Ladies in Waiting, Women Warriors in Combat?

There is a push afoot to grant women the unrestricted right to serve in combat positions. I can think of one female Sailor who had the strength (quite easily) to serve on the frontline. But she was a head-case, which would make her prohibitive for such a position. I’m also not a fan of what 1st. Lt. Colleen Farrell did, getting the ACLU involved:

Marine 1st. Lt. Colleen Farrell speaks during a media conference on Tuesday in San Francisco. Farrell and several other active women military personnel have filed a federal lawsuit to demand combat action, requesting all branches of the military to remove the so-called combat exclusionary rule that bars women from fighting on the front lines. This suit, to be filed by the American Civil Liberties Union, is believed to be the first involving active duty military personnel.

I respect all our female service members, including the ones I disagree with. Like Army Staff Sgt. Jennifer Hunt. Who was a true hero in Iraq when her Humvee hit an IED:

“I’m trying to get rid of the ban with a sharp poke,” said U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Jennifer Hunt, who was among the plaintiffs in the latest lawsuit and was injured in 2007 when her Humvee ran over an improvised explosive device in Iraq.

Female Marine going pull-ups

Hunt and the other three women said the policy unfairly blocks them from promotions and other advancements open to men in combat. Three of the women are in the reserves. A fourth, Marine Corp Lt. Colleen Farrell, leaves active duty this week. . .

American Civil Liberties Union Ariela Migdal, who represents the four women, said Panetta’s actions weren’t enough. She called for an end to the combat ban. “These tweaks and minor changes on the margins do a disservice to all the women who serve,” she said.

“It falls short,” she said. “It is not enough.”

Marine Corps Capt. Zoe Bedell said she left active duty, in large part, because of the combat exclusion policy. Bedell said she was frustrated that her advancement in the Marines was blocked by her inability to serve directly in combat units.

Female IDF soldiers

The lawsuit is taking an interesting path to reach the courts. By alleging that women are already serving in combat:

The lawsuit also alleges that women are already serving unofficially in combat units.

Air National Guard Major Mary Jennings Hegar sustained shrapnel wounds in 2009 when she exchanged fire on the ground in Afghanistan after her Medevac helicopter was shot down. Both she and Hunt received Purple Heart medals for their injuries.

The lawsuit was assigned to U.S. District Judge Edward Chen, an appointee of President Barack Obama.

We shall see, Shipmates. We shall see. The Israelis had some interesting studies on this. And pullups for females were finally added to the Marine Corps PT test. I will give the last word to Capt. Katie Petronio: We as an institution are going to experience a colossal increase in crippling and career-ending medical conditions for females.

18 thoughts on “Ladies in Waiting, Women Warriors in Combat?”

  1. Prepared for serious incoming but, make a graph – you can measure the decline of the United States of America (in any calibration you so choose ) with the ratification of the 19th Amendment. Uncle Sugar & Nanny gubmint born on that day.

  2. There is the periphery of combat (the edges of the blade);
    And there is the point of combat (the tip of the blade).

    Afghanistan has shown that time and again female medics pushed into the point of combat have covered themselves with pride & honour whilst under fire, even returned fire and shielded the wounded using their own bodies to prevent further harm. However; they have been afforded the diluted protection of thirty combat troops. To dilute any further weakens the chain to the point of breaking.

    The worst possible scenario would be that such females are injured and captured, and then used and abused to the torment of their loved ones, and brothers in arms. It would be a propaganda tool so great that it is unimaginable.

    The rules state no fraternisation; you will not be shocked by how many ‘front liners’ have discretely returned through pregnancy, or have submitted to the morning after pill.

    I for one have thought of this long and hard, I have also spoke with serving RM’s and asked their opinion. To a man they do not wish to see the day that females operate as the tip of the blade.

    To this day the Royal Marines do not accept females into the Corps, nor do the Parachute Regiment.

    There is more to say on the subject, but with respect I will save it for another time.

    With the great pride I post the following link.

    Yours Aye.

  3. The whole matter of women in combat should be very, very easy to solve: Any woman who is physically able to perform according to the minimum standards set for men, can join. That would most likely decrease the amount of women in combat.

    I see absolutely no problem with it. Serving in the military isn’t a right, neither is going to war. And anyone who can’t keep up with their unit, or carry as much is obviously someone who shouldn’t be allowed in an infantry unit.

