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 (3,524 Responses)
  1. john-117

    In the near future, gender roles will so far gone, that women will be surgically grafting pen is's on themselves in order to get other women pregnant.

    January 23, 2013 at 5:04 pm | Reply
    • RedLeg1

      You lost me there Master Chief ... say hi to Cortana for me.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:32 pm | Reply
    • erexx

      Thats offensive and ignorant.

      January 24, 2013 at 2:36 pm | Reply
  2. tex from Virginia

    The only stories I heard about female marines all ended with "then I f#@#ed her"

    January 23, 2013 at 5:03 pm | Reply
  3. Old Guy

    I do not care who is serving as long as the standards are not reduced or removed. Unfortunately, some political types view any standards as an impediment to their ideals. The military is a political machine,and often adjust its policies to fit the current political fad. When Airborne School was opened to women, certain obstacles were reduced or removed. In official Army doctrine Paratroopers became parachutist... There are already two physical standards for women and men. It is academic dishonesty to claim both equal then adjust the standards for one group. Again, if they(anyone) are capable let them serve. If not keep them out. Just dont lower the standards...

    January 23, 2013 at 5:03 pm | Reply
  4. mike hunt

    The purpose behind this is to immedately increase the number of combat ready soldiers. The question you should all be asking yourself is, why the sudden need for more combat ready solders now that we just ended 2 wars? Be prepared to defend yourselfs against all enemies, foreign and domestic.

    January 23, 2013 at 5:02 pm | Reply
    • Jon

      This has nothing to do military preparedness. It's Obama and the democrats pandering to female voters. Anyone with half a brain knows this is a terrible move from a military strategy perspective.

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

        As a female officer with two combat deployments, over 60 combat patrols, and a commander I don't agree that Obama is pandering to me.

        January 25, 2013 at 8:54 am |
  5. DeepeThought

    If it is discrimination forbidding women in combat then it is also discrimination (against men) not having all women register for the draft and having separate sports clubs for men and women in collleges, pros, high schools, etc.

    January 23, 2013 at 5:02 pm | Reply
  6. MANDATORY MILITARY DRAFT

    So now there is no reason to not require everyone's daughters to take part in a Mandatory Military Draft???

    January 23, 2013 at 5:02 pm | Reply
    • AngryKelly

      Correct, except there is no mandatory draft.

      January 23, 2013 at 11:25 pm | Reply
  7. Sick Rantorum

    First Blacks. Then Gays. Now Women? Pretty soon just about anyone will be able to fight for our country. Next up they will be letting non-citizens fight for American Values and way of life.

    January 23, 2013 at 5:02 pm | Reply
    • mike hunt

      clever, but they already can and have been able to for centuries. citizenship is not required to serve.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:06 pm | Reply
    • guppy

      Already have foreigners in our military or didn't you know that. It's a way for them to gain citizenship. Just FYI.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:06 pm | Reply
    • Sylar75

      Well the French have the foreign legion and anyone who serves for 6 years (I believe) becomes a citizen. We should have an American Foreign Legion for people wanting citizenship. Serve for 6 years and you and your spouse and children become citizens. Of course they would have to have background checks and we would have to only use them over seas until they fullfilled their commitment. I'd rather a Mexican immigrant fought for his citizenship rather then just sneak in over the boarder. Also no pay for them besides food and housing. We pay them with citizenship. This would solve a lot of our military financial problems and immigration problems as well.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:10 pm | Reply
  8. bandnerd

    Since when is being gay a "personal choice of behavior"??

    January 23, 2013 at 5:02 pm | Reply
    • ohmyohmy

      Someone likes watching Oprah!

      January 23, 2013 at 5:06 pm | Reply
    • Paul

      Always has been a personal choice.

      January 24, 2013 at 6:12 am | Reply
      • erexx

        Your a bigot.

        January 24, 2013 at 2:44 pm |
  9. yourcongress rep

    yes I have and it was in Iraq......u are dumb as hades also

    January 23, 2013 at 5:01 pm | Reply
    • Max

      yeah, sure

      January 23, 2013 at 5:02 pm | Reply
  10. Mark

    Most of the things being said here about women not being fit for combat were said about African Americans. Ask the WWII bomber pilots who were amazed that black P-51 pilots didn't run when the Messerschmidts showed up.

    January 23, 2013 at 5:01 pm | Reply
    • Old Guy

      There are two physical standards for women and men. It is academic dishonesty to claim both equal then adjust the standards for one group. Again, if they(anyone) are capable let them serve. If not keep them out. Just dont lower the standards...

      January 23, 2013 at 5:06 pm | Reply
      • alexusf

        Exactly. Im a chick and I support this as long as the standards for measuring are the same, and they are not. Why not? Because most women could not physically match a man.

        January 23, 2013 at 7:17 pm |
  11. levi

    Oh No! Now we will have to endure another TV show. It will be called ArmyHusbands

    January 23, 2013 at 5:00 pm | Reply
  12. kevin

    Men in the North Vietnamese army kicked our men's asses in that particular conflict. Aren't American women about the same size as Vietnamese men?

    January 23, 2013 at 4:59 pm | Reply
    • commonsense123

      actually einstein, very few battles were won by the north vietnamese, your buddies like obama and his ilk defeated us...

      January 23, 2013 at 5:00 pm | Reply
      • Carl, Secaucus, NJ

        Yeah, Obama had a lot to do with it–he was eight years old, I believe. It was the war we lost, not the battles. We killed a lot more of them than they did us. We still lost the war. And if anyone says it was a political defeat but a military victory, by the time the American people (and soldiers) got sick of that war, we'd had years of saying victory is just around the corner. Congressmen aren't the only people full of B.S.–plenty of generals are too.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:05 pm |
      • Robert

        @Commonsense123 – Seriously? Obama and his ilk helped the US lose in Vietnam? Obama still had cartoon characters on his drawers during Vietnam. Get your head out of Rush's rump before you suffocate.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:09 pm |
      • Marlon 45

        Nonsense123, the President was a Boy during The Vietnam War so what did he do to be dragged into that, I'm sure your hatred for him is Racially based nonsense, But Give it a Rest

        January 23, 2013 at 5:43 pm |
    • john-117

      They didn't kick the butts of the US army. They US had no real objective and because of civil unrest at home, the military was withdrawn. We could have wiped the Communists from the face of the planet if that had been out plan.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:01 pm | Reply
      • kevin

        Saigon was overrun. We weren't asked to leave. We were forced to leave. If we had won enough battles, we never would have been forced to leave.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:03 pm |
    • Bob

      Factually incorrect, but keep up the ignorant comments.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:03 pm | Reply
      • kevin

        I bet if we had accomplished our objective of preventing the spread of communism to the democratic nation of south vietnam, we would have a military presence there somewhat similar to the presence we have in S. korea. Maybe those bases would have been downsized in recent years because Vietnam has never been much of a threat. But we definitely would not have left S. Vietnam the way that we did if we had held our own against the N. Vietnamese. Don't want to blame the grunts? Ok. Blame the generals and politicians. They are men too, aren't they?

        January 23, 2013 at 5:08 pm |
    • ResponderOne

      The kill ratio in that conflct was approximately 19:1, meaning 19 North Vietnamese were killed for each US/allied casualty. If you're suggesting that's "kicking ass" we'd better prepare for losing a lot of wars.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:05 pm | Reply
      • kevin

        That's a great stat. It proves my point. Ass-kicking the other guy 19 to 1 did not help us win that war. Having big strong american men did not help us either. This saps the strength of the argument that only men can win in combat.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:10 pm |
    • Old Guy

      When Saigon was overrun the only US troops in country were at the Embassy...

      January 23, 2013 at 5:09 pm | Reply
      • kevin

        We abandoned our bases throughout the country because they would have been overrun.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:12 pm |
  13. t-dog

    They can hardly drive a car, what happens when they get into a helicopter???

    January 23, 2013 at 4:59 pm | Reply
    • Jon

      This is another consideration, indeed. Scary.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:03 pm | Reply
    • FlyNavy

      We females already fly every aircraft in the military. In fact, I land on aircraft carriers while you look up cat videos on the internet. We've been keeping you safe for years. This is a non-issue.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:08 pm | Reply
    • sam

      There are always sandwiches to make, right smartass?

      January 23, 2013 at 5:19 pm | Reply
  14. Davy

    unfortunately most will not understand this... The military is about fighting and winning Americas wars not about providing everybody and equal rights. We don't allow this old, overweight and in many cases the disabled to serve.

    Most of these posts are from people not in the military and who have no desire to serve in the military and all they see is an equality issue. It is not an issue of desire or intellect just physical ability and culture.
    Most men could not make it through combat arms units. We create these units to serve a purpose and a culture of disciplined crude alpha male aggressiveness that most would feel uncomfortable being around.

    For us in the military we know what this means, lower standards...It also means someone will have to carry their weight.. we all have seen it happen over and over again when females are put into these units

    January 23, 2013 at 4:58 pm | Reply
    • manny

      well said

      January 23, 2013 at 5:04 pm | Reply
    • BKLNUSMC

      Agreed.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:19 pm | Reply
  15. Abdullah Abdullah

    Women are inferior to men...PERIOD.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:58 pm | Reply
    • Dude

      Jerk!

      January 23, 2013 at 5:02 pm | Reply
    • Common Sense

      That's the truth!

