January 23rd, 2013
03:21 PM ET

Military to open combat jobs to women

By Chris Lawrence, with reporting from Barbara Starr

[Updated at 9:30 p.m. ET] The U.S. military is ending its policy of excluding women from combat and will open combat jobs and direct combat units to female troops, multiple officials told CNN on Wednesday.

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta will make the announcement Thursday and notify Congress of the planned change in policy, the officials said.

"We will eliminate the policy of 'no women in units that are tasked with direct combat,'" a senior defense official said.

The officials cautioned, however, that "not every position will open all at once on Thursday." Once the policy is changed, the Department of Defense will enter what is being called an "assessment phase," in which each branch of service will examine all its jobs and units not currently integrated and then produce a timetable for integrating them.

Go to CNN's iReport to share your thoughts on women in combat

The Army and Marine Corps, especially, will be examining physical standards and gender-neutral accommodations within combat units. Every 90 days, the service chiefs will have to report on their progress.

The move will be one of the last significant policy decisions made by Panetta, who is expected to leave in mid-February. It is not clear where former Sen. Chuck Hagel, the nominated replacement, stands, but officials say he has been apprised of Panetta's coming announcement.

"It will take a while to work out the mechanics in some cases. We expect some jobs to open quickly, by the end of this year. Others, like special operations forces and infantry, may take longer," a senior defense official explained. Panetta is setting the goal of January 2016 for all assessments to be complete and women to be integrated as much as possible.

The Pentagon has left itself some wiggle room, however, which may ultimately lead to some jobs being designated as closed to women. A senior defense official said if, after the assessment, a branch finds that "a specific job or unit should not be open, they can go back to the secretary and ask for an exemption to the policy, to designate the job or unit as closed."

The official said the goal remains to open as many jobs as possible. "We should open all specialties to the maximum extent possible to women. We know they can do it."

CNN readers skirmish over women in battle

Sen. John McCain, an Arizona Republican who spent six years as a prisoner of war during the Vietnam War, said he supports lifting the ban on women serving in combat, pointing out women are already serving in harm's way. But he said the move should not fundamentally change the military.

"As this new rule is implemented, it is critical that we maintain the same high standards that have made the American military the most feared and admired fighting force in the world - particularly the rigorous physical standards for our elite special forces units," McCain said in a statement.

By the numbers: Women in the U.S. military

Thousands of women in the military have already found themselves in combat situations, said Sen. Patty Murray, D-Washington. Recent wars such as Iraq and Afghanistan have lacked a real front line, and women serving there have come under fire and had to fight back alongside male counterparts, she said.

Murray, who leads the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee and is a member of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, called Panetta's decision a "historic step for equality" that recognizes the role women play in the military.

The Pentagon must notify Congress of each job or unit as it is sent up to the secretary to be opened to women. Then the Defense Department must wait 30 days while Congress is in session before implementing the change.

It is a marked difference from the way the military ended the exclusion of gays serving openly, or the "don't ask, don't tell" policy. In that case, there were no stipulations attached to openly gay service members. There was no staggered approach that integrated openly gay troops into units. It was instead done all at once, across the board.

A senior defense official explained the Pentagon's reasoning behind the different approach: "You're talking about personal choice of behavior versus physical capability. And they were already in the units. If you take a unit that's never had women before, that's quite a culture change."

Another senior defense official said the goal is "to provide a level, gender-neutral playing field."

The American Civil Liberties Union recently filed a federal lawsuit against the Department of Defense, charging that combat exclusion is unfair and outdated, harms America's safety and prevents women from receiving training and recognition for their work. The plaintiffs, who include women awarded Purple Hearts, say the exclusion places them at a disadvantage for promotion.

Former troops say time has come for women in combat units

The ACLU said it is thrilled about Panetta's planned announcement.

"But we welcome this statement with cautious optimism, as we hope that it will be implemented fairly and quickly so that servicewomen can receive the same recognition for their service as their male counterparts," Ariela Migdal, senior staff attorney with the ACLU Women's Rights Project, said in the statement.

Earlier this month, the Army opened the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment to women, and it has begun recruiting female pilots and crew chiefs. The Navy has put its first female officers on submarines in the past year, and certain female ground troops have been attached to combat units in Iraq and Afghanistan. More than 800 women were wounded in those wars, and at least 130 have died.

soundoff (3,527 Responses)
  1. Build Muscle, Burn Fat, Tone Up, Abs, Chest, Big Arms

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    February 26, 2013 at 11:57 am | Reply
  2. Jobs for women

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    January 31, 2013 at 2:26 am | Reply
  3. dolemite2013

    "yo mutha wears combat boots!

    January 27, 2013 at 11:29 pm | Reply
    • Howard

      Having served in the Army in a combat MOS, I feel this is a disgrace. First point is, will physical standards for qualifications have to be lowered to accomadate women? Such as PT tests, weight carried on forced road marches? Also, it's not about womens rights, its about what is best for the team, squad, platoon, company? Where will women sleep while in the field? Does this mean that the barracks will now include the sharing of rooms by males and females?Where will women sleep during field combat duty? To an even greater point, do you want your daughters drafted into combat? I have two daughters and I will never allow them to be drafted. Combat is bad enough for men to handle from not only a physical perspective but from the mental stress. Combat is more than just pulling the trigger of a weapon.

      January 28, 2013 at 9:52 am | Reply
      • Chicadow

        I'm curious where you find disgrace. Are you afraid that finding a woman capable of doing the job as well as you did would make your service less valuable? If you climb Mt. Everest, you did it. If a woman then does it- you still did it. If you feel that your climb is now a lesser accomplishment – that's your problem. I was in the Army for seven years and I saw many men not capable of doing the job- they quickly became civilians (probably not capable of doing their civilian jobs either). But the performance of other soldiers had nothing to do with my busting my butt every day.

        In regard to physical requirements, where women will eat, sleep, etc, I agree that if any accomodations must be made that would reduce the efficacy of the country's defense there is a problem. But I can assure you that military leadership will ultimately be held responsible for the success of their missions and because of that fact, they will make it work. Training and performance should be judged based on the requirements of the job. If you feel disgraced because the military can still complete its missions with men and women on the job, you missed the point of the mission in the first place. Nobody ever said "Take the hill, with a smile on your face!" The mission- just take the hill.

        January 28, 2013 at 2:48 pm |
  4. American Citizen

    We must rally all expendable forces to the defense of our glorious nation. Equality is the name of the game these days, so prepare for an equal chance at being shot at and destroyed.

    January 27, 2013 at 10:15 am | Reply
    • STTAB

      Old hat. In the 90's the US military did a study on putting women in combat roles. The bottom line is physiologically they can not do it. This study proved (surprise) the genders are different. Repeated, sustained combat operations, in the infantry setting, are disastrous for the female body.

      The commoner views combat through the lens of Iraq and Afghanistan as viewed on the boob tube. They forget about the sustained operations required during the initial invasions. Even then the quickness of victory ensured everyone would forget. Just because you "patrol" out of a FOB, get in a few TICs or set off a few IEDs does this prove you can do the job of an infantryman? Your eating Burger King when you get back for sakes. Real infantry combat is harsh, animalistic, and designed to be unfair. Speak up if your a woman that's been in hand to hand combat. Any cases i've heard of, they got their butt saved by a man.

      Most people forget how we prepped for war pre 9/11. Just the training alone would break the average man, permenantly for life. Why do you think the retirement was set at 20 years. Because after 20 years of working as an infantryman most men are physically broke, and they deserve a benny or two. I remember training for the "north Korean menace" in the '90s. Thirty days in the field, living out of a ruck. A female wouldn't make it on a supply run (carrying two 5 gal water jugs for 6 K) much less be able to hump a .50 cal receiver to the support by fire position. And yes, I've seen all this attempted over the years. Always, always, the load gets passed off to a man. But hey, we let them carry it for a bit and made them feel good about themselves.

      The proof is in the pudding. The Canadian military spent 250 million recruiting and training females for the infantry. About 250 made the initial cut, only one made it through training meeting the standards. She quit after a year on the job because her body could not take the rigors of sustained combat training, much less operations.

      The Israeli military is constantly used as an example of women in combat roles. They pulled females from infantry units after the 1948 war. Their presence on the battlefield was a constant distraction to men. The combat exclusion clause states specifically, "they jepodize the survival of the entire unit". Israeli historian Martin Van Creveld has written extensively about the failure of the IDF to successfully integrate and use women in combat. Today, the closest they get to combat is teaching marksmanship to men.

      The German KSK for the last 10 years has put up the challenge to any woman that can complete their selection and assessment. To this day not one female has passed.

      Currently, the US Marines put out the call for female officers to attend Infantry officer basic. Not a one passed. These were the best the Marine corps could muster. I' ve seen this notion since the '90s. For years the modern female has been told she is a unique snowflake, and can do anything she puts her mind to. If women where ment to be in physical combat, we would of integrated them in the stone ages. The only problem is the US military will bend in order to accommodate.

      History proves itself. Airborne school used to be the Ranger school of its day. After women where allowed to begin attendance, standards were dropped to accommodate. Airborne school is nothing more than a booze fest for most guys nowadays.

      After women where forced upon West Point they had to drop the requirement for all cadets to carry a fully laden soldier, a specific distance. The standard could not be passed by females and was dropped to accommodate.

      I'm still looking for this unicorn (a woman that can take the rigors of sustained combat).

      January 27, 2013 at 8:53 pm | Reply
      • Chicadow

        Not meant in sarcasm- seriously, where can I find the study? I agree wholeheartedly, jobs have certain physical requirements that can't and shouldn't be changed. But if someone can do the job, I don't care if they have to check 'neither' in the M/F block on their paperwork. Let them do it. I know a woman who graduated with the first class at West Point that let women in. I'm proud of your service, but I'll make a bet- she could snap you like a twig.

        January 28, 2013 at 4:24 pm |
      • STTAB

        CHICADOW. Ask your lady freind who graduated West Point if she completed every obstacle in order to graduate like the men had to. Or if she completed the buddy carry in order to graduate like all men have to. She'll know what I'm talking about. What study would you like me to reference? Your female buddy that can snap men like twigs, has she ever killed a man with her bare hands. I know men who have. And they had a tough time of it. I've never met a female that could.

        January 29, 2013 at 6:43 am |
      • Morgan

        I am a woman and I have been training to go into the military and fulfill my dreams to become a soldier. I do not expect nor want standards to be lowered for me; I do not want to be a soldier just to say that women are better than men rather I want to be a soldier to serve my country to the fullest extent.
        Oh and just for the record I am a third degree black belt in tae kwon do and I have te skills and the knowledge to kill someone with my bare hands.

        February 6, 2013 at 9:50 pm |
  5. liamnc

    Women are emotional creatures. Its hard for most of them to imagine that there might be a logical reason most men (especially male soldiers) are opposed to this.

    Letting women fight along side men on the front lines is going to be a train wreck.

    January 26, 2013 at 3:52 pm | Reply
    • MoGold

      Really? Because its been such a "problem" for the Israelis?? Your argument doesn't hold water.

      January 26, 2013 at 7:35 pm | Reply
      • liamnc

        That's a good point. Its just my opinion biased on my experiences. I could be wrong however, only time will tell.

        January 26, 2013 at 7:58 pm |
      • pep

        Water, eh? That's when the worries really begin; when her "water breaks". You see, MoGold, women have menstral cycles that usually cause discomfort to the extent that some women cannot perform daily tasks. Having women at the front, suffering from these maladies (including getting pregnant), will be of little help to other GI's in life and death situations!

        January 27, 2013 at 10:20 am |
      • Don

        pep, you do realize that there are hormonal injections and IUDs that not only serve as birth control methods but can also stop women from having a period altogether, right? Things like Depo-Provera shots and progestogen IUDs have failure rates of 0.2% and less. Please tell me you knew that already.

        January 28, 2013 at 12:23 pm |
    • Morgan

      I am a woman and have wanted to be a soldier since I was little, and I have been training to be a soldier as well. I do not nor ever have nor ever will allow emptions “control” me.
      If I have to kill someone to save the life of a fellow soldier, civilian, or my self I would not hesitate not even for a second, I will take that shot no doubt.

      February 6, 2013 at 10:14 pm | Reply
  6. what?

    The people promoting this – I can guarantee, will be the same people, jumping up and down about how there is zero tolerance for harassment, everytime an accusation is made.

    January 26, 2013 at 1:04 pm | Reply
  7. Jim

    I would not want women in combat or in any area where women can be harmed or killed. Like it or not, males are more expendable then are women and in reality, I even think women and not us males are by far the superior gender. If I was in a demo derby, I would not use my best car in the race, I would use a well used car. This is not because women can not handle the job, in fact I think women would do better then most males as women are showing they can do anything males can do. Now that women are getting equal chances, women are leaving us males far in the dust.

    January 26, 2013 at 5:24 am | Reply
    • GeorgeWBush

      But they are very emotional and would cry a lot. Imagine in a middle of a fire fight and a brave soldier is pinned down by enemy fire. He ask for cover fire but Private Cindy Smith is crying because she just received a text from her boyfriend informing her that he's found a new flame.

