The pedophilic practice of bacha bazi or "boy play" in which powerful Afghan men take on a "boy for pleasure" isn't new. Gregory Buckley Jr. tells the Times that his son told him how he could hear the screams of boys being abused by Afghan policemen on his base.
The White House said it was "deeply concerned" about a report in the New York Times which recounted the disciplining of two US military officers who tried to stop the sexual abuse of a young boy.
Former Special Forces Captain Dan Quinn said, "The reason we were here is because we heard the horrible things the Taliban were doing to people, how they were taking away human rights". He has since left the military.
Army officials also removed Capt. Daniel Quinn, Sgt. His father believes his son's open concerns about the abuse is what killed him.
U.S. Rep. Duncan Hunter, a Republican from California, has taken up Martland's case with Defense Secretary Ash Carter in an attempt to keep the solider in the Army.
As if the atrocities of war itself weren't enough of a traumatizing experience, USA soldiers have to deal with some events that are almost impossible not to react to - for example, rape.
Gen. John Campbell, the commander of USA forces in Afghanistan, denied the existence of a policy directing US troops to ignore allegations at the hands of Afghan forces.
Despite sickness, distress and pain from hearing or watching sexual predation, some soldiers have noted that they understood the policy and respected it.
"You can’t try to impose American values and American norms onto the Afghan culture because they're completely different..."
"This kind of behaviour doesn't just violate Afghan law and Afghanistan's global obligations, it certainly violates pretty much everybody's notion of what acceptable behaviour is", Earnest said later. "They don't know our Marines are sick to their stomachs". (Though even if it does, the weight still falls on the current administration for not stopping it.) Or did it come strictly from inside the military without anyone "bothering" the civilian leadership over it?
"The only people who should be punished are the ones who created and condoned this immoral and savage code", Buchanan continued.
A lawsuit charges that the US military's indifference to the crime of Afghanistan officials sexually abusing boys led to the killings of three Marines in 2012 by the youthful companion of a corrupt Afghan police chief. But Hunter said that a commanding general signed an order of reprimand against Martland saying his conduct during the incident was inexcusable and "demonstrates a flagrant departure from the integrity, professionalism and even-tempered leadership I expect from all soldiers of this command, especially a special forces professional".
In 2011, Quinn and Martland investigated the claims of Afghan residents who said military commanders raped a 14-year-old girl in a field. At least one soldier interviewed by the Times subscribed to that argument: "The bigger picture was fighting the Taliban", said a Marine lance corporal who asked to remain anonymous.
Goldstein gives no indication that this "policy of treating child sexual abuse as a cultural issue" was in place before 2009, i.e., before Barack Obama became President.