November 4, 2013

An update on women training for military combat.

Last month, 81 male and female Marines took the Marine Corps Infantry Officer Course. 65 males passed. There were 4 women, all of whom failed.
Women began reporting to IOC on a voluntary basis last year. Counting the latest class, 10 women have attempted IOC, and none has passed. 
Meanwhile, in the Marines Delta Company, Infantry Training Battalion:

13 women who have volunteered to participate in a closely watched experiment into the feasibility of integrating females into the infantry. The infantry is among a handful of military jobs that remain male-only preserves.

The women, who are shouldering the same packs and wearing the same combat uniforms as the men, are barely distinguishable from the men as they trudge in the darkness....

The two-month enlisted course here at the School of Infantry-East is not as demanding as the officer course and it is more likely at least some women will complete it....
In the Army:
The Army is also undertaking studies as it works to open ground combat positions to women. Recently they validated the physical requirement of all their specialties in an effort to create tests that will screen applicants for those occupations.

Among the hardest physical task was in the artillery field, where a three-person crew has to load 90 rounds of 155mm howitzer shells, which weigh about 95 pounds each, into an ammunition truck within 45 minutes.
CORRECTION: Text under "In the Army" was changed.

64 comments:

David said...

Your mother does not wear combat boots!

Ann Althouse said...

My mother did.

My mother was one of the first WACs.

MadisonMan said...

If women can pass the requirements, the undiluted requirements, I have no problem.

I presume the requirements are there as a kind of test for the actual job, after all.

Alex said...

Your momma wears combat boots.

JohnG said...

The issue is not whether women can pass the requirements of some fabricated training regiment no matter how punishing it might be. The issue is whether they can keep up with a rifle squad out on patrol day after day, humping the same loads as the men, eating on the go, sleeping fitfully in the mud (if they're not on ambush), and then getting up the next day, without any sanitation (or privacy), and doing it all over again.

Alex said...

JohnG - off to the re-education camp for you.

Lance said...

I don't get the "In the Army" subhead. Camp Geiger is USMC. That made me check the source article, which doesn't mention the U.S. Army at all.

BDNYC said...

If it improves military effectiveness, I support. If it degrades military effectiveness, I oppose it. It's as simple as that.

Whether women can pass muster is but a secondary consideration. I'm sure there are a great many women who can pass the physical requirements, even if the military refuses to dilute them.

This isn't the same thing as desegregating the military. Why? Because I think the intrinsic differences between the sexes are far more difficult to overcome than whatever bullshit cultural/racial differences exist between the races. Those cultural/racial differences are precisely the sort of thing the military aims to obliterate; after all, if soldiers are going to think of themselves as members of any group, it should be the military.

I don't think sexual relations is going to be the source of the trouble. It's going to be the female drama and the special emotional needs and the constant backstabbing. And the male instinct to act stupidly around women, especially when placed in scary circumstances.

Jenn said...

I've said this before - the "kind" of men who make good infantry soldiers are almost by definition the "kind" of men who will not tolerate a female in harm's way, to the detriment of the overall mission. To break them of that basic instinct will not be beneficial, in my opinion. Think of how many women in majority-male groups now who say things like "oh, they treat me like a sister, it's great." Yes, it is. And what do good men do when their sisters are in danger?

And that's not even scratching the surface of the sexual tensions that are utterly and completely inevitable when a group of young, adrenaline-saturated people are stuck in high-stress situations.

This is a bad idea. I don't think it's going to end very well.

jr565 said...

If they can't pass the requirements they shoudln't be able to serve in a combat capacity.
A war zone doesn't make allowances for male and female capabilities. Its sex and color blind.

Alex said...

jr... it's the grand experiment. We are so filthy rich as a nation that we can afford such luxuries.

Carl Pham said...