      January 23, 2013 at 7:28 pm | Reply
  16. Greeny

    Having served in the military, I'm fine with this decision if the physical standards for women in combat roles are the SAME as the men. If they can pass the test without gender specific physical readiness standards then they should be able to do the job the same as the men. Go ahead ladies. Try and do 70+ push ups in 2 minutes...and when you are done go ahead and sign up for selective service (draft).

    January 23, 2013 at 4:58 pm | Reply
    • DeepeThought

      They will just lower the standards for all. I am worried that the real soldiers who are macho men will not sign up as mush and we will not have the soldiers that can win actually fighting.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:06 pm | Reply
  17. Derrick

    As a male Marine Infantry officer, what's the big deal? What's not being said is that there is ONE, count it ONE standard at Marine Infantry Officer Course for both males and females. If both can pass the physical aspect and leadership aspect according to seasoned infantry instructors, who's to say that women should not be in the fight. They are sometimes more approachable than their male counterparts by the locals in the Middle East. Yeah, there will be your GI Jane's who do it for feminist reasons, but most of them will be screened out and dropped through the training process.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:58 pm | Reply
    • Sammy Z

      HOAH Sir! (I'm a Soldier)

      I just returned from a combat tour in Afghanistan and had females directly embedded with my team. Sure some were too "prissy" for the job but the ones that wanted to be there and were motivated did performed better under fire than some of my Joes.

      Set a single standard for all and allow all to fight.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:09 pm | Reply
  18. manny

    worst mistake ever. .....i been there and i do not see a female having the ability to drag a 215 lb male if need be, women are not built for that, it just human nature

    January 23, 2013 at 4:58 pm | Reply
  19. JC

    Congratulations! Expect thousands of emails from Gen Allen !!!

    January 23, 2013 at 4:58 pm | Reply
  20. rickmeister1203

    When female Israeli soldiers were dying side by side with their male comrades during the formation of Israel, the male soldiers were affected by it tremendously to the point that they became ineffective in their combat objective.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:58 pm | Reply
    • Dude

      It sounds like what you are saying is that the problem with women in combat is the men in combat.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:04 pm | Reply
      • Watiu

        War has been a male-dominated 'profession' since we started throwing rocks at each other. Yes, it is the men that have the problem with it.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:09 pm |
      • rickmeister1203

        Just saying that a man's instinct to protect a woman from harm is similar to a woman's instinct to protect her infant, thus compromising the objective in combat. Worst, that instinct to protect could both cost their lives.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:36 pm |
    • creolecafe

      Dude this is a quote from G.I. Jane movie when she's in the shower talking to the master chief....

      January 23, 2013 at 5:26 pm | Reply
  21. jonBOY

    ive served with women in combat in iraq and i have great deal of respect for the ones that rolled out the wire with me. but when they recieved contact most of us men went into a super protective mode and put our lives in greater danger.

    i guess im kinda on the fence for women in the infantry.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:57 pm | Reply
    • Jemarcus

      That's bull, there are very few women in military attractive enough to risk your life over.

      January 23, 2013 at 8:30 pm | Reply
  22. FlyNavy

    Great news. We already fly over hostile territory and endure the same training as our counterparts, and serve in dangerous jobs already. I am excited to see the new generation of females on the ground below me. I applaud this step in the direction to equality.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:57 pm | Reply
    • Old Guy

      Maam (and I mean that as respect for an officer), being on the ground as an infantryman is different... you and I would have a very difficult time doing each others jobs...

      January 23, 2013 at 5:15 pm | Reply
      • FlyNavy

        Sir (no matter what rank you may be), thank you for your civility. I do appreciate our differences and how our jobs are challenging in different ways. However, you can learn to fly and I've learned to buddy carry males larger than me. There are some strong females out there that can pass equivalent physical tests. The decision has been made. I hope everyone can change their frame of reference in time to not get left behind.

        January 23, 2013 at 10:55 pm |
  23. IvotedforObama

    They aren't going to let them in "real"combat units like Armor and infantry so I don't see the big deal.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:57 pm | Reply
    • Davy

      Nope.. infantry is going to be open

      January 23, 2013 at 5:01 pm | Reply
  24. Mark Neil

    Excellent, so long as the physical standards aren't changed, I applaud the move. Next step is to address the selective services gender disparity.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:57 pm | Reply
  25. One for all - all for one

    Battle lines are blurred, females are flying yets, a bomb or SAM doesn't care if a man or a woman flies the aircraft. Women should have the same rights and yes, I proudly serve, in combat with my fellow man...
    I am an American Air(wo)man, I am a warrior, I have answered my nations call!

    January 23, 2013 at 4:56 pm | Reply
    • Jon

      Sorry lady, but we both know you aren't going to be throwing me over your shoulder if I get hit, while carrying a ruck sack and a weapon. Now make me a sandwich.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:57 pm | Reply
      • Cindy

        Jon: I'm a 150lb veteran who has carried a 200lb man over her shoulder. I hope you choke on your sandwich.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:59 pm |
      • Lucy Ransom

        There's a name for guys like you...single. I bet you have a lot of tissue on hand, though

        January 23, 2013 at 5:00 pm |
      • Jon

        Sorry, Cindy, but we both know, just like I said to the other wanna-be man/woman, you are not going to be able to throw me (200 lbs) over your shoulder in a combat situation, with a 50 lb ruck sack on your back and a weapon and actually get me out alive. We both know this.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:01 pm |
      • DoubleEM

        @ Cindy Please go take a shower – you stink.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:02 pm |
      • Cindy

        Jon – so you are basically sticking with denial then?

        January 23, 2013 at 5:04 pm |
      • Kathy

        Haha. It's an Airwoman talking. She should come do real soldier work before mouthing about what she can handle and what other women should be doing. I am a women and was in a line unit, in the Army, and let me tell you, it's not for everyone. Until a women has actually experienced that kind of environment, I would be careful to push it on others.

        January 23, 2013 at 7:20 pm |
    • Dave

      You're in the Air Force? What's your job? I bet you $100 buck you sit behind a desk. If you've deployed you were a super fobbit. No offense but you're the farthest thing from a warrior. I served with warriors, some of which are no longer with us. I respect your service and respect you as a veteran, such as myself. But I doubt you're physically qualified for combat, and you have zero reference point.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:58 pm | Reply
      • Jon

        More like Chair-Force.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:01 pm |
      • Kathy

        Amen David. Worst case scenario, she was in a tent with air conditioning and heat. Hot food. All of that. Haha.

        January 23, 2013 at 7:23 pm |
    • DoubleEM

      You are moron and a troll. Go away.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:01 pm | Reply
    • giorgio

      Shaddap already??????

      January 23, 2013 at 5:02 pm | Reply
    • PevanB

      Cindy you are nuts and no you cannot

      January 23, 2013 at 5:11 pm | Reply
    • Kathy

      How are your individual "rights" more important than the mission and overall well-being of the unit? Typical Airwoman. Their mouth is bigger than their bark, because they never had to do anything.

      January 23, 2013 at 7:27 pm | Reply
  26. Sylar75

    As long as they are held to the exact same physical requirements I don't have a problem with it. I stress EXACT same physical requirements. The Israelis have been using women in combat for years so it can be done. My only worry is that a wounded female soldier might disrupt a unit more then a wounded male soldier would. Its mens natural response to protect women.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:56 pm | Reply
    • StlJarhead

      No, the Israelis have NOT been using women in combat "for years". They put women in combat in the early years, and found that men put themselves at risk more often protecting the women, so they removed women from combat. Also, it was found that the enemies Israel faced tended to be chauvinist Arabs who would fight harder and refuse to surrender rather than be shamed by being beaten by women. Remember what happened at that theater in Aurora? All those dead boyfriends killed while shielding their girlfriends? This is a behavior hardwired into male mammals by evolution. Men are going to get killed due to this stupidity.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:05 pm | Reply
    • Mark Packer

      In a combat situation, isn't it your responsibility to protect your entire team? I would protect a women just as fiercely as a man fighting next to me. No man(women) left behind!

      January 23, 2013 at 5:13 pm | Reply
      • StlJarhead

        Have you ever served in combat arms? Or even in the military in general? Or are you talking out of your a$$, just like our SecDef who thinks that M16's come with "armor-piercing bullets"?

        January 23, 2013 at 5:16 pm |
  27. ronski

    Are you IDIOTS that made this decision OUT OF YOUR EFFEN MINDS?????

    January 23, 2013 at 4:56 pm | Reply
    • Jon

      No, they are not out of their minds. This is a purposeful decision to weaken the military and allow our enemies to kill more Americans.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:59 pm | Reply
      • N.

        I hope this is a joke, because it's ridiculous.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:01 pm |
    • N.

      Why is it out of people's minds to promote equality....?

      January 23, 2013 at 5:01 pm | Reply
      • Kim

        THANK YOU!!!

