US soldiers told to ignore sexual abuse of boys by Afghan allies
KABUL (92 News) – Severe allegations of leading human rights violators surfaced against US commanders after US troops stationed in Afghanistan came to the realization that some Afghan commanders were sexually abusing local boys and though they often heard the boys screaming, the US Army told them to ignore it.
Rampant sexual abuse of children has long been a problem in Afghanistan, particularly among armed commanders who dominate much of the rural landscape and can bully the population. The practice is called bacha bazi, literally “boy play,” and American soldiers and Marines have been instructed not to intervene — in some cases, not even when their Afghan allies have abused boys on military bases, according to interviews and court records.
The policy of instructing soldiers to ignore child sexual abuse by their Afghan allies is coming under new scrutiny, particularly as it emerges that service members like Captain Quinn have faced discipline, even career ruin, for disobeying it.
After the beating, the Army relieved Captain Quinn of his command and pulled him from Afghanistan. He has since left the military.