The reason for having physical standards for an army has nothing to do with any fundamental requirement for physical strength. Wars are no longer won by a sequence of individual duels between individuals with broadswords, so that he with the longest reach, strongest right arm, and greatest stamina wins. It's a mechanized, industrialized army, and you can pull the trigger with a tiny girl finger just as easily as with a brawny man finger. So insofar as that goes, the girls in the trenches crowd is quite right.

But that's a red herring anyway. The reason for standards is because in a modern army each soldier has to be very well equipped, with training and expensive equipment. There's a huge investment -- probably well north of $1 million -- in each trigger-puller. If each is to be able to operate the equipment, it has to be designed around his typical size and strength. That's why, for example, the submarine service won't take men who are too tall, and the USAF won't take pilots who need glasses. They're outside the design range of the equipment.

The problem is, females are often outside the spec range of equipment designed for men. They are shorter, weigh less, have different leg/arm ratios, much less upper body strength, but conversely much more cardiovascular endurance. If we were to go through the entire equipage -- including training regimes, operating protocols, and equipment -- and design two of each, one for males, one for females, the expense would be enormous. You'd basically have to have two separate armies, one using M equipment and training, and one using F.

Is that efficient? I'd say not. You're doubling the cost of equipping your army for no good reason. You might argue the reason exists if you simply can't get enough of a single sex to fill your army, but if that is you're problem, you have much bigger issues.

The real issues seems to be two: (1) the "equality" lobby who worries if women aren't draftable or taken as volunteers then arguing they should be treated equally somewhere else will fail. For example, a woman candidate for President in a war or warlike situation will be unable to say she's a vet the way a man might; (2) there is a small segment of woman who want to pursue a military career, and can't do it effectively if they are denied combat roles. Even if their ultimate goal is to be a desk jockey, they may not be able to get there without serving in the ranks (particularly true in the USMC).

I think (2) could be better solved by having a specialized and elite Amazon corps, with equipment, training, and operating protocols designed specifically for women (and commanded entirely by women). You'd only attract women who really really wanted to serve, and they could be given dangerous jobs, like the SEALs or Rangers. Since they'd be small and elite, specialized equipment and training regimes would be a modest cost, and worth the investment because you'd be training advanced and eager warriors, not sullen draftees or kids hiding out from adulthood. Furthermore, the status would be high, so serving therein would be a plume in a female officer's hat.

That helps address (1), too, since it provides some measure of equality at the volunteer level, or where service is sought. It doesn't provide full equality of burdens, however. But I think that is simply reality, and could best be addressed by insisting on the higher burden of expectations on women elsewhere. No, I don't mean pregnancy. But, for example, when young children go bad I think we should be a lot more willing to put the blame on mothers -- because mothers have way more influence and power over young children, generally. Not parents, but mothers. Women will resist this, of course. But that's part of the giant quid pro quo for the unequal burden on young men elsewhere, e.g. being draftable. TANSTAAFL.

RecChief said...

it's obvious what must be done, create one set of standards for female infantrymen(?) and another for the men. Just like the disparate standards on the Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT)

openidname said...

@BDNYC: "It's going to be the female drama and the special emotional needs and the constant backstabbing."

Do you know any actual women? Or are you just going by TV sitcoms?

JohnG said...

Alex - It would never work. I am impervious and incorrigible.

Michael K said...

They might try recruiting from the women's rugby team at UCLA. My daughter, who is athletic and tall, but otherwise normal, was looking for a sport to do when she was an undergrad. She made the mistake of inquiring about rugby and was appalled at what she found and had considerable difficulty escaping the attention of team members. It was pretty funny.

She is now married and surfs many days no matter what the weather.

Edward Lunny said...

This is a new venue for women, there are new challenges and requirements, new goals. It will take some time for them to get up to speed. Hearing about, talking about those requirements and challenges is considerably different than meeting them. There are new goals, goals that take on a different meaning when striving to meet them.
This may or may not work out, but, I think that this experiment cannot be avoided, nor should it. No matter the final result, that result will be of importance beyond the face value. Other countries and cultures have done this. Why not us and why not now ? No matter the result, the outcome, we will not have lost anything by doing this and stand to gain greatly.