        January 23, 2013 at 5:10 pm |
      • StlJarhead

        Equality? The enemy doesn't give a flying fig about "equality". Combat doesn't care about "equality". Any blind fool can tell you that there are very basic physiological differences between men and women. This does not make women "less" than men, or "inferior" to men. It makes them more suited to some tasks than others, and less suited to some tasks than males. Female muscular structure, and skeletal structure, make the female body fundamentally unsuited to infantry or armor work, in particular. And if you let women serve in these capacities, you are going to see EXTREMELY high stress injury rates, lowered unit readiness, and higher casualties in combat. But you can be happy sitting in your little suburban soccer mom world, where nobody ever points an AK at you, 'cuz your little feel good experiment in "equality" got implemented.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:24 pm |
  28. Dave

    There are so many reasons why this is a bad idea. Where to start......I spent 25 years in the Marine Corps, the entire time in combat arms. There were less than a dozen women that I met that could have lived up to the physical rigors of combat arms. The amount of gear we're expected to carry, alone, precludes a large portion of women from being qualified. The basic physical fitness test we take is ALREADY different for women because they can't pass the male version. So I guess we'll change that now. This is a small box, and a bad place to make a lucid argument. But this is truly s t u p i d. Figures coming from the Obama Administration.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:56 pm | Reply
    • tethys

      Answer this question honestly, please. I really do want to know your opinion. Given the dwindling interest of men enlisting in the military which would you rather have: A weaker army comprised of males and female volunteers or a compulsory military much like Israel's where all men who can pass the physical are forced to give at least two years of service?

      January 23, 2013 at 5:04 pm | Reply
    • N.

      So the dozen women that you've met who could have lived up to the physical requirements shouldn't be allowed to because they're women? And it is good of the Obama administration to promote equality, yes, it's a long time coming.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:06 pm | Reply
      • PevanB

        Tis was brought to you from another person that has never seen combat

        January 23, 2013 at 5:15 pm |
    • StlJarhead

      Another former Marine here. EVERY time I was in a formation run that included women, the men would REPEATEDLY have to circle around to allow the women to catch up. Every. Single. Time.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:07 pm | Reply
      • N.

        i love misogyny.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:30 pm |
  29. levi

    Jodi Arias can be put into the military instead of prison. She knows how to slit throats like many a jihadist.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:55 pm | Reply
  30. Carl, Secaucus, NJ

    People who say "but what if something terrible happens to a woman soldier?" are kind of missing the point. Equality means being allowed to face the same risks in the same service of the same country.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:55 pm | Reply
    • tethys

      It's only men who are always saying, "But,...but...but what about RAPE?!" Women never mention it. I wonder why that it is. I would sign up for the rape, actually. I once saw this movie where they hung a guy from his ankles, put a rat in a bag and put the bag over his head. The rate ate his face off. Put me in the rape line please. There are worse things than rape. Trust me.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:00 pm | Reply
  31. JR

    You think divorce rates are high in the military now.....wait until the crazy infantry wives find out about this if and when it takes effect.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:55 pm | Reply
  32. JT

    Lets send Piers Morgan to combat he's a woman!!

    January 23, 2013 at 4:54 pm | Reply
  33. Jo

    What a shame reading these messages. The majority of contributors have such a narrow-minded, arrogant approach to this it does nothing for the American image. Give these women some credit. They're in the military. They know what the fight is about.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:53 pm | Reply
    • StlJarhead

      O RLY? So how many years did you serve in Combat Arms. How often have you had the opportunity to observe physical performance standards of women vs men in a military environment?

      January 23, 2013 at 5:12 pm | Reply
  34. john-117

    Yes, because females have done so well as police officers. I'm sure the numerous incidents of female officers being disarmed and overpowered won't be a problem for a female soldier.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:51 pm | Reply
    • bouttime

      By your logic the numerous times that male officers have been overpowered and disarmed means that no man should be allowed to serve in combat.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:53 pm | Reply
      • mc

        Stop freaking out and have a conversation with people. Do you think the majority of women can handle the same physical load as the men do, or do you think the standards should be lowered for women?

        January 23, 2013 at 4:55 pm |
      • john-117

        There is a difference between being disarmed at gunpoint by a group of enemy soldiers and being totally owned by a single combatant.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:55 pm |
    • Max

      117 is this a number you've been a$$-kicked by a women?

      January 23, 2013 at 5:01 pm | Reply
      • john-117

        No John-117 is the name of Master Chief.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:08 pm |
    • arturo

      If the exams and physical requirements are not changed then was is the problem John? Those tests are there to make sure that the woman who make it through to combat units can hold their own just as well as the man next to her can...I know plenty of women who work out, are physically fit and healthy that can serve just as good as any man in the military.

      And its funny. Your name reflects a game in which woman serve openly in EVERY position in the military. There is no discrimination...there are female spartans, pilots, soldiers and commanders. Hell...in Halo 4 the commander of every spartan 4 on infinity was a woman spartan.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:15 pm | Reply
  35. Equality

    Selective Service.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:51 pm | Reply
  36. Jackey

    Women are more weaker in combat. This will get many more killed. However most Women are stronger the gay men so...?

    January 23, 2013 at 4:50 pm | Reply
    • Oh boy

      Is it uncomfortable under that rock bottom feeder?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:57 pm | Reply
    • JLock

      How do you figure? One of my very good friends, who happens to be gay, was a combat communications officer and would probably crush you in any physical challenge. The guy is a beast and would tear you apart. Gay does not equal weak. So take your stupid comments elsewhere.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:01 pm | Reply
  37. emskadittle

    wow, a lot of these comments could have come straight from the talaban

    January 23, 2013 at 4:50 pm | Reply
    • john-117

      Probably the ones supporting women in combat. What a relief to a the Taliban.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:53 pm | Reply
  38. UNCOUTH75

    great now when some broad is a p.o.w. more men can get killed going to rescue her stupid ass

    January 23, 2013 at 4:50 pm | Reply
  39. dude

    "A bullet from a 40 year old is just as effective as a bullet from a 12 year old" Lord of War film. A bullet from a woman is just as effective as from a man.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:50 pm | Reply
    • mc

      Yeah, but can a woman hike up a mountain with a heavy pack and then carry ur butt down when you get hit?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:51 pm | Reply
      • Dude

        I guess she would have to be able to do that.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:52 pm |
      • Equality

        No she can't, but she CAN make you a sandwich while you lay there bleeding.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:53 pm |
      • JB

        Yes I can and because you are my brother in arms I will; but it doesn't mean your not an a**

        January 23, 2013 at 4:56 pm |
      • AJ

        yeah she gave birth to you bearing the pain that you can't withstand.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:57 pm |
      • Mark Packer

        If willing women are able to meet the mental and physical requirements of the job, I really don't see an issue.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:02 pm |
      • Former Army

        Maybe. Maybe not. When I was in, my A-gunner probably weighed about a buck thirty and there was no way he was carrying his own combat load and anyone else in our squad down a mountain. In fact, given the ridiculous weigh loads that we were carrying for a while, I doubt if I would have been able to actually, physically carry anyone more than a few feet.
        So...maybe we should just start having weight and height limits for certain MOS's. Like a carnival ride.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:09 pm |
    • StlJarhead

      Great. So a bullet is just as deadly from a woman as from a man. And what happens when the ammo runs out, or the fight gets close, and it's down to E-tools, knives, helmets, fists, and teeth?

      January 23, 2013 at 5:14 pm | Reply
  40. Gregory Faith

    It was bound to happen. My only worry is POW camps and what can happen there. Think about this again, PLEASE!

    January 23, 2013 at 4:50 pm | Reply
    • Mark

      Why is it so much more acceptable for a man to be tortured?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:57 pm | Reply
      • Gerard

        I would not put my life in there hands. I really think women would not stand up to be beaten, raped and killed. Some women don't want the job. All women would have to sign for the register. That would not go.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:09 pm |
    • cebolla

      More babies!!

      January 23, 2013 at 5:00 pm | Reply
  41. Darren Crawford

    What are the gonna do? Nag each other to death???

    January 23, 2013 at 4:49 pm | Reply
    • mc

      ha ha! a married man!

      January 23, 2013 at 4:52 pm | Reply
  42. Sue

    Any American who can pass the physical and psychological tests should be allowed in combat. A six foot tall woman might be stronger than a five foot five tall man. If a man can't handle working alongside a woman is is trying to save his life, he doesn't belong in the military. As a soldier, he is supposed to work to save his comrades' lives, both men and women. Those of you men who are whining about having weak women in the trenches are correct about one thing–there should be no weakness in the trenches at all. That includes mamma's boys like yourselves.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:49 pm | Reply
    • Watiu

      Most women cannot hold up to men's combat standards. This isn't about anything more than survivability. Some men can't drag a fully-equipped soldier – do you think a woman would be able to on the battlefield?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:53 pm | Reply
    • JR

      That is why we have a selection process. I doubt women will pass SFAS or infantry school, even if she is 6 feet tall. This is the politicians making decisions with out having the first hand experience.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:53 pm | Reply
    • Paul Karch

      Sue, that's not the point. They will be too busy making babies, and trying to look their best (both the guys and gals)... instead of being focused on the fight. You will have MASSIVE casualties if this takes place, if we ever face an enemy that is "somewhat" equally matched.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:54 pm | Reply
    • R. King

      just watch as standards are lowered to allow women to pass.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:55 pm | Reply
    • PevanB

      Sue you have never been in combat and probably have never even served in the military. It is not your a$$ on the line when the bullets fly so S H ut up and stop playing PC with my life. Women are great and we should be equal however we are not made the same (in case you missed that with your partner) that is just how it is. I am 5'6 and there are very few women that can run with a pack and rifle like I can and there are even less of them in the service. to recap – we are equal but different!

