Wednesday 22 July 2009

Sent ashore for keeping sexual score book

Sent ashore for keeping sexual score book.

It seems like the kind of behaviour that should have gone out with the dinosaurs. Certainly such offensive laddishness was supposed to have vanished in the 1970s but.... On July 5 it was confirmed that four male sailors from Royal Australian Navy Ship HMAS Success were sent back home to Oz from Singapore in May.

They had been having a competition to sleep with the most women on board. The men kept an account book recording the number of female crew they had had sex with. "The ledger" had dollar amounts written next to each woman's name Officers and lesbian women won a man an extra point.

The book was found after women aboard complained. Since then there's been much
lurid joking on the internet - and some creditable official assertions of women's rights. Women's Forum Australia spokesperson Melinda Tankard-Reist points out:"When you consider that women constitute 40 per cent of the Navy, they have a right to feel safe in their place of work and not to be treated as potential notches on a sailor's belt. Obviously things have gone backwards, I thought the defence forces had moved on from this sort of pack-animal behaviour.... I don't believe these men should be able to serve at sea anymore because they're not reliable, they can't be trusted, they don't respect women and these are not the kind of men that we need defending us."

Deputy Prime Minister Julia Gillard (above, right) told Network Ten"We don't want to see anything that precludes women from having a good career in our armed forces if that is what they choose to do with their lives....we need our defence hierarchy to get on with the job of investigating these claims and taking appropriate action."

Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Russ Crane said the matter is being referred to the independent Australian Defence Force Investigative Service (ADFIS), which will decide on disciplinary or administrative action.

HMAS Success is not a warship but a replenishment oiler (a naval auxiliary ship with fuel tanks and dry cargo holds, which can replenish other ships while underway in the high seas)

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