BDNYC said...

@openidname

Yep. Work with a few. Grew up in a house full of them. Am married to one.

Alex said...

John - vee shall see. Have you ever been subjected to the KGB?

Ralph Hyatt said...

Carl Pham, the equipment that males carry is as light as possible because the lighter it is, the more that can be carried.

The weight of weapons and ammo and entrenching tools and rations, and radios, and helmets, and kevlar, and night vision goggles, and flashlights, and GPS systems, and maps and compasses in case the GPS system breaks, and gas masks, extra socks, and foot gear and uniforms, and gear to carry it all in or on can only be reduced a finite amount and if it is reduced, then you get to carry some more ammo because running out of it in the middle of a fire fight really sucks.

So yes, physical strength is important since you are going to need to be able to pull yourself over walls and low crawl and run with all that gear on, with little to no sleep for perhaps days at a time. Perhaps in freezing temperatures or in the blazing sun.

Also, the above is also why the US military is an up or out kind of organization. That kind of physical regimen, even just in training, is, in the long run, physically harmful. Your knees and hips start to give out. Older service members need to have progressed into ranks where they are planning and over seeing missions, cause after awhile they aren't going to be able to take part in them.


Strelnikov said...

Standby for Marine combat standards to be lowered in 5...4...3...

Strelnikov said...

"I'm sure there are a great many women who can pass the physical requirements, even if the military refuses to dilute them."

Absolutely. Heck, Demi Moore passed, didn't she? All it takes is the right attitude, haircut, implants, and screenwriter. I predict widespread and diverse passage in the near future.

paul a'barge said...

Watch and count ... the time between now and the 1st false rape accusation.

Tick ... Tock ...

paul a'barge said...

Ralph Hyatt really puts the clue-bat-wood to Carl Pham, gently but oh that has to hurt. At some point. Well, maybe not, given Carl's comment.

eric said...

How long before they start yelling discrimination and make them lower the requirements so women can participate?

I give it less than a year.

wildswan said...

I like the idea of "Amazon" units because then they wouldn't be impeding men but they could carry out tasks and if they did they would be accepted. I don't think many women really want to do this and it wouldn't take many units to soak up almost everyone who wanted to and was qualified. This is based on experience with women, like me, who really like electronics - who like hardware - collectors of old vacuum tubes and like that. We exist and why shouldn't we be allowed to work? But we are not common. And I don't think many women want to be real marines and of them not many could be. It isn't just prejudice.

dhagood said...

@BDNYC: "It's going to be the female drama and the special emotional needs and the constant backstabbing."

if this is what happens, then the experiment will fail and female infantrymen (heh) will degrade combat effectiveness and thus be a bad thing.

on the other hand, i've wondered more than once if some women do drama and backstabbing and such because a) they can and b) nobody has ever taught them not to or shown them a reason why such a tactic is not useful. perhaps some or most of these women will up their game thus adding to the pool of competent infantrymen, which would thus be a good thing.

we shall see.

Paul said...

To be in a combat unit you have to carry huge loads, move great distances with zero sleep for over 24 hrs and still function and work as a team.

That takes alot of physical strength, stamina, think strait, and willingness to still work well with others.

And don't tell me to lower the standards. Combat is what makes the standard, not people, and thus we must function to what happens in real combat, not some equal opportunity/affirmative action standard.

War has no equal rights amendment.

elkh1 said...

Of course women failed all these male chauvinistic trainings. Women are sensitive and empathetic. After all, violence begets violence. We have to find a way to stop before violence spirals out of control.

Let these women talk to the jihadists. Jihadists are people, they need someone to talk to about their feelings. Dress these women in burqas to remind the jihadists their loving womenfolk. They will take off their suicide vests and go home to their mommies.