      January 23, 2013 at 5:00 pm | Reply
    • dumbpplaredumb

      Height has nothing to do with strength. Muscles do. You need to read up on how the human body works.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:03 pm | Reply
  43. barney

    The definition of war is now young men and women dying and old men and women talking.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:49 pm | Reply
  44. Jon

    I noticed in the picture all their weapons have no magazines in them. Probably a smart idea.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:49 pm | Reply
  45. 100 Years Old Virgin

    Great news. Now i can rape injured female soldiers during combat. My virgin body is ready!

    January 23, 2013 at 4:49 pm | Reply
    • God

      If that was a joke, that wasn't funny. If that was serious, you belong in a mental hospital. I'd die a virgin before I ever think about rape.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:11 pm | Reply
    • dulcimer172

      Go try raping, right up to the point you take a round or two to your guts & they walk away laughing as you slowly die in great pain.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:22 pm | Reply
  46. Paul Karch

    BAD IDEA. They are dismantling our military one piece at a time. First the repeal of a very important rule (don't ask, don't tell). Now they are allowing women on the front lines.

    Perhaps it's for the best. Why have the greatest force in the world protecting a bunch of morons who inact these ridiculous things?

    January 23, 2013 at 4:48 pm | Reply
  47. Skip Jones

    Enlistment is down. They need bodies for the next war we make up. Probably in Africa someplace.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:48 pm | Reply
    • Kathy

      The need for help in Africa is, seemingly inarguably, not being made up. Millions of people have been killed and are still getting killed, I think a million or so in the past three months in the Congo, but it barely gets reported. It is a huge humanitarian crisis, especially considering they are using rape as a weapon. Now the Iraq and Afghanistan war is probably more debatable, plus we gained nothing from Iraq; no oil, probably little to nothing politically.

      January 23, 2013 at 7:40 pm | Reply
  48. jollyartdesign

    "...to provide a level, gender-neutral playing field." Great. The battlefield is not a "playing field" – it's a killing field. And contrary to popular belief, men and women really ARE different. Our military is NOT the place to practice the insane, politically-cute social experiments that have so weakened our society—so favored by this president and shunned by every other one, including Clinton. First, uniformed Marines marching in Gay Pride parades. Now this. The Muslim hordes, Russians, Chinese, N Koreans, and anyone else with dreams of bringing America to it's knees are licking their chops...and they won't have to fire a shot to make it happen. There will come a day, likely sooner than later, when even the teaming masses who have fawned over Obama so deliriously will reach for a weapon with which to defend themselves and their families, only to realize their hero has taken that right away too. Now is the time to weep, kids.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:48 pm | Reply
    • Dude

      Since when is having twice as many soldiers available to fight weaker?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:54 pm | Reply
    • anxietyjunkie

      Muslim hordes? What is this, the Crusades?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:59 pm | Reply
    • God

      While it is true that women in general are weaker, there are those rare women who are made of 180 lbs of lean meat. Recruitment is geared towards them. If one of these rare women are willing to enlist and able to meet the same standards as the rest of the military, so be it. However, unless they reduce requirements for women (which I vehemently oppose), you can expect a lot of women to quit within the first week of boot camp.

      At any rate, the military is going to remain, for the most part, a man's world. Don't worry about our military growing weak, because no one is ever going to let in weaker people into the military. Only those rare women who are capable of carrying their comrades out of an ambush with hundreds of pounds of gear and weapons on rocky, mountainous terrain over 10 miles (my current impression of the military) will be allowed to join. The point is to allow tough, beefy women to join our tough, beefy men.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:18 pm | Reply
    • SgtYork

      Wow... talk about shooting down your own Argument before you've even finished making it !! You DO realize that the Russians, Chinese, and N. Koreans have had women in Combat roles for over half a Century ?

      January 23, 2013 at 5:53 pm | Reply
  49. Soldier 1

    I dont have a problem with women fighting right beside me. I have seen young men lose it and become panicked at the morbid reality they will die. All I ask is that women be tested to be able to handle the sight of soldiers bleeding, dying or injured severely and not lose it or start crying over it. Another thing is when we are out int he field for weeks we don't get to see a woman some times. If we do we stare at her because we have been lonely. A woman in the field may help us lonely men (not intimately) but just the sight of one (fellow soldier female) could help. Last thing is the biggest threat to women in the military is rape or S exual Assault. How will we know that the women in fox holes won't be assaulted by their own fellow soldiers? The ratio of women to men will be very low in combat.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:47 pm | Reply
    • mc

      Are the fellow soldiers animals?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:49 pm | Reply
      • Soldier 1

        Please you be the judge. We kill with both Assault Rifles and machine guns. We some times even have to kill with out knifes and you question us as if we may be animals? Have you been there? Please. Go down and buy yourself a iced mocha or something knowing your safe from the big bad Taliban.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:57 pm |
    • Dude

      We don't know. But you might get your ass shot.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:55 pm | Reply
    • Shanna

      I hope then she knows how to use her knives. Also – news flash, LOTS of women get assaulted in the service already.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:56 pm | Reply
  50. Ivex

    EQUALITY!?!? There is no equality in war and fighting......Trust me the treatment captured women get from the enemy will not be equal to the treatment captured men receive....if captured, at worst, a man will be killed and thats usually it but a captured woman will first be repeatedly tortured by her captors then possibly killed.....look at what happened to Jessica Lynch. She was gang raped and sodomized by her captors and sustained horrific injuries from that assault. Look it up online, its in her self biography.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:47 pm | Reply
    • wordsdontmatter

      actually most of that was a lie... not lye... jessica lynch was a militaray complex marketing scam.. i was born in WV does not make me stupid, u? mothers day was created in my home town: Grafton... too... u fat americans will eat anything.. stop!

      January 23, 2013 at 4:53 pm | Reply
    • jtguill

      Which the military makes us aware of before they send us into war (hostile) zones...but they do send us.....dont you think we should be trained, have the same opportunity to protect ourselves with the same types of equipment our male counterparties have?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:54 pm | Reply
      • Ivex

        Sure, as long as you can carry that 50 pound backpack and 40 pound body armor around all day long and not need someone to help you carry it or slow down so you can keep up. Lets not even talk about having to drag or carrying your 200 pound wounded buddy off the battle field to safety.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:59 pm |
    • Dude

      That's just not true, Jessica Lynch was slapped by an Iraqi colonel, but otherwise treated well.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:00 pm | Reply
  51. Angel

    It is a fantasy and fallacy to keep pushing this notion that there are no differences and people are equal. They are not. Women fit for combat are rare not widespread. Not only is this destructive, it aids our enemies because the first thing men know that the enemy will target are the women. You better make them as butch as possible and feed them testosterone. I figure it takes men that actually hate women to send women into combat zones and expect that, no matter how much lip service they give, that those women will be able to fight like men and do the things men do. We don't and can't. Nothing on a woman is like or equal to a man. We don't even think the same. As if real life is some Hollywood movie where the 120 lb woman kicks butt like Bruce Lee. Wow, who hated our country enough to push even that.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:47 pm | Reply
    • FALSE

      Makes sense...

      January 23, 2013 at 4:50 pm | Reply
    • God

      Of course people aren't equal. There are 6'3" 225 lb, all-muscle soldiers who could kill me (5'11" 180 lbs overweight) with their eyes. A lot of guys in the US are already too weak or unfit to fight. The sheer percentage of women who are too weak or unfit would be much higher. But this isn't about them. This is about that 0.0001% of women who are built like tanks. Don't believe me? Go to google and look up "female body builders." Women fit for combat exist in real life. It's just that you're about as likely to see them as you are to see a sober person at a frat party.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:31 pm | Reply
  52. don

    Get real, anyone can pull a trigger, and if you are saying that men are smarter then women, you are a dummy. Obviously you have never been on the line, because if you have, you could care less who is next to you, as long as they are doing their jobs and laying down fire. Moving on.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:47 pm | Reply
    • wordsdontmatter

      more romantic nationalist fodder

      January 23, 2013 at 4:50 pm | Reply
    • R. King

      christ you are so deluded it moved beyond amusing and just became pitiful.

      you really think pulling triggers is all they do? are you really that hilariously stupid?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:53 pm | Reply
    • hVolo17

      I agree partially. It still takes strength. When a warfighter goes down and has to be pulled 50 meters to safety while wearing a combat load around 60 lbs. – 80 lbs it is one hell of a 50 meters, especially under fire. The only job likely to be excluded is some type of infantry as that involves more than just trigger pulling. Ask any rifleman and they will tell you. However, I've seen women in the military do extraordinary things, Iraq and Afghanistan provided proof-of-concept, so this was only a matter of time.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:56 pm | Reply
    • Harin

      This sort of thing always sounds good in the press, but the reality can be different. Very few women have the strength to do what an infantry soldier must do. To upturn every unit to allow those very few in is going to be very costly. Units will have to quickly build separate showers, bathrooms, etc... not to mention the privacy issues that will come up in the field or in theater all for that one or two out of a thousand who have the strength to do the job. I know when I went through Air Assault school I was able to witness the women's training and "allowances" had to be made. The women never had to carry anything heavy, their physical tests were different, and frankly they did not have to do everything the men did. While in country women are constantly pulled and transported for showers while the men may go weeks without the same. As soon as some of those women who are not performing at the men's standard get promoted, resentment is going to set in.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:58 pm | Reply
  53. Laura

    Finally! What a huge step forward.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:46 pm | Reply
    • manny

      worst mistake ever. .....i been there and i do not see a female having the ability to drag a 215 lb male if need be, women are not built for that, it just human nature

      January 23, 2013 at 4:54 pm | Reply
    • Steve

      Yes I hope they have to sign up for selective service now just as men have to.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:55 pm | Reply
  54. jtguill

    I find some of the comments here downright sickening! As a woman that served in the Army for 8 years honorably and with a great deal of pride, I find it insulting people are still in the dark ages. What some of you do not understand is that women do go through rigorous training BUT hand to hand and bayonet training is not where it should end. Like men, women in the military are put in a dangerous and hositle situations just as support staff, however they are not trained properly to protect themselves or thier bothers or sister in arms. They do need evasive tactical training, they do need combat training...war is not fought in one place but all over...bases are not secure but a target. Get your heads out, women are stong, intelligent and resourceful and if we (they) can pass the training then there is no reason whatsoever for them to be excluded. But if you disagree, at least be respectful!

