Military Sexual Assault Rises

Sexual assault in the armed forces increased by nearly 50 percent in the past fiscal year. Between October 2012 and June of 2013, 3,553 sexual assaults were reported to the Defense Department. The report classifies sexual assault as rape, sodomy, and unwanted sexual contact—but not sexual harassment. Military officials say that the higher numbers reflect a changing culture in the military where victims feel safer coming forward. The report is likely to provide momentum for provisions in an upcoming defense bill aiming to confront the problem.