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How can Navy stop sexual assaults? First, admit they happen, admiral says.

Two to three sexual assaults were reported daily in the Navy in 2010, and alcohol was a key factor in most cases, the admiral says, adding that the attacks erode trust and readiness in the force.

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On the heels of a boozy pool party that led to the firing of a US Navy captain for skinny dipping with subordinates, top Navy officials say that they need to take a tougher look at the “command climate” that could contribute to sexual assaults, saying they erode trust and readiness throughout the force.

The key, says Adm. John Harvey, Jr., head of US Fleet Forces Command, is that commanders simply acknowledge that such events are not “a remote possibility but a likely possibility” and recognize those situations that can lead to their taking place.

Two to three sexual assaults were reported daily throughout the Navy in 2010, the most recent year for which figures are available. Of those, more than half – 55 percent – are “blue on blue,” or an assault perpetrated by a sailor against a fellow sailor.


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