The Red Army’s WWII
Horror Orgy Of Rape
Worse Than Thought
By Daniel Johnson
The Telegraph – London
The Red Army’s orgy of rape in the dying days of Nazi Germany was conducted on a much greater scale than previously suspected, according to a new book by the military historian Anthony Beevor.
Beevor, the author of the best-selling Stalingrad, says advancing Soviet troops raped large numbers of Russian and Polish women held in concentration camps, as well as millions of Germans.
The extent of the Red Army’s indiscipline and depravity emerged as the author studied Soviet archives for his forthcoming book Berlin, to be published in April by Viking.
Beevor – who was educated at Sandhurst and served in the 11th Hussars (Prince Albert’s Own), an elite cavalry regiment – says details of the Soviet soldiers’ behaviour have forced him to revise his view of human nature.
“Having always in the past slightly pooh-poohed the idea that most men are potential rapists, I had to come to the conclusion that if there is a lack of army discipline, most men with a weapon, dehumanised by living through two or three years of war, do become potential rapists,” he told The Bookseller.
He appears to echo the American feminist Marilyn French’s notorious claim that “in their relations with women, all men are rapists, and that’s all they are”.
Any such resemblance is, however, superficial. Beevor is careful to qualify any suggestion that what happened from 1944 onwards is in any way typical of male behaviour in peacetime. But he admits that he was “shaken to the core” to discover that Russian and Polish women and girls liberated from concentration camps were also violated.
“That completely undermined the notion that the soldiers were using rape as a form of revenge against the Germans,” he said.
“By the time the Russians reached Berlin, soldiers were regarding women almost as carnal booty; they felt because they were liberating Europe they could behave as they pleased. That is very frightening, because one starts to realise that civilisation is terribly superficial and the facade can be stripped away in a very short time.”
Beevor’s high reputation as a historian ensures that his claims will be taken seriously. Stalingrad was widely praised and awarded the prestigious Samuel Johnson Prize, the Wolfson Prize for History and the Hawthornden Prize.
His account of the siege of Berlin, however, promises to be more controversial. “In many ways the fate of the women and the girls in Berlin is far worse than that of the soldiers starving and suffering in Stalingrad.”
To understand why the rape of Germany was so uniquely terrible, the context is essential. Operation Barbarossa, the Nazi invasion of Russia in 1941, began the most genocidal conflict in history. Perhaps 30 million inhabitants of the Soviet Union are now thought to have died during the war, including more than three million who were deliberately starved in German PoW camps.
The Germans, having shown no quarter, could expect none in return. Their casualties were also on a vast scale. In the Battle of Berlin alone more than a million German soldiers were killed or died later in captivity, plus at least 100,000 civilians. The Soviet Union lost more than 300,000 men.
Against this horrific background, Stalin and his commanders condoned or even justified rape, not only against Germans but also their allies in Hungary, Romania and Croatia. When the Yugoslav Communist Milovan Djilas protested to Stalin, the dictator exploded: “Can’t he understand it if a soldier who has crossed thousands of kilometres through blood and fire and death has fun with a woman or takes some trifle?”
And when German Communists warned him that the rapes were turning the population against them, Stalin fumed: “I will not allow anyone to drag the reputation of the Red Army in the mud.”
The rapes had begun as soon as the Red Army entered East Prussia and Silesia in 1944. In many towns and villages every female, aged from 10 to 80, was raped. Alexander Solzhenitsyn, the Nobel laureate who was then a young officer, described the horror in his narrative poem Prussian Nights: “The little daughter’s on the mattress,/Dead. How many have been on it/A platoon, a company perhaps?”
But Solzhenitsyn was rare: most of his comrades regarded rape as legitimate. As the offensive struck deep into Germany, the orders of Marshal Zhukov, their commander, stated: “Woe to the land of the murderers. We will get a terrible revenge for everything.”
By the time the Red Army reached Berlin its reputation, reinforced by Nazi propaganda, had already terrified the population, many of whom fled. Though the hopeless struggle came to an end in May 1945, the ordeal of German women did not.