    January 23, 2013 at 4:46 pm | Reply
    • Common Sense

      Combat training makes sense, but actual combat could be a disaster for women.

      Point 1.) Groups like the Taliban would likely target women just for being women, she would be in more danger and the unit might be as well.
      Point 2.) Woman have not traditionally been "warriors", nature did not design them for combat roles. Going to the bathroom for one?
      Point 3.) What happens when you have a situation like "Black Hawk Down" and a unit with females who may be/are pregnant?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:55 pm | Reply
      • SilentPro21

        Just to play both sides of the coin, females are given a pregnancy test as part of medical during SRP if they are they are not deployed, if they get pregnant "while deployed or on mid-tour leave" they can and do get a chapter out of the Army.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:03 pm |
  55. Boo

    Women have been serving in Israel's military for years...what's the problem with this...

    January 23, 2013 at 4:46 pm | Reply
    • Rightster

      Women have been serving in the US military for years too, and like Israel, are not used for combat missions. Israel tried it years ago and it was a disaster.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:51 pm | Reply
    • Go Israel

      The women in the IDF do not shoot women and children. They are not effective. You have to take out human shields to get at the terrorists. They are just Palestinians...

      January 23, 2013 at 5:06 pm | Reply
  56. ArmyVet

    Another problem, and it's a big one, is that women have an "out" when it comes to being deployed. They just need to get pregnant and they are excused. Men don't have an out. In a REMF capacity it is bad enough, but in a line unit it would destroy combat effectiveness and moral. Not to mention the physical double standard every one else is citing. Most people agreeing with this have never spent a day in the military or an actual line unit.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:46 pm | Reply
    • Max

      you sound like a pregnant dude. Stop posting this nonsense.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:49 pm | Reply
  57. john-117

    Female Soldier: Lets go get those Al Qaeda terr...wait I'm pregnant, can I have paid time off?

    January 23, 2013 at 4:45 pm | Reply
  58. Grunt

    GOD help us all.
    I am a combat veteran with tours in Afghanistan (RC East). I will tell you that I am absolutely convinced that allowing women in combat roles on the ground will lead to dead male soldiers. I will say that there are a VERY FEW exceptions...I have seen a few women that I would not want to mess with. It's the exception though. It is a fact that women are just not as physical built as men. As a result, they can not perform to the same standards as men. Thus, the different standards for women in physical fitness standards.
    I can assure you that 95% of the women (if not higher) would not be able to hang with the men on the ground, in the mountanous conditions of eastern Afghanistan, carrying all the crap we do, then getting engaged in direct fire combat. They're hearts might be in the right place but they would become a liability to the mission. I have no problem with women in support roles to include pilots and avaiators...heck I even had a female Apache pilot save my keester out in Kunar and Kapisa. JUST don't put them on the ground in combat positions where men have to reliiable upon their strength and stamina.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:45 pm | Reply
    • mc

      Good to hear from inside. I know nothing of the military, but I know a lot about women! I think they should allow the few women who can hold their own, but if you can't pass the same test as the men, forget it.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:48 pm | Reply
    • JR

      AMEN

      January 23, 2013 at 4:48 pm | Reply
    • bouttime

      95%? Even if your bigoted assessment were true why shouldn't the 5% who you deem capable be able to serve in combat?

      It's obvious that you're intent on bashing others to feel better about yourself. I bet you're the loser in your unit who can't keep up with everyone else.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:49 pm | Reply
      • mc

        Uh, relax. I think it is obvious you are a woman who like women.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:53 pm |
      • Grunt

        Your response really does not deserve a response or my time. Frankly you don't derserve to be talking to me!. Any Combat veteran will tell you that everything I said are facts. I am ok with letting the other 5% come join in the fun but if they screw up my mission or put my men in danger, I would but stoke them on the spot. Unless you have walked in a soldiers shoes shut the FXXK up!!! I have been in over 3 dozen firefights some as close as 40 meters apart. I have been wounded by mortar fire. I have had two of my men die in my arms! So, I am done talking...my service speaks for itself!

        January 23, 2013 at 4:55 pm |
    • Doc1

      I totally agree with you. I was attached to an infantry unit for nearly one year and I have to say that it isn't even remotely like television. It is rough, even for men. This is a mistake that will be rescinded over time. I don't know what the heck Obama and Panetta are thinking.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:00 pm | Reply
  59. opinions

    Nothing any of you say; whether positive, or negative is going to change this. The decision is made. SO continue to sit there and act like your opinon matters, when in reality it doesn't. THE DEED IS DONE.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:44 pm | Reply
    • mc

      Uh, we know that Dad. Thanks for the fabulous insight.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:45 pm | Reply
    • carl

      Are you by chance a rocket scientist?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:52 pm | Reply
    • Common Sense

      Nooooooooooo.............. Really? No............. kidding there Doctor Genius........

      January 23, 2013 at 4:57 pm | Reply
  60. mc

    I think that is great as long as they can pass the same requirements man are held to. If the standards are lowered to accept women, it will be a failure.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:43 pm | Reply
  61. Bobby Joe

    This way the male soldiers can get some tail while in combat...I like it. Good for moral.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:43 pm | Reply
    • Sue

      You've obviously never been in the military.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:53 pm | Reply
    • ama01

      You need to get some morals... and a spell checker.
      The word is morale you imbecile, and your comment is distasteful.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:57 pm | Reply
  62. FALSE

    Didn't you all get the memo? In the beginning times it was the Females who hunted and gathered the meat for the family. While the Males stayed back and took care of the home and raised the family! Hahaha ;)

    January 23, 2013 at 4:43 pm | Reply
  63. Daniel

    GEEZ.. what next? The right to vote?

    January 23, 2013 at 4:42 pm | Reply
    • Miss Trixie

      You apparently lack any kind of insight. Just watch them lower the rigorous standards held for men just to be politically correct. If a woman can pass the tough physical challenges than fine but otherwise this will result in a weaker force. Plus, think what will happen when they are captured by Islamic whack jobs. Yeah, great news.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:46 pm | Reply
  64. DeepeThought

    I'm sure it was Lady GaGa in her machine gun bra that convinced the pres to allow women in combat.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:42 pm | Reply
    • Max

      DeepeThought, heluva thought you had ;-)

      January 23, 2013 at 4:52 pm | Reply
  65. Yobobbyb

    Ladies, you have come a long way. Congrats. You can now die in battle just like the men. Now, learn to lift your own darn toilet seats.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:42 pm | Reply
    • The Questioner

      Always have to remind women in their place, eh? Misogynists are so predictable.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:45 pm | Reply
      • Bryansco

        Shut up!

        January 23, 2013 at 4:46 pm |
      • Yobobbyb

        Hey, I am all for women doing everything a man does. Everything. No. Exceptions. Have at it baby. Kill and be killed if it works for you.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:50 pm |
      • Yobobbyb

        What a predictable statement from a Misandrist!

        January 23, 2013 at 4:55 pm |
    • Mamie

      Learn to put the toilet seat down and have some mercy on others who don't want to see your urine drops and pubic hairs on the rim.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:48 pm | Reply
      • Yobobbyb

        Clean it yourself. Who gives a hoot what you like or don't like.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:51 pm |
    • Max

      "Clean it yourself" -– rednecks are attacking. I am surprised you can even type.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:53 pm | Reply
    • SgtYork

      I think you mean -LOWER- your own toilet seats :)

      January 23, 2013 at 6:23 pm | Reply
  66. treblemaker

    I totally disagree with the idea of women going into combat, but my opinion really doesn't matter at this point, because God forbid I would be called a misogynist by the PC crowd who have never served in the military, or have been sent to the front lines. IIt's no different than all the Monday morning quarterbacks who think they know what to do on a football field better than the coaches and players who have to make snap choices in REAL TIME! The REAL WORLD is a cruel place, no matter what the "feel good" left wing crowd tries to tell you otherwise-and I lean Democratic!! I'm sure there are women who could do a superlative job in combat, just as there are men who would choke under that pressure. Point taken. However, for the sake of all mankind, women have no business fighting alongside men in combat. It's a Hollywood fantasy. Don't get me started about equal rights, because as far as I'm concerned, women have one critical advantage over men than will never change-and you all know what that is--.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:41 pm | Reply
    • tethys

      For the sake of all mankind? Are you kidding? Like every woman in the whole world is suddenly going to enlist in the U.S. Army? Is this a joke post?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:47 pm | Reply
    • Oh

      lol, except in some situations were the men are not as physically capable as the women for combat roles...

