British Army #Metoo

"...recalls the problems she and the other female officer cadets encountered during those first days at Sandhurst, where they were provided with ill-fitting uniforms and boots that were several sizes too big...."

we had a different problem at my first unit, with only three women on camp all uniform was ordered with them in mind. Every sodding pair of lightweights was the short leg version, combats, again none in sizes for the rest of the unit. It took months before the storeman (A German Civi who was suspiciously over-friendly when it came to male trousers) got adult sized clothing back in stock

of those three women one was a celibate lesbian (later went god squad), and one was known as 'sperm bank' she only got upset when someone dared to turn her down. (FFS after Eddie "Wankalot" Waring had been there, there was no way I was going to touch her with a barge pole, let alone my knob).
 
From the article:
Her hope is to help the army to improve and to break the power held by what she describes in her book as a "toxic cohort of senior, misogynistic, white, middle-class males".
As someone who has recently retired and spent the best part of my final 10 years working in various posts in Army HQ, some of the most toxic senior officers (usually OF5) were female!
Still, she has a book to sell.
 
D

Deleted 164106

Guest
That can stretch to an isolated occasion, but not to repeated events. Her job the following morning was to unleash hell, not to dig in for six more nights of the same. Apart from anything else, how could any subordinate trust her to stop the same thing happening to them if she wouldn't help herself?
From what has been written, IMHO she did the right thing initially (staying put) - but I would agree that the next morning it should have been flagged / escalated / addressed in a robust manner.
 
I can only speak for what I think would have happened in my Battalion, and this is definitely what think, not what I know because I don't know of a single incident similar to this.

Any male Officer, SNCO or JNCO who was in the same corridor and heard it would have been out like a shot. It wouldn't have happened again.

If she didn't want to deal with it face to face at the time (I can think of some who would have and some who probably wouldn't) she would have spoken to a SNCO in the morning. It wouldn't have happened again.

Or she would made it 'official' and gone up the chain of command which would have unleashed a proper shitstorm.

I literally can't imagine any of our female subbies thinking 'oh well' and just letting it happen.
we had a rock sqn who gave a fair bit of of lip to the camp SWO he walked away from the piss up, however we had to go down and set the fire alarms off in the block at 0500 for his drill session and block inspection.
 
I literally can't imagine any of our female subbies thinking 'oh well' and just letting it happen.
Go and ask them - ask with an open mind and a shut gob. Ask them about how they've been "cat called" in the street, or felt up in bars and the 100s of 1000s of daily shit interactions they've had to put up wit. Ask them how many run with keys between their fingers when they're jogging at night, or choose not to do phys at all in darkness.

Then let us know.

She let it go because trying to identify 4 or 5 pissed matelots from their lairy voices in a shitty mixed mess-block in NELSON is pretty much impossible. I doubt the RN Police would've (or could've) done much beyond take a brief statement and put it in the Daily Occurrence Log.
 

napier

LE
Moderator
Kit Reviewer
We had a (nominally) female attached officer who would try subbies' door handles in the Mess at night - if you were feeling desperate/brave you just left your door unlocked. To be fair she brought beer.
 
D

Deleted 164106

Guest
We had a (nominally) female attached officer who would try subbies' door handles in the Mess at night - if you were feeling desperate/brave you just left your door unlocked. To be fair she brought beer.
Initials CP? In the RLC?
 

napier

LE
Moderator
Kit Reviewer
Go and ask them - ask with an open mind and a shut gob. Ask them about how they've been "cat called" in the street, or felt up in bars and the 100s of 1000s of daily shit interactions they've had to put up wit. Ask them how many run with keys between their fingers when they're jogging at night, or choose not to do phys at all in darkness.

Then let us know.
We aren't talking about what happens to them outside of a military establishment. We are talking about what happens inside a military establishment.

She let it go because trying to identify 4 or 5 pissed matelots from their lairy voices in a shitty mixed mess-block in NELSON is pretty much impossible. I doubt the RN Police would've (or could've) done much beyond take a brief statement and put it in the Daily Occurrence Log.
I don't know how Navy SNCO's operate but I can promise ours wouldn't have been deterred by not being able to prove which individuals it was. As an example from something a lot less serious than this. When some of lads damaged transit accommodation in a training camp while drunk, and then wouldn't own up, the CSM told them that if it happened again the whole company would be sleeping in a forestry block instead. It didn't happen again.

We weren't saints by any stretch of the imagination and I can think of multiple fuckwits in our Battalion that would have treated the females like this if they thought they would have got away with it. The fact that I can't think of any incidents like this would indicate they were deterred by knowing that they wouldn't have got away with it.
 

In_Twists

Clanker
The thing on board a ship with banging on doors...
As someone said earlier, any SNCO/JNCO who had heard it would have gripped the blokes then and there and seen them the next day too.
All this crap about instances going unreported may be down to a couple of things:

1. The female in questions' lack of courage, not wishing to appear weak or moany.
2. The female in questions' lack of knowledge of reporting things one up, or further.
3. The perception that boorish behaviour is sanctioned and any complaining will get the female in question the skunk-eye and possibly less than favourable CR.

There should be nothing historical. If there is and time has passed...well was it a big deal in the first place? if it was, go back to items above. Im not saying women in the block should be treated like slags but even in the 80s and 90s, processes were in place for dealing with it. Now even more so.

If the Army go down the Me Too route, then it will be one of the final nails in the coffin of the once great British Army.
 

In_Twists

Clanker
Oh and even if not dealt with at the time, the next day or following days....so being pissed and ganging up on a full screw doesnt wash!
 
