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Why do some soldiers rape in war situations? : Crime : Nigerialog.com - Nigeria's Premier Online Forum (914 views)

Why do some soldiers rape in war situations?

By dayan (M)September 08, 2016, 09:26:11 AM
Why do some soldiers rape in war situations? 

The seeming endless cases of rape by soldiers in wars lead one to a suspicion- a hunch that, there is something incurably sexual or “sex-motivated” about the very existence of man as species on this planet- and, were one to be more cynical, even conclude that the primary earthly purpose of man is to have sex. The reason for this hypothesis is that rape and related tendencies, occur fairly frequently in the entire span of human history, from absolute peaceful times to the most devastating of wars.

Three situational analogies to be conducted here shall examine this hypothesis very closely, and draw conclusions logically. At the very least, each situational analogy shall plant a quiz in the mind of the reader. A quick caveat here is that such tendencies tended to be more observable in developing countries such as Nigeria, for example, where society is not yet programmed to rein them in through aggressive enforcement of available laws.

Developed countries learned over the years to use laws and enforcement techniques to force such tendencies underground. So, in such countries people carry on as if they have advanced past such acts, that is, until they are deployed as soldiers to fight in some far-flung country; then suddenly these tendencies spring out like the joker from the Pandora box.

Situation One:
Somewhere in Nigeria, a woman was caught stealing a cellphone from an electronic shop and, instead of she to be handed over to the police, or even beaten and let go (jungle justice still, but non-sexual) the woman was stripped and paraded naked along the streets and around the shops, with some men eagerly groping and poking her as she walked. In one of similar cases seen online by this writer, in the most grotesque display of animalistic sexual gore, a man was seen inserting a bottle of some drink into a woman's private part -all part of punishment for theft! Pray tell, how does this “punishment” remotely connect to the crime of theft?

The usual defensive opinion supporting such act usually argue that the suspect -through the wild humiliation- is shamed and taught a bitter lesson not to repeat such crime; but this argument is tenuous, convenient, self serving and a form of “moral licensing”.  Clearly, in this analogy, had the crime incident not being exposed to the public and drawn a crowd, this mob of men circling the woman like a pack of hyenas could have taken their pound of flesh in kind -sexually of course.

Situation Two (This happens a lot):
A man suspected that his girlfriend was cheating on him and wanted to “punish” her. He arranged with some of his friends to lure and ensnare her to a location where they gang-raped her. They then recorded the whole incident and, next the video surfaced online to circulate indefinitely.
This again gets one really puzzled: How does a gang-rape rectify a woman's cheating, or remedy the injury suffered by her boyfriend? 

Taking a deeper psychological perspective, it would seem that the man could not live with his humiliation, i.e. the thoughts of his lady sleeping with another man, and then to ensure that he never took her back, turned her into a free for all and then walked. In other words, the “punishment” is more about his ego than anything else -he is weak and can't leave the woman voluntarily, so he conjures an invidious act to help compel him, hopefully healing his wounds afterward.
Nothing short of pure narcissism. 

But the fact that the so called “friends” agreed to participate in a sexual assault on a woman who did them no wrong, reveals the inner sexual beast lurking just beneath the surface of such men. How does a decent man -totally unconcerned- manage to obtain and maintain an erection to “punish” such a woman if such man never harbored raping tendencies ab initio?  A fair and logical answer to this question supports the hypothesis of this piece.


Situation Three:
In this story reported by the Sun Newspaper sometime last month (or there about), there was a misunderstanding between two women in an Abia state village. The one (a young widow) had borrowed N50,000 from a female relation of her late husband to conduct a business. One thing led to the other, the debtor could not pay off her debt and the creditor became desperate to recover her funds. The creditor then contracted some local young men to go on a debt collection mission to the widow's house. Obviously the creditor wanted her money back and nothing else, but that was not what ended up happening.

To cut to the chase, the young men laid siege on the widow's house, “arrested” and tied her up while her kids watched in horror. After inflicting much bodily harm, they took her to a nearby building ( a deserted community school), and took turns raping her. After the rape they ran away when they heard that she had invited the police to bring them to justice.

Pray tell again, if what they did was legally and morally incidental to the debt collection, why did they run away? If all the tactics they adopted in the debt collection had been strictly for debt collection, they would have stayed to face the police.

They ran away because they really were not collecting any debt, and this author wagers that they would still have raped the young widow even if she had paid the money in full.

The final question then is, could raping the widow have produced the money? Of course not.
So why rape her then?  The answer to this question goes to support the hypothesis put forth in the first paragraph of this article.

These three analogies come together to present the basis for the mental framework that produces raping soldiers.

Raping soldiers are drawn from the same population of men who see women purely as objects of sexual gratification. These are men who would grope and strip a woman for a crime of stealing, and men who would use rape as an instrument for censure,  or for debt collection.

Men who don't rape struggle to connect both sides logically.

In a typical case of raping soldiers reported by the Guardian (UK), a Congolese soldier confessed to the rape of 53 women, a part of which happened after his unit had suffered a defeat at the hands of the rebel M23 fighters in Goma eastern Congo.

According to the report, on November 22, 2012, thousands of defeated, exhausted, battered and bruised Congolese soldiers descended on the town and, in the two days that followed, killed and raped freely.

According to The Guardian, “Their retreat was haphazard and chaotic. The soldiers were embarrassed, angry, upset and out of control; their commanders had disappeared and the battalion and regiment structures had disintegrated.

When they arrived in Minova they were drunk, hungry and violent. The locals suffered two nightmarish days of looting, rape and murder before the army restored some discipline among its troops.”

The operative word from above quote (which should give some cause for concern) is “before the army restored some discipline among its troops.” In other words, it was likely that the carnage continued only to lesser extents.

