Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) has pushed for moving the authority to prosecutte military sexual assault cases out of the chain of command. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Regarding the Dec. 20 front-page article “Scandals undermine Army’s battle against sexual assault ”:

It appears the services cited in the article have failed to grasp the importance to the victim, the accused and the military of quickly and objectively dealing with every case.

That said, taking jurisdiction over sexual crimes out of the chain of command, as recommended in the Dec. 23 editorial “Failure in the chain of command,” would not stop the crimes nor achieve swift justice for the victim or a fair hearing for the accused. The problem has been the military’s inability to hold leadership in the chain of command — all the way up to admirals and generals — accountable.  

I fully support expert “independent units” to assist in prevention, investigation and prosecution, but it remains the chain of command’s responsibility and accountability for discipline.

Steve Maas, New Smyrna Beach, Fla.

The writer is a retired
U.S. Navy rear admiral.