      Private First Class McDonald: " I'm hit! I need cover fireeee!!!"
      Private Smith: " Booo Hooo Boo Hoo Hoo Hoo Hoo"
      McDonald: " SMITH SHOOT THE DAMN FREAKIN' ENEMY "
      Smith: " BOOOOO HOOOOO HOOOO HOOOO HOOOOOO BOOOOOO HOOOOOO ... MY LIFE IS RUINED BOOO HOOO HOOO HOOO"

      Private First Class McDonald gives his life for his country and Private Smith goes home to LA and finds a new love and they lived happily ever after.

      January 31, 2013 at 10:26 pm | Reply
      • Jamie

        You are obviously on the lower end of the intelligence spectrum.

        February 1, 2013 at 12:52 am |
      • Morgan

        Your statement is not valid "GeorgeWBush,"
        I am a woman and have wanted to be a soldier since I was little, and I have been training to be a soldier as well. I don't nor ever have not ever will allow emptions "control" me.
        And if you think for a second that a soldier who has gone through the training who has served along side fellow soldiers that they would leave a soldier behind then you know nothing about the military.

        I will not leave a fellow soldier behind, and I will not hesitate to take a shot.

        February 6, 2013 at 10:07 pm |
  8. Sandra

    Women have already been in combat situations, but the terminology of saying they are only 'attached' to a company/unit/battalion, rather than being a member of it. It's just overdue recognition of that fact.

    January 25, 2013 at 6:27 pm | Reply
    • apotas

      Thank you for stating what most of these commenters don't seem to know.

      January 26, 2013 at 4:10 pm | Reply
      • US Army Sapper

        What Combat unit did you two ladies serve in? I served in the C. Company, Camp Castle Korea, 2nd Engineeers, 2nd ID US Army and also in the 43rd Combat Heavy Engineers, B. Company (Central American JTF – Bravo ; Summer 1989). Just wondering when you both saw combat duty in Army or Marine, Engineer, Infantry, Armor or Artillery unit. Support is MUCH different than being in line platoon in one of the four combat MOS's.

        January 26, 2013 at 4:17 pm |
    • Séamus Ó Dubsláine

      ...the new canon fodder !

      January 26, 2013 at 10:35 pm | Reply
  9. liamnc

    Wait! Let them in! Think of all the money our boys in the unit would save not having to go to brothels!

    January 25, 2013 at 9:55 am | Reply
  10. John

    I wish they would stop comparing combat pilots to combat troops. Figuratively they have blood on their hands. Combat troops have the blood of their enemy, or worse fellow troops, or even worse innocent civilians. Not quite the same.

    January 25, 2013 at 9:51 am | Reply
  11. liamnc

    The answer to this is to keep the physical requirements the same across the board for both men and women, if you pass, you qualify, if you don't, tough cookies.

    January 25, 2013 at 9:42 am | Reply
  12. US Citizen

    Males are required by law to register for Selective Service within 30 days of their 18th birthday. Failure to do so prevents eligibility for Pell grants and subjects the individual to fines and even prison. Females don't have to register but want full consideration for participation in Defense activities, positions including combat, promotion, etc. Am I the only one who see's clear disparaging treatment towards males?

    January 25, 2013 at 9:33 am | Reply
    • Jamie

      It figures that most men would have a hard time seeing that this benefits them as well. After all, most grievancess men have towards women is really baseless crap that actually derives from male on male discrimmination.

      January 25, 2013 at 12:05 pm | Reply
      • tyciol

        Why are you labelling this a grievance against women, and not a grievance against the government?

        January 26, 2013 at 3:09 pm |
      • liamnc

        It seems almost impossible for most women to believe there is a legitimate, logical reason a lot of men (especially soldiers/former soldiers) are opposed to this. All they see is men discriminating against women. Its all emotion, and no logic.

        January 26, 2013 at 3:47 pm |
      • tyciol

        This is a grievance against government. Calling it a grievance against women creates a perception of misogyny where there is none.

        January 26, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
      • apotas

        @llmanc: "Women are emotional creatures. Its hard for most of them to imagine that there might be a logical reason most men (especially male soldiers) are opposed to this."

        And you seriously think that your remarks don't illustrate a grievance toward women?

        January 26, 2013 at 4:17 pm |
  13. John

    “ALL men are cut out for an infantry type role” No they are not. As a former Marine I will tell you not many men or women are ready for what it means to be in a combat unit. Yes there are a lot of physical demands put on your body ( The weight of the gear, peace of the mission, and the constant demand of pushing through pain) that even some men are not able to endure. PSD is a real. Combat troops train every day to inflect death when ever called upon. Combat troops are not mindless killing machines. After that fact, it sets in what you just have done. You can justify it however you can but men come back from combat very different and some men so different they are never the same. I have two daughters; I may not be able to stop them but I will try so that they don’t have to face the mental agony that fellows combat troops. It’s something that we have to deal with for the rest of our lives. That’s how I justify it all.

    With that said females in this country out number male 50.9% to 49.2%. A day may come when this is a pointless debate. When females out number male so greatly they will have to take a greater role in combat. Until then, leave it to us. Don’t be in a hurry to face this burden.

    January 25, 2013 at 9:24 am | Reply
    • WDL

      I hear your point.

      January 25, 2013 at 9:30 am | Reply
    • Jamie

      Women already see and experience combat, we just dont get credit for it because we're not in combat "trades"

      January 25, 2013 at 5:23 pm | Reply
  14. Mercedes

    Will all women have to be eligable if there is a mandatory draft?

    January 25, 2013 at 9:10 am | Reply
    • Pllllt

      Just because a man participates in the selective service, does not mean he will have the ability to do the job, you still have to be able to o the job.

      January 25, 2013 at 6:16 pm | Reply
  15. JD

    So after watching this segment, I realized the political agenda – and that political agenda is not for the safety of my brothers and sisters in arms. This agenda is for votes, and political appeasement instead of the realistics of war.

    You have to look at where we are fighting a war right now for example, their beliefs, and customs, and the disregard that they have towards females. A female infantry soldier would have less chances of survival if captured because of the lack of respect that the enemy has for females, than would be for a male in the same situation. The fact that the pentagon decided to make this change now shows no respect for the cultural beliefs of the countries we are in, and just adds fuel on the fire in a land where the normal civilian already distrusts us and our intentions.

    Isreal also tried females on the front lines if you remember, and had to discontinue their effort as it was leading to greater casulties of their male counterparts that would stop fighting to tend to their females.

    In the end, the fighting on the front lines should never be a political agenda, but the agenda to put forth the best fighting force, that has the greatest chance of then coming home to their families. The agenda should not be about femenist ideals that in the end is going to lead to more soldiers in harms way that will not make it back to see their loved ones.

    January 25, 2013 at 8:56 am | Reply
  16. Tracy Yager

    Here is just one thing that needs to be considered about women in combat. Are these women going to be prepared to answer the question of whether they are pro-life or pro-choice. Reason being is because if a woman is pro-life, she must consider the fact that she may be captured as a prisoner of war. Her captors may torture and rape her which may result in a pregnancy. Is she going to be willing to have an abortion being that she's pro-life or will she opt to not have a baby from the people who captured her. There is nothing that a male prisoner will go through that could result in becoming pregnant so whether he is gay or not, this is not something a man will ever have to be concerned with. So I personally believe it is ok for women to participate in combat, but she must be willing to accept the consequences should something like this ever happen to her.

    January 25, 2013 at 8:51 am | Reply
    • Grrrrreat

      She would have to make that choice no matter where she was, it can happen anywhere. You don't need a war for that.

      January 25, 2013 at 8:57 am | Reply
    • DrTom

      Every women who is Pro-life (or not) should think about what she would do if she became pregnant as a result of rape.
      She doesn't need to be captured by the enemy for,this,to happen.

      January 25, 2013 at 8:59 am | Reply
  17. chris

    "Boogie on Reggae Women what is wrong with me", life liberty and justice for all. The conservative party is out of touch with modern America, its like changing the n word in mark twain books.

    January 25, 2013 at 8:44 am | Reply
  18. 11b

    This is nice and all but they have already changed standards for women in military period. Why do they have to do less pushups and situps than men on a pt test? It shouldnt matter what gender you are a standard is a standard which is exactly why i dont want them in my unit because the second they get handed a 30 pound m240b along with 600 rounds of a combat load and a 90 pound ruck sack they WILL fail. Theres some women that might be able to do it but im not going to risk the lives of the men in my squad over some idealistic dream and a female grunt that has a 1 in 500 shot of being hard enough to be in the infantry.

    January 25, 2013 at 7:54 am | Reply
    • John Palagyi

      Just watched Soledad O'Brien's discussion with panel and guests on women combat and she was incredibly rude and arrogant with the guest professor of law. Repeatedly cut him off and did not allow him to finish thought. As a vieweer, I want all sides of an issue to be discussed not just the way Soledad wants the discussion to head.

      January 25, 2013 at 8:23 am | Reply
  19. Paul

    I saw this news story on Tuesday and knew that, for some, it would be the end of the freaking world. I don't care one way or another whether women want to live in trenches, but I sympathize with them having to overcome a complete mindset that is dead set against them. Good luck, girls.

    January 25, 2013 at 7:10 am | Reply
  20. sastesni@comcast.net

    Women are already in combat as pilots of the most advance combat fighters ever produced. These same questions were asked when it was annouced women would fly combat aircraft. History has shown the questions were not needed. Women have clearly showned their capability as combat pilots, so why all the doubt with the current decisions to increase the women's combat strenghts and responsibilies? I think a few years, womens role in the total combat senerio will seem the norm.

    January 25, 2013 at 12:38 am | Reply
    • Jim

      Simple answer?
      Physical strength.
      Namely upper body strength.

      Man OR woman, you should not be allowed near the front lines if you can't carry or at least drag a 200lb man off the battlefield.
      Otherwise....what good are you?

      January 25, 2013 at 8:25 am | Reply
  21. Nicholas

    I think that the women a allowed to be able to fight in the u.s. military and have rights of freedom.

    January 25, 2013 at 12:17 am | Reply
  22. US Army Sapper

    I love how all these so called experts posting comments here have never served in a Army or Marine Infantry, Armor, Artillery or Engineer unit. They are quick to state that their brother or father or someone they know served.

    January 24, 2013 at 11:08 pm | Reply
    • TexasMarine

      I concur. There is no other profession that so many people that have no knowledge or expertise in, and yet feel they have insight on this matter.

      January 25, 2013 at 8:11 am | Reply
  23. Chris

    This is a terrible idea. Politics and war have an absolutely dysfunctional relationship and yet we continue to let them play together. I remember being in basic training and having to carry the rucksacks and weapons of women who couldn't carry it during ruck marches. And the don't let me even start with the one that had to have the drill sergeant cover her eye with a sheet of paper because she couldn't understand the concept of closing one eye while firing a weapon. Yet we want them to be in the infantry? The military, in general, will do what it takes to keep you in as it has already invested money the second they put you on the bus/plane.

    Let's see how many people feel the same way when they behead a female soldier like they did Daniel Pearl.

    There is no equality in war. There are winners and losers. Sometimes you can't distinguish the two.

    January 24, 2013 at 10:47 pm | Reply
  24. Jamie

    Alot of men here are getting a little too emotional for my taste, and its affecting your judgment. How about you get the sand out of your shaft's before you post such drivel. It doesnt make sence why you come here to patronize all American women for not taking their share of bullets in war, and not losing their share of limbs and YEAH they're finally gonna get their heads blown off!!! - Maybe read the article to realize that women are putting themselves out there to take their equal share of the burden, might save you, your son or grandson from a draft some day. Remember corporal Upham in "Saving Private Ryan" yeah, ALL men are cut out for an infantry type role lol.

    January 24, 2013 at 10:07 pm | Reply
    • Grrrrreat

      Well said! It's more about ego!

      January 25, 2013 at 9:00 am | Reply
    • John

      “ALL men are cut out for an infantry type role” No they are not. As a former Marine I will tell you not many men or women are ready for what it means to be in a combat unit. Yes there are a lot of physical demands put on your body ( The weight of the gear, peace of the mission, and the constant demand of pushing through pain) that even some men are not able to endure. PSD is a real. Combat troops train every day to inflect death when ever called upon. Combat troops are not mindless killing machines. After that fact, it sets in what you just have done. You can justify it however you can but men come back from combat very different and some men so different they are never the same. I have two daughters; I may not be able to stop them but I will try so that they don’t have to face the mental agony that fellows combat troops. It’s something that we have to deal with for the rest of our lives. That’s how I justify it all.

      With that said females in this country out number male 50.9% to 49.2%. A day may come when this is a pointless debate. When females out number male so greatly they will have to take a greater role in combat. Until then, leave it to us. Don’t be in a hurry to face this burden.

