Protect Our Defenders News Blog


STATEMENT: Protect Our Defenders Congratulates “The Invisible War” For Two Emmy Wins and Brave Servicemembers


October 1, 2014 Contact: Brian Purchia,

*** STATEMENT *** 


Washington DC – Last night, the film, The Invisible War, won two Emmys — one for Investigative Journalism and another for Best Documentary — at the 35th Annual News & Documentary Emmy® Awards in New York City.

Today, Protect Our Defenders President, Nancy Parrish, released the following statement:

“We congratulate everybody involved with The Invisible War for bringing the epidemic of sexual assault in the military out of the shadows and into to the forefront of America’s consciousness. The courage that our men and women in uniform showed by sharing their stories in this film is nothing short of remarkable. But, there is much more work to be done as the latest scandal at Ft. Leonard Wood has made painfully obvious. Multiple allegations of intimidation and threats of retaliation for soldiers reporting sexual assault are unconscionable.

“By the Pentagon’s own numbers—less than 10 percent of victims choose to report their assaults. When stories like Ft. Leonard Wood emerge, we are reminded of why victims do not report. This is not an isolated incident: in 2012, 60 percent of victims who came forward faced retaliation. As the DoD report illustrates, it is far too common for victims of sexual assault to be threatened or punished for coming forward and reporting a sexual crime.

“Nobody should have to go through this sort of intimidation or retaliation for reporting a crime. It is time for our elected leaders and Pentagon brass to take real action and fix this broken system. Our troops deserve a professional and impartial justice system. A system equal to the one provided the civilians they protect.”

Entertainment Weekly: PBS leads the pack at News and Documentary Emmys

Real Screen: “Invisible War,” “Crash Reel” among doc Emmy winners

St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Former drill sergeant found guilty in sexual misconduct case at Fort Leonard Wood

St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Army guardsman: Superior said more sexual assault reports could threaten graduation

St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Witnesses describe culture of sex abuse at Ft. Leonard Wood court-martial hearing

St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Ft. Leonard Wood court-martial highlights sex crisis in military

About Protect Our Defenders: Protect Our Defenders is a human rights organization.  We seek to honor, support and give voice to the brave women and men in uniform who have been sexually assaulted while serving their country, and re-victimized by the military adjudication system – a system that often blames the victim and fails to prosecute the perpetrator. Learn more about Protect Our Defenders at or on Facebook at or follow us on Twitter at

Protect Our Defenders partners with Attorney Susan Burke, Burke PLLC to advance lawsuits filed against the DoD and service academies for repeatedly ignoring rape, sexual assault and harassment, failing to prosecute perpetrators and retaliating against the victim.