The Godfather said...

"a requirement to complete three pull-ups" !!!!

Is that what it's come down to?

When I was in basic training (1969), the first day you had to do 10 chin-ups just to get into the mess hall for lunch. (No, I couldn't do it, but when the sergeant asked me, What have you been doing to get into such lousy shape, troop? and I said, I'm a lawyer Drill Sergeant, he thought it was so funny he let me in with only 5.)

There are places for women and lawyers in the military, but they aren't in the infantry.

Skeptical Voter said...

The Godfather is right. I was a 25 year old lawyer--a recent admittee to the California Bar when I arrived at that paradise of the South, Ft. Polk Louisiana for basic training in May 1969. 10 pullups was the price of admission to the mess hall for lunch.

Now I was headed back to California to serve in a National Guard mechanized infantry unit, and keep Riverside CA safe from the dreaded ChiComm Menace. And you know, the Chinese never did invade Southern California in the 6 years I was in the Guard, so I guess I can say "Mission Accomplished".

But the folks at Ft. Polk weren't messing around. In the summer of 1969 they would start a new Advanced Infantry Training Battalion of 1,000 men each week. After 8 weeks of training we graduated, qualified as either riflemen, mortarmen or antitank gunners. I was in one such battalion, and of the 1,000 men, 20 of us were National Guardsmen--going home to California or Kansas or Mississippi.Out of the remaining 980 men--all trained as light infantrymen, 975 got orders to report to Travis AFB for flights to Viet Nam.

There were other training bases. If you're going to keep a force level of 500,000 men in Viet Nam (which we did) and most were there for one year tours, you needed about 10,000 newly trained men each week--just to keep the force level up.

Ft. Polk was turning out infantrymen. Three pull ups just wasn't going to cut it for fitness in combat. Maybe for some disc jockey named Robin Williams--but not for a guy who would be humping it in the boonies.

So standards have slipped.

Tom said...

I'm former Marine infantry. Trust me when I say that women cannot hack it. Many men can't. It's more than the physical stamina, although that is certainly an important factor. It is the day-in, day-out grind. It's the constant fear, the having to take a shit in the wide open in front of your fellow Marines. It's the filth, and it's bugs and parasites.

An infantry Marine in full combat rattle weighs anywhere between 225 and 300 pounds. In the case of a wounded buddy, that's dead weight. I know of no woman who can haul that weight up off the ground to rescue said wounded buddy, never mind having to haul it over a wall or hedge, all while under fire.

Finally, despite all the political correctness and rationalization, there's always this (from a lecture at JFK School, can't remember who actually said it):

"Somewhere a true believer is training to kill you. He is training with minimum food or water, in austere conditions, day and night. The only thing clean on him is his weapon. He doesn’t worry about what workout to do; his rucksack weighs what it weighs, and he runs until the enemy stops chasing him. The believer doesn’t care how “hard” it is; he knows he either wins or dies. He doesn’t go home at 1700; he is home. He knows only his cause."

By the way, Camp Geiger is the Marine East Coast infantry school. Nothing to do with the Army.

David said...

I salute your mother, Althouse. No disrespect intended.

David Davenport said...

Other countries and cultures have done this.

List some.

And no, the Israeli Defense Force does not have female infantry persons.

Jason said...

Stupid on stilts. God bless these young women Marines for giving it a go, but, good lord... women have tremendous washout rates from basic training as it is for things like stress factures, hip problems, and other orthopedic issues. We're talking, like 7 times the stress injury rate of men... and that's without sending them to Infantry school.

These are the best young women we've got. They embrace challenges, they're physically fit, they're go-getters... and we will be screwing a substantial number of them out of promising military careers once they get a permanently disabling back or pelvic injury.

That's not something you can select against in advance, and it's not something you can train for.

It's also hugely expensive for the military.