      January 25, 2013 at 9:10 am | Reply
      • Grrrrreat

        I think she met that sarcastically. As far as step back and wait, why wait until its a must? Shouldn't' women be getting training to be ready for that task now? that's the problem with us now, we wait to the last minute to resolve the problem and then were left scrambling to get it fixed by the deadline, while running the risk of a complete meltdown. It seems to me being prepared is the better option.

        January 25, 2013 at 9:28 am |
    • RED

      Timothy E. Upham was cartographer and translator not a "grunt" that being said he didn't serve in an Infantry role "Combat". Nothing else follows.

      January 25, 2013 at 9:34 pm | Reply
    • Marine & Marine Dad

      Remember corporal Upham in "Saving Private Ryan" yeah, ALL men are cut out for an infantry type role lol.

      Yeah, s*** bags like that are a result of the draft. The draft is a result of desperation, the fear of not having enough expendable lives to carry out war. G.I. Jane was a movie too! The chance of a female making it through SEAL training is so absolutely remote, it would be a waste of money and time looking for those that were actually able.

      Give them what they ask for. Let's see how many could actually make it through SOI. If possible (which I doubt if requirements are kept the same), after they complete SOI, keep them segregated until there are enough of them to create their own Company (this alone would take several years). At that time, put them in a combat situation on the front line on their own, separate from their male warriors. Then let them prove their worth. If you want to compare apples to apples, this would be the only way. Without sacrificing men in the process because they would act differently if there were to be women on the front line with them.

      January 27, 2013 at 7:59 pm | Reply
  25. Kevin

    Nice to see women FINALLY have true, equal rights...meaning they can finally have THEIR heads blown off, too. LOVE IT

    January 24, 2013 at 8:27 pm | Reply
  26. politicaldanny

    Read my opinion here, http://politicaldanny.wordpress.com/

    January 24, 2013 at 8:15 pm | Reply
  27. BLOGGAH

    I'M ALL FOR EQUALITY, AS SUCH, A 300 POUND WOMAN SHOULD BE ABLE TO PLAY CENTER FOR THE NY GIANTS WHY NOT, COME ON GUYS, WE HAVE TO OVERCOME OUR DIFFERENCES THE NFL LIKE THE MILITARY SHOULD BE CO-ED, WHILE WE'RE AT IT WHY NOT BASEBALL AND BASKETBALL, WOMEN SHOULD HAVE THE SAME OPPORTUNITY AS MEN. EITHER THAT, OR SET UP "MEN'S UNITS AND WOMEN'S UNITS" LIKE WE DO IN SPORTS, THE MEN'S SOCCER TEAM AND THE WOMEN'S SOCCER TEAM. IT'S NOT DIFFERENT.

    January 24, 2013 at 7:35 pm | Reply
    • Jamie

      Wow, off topic much? Who asked to be a line backer for an NFL team?? Not the same thing at all dude, not. at. all.

      January 24, 2013 at 10:10 pm | Reply
  28. RamblingMarc

    To determine how the women will perform in combat, let us first integrate them in such men's games as football, basketball ,soccer, and allow them to compete in the track and field events in the Olympics. That will give us idea about how they will perform in battle field along side their men, and against combatant army.

    January 24, 2013 at 6:48 pm | Reply
    • Alan

      Modern combat doesn't often resemble a contact sport, though your point is taken. If ever there was a time when male and female fighters were equalized, it's on today's 'battlefields'.

      January 24, 2013 at 7:23 pm | Reply
    • Gadflie

      Right, and while we're at it, let's test the men in the same way. Let's take a typical all-male infantry platoon and have them compete in an expanded finals of the Olympic 100 meter sprint. Do you think that any of them will be within 10 m of the leaders at the end? Would you?

      January 24, 2013 at 11:06 pm | Reply
  29. spent

    Served in Vietnam and would not want to have a 110 lbs woman pull me out of harms way when I was weighing 228 lbs. I do not envy males that are going to depend on a woman to save a male of whom out weighs them 50 to 75%.

    January 24, 2013 at 6:44 pm | Reply
    • Grrrrreat

      First, thank you for your service. To reply to your comment, as I've stated before, women will need to be able to MEET the same standards as a man. If she doesn't make the cut them she won't be there. Your argument does not hold true for every man either. There are size and weight differences in men too, and not even man can physically pull out his fellow soldier if there's a difference in weight and size.

      January 25, 2013 at 9:09 am | Reply
  30. Theroadhouse

    This is the biggest joke ever. Women have no place in the infantry. Women in the military is already a big enough joke. Just go ask anyone what a wook is! I for one will never take orders from a women nor show them any type of a respect. I've dealt with women in combat before and the only thing they did when we got into a fire fight was get in a ball and cry. We even had 1 group of female shoot at us coming back from a patrol. And i guarantee all there gonna become is the number 1 barracks rat and get passed around more then a dirty mag on deployment....

    January 24, 2013 at 6:33 pm | Reply
    • Grrrrreat

      You are pitiful! Grow up and get your head out of your ass, stop making excuses for why women shouldn't be in the military, many male soldiers can be described in the same manner you just stated above. Trust me I know a lot of guys that would fall under the definition of a "wook"!

      January 25, 2013 at 9:19 am | Reply
  31. speake

    OK Ladies...gear-up & fall-in...Death is an inglorious disrespecter of all persons. So, embrace the Banshee's cacophony and take your place alongside history's forgotten fallen. Brotherhood welcomes all who dare. Take care and work hard not to disappoint, since equality is a feeling defined and enjoyed only by the living. Memorials and fine bronze statues may be replicated with heroic, look-a-like abandon, but they feel nothing and suffer nothing except the changing elements.

    January 24, 2013 at 6:12 pm | Reply
  32. violet

    I think letting women join in in combat is fair. Women can be just as strong as men. Women may seem like delicate little flowers but women are not delicate little flowers. Women are strong, confident, and smart. And it's not fair if men are only aloud in the marines or army because women are no different.

    January 24, 2013 at 6:02 pm | Reply
  33. Jargon

    I understand why its unfair that women haven't been officially given combat jobs. However I dont think this is about fairness as much as it is about trying to have equal benefits. But if we truly follow this through to its logical conclusion you have to talk about what happens if there is a draft. I can just see it now. We'll have to have a rule where both parents couldnt be drafted into service at the same time. Then there will be a scenario where the mother gets drafted. But wait she's pregnant. Should that matter? Well technically no, because the Supreme Court says in the first trimester the unborn child doesnt matter so if she wants to go she can otherwise it violates her 14th amndmt rights. So off she goes to war. Meanwhile her husband stays home with the kids even though he's 6'2", 200lbs and runs a 4.40 fourty and is a whiz with a rifle. Then the next month his draft number comes up and he stays home because you cant draft both parents. What the hell are we doing?

    January 24, 2013 at 5:47 pm | Reply
  34. etownwyo

    If they want to go and fight like a man they should die like a man. You have all these women that are she men wanting to marry women. Let them have at it.

    January 24, 2013 at 5:46 pm | Reply
  35. nanna

    what if the government just gives the wemen a whole bunch of steroids while they are on their periods?LOL. Come on, Women need to be at home with the children. Look at what has happen to the state of the family and family traditions since "the woman " has left the home to pursue a career? The family structure FELL APART BECAUSE THE WOMEN WAS NOT THEIR TO KEEP IT TOGETHER.What if a female pow gets caught, raped, and gets pregnant by her enemy????. Women are not stronger then men and they NEVER WILL BE!
    Their are just some things men can do that women cannot,this also applies to combat. I don't ever want the government to have the excuse to draft females!!! Just because some crazy ass females who think they are men want to join in combat and be fine with it . I don't want to fight he rich man war either.

    January 24, 2013 at 5:33 pm | Reply
    • Grrrrreat

      Do you really think, that men will always be in the position to protect this country? Women can have the same will and devotion to want to stand up and protect her country. She too can have a strong sense of duty and commitment. We forget that these are women who WANT to be a soldier. It is a choice they are making. If they can do it and want to do, who are you to tell her no?

      January 25, 2013 at 9:44 am | Reply
    • Morgan

      I have wanted to be a soldier since I was 3, and I have been training to do so. I do not want to have standards lowered for me because I am female. When I am a soldier I will be because I made it through every training program and have passed all the tests and requirements.
      And how dare you say women should be confined to domestic life, this is the 21st century not the 19th.
      I will be a soldier, I will serve my courty, I will fight for what I believe in, and I will not hesitate to take a shot to save lives!

      February 6, 2013 at 10:49 pm | Reply
  36. must

    We must let them do it if they want- or else they'll throw a hissy fit- that what the politicians care about. Besides that look how cute, and how good they feel about themselves in the uniform, that's the real reason we need to do this. So they can feel good about themselves.

    January 24, 2013 at 5:22 pm | Reply
    • womensrugbyforall

      Like Gay marriage, you don't have to accept it, you only have to respect it. Women need to be given equal rights as men, but not just in some cases. Equality needs to be across the board and cannot exclude sensitive things like marriage and military status. This is a huge step forward to empowering women. I am so proud that I can live in a country where people are tolerable of equality if not an advocate.

      January 24, 2013 at 8:07 pm | Reply
    • Grrrrreat

      That must be your ego talking!

      January 25, 2013 at 9:47 am | Reply
  37. Sgt (ret) Rick

    So are we going to act like 11B are not seperated at all times from other MOSs. Even going home I had to be segragated from all other MOS tents while flying out of Bagdad. When I questioned it it was stated that we insulted and harassed the female soldiers??? I dont know what else to say about that. Also the not showering for a week is par for the job.. Women need to clean more often, to compare a CA or Transpo position to infantry is people that dont know what they are talking about wanting equality. I dont think women are to weak, just that the medical, social, and harrasment issues are HUGE. this is just to feel good and people please understand, HAZING is there.. it is needed to keep unit disipline and unity. THis will end with females added. I have served on both sides of this line, there is a clear diffrence, they can be in the other 200 jobs the army has, grunt JUST DOESNT WORK

    January 24, 2013 at 5:17 pm | Reply
    • Sapper

      I agree, Infantry, Engineers and tankers MOS's are no place for females.

      January 24, 2013 at 10:37 pm | Reply
      • Jamie

        Combat engineer is not a trade many men are cut out for, and will likely remain one of the few trades that is hard pressed to find the rare woman capable of handling those kind of demands. JTF2 in Canada is open to women and there has only ever been one female assaulter. Which is cool with me.

        January 24, 2013 at 11:01 pm |
    • Grrrrreat

      SGT Rick, if a women can prove she is capable than it is her choice to be placed in those situation. You are placing those limitations on women, buy telling them they can't do it. If she's proved herself by meeting the same standards as a man, then she has the right to be in any one of those MOS's. the same goes for any man capable of doing the job. I have personally witness men in key jobs that could not hold true to the tasks and requirements of them and they are still placing others in harm. When do we consider that no limitations are allowed in those positions? For man or women.

      January 25, 2013 at 8:52 am | Reply
      • Howard

        You can say that if a women can prove that she can do the same as a man she should be allowed. Well, I will almost bet you they will lower physical standards to increase the amount of women in these roles. And that will be damaging to our militarys readiness. That will bring the entire military down. For a political show, they will lower standards and say," see, they can do it". I believe women do have a role in the military. But in the infantry?When I went through basic and AIT we lost more than 1/3 of our company because they could not handle the physical and mental pressure. These were all men, and many quit and were crying for momma. Some were injured and had to be discharged on medical. Now, you see Panetta already talking about our Special Forces? Elite groups? PUH-LEASE! very few men get through the first night. But to make a point, they'll lower the standards and make it easier to accomadate women and you'll see press clips and propaganda showing some women having made it through.

        January 28, 2013 at 11:24 am |
  38. nomad2003

    just do not lower the physical requirements. The weight of gear to be carried get very heavy after 10 hours of hauling it around. Yes there are some females that could pass. But in general, more women will fail then men.

    January 24, 2013 at 4:51 pm | Reply
  39. Bang bang

    Yeah off topic but did you know that a large gathering of baboons is called a congress ironic isn't it?

    January 24, 2013 at 3:59 pm | Reply
    • pradakidd

      omg what is this country coming 2 i'm honestly glad i am no longer apart of the u.s military 1st the gays , men who pose as women and now women come on i don't want my wife fighting in a combat zone, this is truly abominable to the armed forces please prepare for a massive failure. I mean come on GAYS & WOMEN IN COMBAT ZONES " IT DOES NOT TAKE A HISTORY CLASS TO FIGURE OUT WE ARE SETTING OURSELVES UP FOR FAILURE BY ACCEPTING THESE PEOPLE OVER ABLE BODY WELL QUALIFIED MEN WHO DESERVE THE RIGHT OF OPTION TO BE IN THE ARMED FORCES SOME OVERSEEING THIS BILL SHOULD NOT PASS THIS OR WE ARE ALL GOING TO HELL IN A HANDBASKET"

      January 24, 2013 at 4:22 pm | Reply
      • cagetch

        There have been females and gays in a combat zone for the last ten years! – Female, Officer, 2x Combat Vet!

