News / USA

Scandals Highlight Ethics Lapses in Military

Scandals Highlight Ethics Lapses in Militaryi
|| 0:00:00
X
Chris Simkins
November 19, 2012 8:41 PM
Several recent scandals involving members and former members of the U.S. military have prompted Defense Secretary Leon Panetta to order a review of ethics-training programs. VOA's Chris Simkins reports on the growing concerns over poor behavior by senior officers.

Scandals Highlight Ethics Lapses in Military

TEXT SIZE - +
Chris Simkins
Several recent scandals involving members and former members of the U.S. military have prompted Defense Secretary Leon Panetta to order a review of ethics-training programs. Concern continues to grow about poor behavior by some senior officers.

Military training continues at San Antonio-Lackland Air Force Base in Texas - still reeling from one of the military's worst sexual abuse scandals. An Air Force investigation found at least 48 female students were sexually assaulted by instructors between October 2010 and June 2011. More than 25 officers and trainers have been investigated and many face criminal charges.

The case is among several in which U.S. military officers have been investigated, demoted or fired for poor behavior and sexual improprieties in the past year. Air Force General Edward Rice said the military has to lead in fixing the problems.

"This is a challenge and a problem throughout our society. We hold ourselves to a very high standard in the military and the Air Force, as we should. And so, because this is a challenge everywhere, there is no excuse at all for us not to get our arms around this and do better than we have in the past," said Rice.

The Air Force scandal comes as the NATO commander in Afghanistan, Marine General John Allen, is being investigated for sending allegedly inappropriate emails to a Florida woman.

The Allen investigation began after the FBI found the head of the Central Intelligence Agency, retired general David Petraeus, was having an extramarital affair. The scandal forced him to resign as CIA director.

Retired Air Force Colonel Chuck Summers said bad decisions and technology got the best of Allen and Petraeus.

"People used to have to physically find you and take a picture of you, but now with computers and smart phones everything can be found out. So you are crazy if you start trying to have a flirtatious affair using a computer or smart phone," said Summers.

Recently, General Jeffrey Sinclair was charged with adultery and sexual assault against several female subordinates. And the former head of the U.S. Africa command, General William "Kip" Ward, was demoted and resigned after illegally spending $80,000 of government funds.

Summers said he is troubled by military leaders who abuse their authority.

"I think commanders have to realize how much power they have and that people just jump at their every command. People want to please commanders because that is how they get promoted. But also they have to be wary that people out there for whatever reason are looking over their shoulders trying to catch them. Any little mistake they make they become vulnerable to criticism and ridicule," said Summers.

Analysts say poor behavior by a few senior officers has negatively impacted the U.S. military and cast a dark shadow on one of America's most respected institutions.

You May Like

Multimedia Anti-Keystone XL Protests Continue

Demonstrators are worried about pipeline's effect on climate change, their traditional way of life, health and safety More

Thailand's Political Power Struggle Continues

Court gave Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra until May 2 to prepare her defense over abuse of power charges but uncertainty remains over election timing More

Malaysia Plane Search Tests Limits of Ocean Mapping Technology

Expert tells VOA existing equipment’s maximum operating depth is around 6 kilometers as operation continues on ocean bed for any trace of MH370 More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Messagei
X
Penelope Poulou
April 22, 2014 5:53 PM
Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Message

Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pro-Russian Separatists Plan 'Federalization Referendum' in Eastern Ukraine

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine say they plan to move forward next month with a referendum vote for greater autonomy, despite the Geneva agreement reached with Russia, the U.S. and Ukraine to end the political conflict. VOA's Brian Padden reports from the city of Donetsk in Eastern Ukraine.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video International Students Learn Film Production in World's Movie Capital

Hollywood - which is part of Los Angeles - is the movie capital of the world, and many aspiring filmmakers go there in hopes of breaking into the movie business. Mike O'Sullivan reports that regional universities are also a magnet for students who hope to become producers or directors.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid