Pornography Scandal Rocks U.S. Military

Pornography Scandal Rocks U.S. Military

ARMEND NIMANI/AFP/Getty Images

How widespread is this sex perversion? More so than you might think.

The United States Marine Corps is in the midst of a moral crisis. On March 4, investigative journalist and Purple Heart recipient Thomas Brennan reported that members of a Facebook group called Marines United were distributing photographs of naked female service members. This Facebook group has about 30,000 members, including Marines, Navy corpsmen and British Royal Marines. While only about 500 of the 30,000 members are believed to have viewed the compromising photographs, a Marine Corps spokesman recently confirmed that military officials are currently unaware of how many personnel were involved in posting activity.

According to Brennan’s exposé at the Center for Investigative Reporting, the Marines United page began sharing indecent photographs of female service members soon after the military added women to the Marine Corps infantry last January. Since Brennan contacted Marine Corps headquarters six weeks ago, dozens of women have been identified in photographs posted by the pornography ring. Numerous social media accounts associated with Marines United have been suspended, but the actions taken so far have not yet stopped the photo sharing.

This scandal is not limited to just the Marines United Facebook page, or even to the Marine Corps. Since this scandal became public, investigators have found hundreds of photographs of naked female service members from every branch of the military posted to another image-sharing message board. Some of these women were stalked and photographed by male colleagues. Others shared photos of themselves naked, intending them to be private, only to be betrayed by whomever posted them publicly on social media.

Newly sworn-in Defense Secretary James Mattis has condemned the pornography ring and pledged to shut it down. “Lack of respect for the dignity and humanity of fellow members of the Department of Defense is unacceptable and counter to unit cohesion,” he said on March 10. “We will not excuse or tolerate such behavior if we are to uphold our values and maintain our ability to defeat the enemy on the battlefield.”

The Marine Corps has already issued new social media guidelines, which emphasize that the rules “have long prohibited sexual or other harassment, fraternization, retaliation, reprisal and hazing” and that “sexual misconduct related to indecent viewing, visual recording or broadcasting” will be punished. Undoubtedly, several dozen service members will be expelled from the military for their role in this scandal. According to the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, some perpetrators could even serve prison time. While all these measures may be warranted in a case like this, none of them really addresses the root cause of the problem.

Many are condemning “toxic masculinity” and “macho culture” as the cause of this scandal, but far fewer have the courage to admit the real source behind this moral crisis in the military. It’s not just American servicemen who are addicted to pornography: America is addicted to pornography.

Studies indicate that 1 in 10 Americans are addicted to online pornography. The addiction rate among young, male military personnel is believed to be much higher. “Twenty percent would not shock me,” Navy Chaplain Lt. Michael Howard told the Military Times in a 2013 interview. “That would be a conservative estimate.”

Many military chaplains believe online pornography is perhaps the biggest personal problem facing service members today. While many people bristle at the suggestion that there is any connection between “casual” pornography viewing and the photo-sharing scandal that has made it into so many headlines, study after study after study show a direct link between pornography consumption and the commission of sex crimes.

According to the Department of Defense, reported sexual assaults on military members increased from 19,300 in 2010 to 26,000 in 2012. There are reasons why sex scandals and sexual assaults are increasing in the U.S. military. The main reason is that Americans are growing up in a hyper-sexualized society that glorifies illicit sex and outright pornography. This leads to a physical and psychological rewiring of the brain, desensitizing the person to the needs of others, and it fuels an abnormal desire for even more depraved perversions.

The pornography scandal rocking the military is vile, but it is only one symptom of the pornography scandal that is American society. Yet that scandal is not only underreported, it is denied outright or actually glorified by many. Until Americans in society start fleeing immorality and teaching their children a wholesome, biblical view of sex, the devastation caused by pornography will continue, outside the Department of Defense and within it.

To learn more about pornography’s effects, read “Porn Is the Devil.” To understand the healthy and inspiring purpose for sex, read Herbert W. Armstrong’s book The Missing Dimension in Sex.

Dutch Election: Political System Shatters

Dutch Election: Political System Shatters

Carl Court/Getty Images

Geert Wilders didn’t lose. Instead, he’s part of a dangerous trend sweeping Europe.

Yesterday morning, news of Geert Wilders’s epic defeat filled the headlines. Bloomberg: “Dutch Liberals Defeat Wilders’s Party in Blow to Populist Surge.” Daily Mail: “Far-Right Dutch M.P. Geert Wilders FAILS to Make Inroads in General Election.” The Telegraph: “Netherlands Rejects Far Right.”

Welcome to 2017 Europe, where it is a major defeat for a far-right party (or at least one frequently labeled far right) to come second. Wilders’s Party for Freedom (pvv) increased its number of seats from 15 to 20. The media responded with relief that it didn’t do even better. The fact that it was even thinkable for the Party for Freedom to actually win the election shows how far European politics have shifted over the last decade.

The reason Wilders didn’t win seems to be that so many other candidates copied his rhetoric. The last-minute surge in support for Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and his People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy (vvd) comes largely because Rutte took a tough line against Turkey over the weekend.

Relations between the two countries have deteriorated rapidly, with the Netherlands banning Turkish ministers and the Turks smuggling decoy ministers across the border from Germany, culminating in Turkey deporting dozens of Dutch cows.

Throughout it all, Rutte refused to back down or apologize and was rewarded by his “victory”—winning the most seats in the new Parliament but still down eight seats compared to the last election.

Rutte isn’t the only one who has found his inner Wilders. Wilders set the agenda for the whole election. James Traub wrote for Foreign Policy:

In the weeks leading up to the vote, the Dutch have been preoccupied, almost obsessed, with issues of immigration, integration and national identity. Overschie is a largely white enclave in a city that, like most major urban centers in the Netherlands, consists about equally of immigrants and native Dutch, and everyone I spoke to in the Boulevard agreed with some part of Wilders’s nativist agenda. …

He has so thoroughly reshaped Dutch political culture that voters who share his views, but find him ultra vires, can now vote for any number of parties that have taken a hard-line on immigrants and on Islam, including the vvd itself. This is Europe’s politics in 2017; the center holds, but only by giving ground to the nationalist right.

This shift has left the political system shattered.

The Dutch Labour Party saw its vote collapse from 38 seats to just nine. Now, Dutch politics is dominated by a range of smaller parties with similar numbers of seats. Since the Dutch choose not just the party but the actual individual they want to represent them in parliament, and because so many parties ran this year, the election required a gigantic ballot paper.

Wilders’s pvv, the Christian Democratic Appeal, and the Democracy Party all won around 19 seats. The Green Left and the Socialist Party both won 14. In 2012, nearly 65 percent of the vote went to the top three parties. This time, they won only 47 percent.

This is going to make coalition negotiations awkward and governments unstable. The next government will need at least four parties to have a majority. The New York Times wrote:

This year’s election may give the Netherlands its most fragmented government in history. Some political analysts believe it could take weeks or months to form a government and that the governing coalition will be fragile.

In Belgium, which has a similar political system as the Netherlands, it famously took nearly a year and a half after inconclusive elections in June 2010 to form a government.

This rise of fringe parties has played out across Europe. It also closely follows the trends of the 1930s. Unfortunately, it quickly forms a feedback loop. The rise of fringe parties deprives traditional parties of their usual votes. As traditional coalitions stop working, governments become complicated left-right coalitions as the mainstream unites to keep out the fringe. This convinces more people that the mainstream doesn’t work, and support for the fringe grows.

This week’s election in the Netherlands provides further proof that European politics are entering dangerous territory. In different ways, the people are concluding that politics as usual isn’t working and are turning to outsiders like Geert Wilders.

In one country, this would not be a big deal. But it is the current situation in almost every European country. Massive political upheaval occurring in so many nations at the same time is going to have a major effect on world news. For where this shift is leading, read “Democracy Is Dying.”

Trump’s War Against the Media—Not as Ruthless as Obama’s

Trump’s War Against the Media—Not as Ruthless as Obama’s

Mark Wilson/Getty Images

The major media in America view President Donald Trump as enemy number one, but Mr. Trump’s war with the media isn’t close to what Barack Obama’s was.

Listen to the March 16 Trumpet Daily Radio Show.

The major media in America view President Donald Trump as enemy number one, but Mr. Trump’s war with the media isn’t close to what Barack Obama’s was. Under Obama, right-wing journalists faced prosecution, were labeled as coconspirators, and even faced jail time. On this Trumpet Daily Radio Show, we take a look back at Obama’s war against the media and show how it reshaped America.

Stream or download Trumpet Daily Radio Show at:

http://app.stitcher.com/browse/feed/68064/details

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/trumpet-daily-radio-show/id1003885427

http://kpcg.fm/shows/trumpet-daily-radio-show

Discussion: Scotland’s Referendum and the End of Britain

Trumpet

Trumpet analysts Brad Macdonald and Richard Palmer discuss the new Scottish referendum.

Japan to Dispatch Largest Warship in Boldest Show of Military Force Since World War II

Japan to Dispatch Largest Warship in Boldest Show of Military Force Since World War II

KAZUHIRO NOGI/AFP/Getty Images

The tension over the disputed territory in the South China Sea is about to escalate to another level.

Japanese authorities said on March 14 that the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force will dispatch its largest warship, the Izumo helicopter carrier, on a three-month tour through the South China Sea. The move represents Japan’s largest show of military force since World War ii and marks a major step in Tokyo’s march toward remilitarization.

China claims nearly all of the vast, resource-rich South China Sea, through which one third of the world’s maritime trade passes. Brunei, Malaysia, Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam also claim portions of the sea. Chinese island-building and vessel movement in the region have posed a major challenge to the rules-based global order and have prompted the United States to conduct frequent naval and air patrols to ensure freedom of navigation.

Japan has no claims to the South China Sea, but it is entangled in separate territorial disputes with China over parts of the East China Sea. The decision to dispatch the 817-foot Izumo shows that Tokyo supports the tougher stance that the U.S. is taking toward China under President Donald Trump. The dispatch also suggests that Japan may seek to establish its own military presence in the South China Sea.

The Izumo can carry up to 400 marines and 14 attack helicopters. It is scheduled to sail from Japan in May, stopping in Singapore, Indonesia, the Philippines and Sri Lanka before arriving in the Indian Ocean for joint naval drills between the United States and India. ZeroHedge said that Japan dispatching the warship means that “tension over the disputed territory in the South China Sea is about to escalate to another level.”

At the end of World War ii, U.S.-occupied Japan was given a constitution that outlawed war as a means for Japan to settle international disputes. Article 9 states: “Japanese people forever renounce war as a sovereign right of the nation and the threat or use of force as means of settling international disputes. … [L]and, sea and air forces, as well as other war potential, will never be maintained.”

That constitution has governed Japanese affairs in the 70 years since, but Japanese leaders have quietly moved away from pacifism and toward remilitarization, especially under the current prime minister, Shinzō Abe. Dispatching the Izumo represents the latest and one of the boldest moves away from Article 9 and toward an assertive military.

Since Japan’s constitution bans the country from acquiring offensive weapons, Tokyo labels the $1.2 billion Izumo as a destroyer, a class of vessel with largely defensive weapons systems that typically cannot project power in an offensive manner. But this is illusive designation.

The Center for International Maritime Security (cimsec) says that the cutting-edge Izumo is “in a category similar to that of the Invincible-class carriers commissioned by the Royal Navy. … Equipped with the latest in electronic warfare, fire control and radar systems, the Izumo class has been designed with the battlefield of the 21st century in mind.”

The vessel is also equipped with Phalanx and SeaRam close-in weapons systems, which are able to counter nearly all types of inbound ordnance. cimsec says the scale and weaponry of the Izumo “represents a major advance in Japan’s maritime defense capabilities, significantly increasing the country’s ability to project force.”

cimsec’s analysis concludes:

Given this potential, simply calling these ships “helicopter destroyers” could be construed as misleading, or even deceptive. Therefore, we can surmise that the classification is largely for political purposes, as the inherently offensive capability of aircraft carriers would run counter to the values espoused in Article 9 of the Japanese Constitution. Whether the [Japan Maritime Self-Defense Forces] decides to further develop the capability of these ships has yet to be seen; however, the potential is there and serves as a warning to China and [North Korea] that Japan is indeed a maritime power to be reckoned with.

Japan dispatching the Izumo to the South China Sea marks a major step in Tokyo’s march toward remilitarization and is likely to intensify China’s aggression in the region. To understand the vital significance of this trend, read “Why We Watch Japan’s March Toward Militarism.”

Silly Dove: As Britain Negotiates EU Exit, the SNP Calls for Scottish Independence

Silly Dove: As Britain Negotiates EU Exit, the SNP Calls for Scottish Independence

BEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

While Britain sorts out its EU departure it also faces the question of its very existence, again.

Listen to the March 15 Trumpet Daily Radio Show.

The two-year procedure for Britain exiting the European Union commenced this week as the bill triggering Article 50 cleared its final hurdle in Parliament. Coinciding with this, Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced legal proceedings for another independence referendum, which she says should be held before Britain finishes leaving the EU. Now Britain has to sort out its EU Brexit at the same time it again faces a challenge to its own existence as a United Kingdom. On today’s Trumpet Daily Radio Show, we look at where Britain’s internal division will lead.

Stream or download Trumpet Daily Radio Show at:

http://app.stitcher.com/browse/feed/68064/details

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/trumpet-daily-radio-show/id1003885427

http://kpcg.fm/shows/trumpet-daily-radio-show