How many German women were raped? One can only guess, but a high proportion of at least 15 million women who either lived in the Soviet Union zone or were expelled from the eastern provinces. The scale of rape is suggested by the fact that about two million women had illegal abortions every year between 1945 and 1948.
It was not until the winter of 1946-47 that the Soviet authorities, concerned by the spread of disease, imposed serious penalties on their forces in East Germany for fraternising with the enemy.
Soviet soldiers saw rape, often carried out in front of a woman’s husband and family, as an appropriate way of humiliating the Germans, who had treated Slavs as an inferior race with whom sexual relations were discouraged. Russia’s patriarchal society and the habit of binge-drinking were also factors, but more important was resentment at the discovery of Germany’s comparative wealth.
The fact, highlighted by Beevor, that Soviet troops raped not only Germans but also their victims, recently liberated from concentration camps, suggests that the sexual violence was often indiscriminate, although far fewer Russian or Polish women were raped when their areas were liberated compared to the conquered Germans.
Jews, however, were not necessarily regarded by Soviet troops as fellow victims of the Nazis. The Soviet commissars had commandeered German concentration camps in order to incarcerate their own political prisoners, who included “class enemies” as well as Nazi officials, and their attitude towards the previous inmates was, to say the least, unsentimental.
As for the millions of Russian prisoners or slave workers who survived the Nazis: those who were not executed as traitors or sent to the Gulag could count themselves lucky. The women among them were probably treated no better than the Germans, perhaps worse.
The rape of Germany left a bitter legacy. It contributed to the unpopularity of the East German communist regime and its consequent reliance on the Stasi secret police. The victims themselves were permanently traumatised: women of the wartime generation still refer to the Red Army war memorial in Berlin as “the Tomb of the Unknown Rapist”.
Erroneous beliefs about rape can have disturbing implications.
This summer, a U.S. congressman and senate candidate made headlines for his comments about the link between rape and pregnancy. “If it’s a legitimate rape,” he said in a TV interview, “the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down” (you can watch the full interview here). This statement has been criticized by Democrats and Republicans alike, as it suggests not only that women who become pregnant from rape were likely not in fact raped, but also, more broadly, that some forms of rape are not “legitimate.” The congressman apologized for his remarks, saying that he misspoke, but the belief system reflected in his words may be more pervasive than we realize. Although most of us are taught that rape is wrong, we are also exposed throughout our lives to ideas about rape that are both inaccurate and harmful. These rape myths, as they are called, can directly or indirectly serve to excuse perpetrators and blame victims, and psychologists have found that they may also increase the likelihood that individuals will commit rape.
The idea that rape cannot cause pregnancy because of a woman’s ability to somehow shut down her reproductive system is quite bizarre, but other rape myths are probably more familiar. For example, rape victims may be seen as having “asked for it” through provocative clothing or behavior, or having “wanted it” despite saying no. Another common rape myth is the idea that men can’t always control their sexual urges. Research suggests that there is a link between acceptance of these better-known myths (i.e., not the pregnancy myth per se) and proclivity toward actual rape. For example, convicted and self-confessed rapists have in some studies reported higher rape myth acceptance, and studies of non-convicted men have consistently found a significant positive correlation between rape myth acceptance and rape proclivity. Due to ethical constraints on examining actual behavior, rape proclivity is often assessed indirectly, such as by asking participants to report the likelihood that they would engage in rape if they could be assured that they would not be caught or punished.
In one set of studies, researchers found that social norms about others’ acceptance of rape myths may increase rape proclivity. When college students were led to believe that other students scored high (vs. low) on a measure of rape myth acceptance, they consequently reported greater personal rape myth acceptance and, in turn, greater rape proclivity. In these studies, rape proclivity was measured by having participants imagine a series of acquaintance rape scenarios and report whether they would have behaved in that way themselves and whether they would have enjoyed it. The scenarios vary in terms of the victim’s level of physical resistance, but all are clearly instances of rape.
