Skip to comments.Women in Combat
Posted on 02/06/2013 3:46:10 AM PST by Kaslin
A senior Defense Department official said the ban on women in combat should be lifted because the military's goal is "to provide a level, gender-neutral playing field." I'd like to think the goal of the military should be to have the toughest, meanest fighting force possible. But let's look at "gender-neutral playing field."
The Army's physical fitness test in basic training is a three-event physical performance test used to assess endurance. The minimum requirement for 17- to 21-year-old males is 35 pushups, 47 situps and a two-mile run in 16 minutes, 36 seconds or less. For females of the same age, the minimum requirement is 13 pushups, 47 situps and a 19:42 two-mile run. Why the difference in fitness requirements? "USMC Women in the Service Restrictions Review" found that women, on average, have 20 percent lower aerobic power, 40 percent lower muscle strength, 47 percent less lifting strength and 26 percent slower marching speed than men.
William Gregor, professor of social sciences at the Army's Command and General Staff College, reports that in tests of aerobic capacity, the records show, only 74 of 8,385 Reserve Officers' Training Corps women attained the level of the lowest 16 percent of men. The "fight load" -- the gear an infantryman carries on patrol -- is 35 percent of the average man's body weight but 50 percent of the average Army woman's weight. In his examination of physical fitness test results from the ROTC, dating back to 1992, and 74,000 records of male and female commissioned officers, only 2.9 percent of women were able to attain the men's average pushup ability and time in the two-mile run.
In a January report titled "Defense Department 'Diversity' Push for Women in Land Combat" Elaine Donnelly, director of the Center for Military Readiness, points to U.S. Army studies showing that women are twice as likely to suffer injuries and are three times more undeployable than men. Women are less likely to be able to march under load -- 12.4 miles in five hours with an 83-pound assault load -- and to be able to crawl, sprint, negotiate obstacles with that load or move a casualty weighing 165 pounds or more while carrying that load. Plus, there are muscle-challenging feats, even for men, such as field repairs on an M1A1 Abrams tank.
Then there's the pregnancy issue, which makes women three to four times as likely as men to be undeployable. And once deployed, they often have to be medically evacuated, leaving units understrength. Finally, there's another difference between men and women rarely considered in deliberation about whether women should be in combat. All measures of physical aggressiveness show that men, maybe because of testosterone levels 10 times higher, are more aggressive, competitive and hostile than women. Those attributes are desirable for combat.
Here are a couple of what-if questions. Suppose a combat unit is retreating in mountainous terrain in Afghanistan, where a person's aerobic capacity really makes a difference, and the women in the unit can't keep up with the men. What would you propose, leaving the women behind to possibly be captured by the Taliban or having the unit slow down so the women can keep up, thereby risking causalities or capture? What if a male soldier is washed out of the Army's Advanced Infantry Training program because he cannot pass its physical fitness test whereas a female soldier who can't perform at his level is retained? Should male soldiers be able to bring suit and be awarded damages for sex discrimination? How much respect can a male soldier have for his female counterpart, who is held to lower performance standards?
There's another issue. The Selective Service System's website has the following message about draft registration: "Even though the Secretary of Defense has decided to allow women in combat jobs, the law has not been changed to include this. Consequently, only men are currently required to register by law with Selective Service during ages 18 thru 25. Women still do not register." How can that, coupled with differences in performance standards, possibly be consistent with the Defense Department's stated agenda "to provide a level, gender-neutral playing field"?
When DoD suggests that allowing women in combat roles is “leveling the playing field” they are comparing combat to a game...
What is WRONG with these imbeciles???????
I was born with a blue cord on my shoulder, and retired with one, but...
I spent a short time in a Medium Girder Bridge unit with the engineers. In the 1990s, the unit picked up women in the mess, maintenance, and administrative sections of the company. One day, they came out to a bridge build in order to “try it out.” They grabbed the carrying handles and went over to a top panel - one of the lightest pieces on the site.
“Le ho, heave!”
Up went the top panel to knee level... for about half a second. Down went the top panel with a thud. They got it off the ground but immediately set it back down. Too heavy.
On a REAL bridge build, the men often have to lift those top panels over their heads and hold them there until the chute bolts are put into place. Women can not do that. After I left that unit, it’s my understanding that the bridging sections finally got women. Their job on EVERY bridge site: PIN MAN. The *easy* job that everyone wants because it doesn’t involve lifting any bridge sections.
So much for a level playing field.
Just because you don't seek out 11B doesn't mean it won't find you...
Energy production - love my electricity and gasoline: power without poop
Public education - progressives,not Christians: not guilty
Obama Care - see above
Farming - our biggest health problem is obesity not starvation
Defense Industry - the envy of the world!
Banking - double entry accounting allowed for the exploration (exploitation) of the entire world.
etc. Medicine, computers, TV's - Love 'em.