        January 25, 2013 at 7:37 am |
      • Grrrrreat

        What misguided beliefs you have. Where have you been the last 10 years in the womb?

        January 25, 2013 at 9:54 am |
  40. masherwould

    I don't think the women should NEED to be able to do all the same physical activities as men. Men and women are fundamentally different, and we shouldn't try to change that.

    Rather change the criterion to select the most capable and fit women. Then put them in roles that are perfectly suited for their strengths. They could be required to be more agile and flexible, rather than buff and burly...but still capable of excelling in the horrors of combat.

    In special forces this would be very helpful. Think how much more covert a woman running around in a Burka would be. Think of all the weapons and stuff she could pack under one of those!

    January 24, 2013 at 3:58 pm | Reply
    • Bang bang

      Those physical activities and criterias were placed there for combat though and they have done that with woman in support roles like this one for all you ladies is the apache helo we use for air support is a female and has helped us out of some not so great situations is that not equal and company related enough for you all.

      January 24, 2013 at 4:03 pm | Reply
    • dztz111

      What u all dont undestand is that we will have a generation of broken women due to the work and stresses an infantry man goes through. I did 5years in the Marine Corp as a radio operator . I was in very good physical shape and conditioning. I got out with shot out knees and a bad back. And i wasnt even a grunt. There is no doubt woman can fight when need be, but to be an everyday grunt is gonna leave a lot of broken women.

      January 24, 2013 at 4:46 pm | Reply
      • Grrrrreat

        So be it, it's her choice. There will always be broken women no matter what they do!

        January 25, 2013 at 9:59 am |
  41. RR

    @john, Funny when I was in there were a lot of men doing the same thing. If they could claim there were pregnant they would have.

    January 24, 2013 at 3:34 pm | Reply
  42. rc0101

    It's actually been scientifically proven in Air Force combat pilot testing in the G force simulator that women do much better than men because of their smaller frame and don't black out as much as men. Plus they're more nimble so they'd be great for Navy seals stuff. Throw a sniper rifle with a silence on them and send them shimmying up the closest tree is what I'm thinking.

    January 24, 2013 at 3:28 pm | Reply
    • aberkromby

      Do you even have any idea what SEALs do? A 110 pound "nimble" woman will not be able to haul 40-100lbs of gear up a mountain, under fire, for a sustained length of time. Let alone do all of the above while also carrying a 230lb wounded male teammate (plus his 50-100lbs of gear) back down the same mountain. That goes without mentioning what might happen to any female combat soldier who were captured by the enemy.

      Women do have a place in the military. They've been flying attack helicopters for years. But putting them on the front lines and in special warfare roles for the sake of equality, that's just stupid and irresponsible.

      January 24, 2013 at 10:04 pm | Reply
      • rlc

        I love how you rationalize inequality by using stereotypical blinders on. You assume all women weigh 110 pounds to be nimble. The Army medical chart for a woman 5'4 states you can be as heavy as 140. So let's assume the average is 125 since the average clothing size for a woman is a 14-16. Sorry to burst your bikini-clad, sportscar model forced-fed into our advertising for the past century bubble. Besides, do you honestly think a 110lb nimble man would be able to lug your 220lb fat a$$ plus all your stuff up or down a mountain? Oh wait, he'd be a man, and by default of having man genes, he can lift things that heavy.

        January 25, 2013 at 1:38 am |
      • Edward

        I doubt that a small man could carry someone that big either . I wouldput up my 5ft 8 187 lbs sister against you anyday bro she would kick your azz and she isnt fat either she is all muscle and she is also 50 therefore your logica is illogicalI d ont tthink gender should play any role in anything but physical andmental abilities should further more if your that large unless the guy is linebacker your not gonna get carried dragged or otherwise lol

        January 25, 2013 at 6:21 am |
      • Grrrrreat

        Good grief, you are assuming a women is 110 lbs. get real, if a women can prove that she is capable of doing the task by passing the same standard as her male comrades, then she is more than capable. Think outside of the box!

        January 25, 2013 at 10:04 am |
  43. Bang bang

    They did a while ago the SEER course has a female only SEER school they implemented after the whole Jessica what's her face in the Iraq invasion

    January 24, 2013 at 3:00 pm | Reply
  44. apotas

    so most women can't hack physical requirements for training.
    are you all blind, or do you not realize that most american men can't either?
    dear god, we're a nation of overfed, diabetic blimps clutching cheddar bacon cheeseburgers like security blankets.
    the fact is that some women CAN hack it physically. maybe less than men. but don't disqualify them on the sole basis of them lacking a certain physical organ.
    women serving equally in combat should mean that we sign up for the selective service and adhere to the same guidelines and tests.
    any other argument against women serving in combat, i.e. menstruation, the servicemen won't be able to handle their hormones, women are hysterical, is completely irrelevant and asinine and will not be addressed.

    January 24, 2013 at 2:52 pm | Reply
    • Anthony

      Actually it isn't completely irrelevant but that is why there will be some jobs Women will still be excluded from. Go be a scout behind enemy lines while you are having your period and see how fast their dogs might sniff you out. Whether it can be helped or not, this happening could very well get you and whoever you are with killed.

      I do however agree to making the physical standards for all women in all branches of the military equal to those of men.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:57 pm | Reply
      • apotas

        Ok that is a good (albeit weirdly specific) point. Mine was directed more toward the "We'll have to airlift tampons" or "They'll get pregnant to get out of combat duty!"

        January 24, 2013 at 2:59 pm |
      • Grrrrreat

        You obviously haven't heard that periods can be stopped by a simple birth control shot or pill.

        January 25, 2013 at 10:08 am |
    • Rogue

      Women already get pregnant to get out of deployments, sorry but seen it. Also, how can they be effective leaders if/when they get pregnant and can't lead their Soldiers. The Infantry isn't a desk job.

      January 24, 2013 at 3:29 pm | Reply
      • Michelle

        This is true women do get pregnant to get out. There needs to be strict rules made about this. Maybe even punishments. I know that seems extreme but we can't have that happening.

        January 24, 2013 at 3:31 pm |
    • Dub

      Of course you're a vegetarian! There is no way you could hack it for a day in infantry training. why dont you find something else to do...........you're a talker. blah blah blah

      January 24, 2013 at 11:55 pm | Reply
    • Dub

      You hate all men, and if you're dating one, he's probably an unhappy individual. keep on hating. you can sure type well though. keep your a$$ where it belongs, behind a computer.

      January 24, 2013 at 11:59 pm | Reply
      • apotas

        This was such a weird comment.

        January 25, 2013 at 10:30 am |
  45. Anthony

    The sad truth to the matter is women don't want to do this to fight, they only want to do it to say they can do what the men are 'allowed' to do. For one I am fine with it as long as it is equal across the board. Women pt standards the same as mens (EVERYWHERE, not just combat arms. It is the same for men in any MoS), you can't simply say it should be this for some and that for others. Equal treatment in basic training/AIT... which i guarantee won't happen. Draft for everyone, all women just like all men. If purposefully injuring yourself to get out of deployment is a chargeable offence, so should be getting pregnant.

    January 24, 2013 at 2:49 pm | Reply
    • Luana

      Agreed certain standards, rules, regulations, etc need to be put down. I am all for this as I mentioned before, however this needs to be acted out with care.

      Men are stronger then women. It is just fact there is nothing we women can do about it. However there are exceptions. and the exceptions are the women who should be allowed to be in combat. Period. We can not make exceptions just to be equal it would be unfair.

      However the people making the stupid sandwich, period, and girly girl comments your making your self look stupid. Use actually real mature reasons.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:56 pm | Reply
    • Bang bang

      It is unplanned pregnancy is grounds for chapter if seen fit by the unit cmmander

      January 24, 2013 at 3:03 pm | Reply
    • Morgan

      I am a woman and have been wanting to go into the military since I was 3. I don't want to go into the military and fight just to say I am better then men I want to go into the military because I want to serve my country to the fullest extent. In addition, I don't want stands to be lowered not epect them to be lowered for me or any other women for that matter, that standards are that the standards. I will serve my country, I will work everyday until I can, I will fight, and I will succeed. Semper Fidelis!

      February 6, 2013 at 9:26 pm | Reply
  46. Luana

    No No No. Women in combat roles? Hell yeah. However standards NEED to be risen.

    This is coming from a women who plans to join the military. This is combat. this is people shooting at you. This is the possibility of POW. I truly believe that some women can handle combat roles just as good as men, but not all can.

    If women want to be in combat roles they need to meet the same standards as men. This is not a game we can not lower our standards just to let us in. I am sorry fellow ladies, but it is the truth. I want us to be equal to men. And to do that we need to meet their physical standards as well.

    January 24, 2013 at 2:45 pm | Reply
    • theyear1986

      Agreed.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:48 pm | Reply
    • SB1790

      Gays in the military and women in combat? Well I must say that I would probably feel quite safe behind a very butch lesbian with an AKA.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:53 pm | Reply
    • Sheilagh

      Hear! Hear! If a woman wants to be eligible for a combat position, she should be able to pass the same tests men do. Israeli women have been doing REQUIRED service (including combat) for years.

      January 24, 2013 at 5:14 pm | Reply
  47. theyear1986

    This comment thread sickens me. I'm a strong female, but would never want to serve. But women who want to serve their country who can perform the necessary tasks – carry the equipment, pull their comrade out of danger, mentally prepare themselves to kill the enemy – should be able to. These comments I'm reading are disgusting. "she'll have her period", "want her lipstick", "go makE me a sandwich instead".. The women who want to serve aren't Barbie dolls. Have you fools met a strong, determined woman? Apparently not- they are probably too smart to talk to you.

    And for people saying this will distract men, that says more about the idiotic men then the women.
    The only incapable women in this conversation are the ones dating some of these people commenting. They must be desperate and weak females!!!!

    January 24, 2013 at 2:40 pm | Reply
    • truthbetold

      To theyear1986. Did you already know that physical standards for females in non-combat roles in the military are already lowered and have been since the beginning? Marine Corps for example. Men must complete 20 dead hand no swing pull ups for achieve a perfect score. At the present time woman are not required to do pull-ups at all. I hear the screams of equality, but never heard any female military or civilian scream they wanted to do 20 pull-ups. Where are all the cries of inhumanity, discrimination, fair play etc. on these issues of lowered standards we have right now? Equality is fine when is appeases the minority but not when it is the standard for the majority. Careful, I already see the double standard in action even before the new law takes effect.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:58 pm | Reply
      • Citizen Twain

        I am sure the enemy will be impressed when you are doing pull ups for them. Hey, hold on, don't shoot, I can do 20 pull ups. Watch!

        January 24, 2013 at 3:01 pm |
      • 1775

        To thruthbetold: Just so you know the Marine Corps is making females do pull ups starting next year and this year it is optional. Oh and another thing females have been asking for this change for awhile... policy takes time to change . Also by the way female here and Marine and I can do 11 pull ups and a lot of other females can do just as many or more so, they can prove to the men they can do it.

        January 24, 2013 at 7:34 pm |
    • truthbetold

      Citizen Twain. You do understand the basic concepts of war fighting dont you, its does get physical you know? Do you really believe its all XBOX ? It does require upper body strength . Last time I put on my pack and pulled myself up into the back of a 7 ton five feet off the ground those pullups sure paid off, not to mention we were in a real hurry. Also upper body strength will help you pull your head out of your buttock, you should try it.

      January 24, 2013 at 3:11 pm | Reply
      • Citizen Twain

        By your rude comments I can tell you are a true gentleman, well, I declare.

        January 24, 2013 at 3:14 pm |
    • truthbetold

      I have never been accused of being a gentleman on the battle field on 5 differnt tours.. YOUR WELCOME, now wrap up in that warm blanket and sneer at the world..

      January 24, 2013 at 3:20 pm | Reply
      • theyear1986

        A true hero asks for a thank you...oh wait.

        I am trying that if women pass all requirements, they should serve. If the tests are skewed, that's something that should be addressed, but that doesn't mean that a woman won't be able to pass the correct test. Believe me, I know a few women who could do 20 pull ups and kick your butt at the same time.

        January 24, 2013 at 4:06 pm |
  48. erexx

    There are some women soldiers who are just better than the men.
    The deserve to be able to shoot back.
    There are a lot of male chauvinists with seventieth century mentalities on this board.

    January 24, 2013 at 2:40 pm | Reply
    • Bang bang

      Ok this whole now they can shoot back argument is dumb over seas everyone carries a weapon regardless of gender and you ammo so who said they can't shoot when they need to you really should stop using that as your justification

      January 24, 2013 at 3:22 pm | Reply
      • erexx

        You missed the first sentence.
        They also don't complain as much.

        May 13, 2013 at 10:47 am |
  49. Michela

    Is combat for all women? no. I can agree with this. However there are women who can get the job done and well. You can not make all women suffer just because some can't do the job. Same for men.

    I think that standards for women who want to be in combat roles should be heightened or made the same as men.

