A Facebook group made up of tens of thousands of Marines, Navy Corpsmen and British Royal Marines has been sharing illicit photos of women for at least several months prior to the Department of Defense investigation into the group's activities.
Moment of Peace: Corporal Larry G. Nabb (Brush, Colorado) finds a moment of peace in front of a gaily decorated Christmas tree at Quang Tri Combat Base. Nabb is serving as a truck driver with 3d Marine Division’s Headquarters Battalion, and is one of thousands of Marines celebrating their Christmas in Vietnam
U.S. Marine Corp Assaultman Kirk Dalrymple watches as a statue of Iraq's President Saddam Hussein falls in central Baghdad in this April 9, 2003 file photo. U.S. troops pulled down a 20-foot (six-metre) high statue of President Saddam Hussein in central Baghdad and Iraqis danced on it in contempt for the man who ruled them with an iron grip for 24 years. In scenes reminiscent of the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, Iraqis earlier took a sledgehammer to the marble plinth under the statue of Saddam. REUTERS/Goran Tomasevic/Files (IRAQ - Tags: TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY CONFLICT)
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While the group was initially reported to authorities in late January, one member of Marines United brought the group's photo-sharing problem to light on Reddit back in September 2016. The temporary account, MarinesUnitedthraway, claimed to have reported the group to Facebook, as "the vast majority of the posted items were pictures of girls posts without permission, revenge porn, creepy stalker-like photos taken of girls in public, talk about rape, racist comments and just straight bullshit." Vocativ has reached out to the user and is awaiting a response.
Several of the responses to the post, published on the USMC subreddit, defended the activity on Marines United. One user told the OP to "get thicker skin." Another suggested the user to simply turn a blind eye: "You obviously don't agree with what's being shared on the page so just ignore it." Another bragged about the group's activities, saying "We exist in numerous forms of social media. We're not stupid, we know exactly what it is we're doing...Everyone of us in MU earned our title of Marine like our brothers before us." One claimed to be an administrator of the group and argued: "You obviously don't see all the good that comes from MU as well. Even as an admin on the page, that you didn't get shut down, there is shit I don't agree with. The difference is, I'm a fucking man and just keep rolling on."
Hundreds of Marines are now under investigation for their part in sharing nude photos of their colleagues.