That's not counting the inevitable heat injuries, which you're probably not hearing about, but once someone goes down with heat stroke once, they are more prone to it in the future.

This is PC bullshit of the highest order. But the integration of women into combat MOSs and the integration of gays into the military and dealing with sexual harrassment and assault problems is what's taking up all the bandwidth and eating up scarce training schedule time all up and down the chain.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Army is down to just two combat ready brigades. THAT is the real problem.

Fuck this shit.

I did 21 years, most of it infantry. Thank God I'm retired.

A hearty fuck you to anyone who never hauled a mortar baseplate or a M240B tripod and spare barrel bag up a hill who thinks they know better.

Jason said...

Observe, libtards:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rRfCpQx_FDE

Jason said...

These guys pretty much have it nailed. Spot on.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0HmT5jqy-iE

pst314 said...

Carl Pham "The reason for having physical standards for an army has nothing to do with any fundamental requirement for physical strength..."

Read House to House: The Battle of Fallujah by David Bellavia for a graphic illustration of the importance of physical strength and endurance.

The Drill SGT said...

This again.

1. It comes down to a case of individual rights versus force effectiveness. I'm on the side of Force Effectiveness. That means no women in Combat Arms. Period.

2. Althouse, don't confuse Military Combat with Combat Arms, they are not the same. Many women have served successfully in combat, none have served successfully in the Combat Arms.

That Marine story about the Infantry Officer Course? It's like 1 day of combat in a tour that lasts 365 days. 10 women have tried, 9 failed short of 1 day, the 10th at day 8. Note that 15% of the Men fail. Only one of the women and these are top top flight women can get through Day 1. The enlisted test? 99% of the men pass. They are hoping that 10% of the women (e.g 1) gets through...

Carl Pham, what a load of crap. The Army did some analysis on combat infantry loads in 2006 or so. The three standards (as measured in combat) worked out to 60+, 100+ and nearly 130 pounds of weight. carried all day, up hill. Read this view of a female combat vet marine engineer.

http://www.mca-marines.org/gazette/article/get-over-it-we-are-not-all-created-equal

3. The second article covering enlisted marines had some Army material in it. an example:

The Army is also undertaking studies as it works to open ground combat positions to women. Recently they validated the physical requirement of all their specialties in an effort to create tests that will screen applicants for those occupations.

Among the hardest physical task was in the artillery field, where a three-person crew has to load 90 rounds of 155mm howitzer shells, which weigh about 95 pounds each, into an ammunition truck within 45 minutes


PS: Women can serve successfully in combat. Hell, I met my wife when we were both Army Captains, she retired as a Colonel. I have nothing against women in combat, but never in the combat arms...She's a JAG...

PPS: I did BCT in Sep 1969 :) At that point, one of the events was the 150 yard man carry. Pick a guy up and run him around a track for 150 yards for time. Brutal on the knees. For men...

exhelodrvr1 said...

Carl Pham,
"It's a mechanized, industrialized army, and you can pull the trigger with a tiny girl finger just as easily as with a brawny man finger"

Have you paid attention to any of the documentaries about the infantry units in Afghanistan?

The Drill SGT said...

Ralph Hyatt said...
The weight of weapons and ammo and entrenching tools and rations, and radios, and helmets, and kevlar, and night vision goggles, and flashlights, and GPS systems, and maps and compasses in case the GPS system breaks, and gas masks, extra socks, and foot gear and uniforms, and gear to carry it all in or on can only be reduced a finite amount and if it is reduced, then you get to carry some more ammo because running out of it in the middle of a fire fight really sucks.


Short version of Ralph's "Ode to Loads".

There is no such thing as too much ammo. Only too much ammo to carry!!!

Ann Althouse said...

"I don't get the "In the Army" subhead. Camp Geiger is USMC. That made me check the source article, which doesn't mention the U.S. Army at all."

The second link has a section on the Army, but I excerpted at a place where it shifted back to talking about Marines

Sorry.

