Further information is coming out now about the US military involvement in the Secret Service scandal in Columbia. Apparently it was 7 Air Force personnel and 2 Marines who were part of a bomb disposal team that got caught up in this scandal:
Investigators believe that as many as 21 women were brought by U.S. Secret Service and military personnel to the Hotel Caribe in Cartagena, Colombia, last week during a night of carousing, a dramatic increase in the number of women previously disclosed by government officials.
Officials said 11 Secret Service and 10 military personnel are suspected of misconduct that took place before President Obama arrived in Colombia for an economic summit. Initial reports suggested that the military personnel, some of whom were confined to their rooms after the scandal broke, had violated curfew, while the Secret Service members had engaged with the women, who were allegedly working as prostitutes.
But Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) said Tuesday that Secret Service Director Mark Sullivan told her that the preliminary investigation has determined that 20 or 21 women were brought to the hotel last Wednesday night. Agency investigators in Cartagena have obtained copies of the women’s identification cards, which they were required to present at the hotel, and are attempting to interview some of the women, said Rep. Peter T. King (R-N.Y.), head of the House Committee on Homeland Security.
King said investigators have determined that none of the women were minors. [Washington Post]
You can read more at the link but this sounds much like when Fox News did their big expose’ on prostitution in Korea back in 2002. People were shocked about the prostitution going on in Korea even though it had been going on since the 1950′s and by the time Fox News did their report it had greatly scaled down compared to prior decades. Since that report it has scaled down even further. By the way does anyone know if USFK is still showing that Fox News report to new personnel as part of inprocessing?
I have never been to Columbia but I did have a real good conversation with a US military servicemember who did, so take for what it is worth, but he told me that Columbia is filled with women looking to hook up with Americans. He said it was kind of like going to Angeles City in the Philippines. Has any ROK Heads been to Columbia and can confirm this? So it appears that what these guys were doing is something that had been going on for a long time and everyone turned a blind eye to it until the media got hold of it like what happened with prostitution in Korea. What is most troubling about this case is that this isn’t Private Tentbag buying time with a Juicy Girl but instead people tasked with protecting the President. All these Secret Service and military personnel should have known to not take such actions on a mission like this. What will be interesting to find out is if these Secret Service and military personnel were given specific briefings about prostitution in Columbia and decided to ignore it or not?