      "There was also concern that, in aviation, the female body is not as adept at handling the increased g-forces experienced by combat pilots; in fact, there is now evidence that the male body is less able to handle the g-forces than the female body: women are less likely to black out due to shorter blood vessel routes in the neck"

      January 23, 2013 at 4:49 pm | Reply
  67. Ralph Moerschbacher

    How far will the AMERICAN people let this president, no capital letters, go? The biggest problem in our country is the apathy of the American people. Most great civilizations have destroyed themselves from within. Do anyone see the light at the end of the tunnel?

    January 23, 2013 at 4:41 pm | Reply
    • tuckerfan

      I do, it's about time women fully serve. I'm a veteran and think this is a great idea. Short of a field artillery unit or loader in a tank I can't think of a single Army combat job that a woman couldn't do – and some of them could be loaders. Our country has some issues, mostly due to with the lack of evolution for our teabilly brothers and sisters but other than that we're doing ok

      January 23, 2013 at 4:48 pm | Reply
    • Will

      This wasn't even the presidents call but nice try.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:48 pm | Reply
      • Divdar

        Right, he had absolutely no influence in this at all.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:05 pm |
    • Max

      yesterday the battery in my car died. Now I know whose fault that was – PRESIDENT!!!!!

      January 23, 2013 at 4:55 pm | Reply
  68. securemycloud

    Let them Fight! Hell, they might actually shoot and lead better than their counterparts. Men are scared and cannot embrace change. Their reign has ended. And so will their egos.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:40 pm | Reply
    • CD

      is that what women and beta males actually believe? hilarious.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:46 pm | Reply
  69. bouttime

    You bash women because you hate yourself. It is you who lack the strength...to face life's challenges while maintaining a shred of integrity.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:40 pm | Reply
  70. floridasboy

    After the first one that gets abducted and the video of her being raped and tortured comes out, what will obama and panetta say to draw attention away from the utter stupidity of the decision to make it possible to happen?

    January 23, 2013 at 4:40 pm | Reply
    • bouttime

      It's no worse than all the male POWs who've been tortured and raped. Do you want to exclude men from combat too or is okay when it's a man being raped and tortured behind enemy lines?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:43 pm | Reply
    • manycatsonekid

      Um, I guess you forgot what happened to those two female troops back under Bush's watch. Jessica Lynch ring a bell? How about going back to the Gulf War and Rhonda Cornum? Or the thousands of women in uniform or who worked with the military who were taken prisoner as far back as the Civil War? And they WEREN'T even in combat. Maybe if they got the same training and weapons, they might have had a better chance.

      Female troops from our country and those of our allies are already dying, so really...?

      January 23, 2013 at 5:03 pm | Reply
  71. bribarian

    Political correctness is bringing this country into full r3tardation.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:40 pm | Reply
    • Ralph Moerschbacher

      Amen political correctness is killing us.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:43 pm | Reply
    • Max

      you must be very politically correct then

      January 23, 2013 at 4:57 pm | Reply
  72. joe

    Joke right? Who would choose a woman to fight off the enemy compared to a man? PC gone mad and you can guarantee inside 12 months there will be an incident that makes all the front pages

    January 23, 2013 at 4:39 pm | Reply
    • bouttime

      Let me guess, you've never faced a man or a woman with a gun have you? Foolish prejudice has no place in policy making decisions.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:46 pm | Reply
      • joe

        yes I have and I wouldn't wish it on anyone. When it gets to hand to hand and staying alive is your only priority you don't want to be next to a physically weak individual

        January 23, 2013 at 4:50 pm |
  73. Nate P

    I'm all for equal rights. If women are to be treated as equals they should be able to do any job. There also shouldn't be anything wrong with hitting them back if they hit first

    January 23, 2013 at 4:39 pm | Reply
    • Max

      news flash – they are doing nearly all jobs for quite some time. And yes you may hit a women if you are an imbecile that is. I bet you do that. Gotta love crooks like you – must be a weird mutation you have in your genes.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:00 pm | Reply
  74. Joseph McCarthy

    A chance to kill, what a thrill! I bet that these blood thirsty broads are happy now that they can that they kill as many people as men can. This whole thing makes me want to throw up! More evidence of what a sick society that we're all living in!

    January 23, 2013 at 4:39 pm | Reply
  75. AnnaLisa

    It is about damn time.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:38 pm | Reply
  76. Rightster

    Pregnancies will skyrocket during actual wars (as opposed to occupations).

    January 23, 2013 at 4:38 pm | Reply
  77. sit_on_Muslims

    Yes! Now, our women could sit on Islamic male fighters' face! :)

    January 23, 2013 at 4:38 pm | Reply
  78. LB Colorado

    Men will not receive this well. For the women that have been and will be raped in the future, well "friendly" fire will take care of that. I understand equality, but be careful what you wish for as it could come back and bite you big time. I am just saying, common sense should be used. The standards should NEVER VARY, if you can't do the job on every level, then don't jeopardize the ones that can. A lot of bad things happen to women already in the military, but in the battle field – think about that. Ladies, just watch your back and your sister's back, you all will need some extra sets of eyes. Do not trust the men out there and if you do, then do not cry when you are not treated the way you think you should be treated. There is a difference between men and women and that is just the way it is. Good luck ladies – hope this works out for you.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:38 pm | Reply
  79. ItSoNlYmE

    Wow... first gays, now this. Surely the sun won't rise in the east tomorrow. It must be Obama's fault. I'm sure somehow there's something socialist about it.

    About time the US joined the mid-20th Century.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:37 pm | Reply
  80. betterdays

    The one laudable thing our government is still halfway-successful at is defending us and our interests.

    Let's see what happens.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:37 pm | Reply
  81. CBA

    What a bunch of egotistical, ignorant statements on here. After reading the article, I was like "about time!" This is great news because there are very capable women out there that would be able to serve in combat roles without any issue. It's the regressive, discriminatory males who will cause the problems. Most of these comments prove that.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:37 pm | Reply
  82. Steve

    Congratulation ladies. Now get down and register for the draft. You 99% who don't want to serve in combat can thank the vocal 1% who do when you get drafted. Didn't think about that, did ya!

    January 23, 2013 at 4:37 pm | Reply
    • Nclaw441

      There is no draft.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:41 pm | Reply
      • Vitaly

        No. No draft. But there is a registration requirement. So ladies: Start registering.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:56 pm |
      • rhisa

        Your correct, but 18 year old males still have to register, so yes woman should too. That said, I'm all for this. My daughter is a Fire Controlman on a US Destroyer and while not the front lines, she is in a combat position and helps fight the ship. Women in other countries also serve in combat positions. If a woman can do it , then let her. However, as stated somewhere else in here. The critieria and base physical requirements should not change. If a woman wants to do the job, she needs to be ABLE to do the job.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:01 pm |
    • CBA

      Ummm...what draft?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:42 pm | Reply
      • no comment

        I think poster means selective service, which is registering for the draft if there was ever one initiated.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:51 pm |
      • CBA

        nocomment – true, I knew what was being implied; just trying to make a point.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:26 pm |
  83. RedLeg1

    Artillery ... Armor ... are you serious?!! Yeah, I'd like to see the average female load 90lbs 155mm rounds at a rate of 4 rds/min for a prolonged period of time ... and then when the mission is over ... a relaxing break? ... NO ... you have to pack your sh!t and move to another FP before you receive counterbattery fire. Same with tanks ... we don't have auto-loaders in the US military!!! Plus, in the US Army "Armor" covers the Cav Scout MOS as well ... not going to happen. I can barely get the female motor SGT in our support company to grab her own paper for her printer without trying to flirt one of my 13Bs into doing it for her ... this is a travesty and will lead to a huge bump in SHARP investigations and degrade combat unit effectiveness ... not to mention now I won't be able to sleep in my tighty-whities in the field anymore!!!

    January 23, 2013 at 4:37 pm | Reply
    • Davy

      agree!

      January 23, 2013 at 4:38 pm | Reply
    • ItSoNlYmE

      Hello?!?! It's 2013, not 1953 dude...

      January 23, 2013 at 4:39 pm | Reply
      • RedLeg1

        Oh is it?! I'm sorry ... I’m unaware of the evolutionary change that took place in the last 60 years that has made the average woman as physically strong as the average man … and also made it so they don't have to come out of the field for one week every month! You think the numbers I was giving you was for 1953 military ... no ... I'm in now and we load our own sh!t manually still today! Even if they maintain the same physical standards as males (which they won’t) that might mean 3-4 women per company/battery/troop … so in other words 3-4 females for every 100-130 males … sure … that will work!!! Navy tried that piecemeal crap back in the 90’s … didn’t work out so well.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:48 pm |
    • LostinSLC

      Man get over yourself. I did my OSUT at Ft. Leaonard Wood and saw women there kicking tail over some of their male counterparts. If she can show that she can hold her own, I don't care. It is about the soldier and their ability to follow orders and get the job done.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:40 pm | Reply
    • STH

      Solution: Require everyone who wishes to serve in these roles, regardless of gender, pass the same stringent physical tests. If they do not pass, they do not make the cut. Fewer women will likely make it through, but those that do will have undergone the same physical tests as the men and likely be able to perform in the role because they passed the same test.