For example [paraphrased from the original]:
“You have a women over after going on a date. She says she’s had too much to drink to drive home, so you tell her she can stay over. You want to take advantage of this opportunity to sleep with her, but she says no, saying that you are rushing things and she’s too drunk. You sleep with her anyway.”
If you are disturbed that anyone would report being likely to behave in this way, rest assured that the mean response fell between “certainly no” and the adjacent response, presumably “no,” regardless of what condition participants were assigned to, though the endorsement of anything but “certainly no” is troubling. The researchers recommend interventions that draw on the power of social influence, such as having fellow students speak out against rape myths to their peers.
Acceptance of rape myths is not just a product of a sick mind, but an unfortunate response to subtle and not-so-subtle messages from social groups, family, and media that communicate the legitimacy of these beliefs.
Importantly, this research does not suggest that anyone who holds erroneous beliefs about the causes of rape will go on to commit rape. But these beliefs can nonetheless contribute to a culture where rape victims are more likely to be questioned and blamed (and to question and blame themselves), and perpetrators are more likely to be excused or even encouraged. The congressman’s “legitimate rape” comment, along with others that have recently come to light, may seem isolated and extreme, a case of a bad apple or just a bad use of words, but the belief system that it reflects seems much more deeply rooted in our culture.
A good guide so that everyone has a clear understanding of what the crime is, and what boundaries should not be crossed. Don’t forget, there is such a thing as digital rape too (rape with foreign object or finger). I’m giving both sides here for a complete understanding, click on the links and study EVERYTHING.
The department then conducted an audit to determine whether there were untested kits from before 2009. In total, the audit uncovered 753 untested rape kits dating from 2003 to 2013. The department plans to send these kits to a private crime lab for testing so as to prevent another backlog at the department’s lab. Going forward, the department has changed its policy from testing a kit only when the suspect is unknown to testing all kits.
For more information on reforms happening in San Francisco, click here.
A rape kit backlog starts for several reasons. One reason is lack of resources. On average, it costs between $1,000 and $1,500 to test one rape kit. As crime labs have grappled with limited capacity and state and local law enforcement budgets have tightened, untested kits have piled up across the country.
- Crime lab resources. While public crime labs throughout the country have struggled to maintain sufficient funding and personnel in recent years, technology has advanced and the demand for DNA testing has grown dramatically. In addition to rape kit evidence, crime labs receive DNA samples from hundreds and in many cases, thousands of crime scenes each year. The result has been exceedingly long turn-around times—sometimes years—for testing.
- Police resources. Many kits never make it to a crime lab in the first place and instead spend years—even decades—sitting untested in police storage facilities. Law enforcement agencies often lack the technology to track untested rape kits and the personnel needed for shipping or transporting untested kits to a crime lab in a timely manner. These agencies further lack resources and staffing to investigate and follow up on leads resulting from rape kit testing.
Another reason behind the backlog is detective discretion. In the majority of jurisdictions, the decision whether to send a rape kit for testing rests solely within the discretion of the officer assigned to the case. Several factors can affect the officer’s decision, including:
- Whether the department prioritizes sexual assaults. Law enforcement agencies often fail to dedicate the time and resources that other crimes receive to sexual assault cases. More than with any other crime, members of law enforcement frequently disbelieve or even blame victims of sexual assault rather than focusing on bringing the perpetrator to justice.
- Whether the case is likely to move forward. Due to a lack of understanding about how trauma can affect a survivor of rape, officers often misinterpret survivors’ reactions and choices in the immediate aftermath of the assault as being “uncooperative” or “not credible.” In addition to the biological and emotional impact of recovering from the direct trauma, survivors also may be hesitant to participate in the criminal justice process for a number of reasons, including fear of retaliation, being treated poorly by members of law enforcement, shame and not wanting others, such as family and friends, to know about the assault
- Whether the identity of the perpetrator is known. Many jurisdictions only test kits in cases where the assailant is unknown in order to attempt to identify a suspect through DNA evidence. It is important to remember, however, that rape kit testing has significant value beyond identifying an unknown suspect, including the ability to confirm a suspect’s contact with a victim, corroborate the victim’s account of the attack, link unsolved crimes to a serial offender and exonerate innocent suspects. Testing every rape kit booked into evidence ensures greater access to justice for survivors and signals to perpetrators that they will be held accountable for their crimes.
