DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA – Earlier this year, an investigation by the Associated Press revealed a disturbing sexual assault problem on some of the nation’s military bases around the world. Since the initial story broke, it seems the problem is worse than originally thought and Congress wants answers and changes, something that the Pentagon is fighting against.

Since the story broke in March, the AP has found that there are now nearly 700 cases over the last 10 years of child-on-child sexual assault, occurring on military bases or at military-run schools. The investigation found that despite the fact that the vast majority of these cases were found to be credible, very few were ever pursued by prosecutors, leavings offenders without rehabilitation and victims without justice.

Now, Congress wants answers. In a rare show of bipartisanship, members of both the House and Senate Armed Services Committees have sent letters to the Defense and Justice Departments demanding that each department’s inspector general initiate investigations as well as Congress’ own watchdog, the GAO.


Sen. Joni Ernst, an Army National Guard veteran and Iowa Republican, said of her meeting with Pentagon school officials, “I think they would like to make the corrections … because, simply, they can do it faster than Congress can.” But she went on to say that while she supported internal reforms, she may still back legislation aimed at fixing the problem.

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