      This is literally the simplest concept ever, it's called making sure people are capable of doing a job before assigning them to it. Not sure why so many have trouble understanding that concept.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:42 pm | Reply
      • RedLeg1

        Won't happen! That was the initial concept when they did away with WAVES and the Army Women’s Corps back in the 50/60's ... but eventually to get the numbers up they lowered the standards ... and eventually the standards got so low they had to just make two separate standards ... like we still have today. SpecOps will probably be able to keep the "standards" thing going ... at least for a while, but not the rest.

        And people ... stop with the "Israeli’s have females in combat arms" defense ... its one Battalion that is barred from direct combat action and its where the fat-a$$ male that still have to serve their mandatory two-years are put to keep them from degrading real combat units. So, do some research before you spew crap!

        January 23, 2013 at 4:54 pm |
    • 123

      LostinSLC- there are no combat arms in Ft Lenardwood, don't bring your POG training to a conversation about Combat. Ofcourse the women were "kicking butt" as you put it- it wasn't combat arms!!!

      January 23, 2013 at 4:53 pm | Reply
      • RedLeg1

        Like!

        January 23, 2013 at 4:55 pm |
  84. dru

    face it. chivalry is dead. it is no longer acceptable to for a man to want to bear the honor of defending his mother, sisters, wife, and daughters.

    while i agree that women are equal, we aren't the same. i know they can have equal endurance, fine motor skills, intelligence, etc. what they lack genetically is muscle mass, size, and testosterone. you can't fake that.

    and while i've never served in the military, i have played enough co-ed sports to realize that if my life depended on the physical strength of a fellow soldier to carry me out of harm's way, even above average females would worry me. look at the girls in the picture above. would a single one of you trust them to carry you to safety?

    January 23, 2013 at 4:37 pm | Reply
    • mrpips

      Sounds like a problem exclusive to men who could stand to lose a few pounds.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:41 pm | Reply
    • Kraas

      Chivalry is most certainly not dead. Just because you defend a woman's honor doesn't mean she is your inferior, or does it mean you can't do it jointly. And if they can pass muster then hell yes I would trust my life to any of them. I'm sure most of the ladies in the picture could kick the butt of 90% of the people reading this article.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:42 pm | Reply
    • Laura

      They said those exact same things about African-Americans in the military. They said they lacked the courage, intelligence, discipline, and physical abilities. They were segregated, and denied opportunities for promotion, and not honored for their service. Sound familiar?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:43 pm | Reply
    • Ken

      Yes. I would trust the training & charactor of a Marine over some muscular pretty-boy.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:44 pm | Reply
      • dru

        it doesn't take training and character to carry someone. it takes brute strength. thanks for making my point.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:47 pm |
    • Army

      Dru, co-ed sports is not the same thing. I'm a woman who spent 10 years in the army serving her country. I wasn't out playing sports. I was out flying Army helicopters. Next time you comment, comment on something you have knowledge about. As for those girls, don’t underestimate them.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:47 pm | Reply
      • dru

        thanks for your service. but what's your point? i didn't say women lack the mental capacity to fly a helicopter, shoot a gun, etc. and i of course realize that co-ed sports isn't the same as the military. i'm just saying that if you're in a situation that is physically taxing to even the most fit of men, you might be out of luck if you are depending on someone that's 5 inches shorter and 40 pounds lighter than you to carry you, fend off an attacking enemy, etc.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:55 pm |
      • 123

        hey Army- take your own advice. this post is about Combat! you were a pilot- literally sitting your way through any fighting that you were around. Thank you for your service, us COMBAT soldiers always need a ride to the fight, always need food and ammo delivered, and ofcourse can use some Aerial Support. But the key word there is SUPPORT, you do not know combat or it's physical tolls, so, take your own advice. And if you were a male pilot, I'd tell you the same damn thing.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:57 pm |
    • Ira

      So true. And why all this bs? Isn't it enough to kill sons? Why do we need to kill daughters? Since I last checked women still give birth, create life and deserve the privilege to be protected, not murdered.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:49 pm | Reply
    • Ken

      You say you never served in the military. I have & you wouldn't understand. We're not talking about your doubles tennis match where you can stop for a glass of Perrier and a potty break. I would take any of those Marines to save my life any day. Thanks for making my point.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:41 pm | Reply
  85. Davy

    Extremely bad idea...
    -They will have to lower standards for all to adjust for women or have 2 standards like the currently do
    .-Can't see a female making through ranger or even IOBC without lowering standards. Just not physically possible.

    -Unfortunately this will change the environment of combat arms units, not for the better.. We ask these men to perform grueling jobs that are just not possible for women. There is a culture that will have to change and not for the better. adding one female will change that rough alpha male culture that we expect to win our wars.

    anyone that has been in a combat arms unit and then in a unit with females knows this difference...

    January 23, 2013 at 4:36 pm | Reply
    • ItSoNlYmE

      Funny that none of the things you list has happened in any of the other armies in the world that allow women in combat positions. How do you explain that?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:39 pm | Reply
    • Shelter

      Instead of Bullets, and Rifles they will have Pillow fights.... And Pajama Parties, to see who paints their nails camouflage faster....

      January 23, 2013 at 4:40 pm | Reply
      • Sue

        You mean the girls will be having pillow fights while the boys are playing air guitar and hiding in their tree forts?

        January 23, 2013 at 5:00 pm |
  86. AF White

    If this is policy, then all woman should be required to register for the draft at 18 as well.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:35 pm | Reply
  87. John

    I think women should be allowed to serve - providing they can pass the same rigorous physical tests males are subjected to. Here are the latest results: http://www.forbes.com/sites/katiedrummond/2012/10/16/marine-corps-women/

    January 23, 2013 at 4:35 pm | Reply
  88. US = Cultural Marxism

    Well, are they really women?

    January 23, 2013 at 4:35 pm | Reply
  89. bouttime

    Amen.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:35 pm | Reply
  90. okokletssee

    It's Starship Troopers! Let them shower with the guys too.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:35 pm | Reply
    • Divdar

      They will be.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:49 pm | Reply
  91. DevilDog06

    Any other motivators see the mistake in the photo? Looks like the recruit in the center of the photo couldn't lock their bolt to the rear...

    January 23, 2013 at 4:35 pm | Reply
    • Amniculi

      Ejection port covers open on two of them. Heinous!

      January 23, 2013 at 4:36 pm | Reply
      • TeufelhundenWW1

        @Amniculi: DevilDog06 is probably correct. It looks like that the other two gilrls haven't successfully pullled back their respective bolts during the initial part of the "Inspection, Arms" drill movement–not the other way around. When the "Port, Arms" portion is called, that's when the bolts are released and the port covers are eventually closed.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:51 pm |
      • TeufelhundenWW1

        Correction from the earlier comment: The other two women were successful in pulling back their bolts, but not the one in the middle.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:07 pm |
    • okokletssee

      What's the idea of looking down in the barrel like that private? ;)

      January 23, 2013 at 4:37 pm | Reply
    • Vitaly

      I would have to agree. I am seeing an empty chamber on the two, whereas if the bolt were forward, you would see it.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:04 pm | Reply
      • TeufelhundenWW1

        @Vitaly: Which also brings another "mystery" to the picture: If the female recruit in the middle of the picture was unsuccessful in pulling back (and locking) her bolt chamber group, we would have also seen the bolt group at the forward position with her (rifle) port cover open.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:55 pm |
  92. JT

    As far as women in Combat I'm all for it! We can send Hillary, Feinstein, Pelosi and Boxer to the front lines ASAP!!

    January 23, 2013 at 4:34 pm | Reply
  93. Patrick in Wisconsin

    I find it ridiculous that all the [presumably] men complaining about letting women serve in combat have probably never served even one second in our military. I'm in the Air Force and let me say that I would prefer to have a woman in my flight any day over a male hothead. In some ways, they're even better at making rational life or death decisions than men. If anyone WHO HAS SERVED IN THE MILITARY disagrees with this, please explain.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:34 pm | Reply
    • COGowan

      Patrick nailed it. And we (USAF vet) have had women fighter pilots for 20 years. People who think women can't handle it are ignorant, stupid, or that dangerous combination of both.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:40 pm | Reply
      • JR

        The stresses of flying are much different than the stresses of the infantrymen

        January 23, 2013 at 4:42 pm |
      • COGowan

        True. Even the tiniest of mistakes will kill a pilot, whereas the average ground-pounder can blow his/her foot off and just go home.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:48 pm |
      • 123

        this post is about COMBAT, if it were about support we'd as the opinion of USAF. No disrespect, both aspects are important. but don't for a second think you know what combat is flying a god damn plane....

        January 23, 2013 at 5:04 pm |
      • JR

        You are an idiot. Come down to the ground and see what it is like. It must be nice to fly around at 10,000 ft in AFG knowing that the enemy does not have the resources to touch you.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:04 pm |
    • laura

      I think I love Patrick.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:42 pm | Reply
    • realist

      You wouldn't know about the military Patrick, you're in the Air Force.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:42 pm | Reply
      • JR

        LOL...so true

        January 23, 2013 at 4:43 pm |
      • SilentPro21

        LOL for the win!