Jurisdictions that are deeply invested in bringing justice to survivors and preventing future crimes have dedicated the necessary resources toward addressing their backlogs and moving cases forward. New York City served as a model for the rest of the country when it committed to testing every rape kit in its backlog and aggressively following up on leads and prosecuting cases. Detroit is now working to pull together the resources needed to test every kit in its backlog of more than 11,000 untested kits and to investigate the resulting leads. In Cleveland, prosecutors have initiated cases against dozens of perpetrators as testing has begun on a backlog of more than 1,400 kits.
Published on Mar 16, 2014
“It’s one of the most shameful numbers in American law enforcement: According to the Department of Justice, some 400,000 “rape kits” are languishing in evidence lockers across the country because local authorities can’t afford to process them. The kits, some of them dating back to the 1980s, contain DNA evidence that could convict rapists.
Now the evidence might finally make its way to prosecutors. Last week, the White House announced a little remarked upon initiative to devote $35 million of the 2015 budget to processing unopened kits and otherwise furthering sexual assault prosecutions.”
Read more: http://www.newrepublic.com/article/11…
Greg Suhr Sued By Former SFPD Lawyer Who Says She Was Fired For Investigating Police Chief
Posted: 05/16/2013 4:46 pm EDT Updated: 05/16/2013 4:52 pm EDT
A former lawyer for the San Francisco Police Department is alleging she was fired in retaliation for her investigation of misconduct allegations against Greg Suhr, now the department’s chief and the highest-paid top cop in the nation.
In a suit filed against Suhr and the city earlier this week, Kelly O’Haire claims she was terminated from her internal affairs attorney position on the police force because of her work prosecuting Suhr for failing to report an incident of domestic violence.
“I’ve been in law enforcement my whole life,” O’Haire told the Marin Independent Journal. “It was pretty devastating. I’ve never been disciplined. I’ve never done anything wrong in my career.”
O’Haire spent more than 20 years as an undercover police officer and assistant district attorney in Marin Country before joining SFPD in 2006. She was fired two weeks after San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee named Suhr to the department’s chief position in 2011.
O’Haire’s investigation of Suhr stemmed from an incident that allegedly occurred on a Friday night in 2009, when Suhr — who was deputy police chief at the time — received a call from a female friend who said she was being beaten and strangled by her boyfriend. When Suhr drove over and picked her up, the woman’s collarbone had been broken and a portion of her hair had been ripped from her head. Suhr dropped the woman off at her home that evening, but a police report wasn’t filed until that Sunday. The attacker was later charged with attempted murder.
California law requires law enforcement officers to immediately make an arrest in domestic violence cases when the suspect is known and to file a police report within 24 hours. According to O’Haire, Suhr did neither.
O’Haire prosecuted the case before the San Francisco Police Commission and it eventually resulted in a demotion for Suhr. Related charges could have resulted in him getting the boot, but then-Chief Heather Fong, with whom Suhr reportedly had a rocky relationship, left the department later that year and was replaced by George Gascón. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Gascón allowed Suhr to serve a suspension for the incident instead of proceeding with further charges.
During the initial investigation, O’Haire alleges, Suhr’s lawyers repeatedly made threats against her. She recalled an incident, which she later reported to the Police Commission, when one of Suhr’s politically-connected attorneys called her up and said that her actions against Suhr were “going to be a future employment problem,” and that she was “going to be sorry.”
