- Australia cadets from several decades ago have reported that they were raped as part of the initiation
- The youngest rape victim was 15 years old
- More than a dozen recruits will provide evidence to prove claim
At least 100 teenage recruits of the Australian military in the past decades were raped and were told to rape each other as part of initiation practices.
Military recruits dating back from the 1960s revealed that they were not only raped by the staff but also repeatedly forced to go against each other and rape their co-cadets.
To prove this claim, at least a dozen recruits will provide the necessary evidence. Such evidence will be presented to a government sex-abuse inquiry that will be held this month in Sydney.
According to information gathered, the abuses took place within the Australian defense force. However it is also believed that the abuses also happened at the naval training center HMAS Leeuwin as well as at the army apprentice school Balcombe in Victoria during the decades of 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s.
According to one witness, the rape victims were as young as 15 years old. “On multiple occasions, I was snatched from my bed in the middle of the night by older recruits and dragged to a sports oval,” a male recruit said.
In that oval, he was forced to rape other recruits. He, however, did not only play the role of a rapist as he himself also became a rape victim by older recruits and staff members.
“The environment made it useless to resist. One could stand only so much abuse before realizing that saying ‘no’ was pointless. After a while compliance and getting it over and done with seemed the best solution,” he said.
What made it seem like a nightmare was that they were not allowed to report the abuses or they would have to face punishment. Other recruits were told that such practice was a “rite of passage”. It was part of the initiation so to speak.
The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sex Abuse will be tasked to hear evidence from both men and women victims.