        January 23, 2013 at 5:06 pm |
    • John

      Haha! The Air Force? We are talking about combat. Former Marine here. A woman in combat would be like a bolt shoved in the gears of a fine tuned war machine. Women cannot carry the same amount of gear a male can. They lack the intimidating aggression that a male has. A male enemy will not be afraid of a female grunt. Plain and simple. And on to the male protector role. Nature instilled this in men, not society. If a firefight were to break out, instead of focusing on the fight, some males may instinctively try to protect the female. There are plenty of other reasons this is a bad idea. Just keep reading the comments.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:48 pm | Reply
      • laura

        John, why should women be held back because of your weaknesses, genetic or otherwise?

        January 23, 2013 at 4:50 pm |
      • John

        Maybe because it affects the mission? And that is a small reason. I want you to throw on 120 lbs worth of gear and go on a hump with me. When I got tired, you would probably still be there keeping up. The difference is that you would still be there, struggling to not give up simply to prove a point, while I could still keep going, you would fall out. Then what? Turn it around guys, we have to go back to base. No. Here comes a helo to come get your used up carcass and take you back to base. Then what? Oh, an IED just blew up a truck. We need instant extract for the driver who is now a triple amputee, losing blood fast. Wait, DUSTOFF went to get some woman who can't take a 10K hump in the desert? Sorry man, you're gonna bleed out.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:58 pm |
      • hannah

        John, isn't it better for the enemy to undermine you? you know, sort of a surprise attack? At least that's how I was able to take on a man twice my size in Tae Kwon Do. Gave him a bloody noise that day. For the rest of month, he was made fun of because he was beaten by a girl. It's simply because he undermined my abilities and didn't take the time to analyze the situation as carefully. He was far too confident in his testosterone. But, hasn't Mulan taught you anything? ;)

        No but seriously though. Don't undermine women. We can be pretty aggressive if the need arises. Actually, some women are even more aggressive than men (I think there's a study somewhere that shows that). Heck, they can actually be a lot crueler than their male counterparts. I'm pretty sure there's no reason for your protective instincts to comeout.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:06 pm |
    • UsMarine

      Please dude, dont even comment again. You are in the Air Force that disqualifies you right away from talking about this subject. What you do sleep in your satin sheets on base and once in a while fly a plane "IF YOU EVEN DO THAT" 30plus thousand feet ? Once you have really SERVED in the front lines with an Infantry detail you can comment, in the meanwhile SHUT UP.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:06 pm | Reply
    • afkbrad

      Patrick, I'm in the Air Force and you're a desk jockey of the first degree. I'm part of the 2% of the Air Force that actually has a GROUND COMBAT mission.

      After years downrange I've never seen one woman able to keep up with the boys. However, who am I to deny them their rights to die for their country? I'm glad women will be picking up a rifle and a pack and stopping bullets just like the guys. After a long day I'm sure most men will be able to appreciate a little loving.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:16 pm | Reply
    • she001

      I am a female. I am a veteran. I do not agree with allowing women in combat roles. It is not a question of ability, intelligence, or dedication, as I have encountered many women throughout my 10+ year career that I would have no reservations about sending to the front lines. These women are compentent, tough, resilient, and dedicated to the mission. I, myself, would have no qualms whatsoever about serving on the front lines, should my country require it. My concern lies with the men I would serve with. Anyone who has ever served in the military will tell you that we all share a common bond, a kinship unlike any other that cannot be replicated through any other relationship in life. We understand each other in ways even our own spouses cannot (unless that spouse is also military). We are trained to look out for each other and never leave anyone behind. We don't deploy as random groups of strangers. We know each other. We know each other's families. We have trained together, shared in personal and professional triumphs and shortcomings. We are family. Speaking only from my experience, I can assure you that were I to be deployed to the front lines with the men I currently have the honor to serve with, and put in the situations they face on a regular basis in theater, they would 100%, without a doubt, be more concerned for my safety than that of their own and of each other. At home, these men accept me as an equal and expect me to perform at the same level they do and they know I am capable. But put us in a survival situation, where lives are at stake, they are going to act on instinct and protect me which will invariably cause them to lose focus on the mission and their own safety. Obviously, this cannot be said of every man serving in the military but it is at least worth giving some creedence to. And to the women who chastise and ridicule men who espouse this concern, I say this: you are damn lucky there are still men out there that are willing to risk life and limb to keep a woman safe, not because he views her as inferior but because he recognizes that women represent life, beauty, and the softer side of existence. War exposes you to things that no human should ever have to experience. It removes you from anything familiar, comfortable, and good. Why introduce that kind of drastic contrast and then mock a man for wanting to protect something that might remind him of his sister or his daughter? I won't infringe upon your right to join the front lines if you don't condemn men for their, often instinctual, inclination to keep me safe. I can assure you, at the end of a long day of taking on the world, most women want nothing more than a man that can make them feel like a woman again.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:54 pm | Reply
  94. Clay

    Military need women

    January 23, 2013 at 4:34 pm | Reply
    • JR

      Yes but hopefully not for SF or infantry

      January 23, 2013 at 4:40 pm | Reply
  95. sallymae

    NEANDERTHALLS !!

    January 23, 2013 at 4:34 pm | Reply
    • Common Sense

      Feminists!

      January 23, 2013 at 4:37 pm | Reply
      • Bryansco

        I HATE feminist! They like to pick and chose how they are equal to men. ha!

        January 23, 2013 at 4:57 pm |
    • betterdays

      Neanderthalls? With two "ells?" Like Underalls?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:39 pm | Reply
  96. Stephen Daedalus

    About damned time.. this is good news.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:34 pm | Reply
    • JR

      Why is it good news?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:41 pm | Reply
    • john-117

      Its good news that the army is lowering its standard and entrusting military operations to anatomically weaker soldiers?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:49 pm | Reply
      • JR

        Exactly my thoughts John

        January 23, 2013 at 5:02 pm |
  97. levi

    Will Jason Wu be designing their uniforms?

    January 23, 2013 at 4:33 pm | Reply
    • laura

      And his pincushion holder will design the men's cups. Ouch

      January 23, 2013 at 4:44 pm | Reply
  98. Pat

    I'm sorry, but this is old news. Women have been serving side by side with me ever since I've been in the Army, and I'm a 5 year vet. I've seen women killed and maimed the same as men and, unfortunately, I was almost killed trying to make a woman run faster while under fire. Fact of the matter is, a 140lb woman has to carry the same load as me, a 6'2" 200lb man has to carry and for some of them that's a challenge.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:33 pm | Reply
    • okokletssee

      It's another photo opt to promote "Change" lol

      January 23, 2013 at 4:38 pm | Reply
    • JR

      Been there before brother.......

      January 23, 2013 at 4:39 pm | Reply
  99. JP

    When we see combat women subjected to the same disgraceful treatment that the helicopter teams shot down in Somalia were (see Blackhawk Down) then the 'wisdom' of this will be apparent – and there are many terrorist groups there looking for such an opportunity. Too bad its as a result of political pressure that we are going to give them one.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:32 pm | Reply
    • Stephen Daedalus

      Fortunately most people have enough respect for women, and are not so paternalistic that we won't begrudge their right to fight, die, be captured, raped, and tortured (just like men). It's nothing I'd want for my daughter or son, but it's also not my place to dictate how another should live. You might want to consider that JP; equal rights to good things, and bad things... it's not your choice to make for half of the population because they have soft bits.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:35 pm | Reply
      • UsMarine

        hey there barney. I dont give a rats ass if they die, get raped, injured or what not if they are serving on the front line. WHAT I DO CARE FOR IS THE MEN THAT WILL DIE, INJURED, TORTURED ETC ETC TRYING TO PROTECT A FEMALE FOR WHATEVER REASON. TRYING TO CARRY A FEMALE THAT DROPPED OUT OF A HUMP BECAUSE THE LOAD WAS TO GREAT, TRYING TO PROTECT A FEMALE CRYING FOR MOMMY BECAUSE SHE HOT HER PMS IN A FIGHTING HOLE. That sir is what i DO care for.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:13 pm |
    • Dude

      Why? Because a woman being killed is worse than a man being killed? How paternalistic of you.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:49 pm | Reply
      • john-117

        I don't think you are using the word paternalistic correctly. Perhaps you should get a dictionary.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:54 pm |
      • Ira

        Men start their pathetic wars and should fight their pathetic wars. Women are creators of life and deserve the privilege to be protected, not killed.

        January 23, 2013 at 4:56 pm |
      • Dude

        pa·ter·nal·ism (p-tûrn-lzm)
        n.
        A policy or practice of treating or governing people in a fatherly manner, especially by providing for their needs without giving them rights or responsibilities.

        Yeah, that fits.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:06 pm |
      • john-117

        Paternalism: The behavior, by a person, organization or state, which limits some person or group's liberty or autonomy for their own good.

        You defined Patriarchy, not paternalism. Those are completely different definitions.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:11 pm |
      • john-117

        The root word paternal means parent not father.

        January 23, 2013 at 5:15 pm |
  100. Eye4Eye

    I guess if the Israelis can do, it so can we...

    January 23, 2013 at 4:32 pm | Reply
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