Mar 20, 2017

Marine Corps knew about nude photo sites in 2014

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

The nude photo scandal that spans all branches of the military has brought Marine Corps leaders to center stage. Now it has emerged that the Corps knew about websites on which explicit photographs of female Marines were being shared as early as 2014, according to Task & Purpose. At least 20 victims have come forward about how they were targeted on the sites, which had more than 30,000 members, per Marine Times.

In 2014: The Marine Corps was asked about several web sites where members were posting vulgarities, sexualized comments, photos, and encouragements to rape other Marines. A spokesman at the time said "The Marine Corps and the Inspector General's office monitor complaints but not necessarily the websites themselves," but that they had tried to get photo sharing groups removed from Facebook.

In 2017: The Commandant of the Marine Corps, General Robert Neller, told the Senate last week, "we're going to have to change how we see ourselves and how we treat each other." Sen. Jeanne Shaheen was skeptical, noting the military has promised to remedy internal sexual abuse problems before to no avail.

  • Over the weekend, the Corps rolled out a new ad highlighting how Marines are good citizens, per the AP. The ad had reportedly been in planning for some months, but is surfacing just as the Corps is roiled in this public relations nightmare.
  • Today, the Marine Corps launched an update to its social media policy to make it easier to prosecute Marines under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, according to Stars and Stripes. Punishments could potentially include felony charges or end a service member's military career.
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