World War II taxed many American GIs lives during their years of battle and turmoil, but after V.E. Day, victory in Europe, the only things taxed were young German women. The matter of the GIs sexual behavior had never really been an issue for the U.S. military before 1945, but it had soon become a top priority.
When the war in Europe was over, American soldiers were left with great amounts of free time and free transportation. Some of these men had not had any type of sexual activity for years, and the newly conquered Germany had many resources. At first, young German women were afraid of the American soldiers believing them to be rapists like many of the Russian Army’s men. This fear soon passed and German women and U.S. soldiers were heavily engaged in sexual activity with the each other. The military tried to regulate this by making anti-fraternization rules, but many loopholes were found. Eventually, these laws were all but dropped, but a new challenge was affecting the men---venereal disease. V.D. was a growing threat among all sects of the GIs. Some of the numbers were staggering, many units were filled with V.D. The military saw this threat and along with American Red Cross took measures to ensure V.D. rates would be lowered. The Red Cross handed out V.D. packets to protect the men and penicillin shots were regularly administered to American soldiers. Both White and Black GIs were at risk for V.D., but the rates among black soldiers were much higher. This was figured to be due to the Red Cross’s distaste for Black Americans.
The sexual behaviors of soldiers in WWII was a very debated subject, but most of the U.S. military was very liberal with its soldiers, after all, they had just won the biggest wars in history.
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