WASHINGTON (AP) - The Army's top officer is telling soldiers that after demonstrating courage and resilience in 12 years of war, it's time for them to make the fight against sexual assault their primary mission.
Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno sent a message to the force Thursday saying that sexual assault and harassment violate the trust between soldiers and leaders and are contrary to Army values.
He told soldiers at Fort Riley, Kansas, that the increase in military sexual assaults leads people to believe that the Army is unable to police its own ranks. He says sexual harassment and sexual assaults "eat at the very core of what we are about - trust."
Odierno and other military leaders are meeting with President Barack Obama Thursday on the escalating sexual assault crisis.
(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)