    All these negative comments really do disgust me however. We are in 2013 and yet we still have hate. With the right standards and training a women can be ready. There are of course a few rules that I think should also be enforced but I am sure that will come.

    January 24, 2013 at 2:35 pm | Reply
  50. jimmy

    bottom line is that women cant meet the standards of man, therefor u will have female soldiers in combat units that have lower standards than men. weaker military!!!

    January 24, 2013 at 2:32 pm | Reply
  51. richmeister1203

    This is not about a contest to prove that women indeed can stand shoulder to shoulder with men in battle. To kill and be killed. Women can offer a whole lot in the military but to actually serve in the front lines , seize a machine gun nest or assault a heavily fortified bunker is hopefully, not an option. It is best to leave this part to the men.
    In 1942 Bataan, women served heroically side by side with their male counterparts by nursing the badly wounded. They were less than 50, captured and interned, and after the war, was awarded medals for gallantry. Their contribution to the war effort was exemplary and they didn't have to kill.

    January 24, 2013 at 2:27 pm | Reply
    • Poltergeist

      Russia used females snipers and Russian women are hot. You should reconsider.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:30 pm | Reply
      • richmeister1203

        Russia was invaded and similar to the Israelis, their very existence was on the line. When that happens everyone has to fight. Besides, Russia was then led by a murderous tyrant who only cared about keeping his power intact.

        January 24, 2013 at 3:04 pm |
  52. john

    i recommend having women in their own unit that do all the check points and guard towers. they can till hold a gun and wont get other soldiers killed in real combat

    January 24, 2013 at 2:25 pm | Reply
    • Anthony

      MP's man many check points and towers, and women are already allowed.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:26 pm | Reply
    • erexx

      They are already serving with men.
      At least now they can shoot back.
      Never been in the service have you?
      I would take some of those women over some of the men all day long.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:28 pm | Reply
      • Anthony

        Serving with men and serving with men in the positions they previously could not are totally different things. Many MOS's have dorm style rooms during basic and AIT so this works for them. Take Infantry for example, however. 1 big room, guys sleeping in whatever they want to, 1 bathroom, 1 shower room, Drill Sergeants who will smoke you over anything and not care if you are dressed or not... How exactly is this going to work with women besides cause many lawsuits in the future or need millions upon millions of dollars to be spent to renovate all of these currently functional barracks and dumbing down the working methods of training, which will in turn weaken all of our combat arms soldiers.

        January 24, 2013 at 2:39 pm |
      • erexx

        Been there. Same thing exists for the females. Female drills are just as nasty as the Males. Nothing weakens our fighting force more than War without end. Its already works. No need to renovate anything.

        May 13, 2013 at 10:50 am |
  53. Joseph McCarthy

    I never seen so many ignoramuses comment on any one website as I do here. Don't these people know that there is absolutely no glory in killing people? Now these broads think that there is! Killing is but one thing only, bad, bad and bad! This kind of ignorance here is truly nauseating.

    January 24, 2013 at 2:24 pm | Reply
    • George Patton

      Sorry Joseph, you're only wasting your time here. You simply cannot cure stupidity no matter how hard you try! It's the kind of people who keep on vomiting their ignorance here who'll eventually bring this country to it's very knees!!!

      January 24, 2013 at 2:30 pm | Reply
    • Grrrrreat

      How the hell do you think America got to where it is today? No one is saying they want to kill only that if it means to protect our country (which includes you) then if we have to kill to save millions of lives then a women should have the choice to be included in that protection. How bad was it when we were attacked on our own soil....rant your comment to the families of the loved ones lost during that killing. You nauseat me with your stupidity.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:40 pm | Reply
      • George Patton

        How do you know Grrrrrt, that 9/11 wasn't an inside job? I don't myself but I strongly suspect that it was! Never put anything past the C.I.A., never!!! Besides, 9/11 was a boon to the Bush administration as he got the so-called Patriot Act through Congress and provided the perfect pretext for the invasion of Afghanistan in 2001!

        January 24, 2013 at 2:55 pm |
      • Citizen Twain

        Now that is a whole other can of worms.....

        January 24, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
      • Grrrrreat

        George, ummmm were you in the pentagon? It really disgusts me when everyone makes assumptions about Bush and the reason behind the war on terror. Hello! Get real, lets place blame where it belongs. Clinton administration completely ignored the signs of the attack on America for his political party. Bush cleaned up the mess!

        January 25, 2013 at 8:25 am |
      • Morgan

        George, I have never, not once, thought that the events that took place on September 11th 2001, were planned by people in the U.S. government, and I was someone who was directly affected. I am personally appalled at that idea, but then again I have never been aconspiracy theorist.
        Nevertheless, being someone who was directly affected, I am not one to go and point fingers or blame the former presidents for the September 11th events, the President, all presidents that is, have an extremely stressful job and what happenes during their addmistration (whether they are involved or not) it is automatically "their" fault, and I believe that in certain cases, such as September 11th, that it was not a single man's fault.

        February 6, 2013 at 10:34 pm |
  54. john

    a female in basic training with 60 men that havent had female company in 4 months. GREAT IDEA PANNETTA!!!

    January 24, 2013 at 2:21 pm | Reply
    • erexx

      They are already serving with men.
      At least now they can shoot back.
      Never been in the service have you?
      I would take some of those women over some of the men all day long.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:28 pm | Reply
    • GeorgeWBush

      OMG! A female recruit in a middle of 60 lads who hasn't had a female companion since they were wisk away in boot camp. She better be smart tactically and never apply perfume or she will be like a gaselle in a middle of feeding primal frenzy.

      January 24, 2013 at 3:20 pm | Reply
  55. Kempf

    The Soviet Union had woman soldiers too! Obama is pushing America into the black hole of Communism under the false pretense of equality. How soon before everyone in the USA has ration cards so everyone eats equally its only fair.

    January 24, 2013 at 2:20 pm | Reply
  56. Bang bang

    I think if you are on here and never experienced the stress and intensity of combat then you should say nothing. I have 3 combat deployments and feel if you have never experienced war and stress of it not just mental but physical brutality involved then you shouldn't be speaking about what anyone can or can not do.

    January 24, 2013 at 2:19 pm | Reply
    • ripdoc

      Amen!

      January 24, 2013 at 2:26 pm | Reply
  57. john

    a female with lower standards is taking a slot from a male that has higher standards! SHOULDNT THE BETTER SOLDIER GET THE JOB!

    January 24, 2013 at 2:18 pm | Reply
  58. Poltergeist

    Bah putting women in a room full of men in high testosterone jobs never caused any problems!

    January 24, 2013 at 2:15 pm | Reply
    • erexx

      Yep, it all started with letting them Vote.
      Now we are letting them finally shoot back.
      What is the world coming too?

      January 24, 2013 at 2:24 pm | Reply
    • Bang bang

      I sadly have to agree with that look at police departments even though very different in many ways

      January 24, 2013 at 2:35 pm | Reply
      • Justmyopinion

        Interestingly enough, women have actually been shown to be better police officers because they can remain calm and are not as susceptible to the agitation and aggression of testosterone due to a different set of (female) hormones.

        January 24, 2013 at 3:09 pm |
      • Bang bang

        Yes but the agitation and aggression from testosterone is what is needed to be effective when you are needed to push during a fight.

        January 24, 2013 at 3:25 pm |
      • Ann

        The best law enforcement officers (20 years for me so far) use their brains and communication skills, not their brawn. It's not like on TV, folks.

        January 24, 2013 at 3:38 pm |
      • Bang bang

        Neither is war and the brains plays a big role but the brawns is what backs that and creates an effective force to couple with brains

        January 24, 2013 at 4:08 pm |
  59. john

    united states a superpower??? doesnt look like it now that we are lowering standards in all our combat units so women can join. our leadership is terrible

    January 24, 2013 at 2:12 pm | Reply
  60. Anthony

    If we rely on women for combat positions is it wrong to require they be on birth control or what not? Both times i was deployed there was a huge spike in the number of pregnancy's on base, largely believed to avoid being deployed. If this happens in a combat unit it could cause huge problems. Men don't get to stay home because they are having kids.

    January 24, 2013 at 2:12 pm | Reply
  61. AF White

    WAR ON WOMEN !!!!!!

    January 24, 2013 at 2:12 pm | Reply
  62. Poltergeist

    Everyone has the right to PTSD. Draft em, trench em.

    January 24, 2013 at 2:11 pm | Reply
  63. Jargon

    I also wonder about the following scenario. Imagine you have 100 people available for your army. 70 are men and 30 are women. You have 70 combat jobs, and 30 non-combat jobs. 10 of the 30 women volunteer for combat jobs and 50 of the men. You need 10 more combat personnel. How does the military handle this? Are men allowed to opt out of combat jobs? Will physically able women be allowed to opt out of combat?

    January 24, 2013 at 2:10 pm | Reply
    • Poltergeist

      Hire more women. Becuae casaulities wouldn't be equally distributed.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:12 pm | Reply
  64. john

    great! now we will have infantry soldiers that eonly have to 17 pushups and much higher run times. you dont have to have upper body strength or speed in combat!!!!! oh wait, you do.

    January 24, 2013 at 2:10 pm | Reply
  65. what?

    Hey why stop here? How about the crippled – if they want to serve on the front lines? We can't discrimate against them, can we? Also I turned 50, and I think there should be no age- restrictions against the elderly- I want to join the 82 airborne- why should an 19 year old get to do it and not me? it's age discrimination- I am going to sue. Which ever plotician doesn't go along with this- the elderly vote will turn against you. How about epileptics? they should be short range missle operators, if they want – it's equal rights.

    January 24, 2013 at 2:09 pm | Reply
    • apotas

      your post is too idiotic to respond to

      January 24, 2013 at 2:27 pm | Reply
      • Grrrrreat

        Stop making an ass of yourself.......you comments are absurd.

        January 25, 2013 at 4:10 pm |
    • Stef

      This is a terrible idea not to mention dangerous and it WILL compromise the safety of our male troops. They are stronger, PERIOD. Who cares if the women want to do it? I am woman, and if i have to defend myself, and if I can , I will. But to put others in danger because of women who think they can handle it? crazy...

      January 24, 2013 at 2:37 pm | Reply
      • Whatever

        Why is it that women whom obviously have NO military experience have to banter on about what they think women can and cant do. Put your foot were your mouth is and keep your opinion to yourself. Not every women wants to sit back and watch, she wants an active role and if she is capable let her do it. Continue to be content with your life and let the big girls do their job.

        January 25, 2013 at 4:17 pm |
    • Bang bang

      Yeah that's a pretty ignorant comment just so your tracking my platoon sergeant is missing his left leg from just below the knee and yet here we are on a deployment. There epileptics in the military they just can't be on any line units and as for age well you should have manned up and joined earlier

      January 24, 2013 at 2:43 pm | Reply
  66. Lynndel Humphreys

    Stupid idea

    January 24, 2013 at 2:09 pm | Reply
  67. CJRP

    This is just another IMPEACHABLE OFFENCE by this man. How dare he risk the lives of those whom he is sworn to protect–our soldiers in uniform–based on the bizare idea that there is no human nature and no simple, irreducible facts of life. To deliberately harm the military in this way is a violation of his oath of official–and completely impeachable. However, this to will pass. When a sensible man takes office in 2016 and appoints sensible men to the joint chiefs of staff, this bizarre experiment will end. For what one secretary of defense can issue by ukase, another can upend just as easily. This weird social engineering will prove a flash in the pan–the victim of the cold facts of the world we live in, where women have no place in combat.

    January 24, 2013 at 2:08 pm | Reply
    • apotas

      hey, you utter ignoramus,
      women have been serving in the armed forces for a long time now (GASP).
      take your conspiracy theories and blind hatred elsewhere

      January 24, 2013 at 2:28 pm | Reply
    • rc0101

      Are you seriously believing that adding women to combat roles would somehow "harm" the military or, as you put it, the soldiers he's supposed to be protecting??? You realize that these soldiers you're so afraid of being harmed already have women fighting on the front lines and being killed along with male soldiers, right? Or are you suggesting women soldiers who have died fighting side by side with men are just the disposable, pretty parts of the military? I'm completely amazed how ignorant you are about who's actually fighting and dying for your freedom to spew your Victorian era mentality.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:52 pm | Reply
    • LeftHandedThinker

      As a former combat arms soldier, and the father of a newly enlisted soldier I can only say that if a given female can meet the physical standards let them try. Some women are clearly capable. They are however going to experience huge problems trying to integrate into a culture that is unlike anything they have ever known. There is no such thing as chivalry in an infantry company. They WILL have to carry that 70 lb pack. They WILL have to suck it up and drive on. No one is going to carry it for them. No one is going to sympathize about the timing of thier menstrual cycles. No one is going to designate a women's only bush or log for latrine purposes.

      The only true way to evaluate thier performance is to wait until the bullets start flying. At the beginning of the OIF I, Pvt Jessica Lynch's convoy was ambushed by insurgents. By her own account her rifle had choosen that exact instant to 'jam', and she courageously curled up into a ball on the floor of her truch and played dead until she was captured minutes later. At a time when Saddam had been flushed out into the open and was vulnerable, Special Ops personell had to drop everything and mount a rescue operation to save brave Pvt Lynch, who was awarded a Silver Star medal for getting herself captured.