But the truth can be found in the exact words of the soldier:

“I didn't rape because I am angry, but because it gave us a lot of pleasure," says 22-year-old Mateso (not his real name). "When we arrived here we met a lot of women. We could do whatever we wanted."

Having examined all the related scenarios, the conclusion then must be drawn as to the REAL reason some soldiers rape in war situations: They rape for power, or to exercise power, and choose to do so sexually.

Why must power only be expressed sexually?

Ordinarily, when faced with life and death situations as in war, most normal men recoil and wax spiritual. However some do the opposite, which is to tap into the most basic of animal instincts, unleashing and letting loose. So, what type of quest for power would inure a man enough, enabling him to get and maintain an erection to conduct rape, all while engaged in a life and death business of war? Probably the same power quest demonstrated by the men that stripped a female cellphone thief, that raped an errant female lover, that raped a helpless widow… that raped 53 women in a war situation in Goma, eastern Congo. QED

Now that we know that, the real reason some men rape in wars, is the same reason they rape and abuse women in civilian settings -an inherent unbridled quest for sexual gratification, and exploitation- maybe the problem can be solved from the roots. So, next time a soldier confesses and expresses remorse for committing rape in a war situation, we should know that the remorse is only skin deep. We should know that the remorse is in fact insincere and that, given a similar situation again, he would repeat the same crime.

It is past time soldiers started serving life jail terms for rape, like everybody else!




Re: Why do some soldiers rape in war situations?

By naijarian (F)September 11, 2016, 09:04:30 AM
The last paragraph I absolutely agree with. Imagine recruiting a wife-beater into the army, or a closet child molester. Somehow, I begin to wonder if real And comprehensive background check and psych evaluation are done on them, esp here in naija. Some are sane, some are just plain raving paycho...

There was a day I ran into one, he was staring intently at me, I stared back. He moved towards as if to say 'how dare y stare back' but I didn't Lowe my gaze. Why e dey look me na. If u look, I look. He got near me, paused and then hissed before moving away. But I reflected later though, it was silly and a close call. Anything could have happened because he could just have been a murderer in a uniform.


Re: Why do some soldiers rape in war situations?

By dayan (M)September 11, 2016, 09:17:29 AM
The last paragraph I absolutely agree with. Imagine recruiting a wife-beater into the army, or a closet child molester. Somehow, I begin to wonder if real And comprehensive background check and psych evaluation are done on them, esp here in naija. Some are sane, some are just plain raving paycho...

There was a day I ran into one, he was staring intently at me, I stared back. He moved towards as if to say 'how dare y stare back' but I didn't Lowe my gaze. Why e dey look me na. If u look, I look. He got near me, paused and then hissed before moving away. But I reflected later though, it was silly and a close call. Anything could have happened because he could just have been a murderer in a uniform.

Believe me you hit the nail on the head there.
They have this sense of impunity that boggles the mind. But I can bet you that it is because we Nigerians haven't started to bring them to justice. A focused person can bring any soldier rapist or civilian abuser to justice, but the problem is that our people don't know.

A friend related to me how some lawyers -who steal client money in Nigeria -get the shock of their lives when they are actually sued and reported to the BAR, and they lose their license. They NEVER thought that it could happen.  ;D

Same can happen to soldiers.


Re: Why do some soldiers rape in war situations?

By dayan (M)September 11, 2016, 09:20:59 AM
Just imagine this level of impunity.

Quote
“I didn't rape because I am angry, but because it gave us a lot of pleasure," says 22-year-old Mateso (not his real name). "When we arrived here we met a lot of women. We could do whatever we wanted.

That to me sealed the hole thing.
It is a crime that needs to stop.


Re: Why do some soldiers rape in war situations?

By naijarian (F)September 11, 2016, 05:57:36 PM
Many people hold on to the 'let sleeping dogs lie' mentality. That's just total BS. Any wrong doing shouldn't be swept under the carpet, because soon enough the dirt will bulge and begin to stink.
Some people will witness a crime and woild rather make a video to share on the internet than to help stop it. Nigerians are a bunch of ignorant elites. We just hide behind our white collar and degrees, we are no better than the bush men. What's the point of being educated when you can't stand up to report a crime, all because you don't wanna be bothered. What a shame!!!


Re: Why do some soldiers rape in war situations?

By dayan (M)September 11, 2016, 08:27:06 PM
Many people hold on to the 'let sleeping dogs lie' mentality. That's just total BS. Any wrong doing shouldn't be swept under the carpet, because soon enough the dirt will bulge and begin to stink.
Some people will witness a crime and woild rather make a video to share on the internet than to help stop it. Nigerians are a bunch of ignorant elites. We just hide behind our white collar and degrees, we are no better than the bush men. What's the point of being educated when you can't stand up to report a crime, all because you don't wanna be bothered. What a shame!!!

I believe that a whole society can be changed by just a handful of focused and determined patriotic people -those not driven by anything other than the golden rule.
If I convince you, and you convince just one person and that person convinces another person; believe me, soon you won't recognize our society again. Defeating evil is far easier than people think. At the outset it may look "Goliath-ian", but all it takes is a stone ordained by God to locate the forehead of the evil. Rape is a Goliath that must fall in our society.


Re: Why do some soldiers rape in war situations?

By GideonSeptember 21, 2016, 01:11:05 AM
Just like rightly said,....soldiers rape because of the power factor.... Absolute power corrupts absolutely.... Time for civilians to stand up to soldiers when it comes to some acts that are unlawful... In fact, a law should be passed that should enable soldiers behave themselves and have self-control in front of women...failure to comply will be punishment


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