War is a dirty business and United States States warriors are taught to do whatever it takes to prevail. That is especially true of SOCOM units, Special Forces, SEALs and all those other denizens of the night who train for and thrive on special situations and tactics. But, even for Green Berets and SEALs there are lines to be crossed.

Such lines have been crossed many times in Afghanistan over the past thirteen or so years as U.S. Army Special Operators, in particular Army Special Forces soldiers, have witnessed and been ordered to ignore certain behaviors by their Afghan counterparts that caused dramatic personal and organizational moral and ethical dilemmas, particularly in regards to the rape of children, girls and boys.

SFC Charles Martland is being put out of the Army for crossing such a line. That line was an event in 2011 wherein Martland, according to his next NCO Efficiency Report, assaulted an ANA, Afghan National Army, officer. The other side of the story is that Martland was intervening to stop the raping of a child, a boy.

Pedophilia is common in Afghanistan. “Bacha baz,” which means “boy player,” and involves boys, between the ages of 9 and 15, are kept as sex slaves and is a common practice among rich and powerful Pashtun men. Having a boy toy shows that a man is prosperous and successful. The burkha is also most common amongst Pashtuns.