    If women are tired of being discriminated against, why do they want to go to combat? Today the PT standards in every Western military are lower for women than they are for men. If women are allowed to join infantry units, one of the fields where physicaly abilities are really required to have a functioning unit, how would they be treated when they walk shorter distances, carry considerably less than their male counterparts, and delay the rest of the unit by not being as physically fit? That if anything would cause harassment and what not to take on the size of Mt Everest.

    Then of course there are other things, like the fact that the female body simply can’t carry as much as men without breaking (ask the Red army in Afghanistan, their official injury rates went through the roof when women were used as infantry to respond to a shortage of manpower), that male soldiers are considerably worse affected psychologically when female soldiers are injured/killed (ask the Israelis), or the fact that both getting enemies in the Middle East and the entire hearts and minds philosofy will both end up dead in the water when the enemies are told to surrender to the gender that they view as almost an animal, or the locals who would look very weak in the eyes of their neighbours if they would respect orders given to them by a female soldier.

  4. Lots of issues here, but I’ll restrict myself to the physical ones. Many years ago a similar movement sprang up to allow women to serve as firefighters and LEOs. In my neck of the woods, that resulted in lowering physical fitness standards so that more women could pass them. Not a good idea. (FWIW, I’m on the plus side of 200 pounds. I don’t care what gender or color the person is who hauls my big butt out of a burning building, but I certainly hope that whoever shows up is physically capable of doing so, and not some PC quota-filler.)

    Similarly, back when I was active duty we didn’t carry nearly as much gear as our troops do today. 60+ pound rucks are now the norm. That’s a heavy load to hump for extended periods of time. IMO the Marines are approaching this correctly. Maintain valid standards, and allow anyone who meets them to proceed.

  5. The Marines have already let women attend the Infantry Leaders’ Course. Why don’t the two Marines in this story actually volunteer to attend that course instead of filing this lawsuit?

  6. Lots of opinions on this; I have a feeling if it does occur within the US military, events will catch up with the reality…a really bad thing is going to happen and those in charge of the government at this time will try to make excuses for it, but at the end of the day, will have to concede it isn’t necessarily a good idea….although the rub is, how do they excuse themselves from making such a disastrous move and the inevitable outcome?? ….this ends justifies the means meme never works, does it….k

  7. CenTexTim in the 10 ring. Bottom line – can you carry my 245 lb deadweight, unconscious, wounded ass out of the firefight and get me to a Corpsman or a MedEvac? If you can’t, what good are you?

    1. They would have to introduce a new combat rule to allow ‘mercy killings’ in the field of combat. The rule being, who shoots him buries him!

      Or; introduce a form of individual ‘man-packable’ helium balloon that can be inflated sufficiently to nudge a 245 Ib bloke out of the kill zone…


  8. A whole new MOS – The Coup-de-Grace Technician. Like the Sioux & Cheyenne women administering to Custer, Reno & Benteen’s Companies. Everything old is new again.

    1. Reminds me of Kipling:

      When you’re wounded and left on Afghanistan’s plains,
      And the women come out to cut up what remains,
      Jest roll to your rifle and blow out your brains
      An’ go to your Gawd like a soldier.

        1. Ahh, Brother Kipling – friend of Hiram, David Dravot & Peachey Carnahan.

          For it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Chuck him out, the brute!”
          But it’s “Saviour of ‘is country” when the guns begin to shoot;
          An’ it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ anything you please;
          An’ Tommy ain’t a bloomin’ fool — you bet that Tommy sees!

          Yeah, we see. And we weep for what’s been lost and what could have been.

  9. EB: Please feel free to always post links on Sailors like Kate Nesbitt. Good story. (PS: I am not sure if Kipling suits me. You see, I’ve never Kippled.)
    Anthony: Your argument is exceedingly logically and straight-forward. I agree completely.
    deflower: Yes, both women rocked out of the class.
    Kris: I would wish that we put the armed services first, rather than political correctness.
    CTT: Perfect analogy.
    Struan: 245 pounds? I doubt very many women can fireman’s carry you or drag you.

    1. That was my point, the first class the two females washed out (ass alot of men did) abd they can’t find any volunteers to go to any more classes. Why sue when they could just volunteer for the training?

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