      That my friends is the future of women in combat roles.

      January 24, 2013 at 3:24 pm | Reply
      • Bang bang

        Thank you someone who can agree that they will be forced into a world that is on a level like no one who hasn't been there will ever know we are not nice we not gentlemen although professional we have our own culture and is not pleasant in any way

        January 24, 2013 at 3:30 pm |
      • IraqiVet

        Ok, I was in the Army for three tours in Iraq in the Third Infantry Division as an infantry officer. One of the primary reasons that Jessica Lynch was captured at all was because her CO was stupid and couldn't navigate. The second reason is that she was a support soldier and the U.S. was still using Cold War training for support, which meant little to no combat training. Now all support soldiers receive more combat training, as there are no front lines. If we make the standards equal across the board, whoever passes should be given a chance. 20 years from now people will be accustomed to the changes. Time changes things. Women can be given shots to stop menstruation, and some women can do what men can do. If they can't, then they won't qualify. My belief is that all soldiers need to get more combat training as it is, including support MOSs. Training needs to change, including PT. Train women to be stronger and fitter. Make them do pull ups. At the very least, the military will be stronger for it, and women that can hack it in combat MOSs will be able to serve in that capacity. As for gays, the Spartans themselves had gay soldiers, and they fought longer and harder in hand-to-hand combat than most men I know could. However, we shouldn't coddle women in the service, either. No standards should be lowered for women. My last point is that I've seen some horrible weak and fat men in the service and some incredibly fit and mentally strong women who I respected much more. Female medical issues can be overcome with shots, implants, etc. Anyway, I've typed enough.

        February 12, 2013 at 7:50 pm |
    • Whatever

      Many men have brought great hard to us, your comment is ridiculous.

      January 25, 2013 at 4:20 pm | Reply
      • Whatever

        That would be harm...not hard

        January 25, 2013 at 6:20 pm |
  68. Michael Silver

    What happens when they get their Periods!!!

    January 24, 2013 at 2:08 pm | Reply
    • ObservantHistorian

      Hopefully they stomp people like you in the 'nads and prevent your genes from passing on into society.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:18 pm | Reply
  69. crystal

    This is such a dumb, political move that will have almost no impact. 99% of military women don't want combat arms jobs to begin with. And of the 1% that do, only a very small percentage could hack it physically. This is a joke.

    January 24, 2013 at 2:07 pm | Reply
    • Gale

      A bigger joke is men using female names to try to pretend that their bitter, misogynist rant is actually coming from a woman.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:08 pm | Reply
      • truthbetold

        Gale, the more you spout off and claim people are lying and must be men/man bash...etc, the more you prove your comments are not relative to the adults here. Thank you for making your post void and nothing more than ones and zeros in cyberspace. PLEASE keep talking its great!!

        January 24, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
    • Poltergeist

      Yeah stop pretending, we all know women in the military have been craving blood since day one.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:18 pm | Reply
    • ObservantHistorian

      And you know these statistics...how?

      January 24, 2013 at 2:19 pm | Reply
      • Poltergeist

        What woman wouldn't rather be in a foxhole with the ground exploding around them? It's just obvious!

        January 24, 2013 at 2:24 pm |
  70. nereyda

    I believe we all have a duty to our country and we should all register. My fear regarding women in the fronts is not being killed but being captured. There are terrible stories about POW being treated and even though we would all like to believe that our enemies are going to be considerate I don't expect it. As a woman that is the wife of a VET dealing with PTS . I could only imagine an added horror Rape. I love my daughters and believe they should serve if needed but would rather not put them in that type of harms way. Call me old fashion

    January 24, 2013 at 2:04 pm | Reply
    • Gale

      Male POWs get raped all the time. Why is that so much better to you? Why are you so obsessed with rape?

      January 24, 2013 at 2:06 pm | Reply
      • Ann

        Agreed, Gale. Rape is a bad thing, but it's survivable. I can attest to that. I trust our young women to make their own choices about what kinds of risks they're willing to take. Men should consider those risks as well.

        January 24, 2013 at 2:21 pm |
    • Whatever

      It is the woman's choice, she is aware of what can happen. Rape is not only limited to women.. Men can be raped too. What your not understanding, is most men aren't going to tell when it happens to them.

      January 25, 2013 at 4:27 pm | Reply
    • IraqiVet

      On my last deployment to Iraq, a male medic drugged his roommate and raped him in his sleep. He wasn't discovered till the very end of the deployment when the victim went to the PA because he was bleeding anally. So...anyone can be raped, and it is just as traumatic for a man. Anyone who joins the military is taking the same risks.

      February 12, 2013 at 7:54 pm | Reply
  71. john

    they should have asked infantry units about this. guaranteed that all of them would agree that its not a place for a female. unless they have the same exact standards

    January 24, 2013 at 2:03 pm | Reply
  72. Slammy

    I wonder if they are going to modify the POW training classes to take into account what might happen to a woman being held captive by those who do not care about the Geneva convictions.

    January 24, 2013 at 2:03 pm | Reply
  73. ripdoc

    There seem to be a lot of people in here commenting who have never served, but clearly have opinions of how the military does and should work. Is everyone here aware of the fact that every branch holds seperate physical fitness standards for males and females? In the Army, a male age 27-31 must complete a minimum of 39 push-ups in 2 minutes to pass and can max the test with 77 push-ups. A female of the same age group must complete a minimum of 17 push-ups to pass and can max with the test with 50 push-ups. The 2-mile run holds a passing time of 17:00 minutes for males and 20:30 for females of the same age group. Why do these different standards exist?

    January 24, 2013 at 2:00 pm | Reply
    • Grrrrreat

      They should no exist! If a women wants it than allow them under the se standards as men. When a man can't do the standard them don't allow a waiver on his limitations!!!!

      January 24, 2013 at 2:02 pm | Reply
      • ripdoc

        I agree that if this is the road that is being chosen, then they're should be no difference in physical fitness standards between genders! But here is the tricky part...do you lower the standard? Because if the standards are "Too Hard" and yet females are, by policy, allowed into the combat arms career fields (MOS) then you will certainly have numerous, valid, equal opportunity complaints. If two men try out for special forces and one makes it and the other does not, well it is assumed the playing field is equal and one was more prepared or equipped for that life; however when gender is introduced into the equation...much tougher to determine what the level playing field is.

        January 24, 2013 at 2:10 pm |
      • RR

        If a women can meet the standards that a man must meet to be in combat then she has proven she can stand by you and carry you in your time of need. It must be the same across the board, if she can't do it then she's not qualified to be on the front.

        January 24, 2013 at 6:24 pm |
    • Gale

      More importantly, why do those small differences in standards matter so much to you?

      January 24, 2013 at 2:07 pm | Reply
      • ripdoc

        Small differences? A 50% difference is hardly small. But if you must know, personally, it matters very much to me to know that the soldier next to me can carry me when I'm wounded.

        January 24, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
      • Poltergeist

        Because if you're weaker than your squad mates you might get them or yourself killed.

        January 24, 2013 at 2:20 pm |
      • Bang bang

        More importantly is have you ever experience combat have seen it done it? If you have then you would know even males that meet the requirements equal to everyone get removed for. If they can not meet it to the same level with that then how can I know they will meet it during fighting.

        January 24, 2013 at 2:48 pm |
      • RR

        Again, if she meets the same standard as a man, then she is capable of supporting you in combat.

        January 24, 2013 at 6:29 pm |
  74. Jargon

    Does this mean that women age 18-35 are now eligible for the draft and could be sent into infantry positions against their will the same as men were in the Vietnam war?

    January 24, 2013 at 1:59 pm | Reply
    • apotas

      We should be. I'm all for signing up for selective service. Not so interested in the military, but we all have an equal duty to serve our country.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:30 pm | Reply
      • LD

        Since when do we have to go to war to provide a service for our country? The last thing I want is my wife, the mother raising our kids to go to war. Send me any day, but not my wife. Her taking care of the home and family (the next generation) while I'm at war is a great service to this country.

        January 24, 2013 at 2:45 pm |
      • apotas

        I absolutely understand what you're saying.
        I just think that if women are in combat positions, we should be forced to sign up for the selective service too.
        But maybe I just say that because I know that there would never come a time when I would have to worry about actually being drafted.

        January 24, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
  75. john

    wait till the 15 mile road march at the end of basic/infantry school after the last field training exercise. you will have 99% of the females falling out and on the bus. ITS THE SAD TRUTH!!

    January 24, 2013 at 1:59 pm | Reply
    • Ann

      Then I hope you'll be proud to welcome the other 1% to the team.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:16 pm | Reply
    • RR

      Ha! Considering that most of the military is men, that's a pretty good percentage!! Just think how many men are failing right now!!

      January 24, 2013 at 4:24 pm | Reply
    • Jamie

      15 miles? Thats all? Meh, just more baseless crap if you ask me.

      January 25, 2013 at 12:07 pm | Reply
  76. rex

    Since the Sec. of Def. has done this for women then Congress needs to update the Draft requirements for all Females between 18-25 years of age to register for the Draft!

    January 24, 2013 at 1:59 pm | Reply
    • IraqiVet

      It's 18-35 idiot. You can be drafted up till age 35. I don't think the draft is a good idea anyway, but if we're going to open up combat positions to women, then they should probably be part of selective service. If it comes to a draft again, we'll probably need every able-bodied person in the country anyway.

      February 12, 2013 at 10:27 pm | Reply
      • jeff

        no need to be rude jerk

        February 13, 2013 at 1:42 am |
  77. john

    women want equal rights, but they dont want to do equal physical training or the same standards of a man

    January 24, 2013 at 1:57 pm | Reply
    • rc0101

      Dude...you're an idiot. I'm an ex-military female and the standards weren't set up by us women, as if we're all in a conspiracy together. The separate standards for women and men were set up *gasp* by a man who thought we couldn't hack it. Considering some men couldn't even hack their own standards, I wouldn't point fingers at women.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:58 pm | Reply
      • Jamie

        Exactly right? Men are so blind to the fact that their problems come from their own gender.

        January 25, 2013 at 12:09 pm |
  78. john

    if they make women do the true standards of an infantryman, its going to be funny seeing all the females fail or quit.

    January 24, 2013 at 1:56 pm | Reply
    • Pablo

      Agreed. We started 394 soliders in my Ranger School class. We graduated 99 and 50 of those were recycles. Only 49 of us went straight through. I went into that course at 185lbs and came out at 155lbs.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:02 pm | Reply
    • RR

      Considering that the ratio of men going through compared to women, I'd say that's a pretty high failure rate for men. Seems to me that men are trying to set women up for failure. Shut up and let them prove it. If they can hack it then commend them on a job well done and stand alongside them in combat.

      January 24, 2013 at 4:32 pm | Reply
  79. jim

    cant wait to see even more women in sick call to get out of PT because its too tough!!!!! that the truth

    January 24, 2013 at 1:54 pm | Reply
    • RR

      ...tell that to all the fat male soldiers too. Wouldn't want them to feel left out. Really John!? Your an idiot! everyone of your comments also apply to men. Seems that if the women in military are only 15%, then I say again if only 1 % can meet the standard than that's enough for me.

      January 24, 2013 at 4:38 pm | Reply
  80. Charles Perry

    I think women in combat could be more effective than men. Women are mean folks–just ask any man who has had to deal with a woman in a divorce. I would put my ex up against any insurgent on the battlefield. She's mean as a snake–and she takes no prisoners.

    January 24, 2013 at 1:47 pm | Reply
    • dirtybird

      Put women in the boxing rink with male boxers, i think we know what would happen. Put women in the NFL, wow that would go well. Why the hell do people not see that combat is worse than any sport. It is more physically demanding than any sport ever will be. Why in gods name, can people not see that this is an obvious bad idea.

      We are not all equal! Sorry, we are not. We are different based on how we are born. Men cant have babies. Women are physically not capable of doing the same amount of physical work men can. These are obvious things. Yes there are tough women who could. That is impressive, the average cannot. The military works off of the average.

      The average male joining has not trained his entire life to do this job, he just can after a few months training he is good to go. Sorry, never in any reality will the average female be capable of performing in a direct combat mos the same as an average male.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:03 pm | Reply
      • apotas

        so then the average woman wouldn't be signing up. only the women that can hack it-physically and mentally. equal playing field. just don't discount them because they lack a penis.

        January 24, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
      • LD

        Agreed. My biggest concern is the draft. Now my wife and daughters have to go to war? Total crap. Let the 1% of women who want to go to war go to war, but don't force the other 99% to go to.

        January 24, 2013 at 2:50 pm |
  81. bankrupt1

    going backwards. we need more men out, not more women in. don't follow patriarchy to your graves. get out!

    watch The Invisible War. Men have the free for all. And nobody will stop them.