We aren't talking about what happens to them outside of a military establishment. We are talking about what happens inside a military establishment.
Sure it doesn't happen inside a military establishment? Sure sure? Have you asked?

I don't know how Navy SNCO's operate but I can promise ours wouldn't have been deterred by not being able to prove which individuals it was. As an example from something a lot less serious than this. When some of lads damaged transit accommodation in a training camp while drunk, and then wouldn't own up, the CSM told them that if it happened again the whole company would be sleeping in a forestry block instead. It didn't happen again.
For a start, Nelson has 1000s of people passing through it daily: think something like a camp where multiple units are in residence at any one time - are you going to put a Brigade's worth of units into a woodblock? Just because a couple of them banged on a door?

We weren't saints by any stretch of the imagination and I can think of multiple fuckwits in our Battalion that would have treated the females like this if they thought they would have got away with it. The fact that I can't think of any incidents like this would indicate they were deterred by knowing that they wouldn't have got away with it.
Or they did get away with it, and you were just never told...
 

Chef

LE
A 30 year career in green, (1990-2020*) rising from 2nd Lt to Lt-Col plus O.B.E. Which seems a pretty good effort to me. Leaves and does this article with items like these:

She alleges that her path up through the officer hierarchy was slower than similarly able and less able men.

She says that she never spoke out about this until 2016, when she was again passed over for promotion for a job that she believes she had been very well qualified for.

Lt Col Allen challenged the decision, asking for feedback as to why she was not selected. She says she was told the decision by the all-male board had been unanimous, but she claims no specific reason was ever given.

She eventually spoke to an individual in the army's personnel centre.

She said: "The line when I just knew the system was broken is when the chap said to me: 'Why can't you just accept that you were never good enough?'

"And at that moment …you just know the system isn't fair and I literally repeated back to him: 'That's not what the evidence shows. All my reports, all my career path has been good enough.'"

So in her opinion she should have got the job. The chap she asks about has the opinion she was never good enough. So her opinion counts a man's opinion doesn't and the board were wrong.

Further down is this:

"I was woken by this dreadful crashing. I looked out of the window - very carefully so I wasn't seen - to see … young soldiers, two or three of them, kicking the door down to get in the room I was supposed to be staying in.

"I watched this. I could hear them shouting 'bitch isn't there' and all that kind of stuff and I just watched.

"I never reported it."


If she didn't report how did she explain the kicked in door at the end of the course? She may not have reported it because she was scared. But how does that tie in with this incident a few years earlier?

As the show ended, she said "the men surged at us, they came forward and started to just grab us".

"I am an ex-karate champion. I decked the guy who grabbed me. My memory is that he grabbed my arm and said, 'come with us, we're about to have a party', and all the other women were being grabbed at the same time.

"But I hit him. I hit him hard and put him down and we all ran."

So shrinking violet or kick ass saviour of her mates?

She does say this;

"I would certainly love for the army to have its #MeToo moment and just acknowledge what happened and move on; move on to where we are today and accept this is part of our history.

"But I don't think we can do that unless we are willing to address it."

So implies she is happy with where the army is today.

I'd imagine that the army is probably no better or worse than any other large male dominated organisation, always room for improvement.

But she has a book to sell.

*The article says she resigned this year after a 30 year career. But she commissioned aged 19 in 1983 and is now 55. So a 37 year career.
 
I have a (female) Young Officer who whilst staying in accommodation ashore had to endure a week of drunk sailors banging on her cabin door demanding sex with "Ma'am". They undoubtedly thought it was funny at the time and probably don't even remember doing it; she was utterly petrified.
Speak to any of the Brit girls at Al Udeid, they will tell you that 2230hrs door-knocking is fairly commonplace there (primarily our colonial brethren). I reported overhearing instances of this through the RAFP and my CoC a couple of years ago, don't know if anything came of it.
 

FORMER_FYRDMAN

LE
Book Reviewer
Go and ask them - ask with an open mind and a shut gob. Ask them about how they've been "cat called" in the street, or felt up in bars and the 100s of 1000s of daily shit interactions they've had to put up wit. Ask them how many run with keys between their fingers when they're jogging at night, or choose not to do phys at all in darkness.

Then let us know.

She let it go because trying to identify 4 or 5 pissed matelots from their lairy voices in a shitty mixed mess-block in NELSON is pretty much impossible. I doubt the RN Police would've (or could've) done much beyond take a brief statement and put it in the Daily Occurrence Log.
Why not do what every decent officer would do and brief one's SNCOs on how horrible life was immediately going to become if there was any repeat and the issue wasn't gripped ek dum? They'd know who it was even if you didn't.

How the hell does anyone lead people into battle if they can't stop the very same people banging on their door and making rape threats?
 
Sure it doesn't happen inside a military establishment? Sure sure? Have you asked?
Girls feeling so under threat they went running with keys in their hand? Never seen or heard of anything like that. I would have counted some of our female officers as close friends, I never asked any of them if they wandered around camp scared of being raped but I am sure they would have said something if that was how they felt, especially as I was regularly sending one of them to outstations for 14 days where they were the only female.

Catcalling I know of having happened, because I know of people being disciplined for it mainly informally but formally as well on at least one occasion I can remember.

For a start, Nelson has 1000s of people passing through it daily: think something like a camp where multiple units are in residence at any one time - are you going to put a Brigade's worth of units into a woodblock? Just because a couple of them banged on a door?
So the alternative to that one particular example not working was to do nothing? I have seen an entire battalion being gated and camp bars closed for less. There are many ways to skin a cat, regardless of the size of the cat.

Or they did get away with it, and you were just never told...
This part, and other posts you have made in the past, show that you really, really don't understand how life in an Infantry battalion works.
 

Latest Threads

Top