The Breaker Morant of the sexualized U.S. military

All sorts of people claim to be scandalized by the raunchy videos made by the current commanding officer of the nuclear aircraft carrier U.S.S. Enterprise, Captain Owen Honors, in 2006-07 when he was second in command. Damned hypocrites! Ever since the Navy integrated women with men, Navy ships have been floating singles bars and factories of illegitimacy—and now that Congress has repealed the prohibition of homosexuals in the armed forces, Navy ships are about to become floating homosexual bars as well. Honors was merely reflecting the reality of a military that is now officially given over to sexual liberation. The hypocrites want the Navy to be sexually liberated, without any public recognition of this fact and of what it really means. Let them stew in their own juice.

Unfortunately, that won’t happen. Instead, Honors will most likely lose his command, the latest Breaker Morant of the sexual revolution.

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JC from Houston writes:’

I went to the videos and they are truly disgusting. But as you say, what more can we expect in the modern liberated U.S. armed forces? Women should have never been on an aircraft carrier in a position to be photographed in the showers. Profanity has always been a tradition with soldiers and sailors, but never endorsed by senior staff (General Patton excepted). What is so sad is that it is impossible to imagine anything like this happening on the earlier carrier Enterprise, CV-6, as it made its way to the fateful encounter with the Japanese fleet at Midway Island in June of 1942. And impossible to imagine it happening on this nuclear powered Enterprise in the first years of its service. Maybe the problem is that the U.S. Navy has not had a real opponent since World War II. From what I’ve been reading about Chinese arms development that may be about to change. I seriously doubt that anything like this occurs on Chinese navy ships.

January 4

Ferg writes:

An acquaintance of mine served on the U.S.S Constellation (CVA 64) for a period during the 1990s. He stated that some petty officers and even some of the officers were pimping for the women on board the ship. Running prostitution rings of a sort on board the ship. He said that he had been approached by the Naval investigative service to be a whistle blower but had declined. I tended to dismiss his story as a typical service rumor, but now that I have read this, I have to reconsider. It seems what he said may have a basis in fact after all if this video is any indication of life in todays Navy.

Alex A. writes:

JC from Houston has correctly observed that the US Navy has not had a credible opponent since World War II, and this is a key factor in the licentious behaviour now permitted in the modern “sexually liberated” armed forces.

Because we don’t expect to wage another war like World War II or to have to defeat opponents of the tenacity of the Japanese or of the fighting efficiency of the Wehrmacht, we can afford to play ideological games in the military. Women soldiers and sailors will never be called upon to suffer and endure (in the front line) in battles like Iwo Jima or Normandy, so they can frolic in the services with impunity. In effect they’re playing at being something they are not and never can be.

I suppose what we’re counting on is the next world war being fought with smart weapons at great distances. It won’t matter much whether men or women push the buttons.

The blogger Stag Heath writes:

After reading your piece about Owen Honors I posted some thoughts of my own. Excerpt:

It’s sad that the PC harridans will have another scalp. What’s worse is that this manifestly capable man who holds a position of enormous gravity earned it by acting the fool. Worst of all is a society that refuses to allow the competent and the virtuous to be recognized as such but expects them to put on an inane circus act to prove that they are just as silly and vulgar as the next guy.

It is customary for public speakers to “warm up the audience” with a light joke or two. Now our so-called authority figures are reduced to ham-handed attempts at the kind of slapstick “humor” that Benny Hill used to do. Except Benny Hill was actually funny.

And he wasn’t commanding a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier.

It seems that in 2011 there is no part of our society that is not begrimed by the frothing tide of smut and nonsense that we call “American culture.”

James P. writes:

I disagree with the statement that the Navy didn’t have a “real opponent” after 1945. The Soviet Navy was a real opponent and the U.S. Navy made serious efforts to prepare to fight the Soviets during the Cold War.

There is an interesting article on the firing of commanding officers in this month’s Naval Institute Proceedings. The author notes that large numbers of ship captains have been fired since 2000. During the during the Cold War, a captain probably wouldn’t be relieved for anything short of running his ship aground, as just about the only thing the Navy cared about back then was mission accomplishment and preparing for war. However, “after 1989 and the Soviet Union’s collapse, the Navy fell into an unchallenged peace so profound that we could reflect deeply on topics considered to have been trivial in the past.” The author thus agrees with your readers that “not having a real enemy” has been a problem for the Navy, but dates the start of this problem from 1989, not 1945.

Why are large numbers of ship’s captains being relieved? Captains are not getting fired for reasons related to the proper purpose of the military (unpreparedness for war or failure in war), but because they are unable to control the inevitable consequences of having women on ships. As the author puts it,

By far the main reason captains are being fired is for charges connected to fraternization, sexual misconduct, or reasons connected to either of these. That includes the commonly employed justification “inappropriate relationship”—however that is defined.

And apparently a captain can be fired for just this sort of thing, even if he is completely unaware that the violations of the Uniform Code of Military Justice are occurring in his ship. The commanding officer of a destroyer was relieved recently not because he was personally involved in any misconduct and not even because he was aware of misconduct and failed to act. Instead, it was discovered that, unbeknownst to him, a number of chief petty officers were engaged in inappropriate relationships with enlisted women in his ship. What was in the mind of his interlocutors is not clear. If he was not guilty of a specific violation of the UCMJ, then he must have been relieved by way of his seniors’ “loss of confidence” in him.

The author then notes, quite correctly, that permitting women to serve at sea and then punishing ship’s captains when male and female sailors “fraternize” is fundamentally absurd:

It is evident that Navy leadership is determined to make women-at-sea into a success story, and anything that gets in the way is deemed to be disposable, including our captains.

This is not to say that this is anything other than fair, sensible, good, reasonable, inevitable, necessary, or just. On the other hand, is it something that should be openly and soberly considered? Is the cost necessary in order to get the benefit? After all, half our COs are being fired for issues related to male/female relationships in their ships.

Casual observers—those who have never served in a fully integrated ship’s company—seem convinced that men and women can serve together in ships with utter disregard for one another’s sex. That sounds ridiculous, because it is. It only sounds sensible to people so determined to make something work that they are able to discount fundamental human nature. Simply put, you cannot put men and women in a small box, send them away for extended periods of isolated time, and expect them not to interact with one another. They’re like magnets being put into a box and shaken—they stick. It is what has kept our species going for 250,000 years.

So, captains are “failing” to achieve the impossible, and they are punished for it. Undoubtedly, future captains will be punished for homosexual fraternization or misconduct that occurs under their command, even if they are totally unaware of it. Let us hope that the only price the nation pays is in the careers of these hapless officers.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at January 03, 2011 07:06 PM | Send

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