    January 24, 2013 at 1:47 pm | Reply
  82. Nick

    Hard to believe that John McCain thinks its OK to expose a woman to the risk of getting the same treatment he got as a POW.

    January 24, 2013 at 1:40 pm | Reply
    • Gale

      Yah. McCain was raped, beaten and tortured. It'd be so much worse if that had happened to a woman. *sarcasm*

      January 24, 2013 at 1:44 pm | Reply
      • what?

        McCain is a politician, and is a perfect example of what this whole issue is about – votes from 50% of the population. The US military is not a social playground, for experiemts on equality- it's not a place for career opporunity equal rights. This all about pleasing woman for votes- nothing else.

        January 24, 2013 at 1:47 pm |
      • truthbetold

        Gale, do you think everything across the board in society should be equal no matter the gender,race, creed, color etc? Do you completely agree with me that same rules for everyone should be applied?

        January 24, 2013 at 1:57 pm |
      • Michael

        It is not the fact that the treatment would be physically worse for a man , but whether you will admit it or not, in all societies it is the role of the man to protect women. That doesn't make men any more or women any less. It is simply a role. In combat men will feel that inherant need to protect women. I can't make a definative statement about how that would affect combat. Israely women are allowed in combat. I don't know if they have been involved on a large scale. It would be nteresting to see how it affects combat.

        January 24, 2013 at 2:02 pm |
      • Ann

        Michael, it is the role of a soldier in combat to protect the other members of his or her team. Period.

        January 24, 2013 at 2:10 pm |
    • Bill

      When the standards are for soldiers, sailors, airmen and, marines then this is fine; however, there will be standards for Male soldiers and DIFFERENT standards for Female soldiers – equality – NO.

      January 24, 2013 at 1:51 pm | Reply
  83. Bang bang

    Look as an infantryman if women want to join combat arms hey by all means go for it. However you need to meet every standard to the T in other words you will be held physically to the male pt standard. You be treated the same as all the male infantryman me i hold no bias so if you were in my squad then you would be held to my standard and the moment you couldn't meet that whether be "corrective pt" to use the now politically correct term, hump the same weight and share the loads evenly without complaint, be involved in whatever training we do in whatever conditions it be in for however long, and more importantly deal with way we speak and interact with one another without be fully offended then you would be moved in heart beat or chart papers started for failure to adapt. And one final note on that is it will be regardless of how you feel about it. I am good to my soldiers but distribute very tough love. So if you think you can hack it then by all means ladies I encourage you to try.

    January 24, 2013 at 1:38 pm | Reply
    • CJ Topspin

      Agreed. This is not co-ed sports we are talking about here. Losing in this arena means death. So if women are equal to the task I am all for it. However if I get clipped and need an evac you had BETTER be able to pull my 220 lb a$$ to safety.

      January 24, 2013 at 1:43 pm | Reply
  84. femaleVeT

    Each service is different in their ways. All female soldiers know the possibility of what will happen especially if they opt for a "combat-related" MOS. Women who want to do these jobs, good luck and expect some heat cause you will have to prove your worth, that's just how it works. Also, to say that it will increase the possibility of rape even if they are a P.O.G....it already happens, rather overseas or stationed on home turf. Coming from a female, those who want to be out there taking the physical toll to their bodies , be my guest. BUT they should go through the same schools as the males to see if they can even handle it. I'm all for this change but i'm not for it when it comes to jeopardizing the safety of the team.

    January 24, 2013 at 1:37 pm | Reply
  85. what?

    What in the hell are we trying to accomplish here? In a country with an endless supply of able bodied men, we need to put woman in the militiary. What an absolute disgrace! Im so sick of it. It doesn't matter if spoiled brat females, want act out they're childhood sibling rivalry – mental disorders against men, we have to worried about our country, our credibility our fighting effectiveness. What do our enemies think of this? How is this helping the USA?, besides internal political game playing- for votes? What a disgrace.

    January 24, 2013 at 1:35 pm | Reply
    • Gale

      Get help.

      January 24, 2013 at 1:36 pm | Reply
      • truthbetold

        Gale...Get help? Could you explain a little more?

        January 24, 2013 at 1:41 pm |
    • RR

      Seems like the men in our government already show us they are spoiled brats! You don't need a women to show you. Wake up, stop putting the blame on women.

      January 24, 2013 at 4:45 pm | Reply
  86. Sadly

    It may take seeing the more frequent pictures and names of women listed as casualties to cause the public cry of outrage against the wars seem to be getting involved in.

    January 24, 2013 at 1:34 pm | Reply
    • Ann

      What's truly sad is that the lives of our male troops aren't considered just as valuable.

      January 24, 2013 at 1:52 pm | Reply
    • RR

      Your forgetting that if a women chooses to be in combat, it is not the peoples decision it's her decision.

      January 24, 2013 at 5:45 pm | Reply
  87. Antronman

    See, they might get jobs in combat and all that...but what about the heavy loading, hmm? It's not even the rucksacks and their assault weapons...it's the other heavy loads. Carrying around mortar tubes and M-60s ain't exactly a trip to the hair salon. Guys are guys and gals are gals. The way we are made, males and females CANNOT BE EQUAL. FORGET IT. Nobody gives a darn about the mental preparation, given time anybody can pass that. But the way we were created, guys are stronger, more enduring, and more gritty. Social equality can never occur because of this too. The earlier civilizations were all controlled by men, because they were stronger and faster. This stuff draws back to ancient times. War isn't about who knows how to kill better, but who CAN kill better. And that person is the faster, stronger, and less emotional being.

    January 24, 2013 at 1:32 pm | Reply
    • Michelle

      I am a woman, n I agree with you 100%! The women out there are not looking at this from a common sense level! Women! Forget it! We are not made physically to carry all that heavy stuff like a man can!!! Yeah we can tolerate childbirth! But c'mon, that too we laying on our backs for! N don't forget, pain in childbirth , we can't even walk , I don't call that high tolerance. Woman in combat is a BS idea! Leave the combat jobs for the men!

      January 24, 2013 at 1:39 pm | Reply
      • Gale

        No one believes for a minute that you're a woman. You're some fat, bald Archie Bunker type ranting away from his living room desperately trying to feel important.

        January 24, 2013 at 1:43 pm |
      • Mia

        LOL are you stupid? Do you really have ovaries or do you just pretend? Clearly you are not a woman since NOT all women lie on their backs to give birth. If you knew anything about womanhood you would know that it's actually better to stand up during birth to allow gravity to help. Laying down came from male-dominated medicine who encouraged– you know what, just Google it.

        Women in combat can be done. Women are smaller, lighter, faster, more nimble than men. We just have to rethink combat. Sure a man could probably lift 150 lbs more easily than a woman–but why should she have to do that? Men and women ARE different, it's not about putting them on equal playing fields. To do that is just to try to prove that men are better than women at physical brute strength. We make up for that in other ways.

        Why are most men so afraid of that?

        January 24, 2013 at 2:07 pm |
    • Gale

      Yet our commander in chief is a slender, thoughtful, intelligent person with no military training. Funny that. Keep telling yourself how special you are though despite having no accomplishments to speak of. You're male and that makes you special.

      January 24, 2013 at 1:42 pm | Reply
      • CJ Topspin

        Gale...I believe in equality...I really, really do. But the physical reality of it – the SCIENCE – is not on a woman's side on this issue. Now there are some strong women out there, don't get me wrong, and THEY might pass the current PT standards in the military...but on the whole women are not as physically abled as men. I am all for the military allowing women on the front lines. But the military simply can't lower the PT standards to get them to pass. That is not equal treatment – that is preferential treatment – an an insult to equality (not to mention bad for the military).

        January 24, 2013 at 1:50 pm |
      • Aaron

        I am guessing you are one ugly women based on your man hating.

        January 24, 2013 at 1:52 pm |
      • GeorgeWBush

        No crying in the battlefield is allowed because you could reveal your platoons position and could cause everyone their lives.

        January 24, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
      • Aaron

        Gale, I agree with CJ. Instead of labeling people who don't agree with this as women badgers, look at reality. Yes there are whomever women out there in the general population that are as physically fit as men. But once trained for war, few women will be able to keep up physically.

        January 24, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
      • Michelle

        Lmao! Actually I am a woman! And you just validated my point, there You go with all the emotions! You would be the first one to get raped and killed! Case closed

        January 24, 2013 at 2:24 pm |
    • ObservantHistorian

      In the so-called "conservative" mind, gay men are also not qualified to be in the military. Not that long ago, so-called "conservatives" thought that African-Americans needed to be segregated primarily into service units. Before that, of course, black Americans were not even considered by so-called "conservatives" to be able to be good soldiers. (When a proposal was made near the end of the Civil War to arm slaves to fight for the Confederacy, one Southern leader who opposed the idea said that if slaves could make good soldiers, then the entire theory of slavery was wrong. Duh....) Pick any area of American life where the promise of greater liberty and opportunity can be extended to those who've been denied it, and you'll find a so-called "conservative" leading the opposition, without fail. They can shoot their mouths off all they want – with the plethora of chickenhawks leading them these day, that's the main weapon most of them are familiar with, anyway.

      January 24, 2013 at 1:47 pm | Reply
      • CJ Topspin

        I think people are upset with the idea of lowering the PT standards to allow women in...in the above cases (gays, people of color, etc.) the standards remained the same.

        January 24, 2013 at 1:52 pm |
      • Gunny

        Good point!!! Lets put Conservatives on point. For every female that wants the job, put a conservative in her place. I think that will see things differently then.

        January 24, 2013 at 3:01 pm |
    • KMarine

      The lines re: front lines are indeed blurred. During Marine Corps officer school we had 4 platoons of men and 1 female. On force marches they started before us and always finished last. It wasn't for lack of effort, skill or tactics. They just weren't able to carry the weight required like the guy were. Many can run faster in shorts & t shirt thant their male counterparts but with a combat load it is a different situation.

      January 24, 2013 at 1:59 pm | Reply
  88. Ann

    Oh, and I had to laugh at some of the responses from men who think women can't function on a lack of sleep. They wouldn't last a weekend with a sick infant!!

    January 24, 2013 at 1:31 pm | Reply
  89. Squire

    Good- now for true equality if there is a draft I'd like to see women eligible as well.

    January 24, 2013 at 1:31 pm | Reply
    • Ann

      Of course. Is anyone arguing against that?

      January 24, 2013 at 1:32 pm | Reply
      • Gale

        Only the woman haters on here.

        January 24, 2013 at 1:35 pm |
      • Ann

        Yeah, the rest of us are ready to share our responsibilities with the guys.

        January 24, 2013 at 1:43 pm |
  90. Aaron

    I really don't see a large number of women that will be able to meet the physical requirements for combat, so I don't think this is going to be a huge issue. And good luck and stay safe to the ones that do.

    January 24, 2013 at 1:30 pm | Reply
  91. Ann

    I'm 50, and have always believed that gender should be irrelevant to opportunity. That was a new idea when I was a kid – I looked for my first summer jobs in classifieds that listed "Help Wanted – Male" and "Help Wanted – Female" in separate columns (bet you can guess which jobs paid better).

    I always thought women should register for selective service just as men did.

    As for this new ruling, it'll be just fine. Don't worry about menstruation or pregnancy. That's an excuse. Keep the performance requirements the same. Most of the candidates who score best on the physical tests will be men, which is fine. However, if there are a few women who can do better than some of the men, then give them the spot on the team and you'll have the best candidates. That's better for everyone.

    Oh, and although I don't really want to have to go to the bathroom in front of anyone, male or female - if I'm being shot at, I won't care. Neither will our female soldiers. Grow up.

    January 24, 2013 at 1:28 pm | Reply
    • Michelle

      With all do respect, hope you have a high tolerance for rape! Cause as a woman, oh it will happen in combat and you better have a high mental tolerance to pull up your panty and keep it moving to protect your country in combat. don't think you women out there are factoring in the true dark side of women in combat. I feel so sorry for the first set of women that have to endure the dark sides of women in combat. Not being mean just keeping it real!

      January 24, 2013 at 1:34 pm | Reply
      • Ann

        I'm very well aware of the possibility of rape, thank you very much, having already been through it myself.

        I'm sure all the young women applying for these jobs will take that risk into consideration, as well as the risk of being injured, killed, disfigured, etc. – in other words, the same risks as the male candidates have to think about.

        Rape is bad. We know this. It also happens to men, by the way. It's bad for them, too.

        January 24, 2013 at 1:42 pm |
      • mamanas

        Heck- from what I hear woman are getting raped by the fellow servicemen. Which is worse rape by the enemy or by someone who is suppose to be on your side.

        January 24, 2013 at 2:07 pm |
      • Whatever

        RAPE CAN HAPPEN ANYWHERE AT ANYTIME TO ANY GENDER, OR ANY PERSON.......STOP USING THAT AS A REASON.

        January 25, 2013 at 4:37 pm |
  92. spaceEatingmonkey

    $luts gettin guns

    January 24, 2013 at 1:27 pm | Reply
  93. spaceEatingmonkey

    women need to be in kitchens

    January 24, 2013 at 1:26 pm | Reply
    • mamanas

      Serving up a pot of hot grease to toss at you.

