though we don’t know how seriously. Second, the complex where these Afghans are being housed is now talking about additional lighting, so it sounds as if this happened at night, i.e. they jumped her in the dark.

What’s not mentioned in the story is what actually happened. The fact that several men attacked a woman soldier makes it sound as if this probably some kind of sexual assault or even an attempted rape. That may be the case but the story doesn’t say that. At least for now, the FBI is keeping the exact nature of the incident under wraps. But I’d honestly be surprised if there wasn’t a sexual aspect to this. I’m remembering what happened in Cologne, Germany and other cities on New Year’s Eve in 2015. We eventually learned that more than 1,200 women had been assaulted by hundreds of foreign nationals.

Obviously whoever was involved in the Fort Bliss attack should be put in prison for an appropriate stretch and then sent back to Afghanistan the moment they get out. These goons had a chance at a better life but that’s over now. They couldn’t control themselves for a few weeks so they are gone. Prison first, then back to Afghanistan where they’ll fit right in with the rest of the Taliban goons.

I guess it’s not very politically correct but the US should really use this as a teaching moment for all of the Afghans we helped leave, especially those without families. We should be making active efforts to weed out any other refugees who can’t control themselves around women. And yes, I’d love to think that’s unnecessary but clearly this incident shows that’s not the case. So instead of pretending this didn’t happen, we should assume it could happen again and then take efforts to make sure it does not.

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Jazz Shaw 5:01 PM on March 22, 2023