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Wisconsin Upholds Discharge For Army National Guardsman Who Solicited Sex From Recruits
On June 15, the Wisconsin state court of appeals upheld a ruling affirming that former Wisconsin Army National Guardsman Jesse Riemer, was adequately punished by the military for soliciting sex from new recruits with a dishonorable discharge, the Associated Press reports.
According to court documents, Riemer allegedly used his position as a military recruiter “to engage in wrongful conduct with recruits and enlisted members of the [Wisconsin Army National Guard].” Military Judge David Klauser sentenced him to 30 days confinement and a dishonorable discharge
At the time of the offenses, Riemer was working as a recruiter for the Wisconsin Army National Guard and therefore subject to the Wisconsin Code of Military Justice described in chapter 322 of the Wisconsin Statutes. Under Wisconsin law, all court-martial appeals fall under the purview of the state court.
Riemer was originally charged with thirteen offenses, including making unwelcome sexual comments and advances, requesting a threesome with a subordinate, recording sexual acts with a subordinate, forcing a female recruit to perform fitness tests in inappropriate clothing, and engaging in sexual intercourse outside his marriage.
“Your conduct outlined in these proceedings, which you've admitted to and accepted responsibility for, is a criminal military offense,” Klauser wrote in his decision. “By my count, there are at least six service members that you have adversely impacted by your actions, and they should have been protected against your actions, which were inappropriate and predatory in nature.”
Riimer had hoped that Wisconsin’s 4th District Court of Appeals would overturn the charge by arguing that it was unduly harsh. However, the court chose to uphold the court-martial ruling, the first time a state appellate court has weighed in on a court-martial decision.
Task & Purpose reached out to Protect Our Defenders, an organization that works to ensure that survivors of rape and sexual assault in the military receive justice for comment on the issue. "My initial reaction is this how a real appellate court handles a criminal appeal," former Air Force Col. and president of Protect Our Defenders Don Christensen said. "Our overly paternalistic military courts would have gone into fits if one of our trial judge had made the reasonable and expected remarks this judge made when sentencing the accused. This is what common sense justice looks like rather than the active duty forces hyper technical process that strips reality from the actual sentencing process. This is what happens when you have real courts administering real justice."
And the state court was swift to deny Riemer's appeal.
“We reject Riemer’s argument,” the 4th Circuit ruled. Cold, but fair.
A Vietnam vet found covered in ant bites is forcing the Atlanta VA to finally reckon with years of dangerous practices
Dawn Brys got an early taste of the crisis unfolding at the largest Veterans Affairs hospital in the Southeast.
The Air Force vet said she went to the Atlanta VA Medical Center in Decatur last year for surgery on a broken foot. But the doctor called it off because the surgical instruments hadn't been properly sterilized.
"The tools had condensation on them," recalled Brys, a 50-year-old Marietta resident. The doctor rescheduled it for the next day.
Now the 400-plus-bed hospital on Clairmont Road that serves about 120,000 military veterans is in a state of emergency. It suspended routine surgeries in late September after a string of incidents that exposed mismanagement and dangerous practices. It hopes to resume normal operations by early November as it struggles to retrain staff and hire new nurses.
The partial shutdown came about two weeks after Joel Marrable, a cancer patient in the same VA complex, was found covered with more than 100 ant bites by his daughter. Also in September, the hospital's canteen was temporarily closed for a pest investigation.
The mounting problems triggered a leadership shakeup Sept. 17, when regional director Leslie Wiggins was put on administrative leave. Dr. Arjay K. Dhawan, the regional medical director, was moved to administrative duties pending an investigation. Seven staff members were reassigned to non-patient care.
The only question for some military veterans and staff is why the VA waited so long. They say problems existed for years under Wiggins' leadership, but little was done.
The former Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs thinks that the VA needs to start researching medical marijuana. Not in a bit. Not soon. Right goddamn now.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump's withholding of $391 million in military aid to Ukraine was linked to his request that the Ukrainians look into a claim — debunked as a conspiracy theory — about the 2016 U.S. election, a senior presidential aide said on Thursday, the first time the White House acknowledged such a connection.
Trump and administration officials had denied for weeks that they had demanded a "quid pro quo" - a Latin phrase meaning a favor for a favor - for delivering the U.S. aid, a key part of a controversy that has triggered an impeachment inquiry in the House of Representatives against the Republican president.
But Mick Mulvaney, acting White House chief of staff, acknowledged in a briefing with reporters that the U.S. aid — already approved by Congress — was held up partly over Trump's concerns about a Democratic National Committee (DNC) computer server alleged to be in Ukraine.
"I have news for everybody: Get over it. There is going to be political influence in foreign policy," Mulvaney said.
CEYLANPINAR, Turkey (Reuters) - Shelling could be heard at the Syrian-Turkish border on Friday morning despite a five-day ceasefire agreed between Turkey and the United States, and Washington said the deal covered only a small part of the territory Ankara aims to seize.
Reuters journalists at the border heard machine-gun fire and shelling and saw smoke rising from the Syrian border battlefield city of Ras al Ain, although the sounds of fighting had subsided by mid-morning.
The truce, announced on Thursday by U.S. Vice President Mike Pence after talks in Ankara with Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, sets out a five-day pause to let the Kurdish-led SDF militia withdraw from an area controlled by Turkish forces.
The SDF said air and artillery attacks continued to target its positions and civilian targets in Ral al Ain.
"Turkey is violating the ceasefire agreement by continuing to attack the town since last night," SDF spokesman Mustafa Bali tweeted.
The Kurdish-led administration in the area said Turkish truce violations in Ras al Ain had caused casualties, without giving details.
Boyfriends can sometimes do some really weird shit. Much of it is well-meaning: A boy I liked in high school once sang me a screamo song that he wrote over the phone. He thought it would be sweet, and while I appreciated that he wanted to share it with me, I also had no idea what he was saying. Ah, young love.
Sure, this sounds cringeworthy. But then there's 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Cory Booker, who appears to be, dare I say, the best boyfriend?