      January 24, 2013 at 1:34 pm | Reply
      • Gale

        Where do I sign up for that?

        January 24, 2013 at 1:47 pm |
    • RR

      Your obviously a stupid man stuck in the days of cavemen.

      January 24, 2013 at 5:47 pm | Reply
  94. US Army SAPPER

    I am speaking as a combat Engineer that served in a combat environment in the 1980's in Central America. Here is a short story: In my combat heavy engineer unit, women were allowed to served in the unit. We had two women in the unit, one was my squad leader in a line platoon. There other was a mechanic. When we were preparing for deployment we were informed that the two female solidiers would not be deploying with us. We later learned that they were given the option of staying back from the deploy for no other reason than it would be dangerous and that they were females. The deployment was the most difficult four months of my life, physically speaking. We worked 17 hours days and got, one day during the entire four months. As long as women are held to the same standard, then I am all for this. But I know they will bend the rules for female solidiers. It is natural for when talking about most species, that will males to "try" and keep females safe. Lastly, combat units are very wild and hard charging. I spent my four years, working HARD, drinking and fighting! Good luck Ladies.

    January 24, 2013 at 1:26 pm | Reply
    • acprp

      Any male who can't act professionally around women should be dishonorably discharged from the military. Also, I really don't buy that men are such noble creatures that they can't help but try to keep a woman safe. Do you know how many women are killed by their husbands or boyfriends every year? That flies in the face of what you just said.

      January 24, 2013 at 1:29 pm | Reply
      • bob

        and how many women aren't killed by their husbands and boyfriends every year? ever lived with a nagging wife? no? take it from me... takes a lot not to snap on your wife... haha

        in all seriousness though... there is something built within men to want to protect and go the distance for women. it has definitely been decreasing over the years as we have seen with the loss of chivalry. chivalry wasnt a social construct, it was just a learned method to the madness of natural male psychology

        January 24, 2013 at 1:46 pm |
      • Pablo

        Do you have any idea the kinds of men in these combat units? First of all they aren't 40something corporate execs who think about what it means to act in a professional manner... They are 95% 18-26 year olds. They are hard charging killers who love what they do and are damn good at what they do...and yet most are still kids, rough around the edges. There's no one else I want covering my butt when I go downrange. There's not a lot of patience for political correctness when the shooting starts... We used to have a saying in our unit "I'd rather be tried by 12 than carried by 6. So please get some experience on the topic before you go running your mouth...

        January 24, 2013 at 1:48 pm |
      • Poltergeist

        We want them for their ability to kill people, not their etiquette.

        January 24, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
      • Bang bang

        Yeah believe me when the hammer is dropped there is no bars on what is said and don't even go into the humor we have that alone would offend most people. And there is no such thing as professionalism when you just been blown up or rounds are bouncing around over, near, or any where in the vicinity of you.

        January 24, 2013 at 3:36 pm |
      • US Army Sapper

        There is no way you have ever served in a combat unit! I am in my mid 40's now and I agree that is not the way things should be, but you are talking about 17 – 25 year olds that are 99% non-college grads. Just think of it like the high school football jocks with M-16's, M-4"S now. When we had a disagreement, the unit had a pair of gloves and that is how we settled it. You females really have no idea how these units operate. I am not saying that it is right, but it is the way it is!

        January 24, 2013 at 11:05 pm |
    • ObservantHistorian

      Let's see, combat in Central America in the 80's.....ah yes, more illegal Republican wars.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:25 pm | Reply
  95. Bcka79

    It's disturbing where this conversation is going.... Posts focusing on menstruation & the apparent likelihood of women getting raped in the armed forces. It makes me wonder what mindsets men are being taught both in the military & in society.

    Perhaps instead of teaching women to fear rape, teach men not to rape? Of course, if we use the men on this forum as examples, we're screwed (figuratively & literally).

    January 24, 2013 at 1:25 pm | Reply
    • acprp

      I have a brother who just left the military and he is one screwed up nut. He hates gays, thinks women are required to obey him, he wants minorities to leave this country. He cheats and steals and then brags about it. God knows what he did while deployed. He's planning to run for office too, though given that he makes several Todd Akin type statements a day I doubt he'll get very far in politics.

      January 24, 2013 at 1:31 pm | Reply
      • ObservantHistorian

        Assuming he's running as a "conservative," he sounds like their ideal candidate!

        January 24, 2013 at 1:51 pm |
      • Bang bang

        So your brother is a congressman then?

        January 24, 2013 at 3:56 pm |
    • bob

      its not about rape from your unit members. gosh you are short-sighted. if a military man is captured by your enemies (whether in a national war or against terrorists rebels such as those in Mali) you are likely captured and tortured and killed. if you are a women... you are probably killed, but only after repeated torture and uncountable times of being raped.

      they do it to women on the street... of course they would do it captured women soldiers. anyone remember what russian soldiers did when they invaded georgia just a few years back? silly short-sighted people.

      we aren't saying dont let women into the military or combat troops... just give them a single bullet to save themselves from hell on earth... or just make them aware of just how hellish it will be

      January 24, 2013 at 1:50 pm | Reply
      • Ann

        Bob, the young women who want to apply for these jobs ALREADY KNOW THIS. They are not stupid. It is for them to decide if they want to take the risk.

        Once again, women are being told that they can't make their own choices about their own bodies, because men know better – it's getting old.

        January 24, 2013 at 1:57 pm |
      • Bcka79

        That's a good point as well.... It's terrifying to think of the tactics the enemy can/do use against our soldiers. I'm not well-versed in military culture or the various societal norms of whom we're fighting, but I wouldn't be surprised to hear that such treatment of women (their own female citizens, as well as U.S. hostages) would also happen to male hostages as well.

        January 24, 2013 at 2:04 pm |
    • Poltergeist

      Where there is war their is rape, it's always been that way. People killing each other aren't in a progressive mindset. If you feel you need to reeducate the entire male population o feel safe somewhere, you probably shouldn't be there.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:08 pm | Reply
      • Bcka79

        I'm not there - though I do respect & support those who volunteer for the services (in most cases). My concern for those who serve & protect our country is my point here.

        I am just a female civilian, an over-educated one at that. (sigh)

        January 24, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
      • RR

        Again people are assuming only women can be raped! Hello, so can a man! It can happen anywhere at anytime to anyone.....it does not require a war.

        January 24, 2013 at 5:53 pm |
  96. Antronman

    Hah..hah! There ARE standards...just they're lowered for women. Do some research before complaining. There have been several studies conducted on this, and earlier in the comments a person even describes the whole thing. Face it, casualties will more than triple should there be a women's infantry. Also, I can't imagine a pair of 20 year old women hauling a rotary cannon and the ammunition for it through the desert. It just won't happen. Future military dialogue, "Ohhhh john? Yes??? Could you carry my rucksack, body armor, AR-15 and my helmet for me? I'm a little tired. Sure." later in the day...John is walking really, really darn slowly and gets shot down.

    January 24, 2013 at 1:23 pm | Reply
    • acprp

      The problem with your comment is that you've pulled everything out of your a$$.

      January 24, 2013 at 1:24 pm | Reply
    • RR

      Sound like someone wants women to be dependent on them. Gotta stroke the ego.

      January 24, 2013 at 6:09 pm | Reply
  97. Maggi Harris

    My opinion – women do NOT belong on front lines in combat positions, just as women should not be regular police officers. First of all – you have inequality of upper body strength and overall endurance – in addition to "human nature". It is basic human nature for the male of our species to "protect and defend" the female of our species. If a man's fellow troop or partner is a woman – when push comes to shove his instinct will be to protect and defend her. . .rather than maintain the task at hand. Human nature is a very hard instinct to override. An entire situation or mission could be put awry or fail entirely if this were to happen. Lives could be lost. NOT a good idea. . .never has been. . .never will be. Women are women and men are men. One is not "better" than the other. . .we just excel differently in various areas. We should stick to what we do best.

    January 24, 2013 at 1:21 pm | Reply
    • acprp

      No one cares about your opinion though that's why you weren't elected to make this decision.

      If you care about physical strength then set standards for that and forget about gender. If a woman can do the job you shouldn't concern yourself with the fact that she has lady parts.

      January 24, 2013 at 1:23 pm | Reply
    • Poltergeist

      Put them in the draft and in the trenches. We don't have equality until women are getting Dear Jane letters too.

      January 24, 2013 at 1:30 pm | Reply
    • ObservantHistorian

      "just as women should not be regular police officers"....and yet have been successfully for years, despite your fascinating insights.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:22 pm | Reply
    • Jamie

      Where do people get off thinking that all you need is brawn and nothing else? A male and female police partnership is the best you could ask for as a civilian! Women bring a certain balance to an otherwise all male dominated occupation especially one that has immense power over the populace is not something to be beckond for. Women are better listeners and are more compassionate, they help keep men in line, we should expect to see LESS rape and violence even towards civilians in combat zones.

      Men are no longer allowed to beat, stabb each other or kill each other in horrific manors as a way of disiplin and settling disputes in the military. Really though, look into what they did in the navy back in the old days of large wooden merchant vessels, they used to tie rope around your wrists and ankles and drag you under the ship shredding your body on the barnacles, then when they are about to pull you out of the water, incase you survived by some unfortunate miracle, they would then fire a canon to shock him into taking water into his lungs. Thats not even the worst of it. Americans are such ingrates.

      January 25, 2013 at 12:21 pm | Reply
  98. G.I. Flo

    Hey you male chauvinist PIGS. Women deserve to get their faces blown off just like everyone else, they have earned that right. You go girls!!!

    January 24, 2013 at 1:20 pm | Reply
    • Bang bang

      Yeah hey go for it while you are at it you can carry your buddy or soldier the 4 some odd km the medivac site or ccp while he screaming or go ahead maybe it is your turn to become a double amputee or see it happen to someone else I am tired or burying young men and boys it is your turn to feel the same go ahead and experience combat from this side of the fence.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:11 pm | Reply
  99. acprp

    As a black man Obama has dealt with ignorance and prejudice his entire life. It is no coincidence that he is the first president to sympathize with the plight of women in the military who are kept out of many roles due to ignorance and prejudice. Did you know that until very recently women were kept off of submarines supposedly because they wanted all the bathrooms reserved for the men? What a ridiculous reason to limit a woman's career. On the same note, it is ridiculous to keep every woman out of combat just because she is a woman. If you think a soldier needs a certain amount of physical strength to do a combat job then make that a requirement and exclude any man or woman who doesn't meet the standards. But you have no right to exclude someone who's qualified just because she's female.

    Thank you Obama for what you've done for women and thank God we finally have a president who knows what it's like to be discriminated against.

    January 24, 2013 at 1:17 pm | Reply
    • Aaron

      Playing the pity card much? Too bad you don't see yourself as an equal.

      January 24, 2013 at 1:24 pm | Reply
    • Poltergeist

      I agree, if men have to go get shot. So should women if they want to be treated equal.

      January 24, 2013 at 1:25 pm | Reply
    • acprp

      @ Aaron

      You have a problem with reading comprehension. Also, that's the problem with conservative white males. You have no appreciation for the harm caused by discrimination. Oh, but you sure do complain about affirmative action and the plight of men in family court. You only care about something when it has a detrimental effect on you.

      That is why Obama was elected to lead and you're a nobody whining on a message board.

      January 24, 2013 at 1:27 pm | Reply
      • Aaron

        No, I actually believe someone should stand on their own two feet and prove themselves. The problem with this country is we have people like you who are lazy and want a hand out. Now shut your whining mouth and do something on your own without complaining.

        January 24, 2013 at 1:34 pm |
      • Gale

        @ Aaron

        She's a lawyer. She works harder and makes a lot more money then you do. You shouldn't assume that someone wants a "handout" just because they aren't a white man.

        January 24, 2013 at 1:38 pm |
  100. christophermcne

    I'm glad that women who choose to do so will be given the opportunity to fight for their country without restrictions. I just hope the military doesn't do the same thing with their physical fitness requirements that our education system has done in terms of reaching compromises between people who do well and people who struggle. It seems like we too often play to the lowest common denominator in this country. We've dumbed down our education system so that slower people don't feel left out, and as a result have not effectively promoted the smarter / quicker students. I hope they don't lower overall physical fitness standards in the military to make things 'fair'...

    January 24, 2013 at 1:13 pm | Reply
    • acprp

      As someone with a high IQ I know what you mean about education. I was in a state without a gifted and talented mandate and I basically wasted k-12 attending a failing public school. I kicked butt in college and professional school but I resented having to play catch up because I was competing with the private school crowd after receiving a crummy public education.

      I think though what the military will do is set physical standards commensurate with what is needed for the job and apply them universally. I am happy that we are yet another step closer to having an actual meritocracy.

      January 24, 2013 at 1:21 pm | Reply
      • Bang bang

        Yeah you clearly have never been in the military then.

        January 24, 2013 at 3:13 pm |
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