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Military Rape Speech 1 by Congresswoman Jackie Speier.wmv

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Uploaded on Apr 6, 2011

Beginning today, I am going to tell these women's stories on the House floor. And I am going to keep telling them and keep telling them until someone takes action.
Earlier this year, seventeen service members—fifteen of them women—filed a lawsuit against the federal government accusing the Pentagon of ignoring their own cases of sexual assault.
Today I want to tell you about one of those—Technical Sergeant Mary Gallagher. She deployed to Iraq in 2009 as a member of the Air National Guard. Her allegation is as follows.
On November 5, 2009, while she was deployed in Iraq, a co-worker offered her a ride home to her living quarters. When she accepted, instead of driving her home, he drove her to a remote area and tried to kiss her. Technical Sergeant Gallagher threatened to report him. He became angry, and verbally assaulted her. She reported the incident to Command, but they claimed that they could not do anything about it.
On November 7, 2009, the co-worker began to stalk Technical Sergeant Gallagher. He tried to break into her room, claiming she "didn't know what she was missing." He telephoned her repeatedly. She again reported her co-worker's threatening behavior to Command, but was advised that they could not do anything because it was a "he said, she said situation."
On November 12, 2009, the co-worker sexually assaulted her in the restroom. He pushed her up against the left side of the wall, took his right hand and pulled her pants and underwear down, and then used his hand to rub her vagina. He simultaneously ground his penis against her, and talked about how much he was enjoying the assault.
Technical Sergeant Gallagher later recounted that incident to NBC (chart):
"I thought he was going to kill me that night. I felt completely isolated and alone and really scared. Here I was, in the middle of a foreign country in the middle of a war."
Technical Sergeant Gallagher did not report the violent assault immediately because Command had advised her that nothing could be done after she had reported the co-worker's threatening behavior on two prior occasions.
Command contacted Technical Sergeant Gallagher approximately two weeks later, and asked for more details of the events that occurred on November 5 and 7, 2009. At that point, she reported the violent assault.
Command's only response was to reassign the assailant and order him to refrain from any contact with her. She was then lectured by the base chaplain, who claimed that 96 percent of sexual assaults on women occur when drinking is involved. Technical Sergeant Gallagher had not been drinking during any of the assaults.
Command later directed Technical Sergeant Gallagher to provide a statement for the Victory Base Compound Marshalls, which she did. At that point she was questioned why she had waited so long to report the assaults and harassment. But in fact, she reported the first two assaults the very day after they occurred.
Technical Sergeant Gallagher now suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
This story is one of many that need to be heard. We have an obligation to inform the American people about what is happening to our female service members.
It is time for Congress to stand up and protect the Mary Gallaghers of the world. She and those like her signed up to defend our nation. We must return the favor. I yield back.

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