O’Haire alleges that threat proved to be prescient; in the years since being let go by the department, she claims she has struggled to find employment in the law enforcement field, which has been her professional home for nearly three decades. Though the SFPD insists her position was eliminated for budgetary reasons, O’Haire says the paperwork she was given at the time of her dismissal was for “termination,” which, in the public-sector employment world, indicates she did something wrong and leaves a serious black spot on her record.
O’Haire argues SFPD’s rationale for her firing is flimsy. She says at the time, the department had a handful of internal affairs attorneys, all of whom received equal pay and of whom she was the most experienced. Only she and Jerry Tidwell, another attorney who also worked on the case against Suhr, were terminated, despite there being another lawyer on staff who had worked at the department for only a few months.
“I was replaced with a captain who was actually paid more than I was,” O’Haire told The Huffington Post. “Over the next three months, people in the department kept calling me and asking for help on cases because no plans had been made for the transition.”
In a statement released to the media on Wednesday, SFPD insisted O’Haire’s claim was “without merit.”
O’Haire’s attorney, Randall Strauss, said that his team plans to call a number of high-profile witnesses in the case, including Mayor Ed Lee and Fong and Gascón, the former police chiefs.
The city has 30 days to file a response to O’Haire’s lawsuit.
SFPD Whistleblower LawsuitKelly O’Haire SFPDSFPD LawsuitKelly O’HaireSFPD SuedGreg SuhrSFPD Wrongful Termination LawsuitSFPD Cheif Greg SuhrGreg Suhr LawsuitSan Francsico Police DepartmentChief Suhr SuedGreg Suhr SuedChief Suhr Lawsuit
Whistleblower/Attorney Kelly O’Haire Sues Chief Suhr/SF for Retaliation and Wrongful Termination
Kelly O’Haire, a whistleblower and former internal affairs attorney for SFPD, filed a lawsuit on May 15, 2013 in San Francisco Superior Court against Chief Suhr and the City of San Francisco for retaliation and wrongful termination. Chief Suhr terminated O’Haire less than a month after he became SFPD Chief in retaliation for her handling several of his prior disciplinary actions that could have resulted in his termination; including his failure to properly report and arrest a domestic violence offender. Plaintiff O’Haire is represented by the Law Firm of Gwilliam, Ivary, Chiosso, Cavalli & Brewer of Oakland, California.
Ms. O’Haire worked in government service for over 27 years, including as a police officer and then an assistant district attorney. In 2006, she was hired by the SFPD as an internal affairs attorney and was responsible for investigating and prosecuting disciplinary actions against members of the police department. In this role, Ms. O’Haire prosecuted Suhr and brought a motion to bring his prior discipline into evidence in that action. This action could have led to termination of Suhr. Ms. O’Haire was threatened by Suhr’s lawyers who told her she did not “know how this City worked,” and that this was going to be a future employment problem for then-Chief Heather Fong, O’Haire, and others involved. Ms. O’Haire’s lawyers expect to call as witnesses many top officials in the City and County of San Francisco, including Mayor Ed Lee, District Attorney George Gascon (who was Police Chief prior to Suhr), and former Chief Heather Fong.
The Monty Show Podcast – June 2 2013, Hour 3: Attorney Kelly O’Haire joins Monty to discuss her case against the San Francisco Police Chief Greg Suhr.
“Collins also said that O’Haire did not “know how this City worked,”…
Threat made by San Francisco Police Officer’s Association attorney Jim Collins to plaintiff Ms. Kelly O’Haire over the phone (see the top of page five of Ms. O’Haire’s original complaint and court filing at the bottom of this post). This confirms just how corrupt San Francisco’s government and agencies really are, they don’t even bother to keep it hidden.
It looks almost certain that Ms. O’Haire will win her case. Chief Greg Suhr won’t pay a dime, YOU THE SAN FRANCISCO TAXPAYER WILL PAY TENS OF MILLIONS.
Why should Chief Suhr or his cohorts be concerned? They lose absolutely nothing for “Behaving Badly”. To the contrary, they received both pay raises and promotions.
“Collins also said that O’Haire did not “know how this City worked,”…