White Guys (used to) Rule
Now those same dodgers and hiders are in positions of power and their children aren't serving either. The pool of parents supporting their children's enlistment is growing smaller all the time and the services are struggling to find the best available - since, contrary to mythology, only smart, fit, well-educated men perform well in the combat arms.
The bottom of the barrel will be visible soon as fewer and fewer top-quality volunteers will be available. We'd better hope that combat robots become available soon.
I have a hard time imagining a mixed sex battalion pulling off something like the Inchon landing, or invading a North Korea backed by the Chinese. I asked one person if they could imagine a battalion of 100% women making a landing at D-Day. I was told combat had changed.
That is a big part of the problem - the idiots think combat is a video game!
They have already spent millions to make this a possibility. Our combat troops are basically pack mules. The know that women can't hump the load. They have robotic mules and other stuff that they are testing. The issue they are having is portable power. A real mule just need some grass and water. A robotic one requires a power source that we have not invented yet. All fantasy on their part.
I never had to wear full combat gear but I had to wear all the protective gear, flak vest, helmet, LBE and chem gear, and that sh!t is heavy. I weighed 50lbs extra without the chem gear.
I am also certain opening up the military to openly homosexual men did wonders for retention and recruitment. /s
The economy is bad so no issues with retention or recruitment. Time will tell on those. Whatever negatives effects happen will be covered up or not reported for years. They are hoping that all us homophobes die off by then.
Sans using weapons of mass destruction and just killing everyone, boots on the ground win wars always have, always will.
You’re missing my point!
This is the infrastructure BO is KILLING!!
I find that surprising, I could see that being true in the USAF, yall have nice quarters. but USA and USMC not so much.
Robots will eventually take up all combat roles. Human reactions are too slow/can’t take Gs/have families. We are looking at only the beginning edges of this evolution with telecommanded devices (like drones). Autonomous devices will follow before long, as soon as the software catches up. We don’t have a lot of choices - we will not get enough volunteers, we have become too casualty-averse, and we have to get this developed before our adversaries do.
True, the new AF standard is everyone will have their own room. The most you would have to share is a bathroom. No issue with a flamer or dyke sharing. The only time you would share is at a deployed location.
One software glitch or virus and war over. Computer chips can’t replace the 3lb shoulder mounter computer.
Last time I was a commander over a training CO (2005 Ft Knox) - I started seeing that...and actually - since you brought that up — I was conducting range op’s for the M16A2 - and it had rained - and the firing positions were full of water - and out of the soldiers coming through that week...I was asked by the COL who showed determination and stood out as a soldier — there was only one I could think of - a female that once in the water never moved - laid there - and finished her entire firing course until done - everyone else was either laying to the side or would get up between lanes....
Which goes back to my other comment - as an MP - females I served with in combat (Iraq 03-04) - did what everyone else was doing,...one that I served with in FT Leonard Wood lost her arm from a RPG...perhaps the 11B series is on the brink of collapse due to no one wanting it - or no those that sign up are far from ever achieving it...
Lately - we are not in the business of winning anything...
Iraq has fallen back into a roller coaster civil war...and Afghanistan will as well...those two campaigns would have been better had we gone in level their infrastructure and then set-up operations that monitored what they did — kinda like playing babysitter with a heavily armed FOB and a US Carrier sitting outside...but winning wasn’t part of the plan over there...why we wasted our time and money to reconstruct I have no idea...plus the lives lost, both civilian & military, was highly unacceptable...we have move away from wars like WW II - Korea...those days are gone...
You write good posts on this topic, but of all the non serving conservatives, why choose one with a medical deferment instead of the fit ones who clearly wanted to avoid service, people like Santorum, or Romney, or Michael Medved, or Hugh Hewitt, Glenn Beck, etc?
Why mention the loss of an arm as a defense to weaken the military by replacing men with females?
Glenn Beck was a bit too young - he was 1 year old when I went into boot camp. Michael Medved is the right age to have gone but Hugh Hewitt was a bit too old for even the earliest part of the war. Mitt Romney is another avoider - we didn't very many Mormons (or Seventh Day Adventists or Jehova's Witnesses) in the Marines that I knew. There are a lot of others too - good 'ol "I had better things o do" Dick Cheney and many, many others. I pick on Rush because he talks a good game but when the country really needed tough men, he got his doctor to help him get out of the draft with Pilonidal cysts, something that easily treatable. In my own case, I had a broken back (discovered during my boot camp physical) thanks to a motorcycle wreck but I still joined because that was the thing we did back then. I have trouble with some guy that wants to speak for me but found some lame excuse to get other people to fight in his place (which includes Mitt).
I didn't bring up any Democrats because it is usually big surprise when the join. I'm not at all bitter, but the guys who were in Vietnam or supporting the war by serving elsewhere during that period are the finest people in the world. The ones that stayed home are what they are.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.