Will fix.

n.n said...

Why do we need a military? This nation can and is being overrun by an invading force (around one million annually) through reproduction. The ambiguous or selective interpretation of the Constitution affords the children of an alien population to possess the same rights as children born to Americans. While the children of Americans are being aborted at a rate of around one million annually. The need for a defense force had been rendered superfluous. In fact, there is neither a need for a military nor a government, since they no longer serve their ordained and established roles.

Tarrou said...

Let me put it in terms civilians can understand. Infantry soldiers are in some ridiculous, punishing physical condition. There are fewer infantry soldiers currently serving than there are Division I NCAA football players in the country. Anyone out there think women would be just as good at the football? And we don't rely on the men next to us to get a "touchdown" but to keep us from getting killed. The stakes are somewhat higher.

MnMark said...

Edward Lunny wrote: No matter the result, the outcome, we will not have lost anything by doing this and stand to gain greatly.

If we are in an actual war we have a great deal to lose. Isn't that obvious to you?

I recall reading a few years ago about how there were military units hollowed out during the run-up to the Iraq invasion by women soldiers who were purposely getting pregnant to get transferred to a base in Germany to get out of having to go to war.

I imagine there will be another serious war against a serious opponent - not a 'gimme' like the Arabs or African terrorists - and then I have a feeling we are going to be in real trouble, with our military full of women, homosexuals, illegal aliens, and gangbangers - all of them promoted based on their victim status and need to get the right 'diversity' in the command structure instead of their competency.

We have such a vicious wake-up call coming for our society...

Paul said...

And one more thing folks...

In war you have better bring your number one A team to the fight.

You bring your B team when the other side brings their A team and you will come to much grief, big time.

War is no place of a jobs corp.

So when you grab the tiger's tail, you have better be a tiger yourself.

Sam L. said...

My kid's mom wore combat boots.

Big Mike said...

Purely out of curiosity, does the IDF use women in their infantry? If so, how do they fare in combat?

Jay Vogt said...

Ah yes, the road to world peace. Whereupon we now include the half of the population in combat that had previously been exempt.

What could possibly go wrong.

Sometimes to achieve our goals we have to rise above our principals

Unknown said...

-----The reason for having physical standards for an army has nothing to do with any fundamental requirement for physical strength.

When it comes to infantry (the topic of the original articles), please keep your comments to areas of which you knowledge. There is still plenty of 70-80-90-100 lb humping that has to be done. Even strong young men suffer musculo-skeletal stress injuries.

I personally know of a 95 lb woman who only wore body armor in the Green Zone in Iraq who has permanent disability from it.

Tarrou said...

@ Big Mike,

No, the IDF banned women from Infantry and a couple other front-line MOS'es. They are allowed to pilot aircraft and various other combat specialties, but not the most physically taxing.

Tarrou said...

@MnMark,

I can't speak to the unit you heard about, but I was infantry, and on one deployment, we had a mechanic platoon attached to us that was over half female (~30). When we got the orders to deploy, mysteriously all but one female got pregnant in the train-up, and our mechanics deployed at half strength. Only a problem if you needed your vehicle fixed, really.

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mark lemberger said...

Read about Frozen Chosen Reservoir in the Korean War. The Army had let standards slide so far in a Nuclear Age that the GI's were killed in droves by men with bayonets. The Marines had kept up physical standards and tactics (everyman a rifleman)and reteated successfully.
My daughter is a Marine and has shot Expert five times but still can't run to save her life.

mark lemberger said...

Read about Frozen Chosen Reservoir in the Korean War. The Army had let standards slide so far in a Nuclear Age that the GI's were killed in droves by men with bayonets. The Marines had kept up physical standards and tactics (everyman a rifleman)and reteated successfully.
My daughter is a Marine and has shot Expert five times but still can't run to save her life.

Clyde said...

