Sex in Afghanistan
The commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, Army Maj. Gen. Jeffrey Schloesser, recently loosened restrictions on sex between unmarr ied men and women in combat zones but is continuing to discourage intimate fraternization.
Activities strictly banned in the past are now “strongly discouraged,” according to a memorandum from Gen. Schloesser, head of Combined Joint Task Force-101.
The memo from the two-star general contained General Order 1 issued April 19 that modified earlier rules limiting contact between single troops, as well as civilians working for the U.S. militar y. Previously, men and women were not permitted to be alone behind closed doors, unless married.
The new order states that two people of the opposite sex can now be together by mutual consent of those in an area, and if the door of the quarters is left open.
“Sexual relations in a deployed environment can have an adverse impact on unit cohesion, morale, good order and discipline,” the memo stated. “Accordingly, sexual relations and intimate behavior, not otherwise prohibited by the [Uniformed Code of Military Justice] between individuals not marr ied to each o t h e r, are highly discouraged.” L ower ranking commanders who seek more restrictive rules must first seek approval from Gen. Schloesser, it stated.
Lt. Col. Rumi Nielson-Green, spokeswoman for the task force, disputed a report in the military newspaper Stars and Stripes, which first reported the new order, that it will be easier for single troops and civilians to have sex.
“As the order exists now, I personally cannot imagine a scenario in which unmarried individuals can have intimate sexual relations,” she said. “I personally do not believe that a general order stops such relations anymore than the existing regulations and UCMJ do.”
According to Col. NielsonGreen, the change “simply allows commanders at levels below the commanding general to remedy cases of sexual misconduct” and brings task force troops under rules in use in Iraq and other Central Command deployment areas.