There are no "ladie's tees" in combat. There was a ~20% washout rate among the men, so it was obviously a very stressful course. The fact that all of the women who have tried the course so far have washed out doesn't mean that no woman could complete the course, but it does mean that such a woman would have to come from the very far right end of the bell curve in terms of size and physical and mental toughness.

The job of the military in general and of infantry units in particular is to kill people and break things. Men as a group are better suited to that than women as a group due to larger average size and more testosterone.

jr565 said...

Look at the marathon. The fastest woman is still outclassed by the fastest men. Simply because men physically are larger and stronger than most women. It doesn't invalidate women being able to run the marathon, but sets up a separate class for women and men. If they didnt do that women would always have lousy times when it come to the best runners who would always be men.
This is true for nearly all sports.
Woman generally compete with other women, not with men.
Marathons are feats of endurance, so hats off to any women or men who complete it.
But combat isn't a sport. Competition involves killing or being killed.and competition isn't based on sex. If you are on the battlefield you have to compete with the strongest best trained men who won't cut you slack because you're a woman.
As such, its crazy to allow women to serve in combat simply because of political correc assumptions that men and women are interchangeable.
I'm perfectly ok with letting women try. But we can't cut them any slack or lower standards simply because they're women. Which might mean a handful of women at best who'd be able to serve in combat.

EMD said...

If our society is cool with bringing back women in body bags, then I'm cool with women in combat.

My grandmother learned how to drive a stick on a troop carrier, circa 1944.

Howard Roark said...

jr565 your point is even more clear. The boy's high school record for running at any distance is faster than the Olympic record for women at the same distance.

As many women who qualify and volunteer for combat infantry training should be able to attempt it. But not 1 woman, or man who fails to meet every requirement should ever be passed.

The life of your battle buddy depends on each buddy being physically capable to do what is required.

The inevitable pressure to lower the standards so women can pass will get more men and women killed.

Their families have an expectation that their marine's life won't be wasted.

Making feminist feel good about the physical difference is NOT a worthy alter upon which to sacrifice a marine.

Bruce Hayden said...

I don't think that it is strength! per se, which is the issue! but rather that almost no women can operate at those levels for very long. As mentioned above, a number of men wash out with stress fractures. Almost all women would. Their bodies just break down faster in these sorts of long term exhausting physical endeavors. Testosterone just seems to work better for this than estrogen, and esp when the production of the latter sometimes decreases under this sort of stress, esp when menstration shuts down.

The Drill SGT said...

As many women who qualify and volunteer for combat infantry training should be able to attempt it. But not 1 woman, or man who fails to meet every requirement should ever be passed.

Sorry, No.

Women in Combat Arms decreases force effectiveness. There aren't enough who could succeed to make it work the loss in morale.

The Infantry is not a social experiment. When metal meets meat, you need to have absolute trust in the man next to you.

four eyes said...

It is pc to pretend that fire fighting and the army are not about strength anymore, but they still are. A fireman has to carry a person out of a fire. A soldier may have to carry a fellow wounded soldier out of harm's way (while being shot at). I am average size (5ft 9in, 150 lbs in college) but when young I deadlifted 300lbs and know for sure I could carry someone over my shoulder because I did it when horsing around. Ask the veterans of combat in Iraq if hand-to-hand combat ever occurs. You can't get a pass when in hand to hand combat or tell the wounded soldier next to you sorry, you can't pick him up.

Kirk Parker said...

MadMan,

"If women can pass the requirements, the undiluted requirements, I have no problem.

I presume the requirements are there as a kind of test for the actual job, after all.
"

You presume wrongly. The req's are there to find the best people for the job. This is the loophole that will likely destroy this experiment, and our military along with it: letting outsider second-guess whether the tests are too "stringent" based their interpretations of actual requirements for the MOS in question.

Sebastian said...

Your mother does not wear combat boots! ... combat-bootsmenmilitary.blogspot.com