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Old 12-23-2014   #221
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Hat tip to Red Rat for this:
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The question at hand is whether women should serve in the infantry, and as I lay out above, I think it’s a bad idea.

(Beforehand) I make the argument that women should not serve in the infantry due to the impact on standards and cohesion (in addition to a couple of higher order drawbacks). Note that I’m not making the argument that women shouldn’t serve on the front line (a conflation many commentators make), but more narrowly that they shouldn’t serve in the job that exists to close with the enemy and stick a bayonet in his chest.
Link:https://medium.com/fall-when-hit/all...e-379e73b9250b
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Old 03-17-2015   #222
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Default A Few Good Women

A Few Good Women

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Old 09-20-2015   #223
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Default Women in Combat

Women in Combat

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Old 09-23-2015   #224
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Default Curb Your Enthusiasm/Skepticism Over Women In SOF

Curb Your Enthusiasm/Skepticism Over Women In SOF

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Old 11-13-2015   #225
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Default DoD Finally Gets the Point of Women, Peace, and Security

DoD Finally Gets the Point of Women, Peace, and Security

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Old 11-17-2015   #226
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After a substantial hiatus from SWC, during which time I spent over 3 years in Afghanistan and 6 additional months in Iraq, living and working mainly outside the wire, and always with females, I am absolutely committed to the concept of ending the exclusion policy.

1. The exclusion policy violates civil rights: I don't care if women cannot qualify, it is frankly anti-American to exclude ONLY on gender.

2. Physical size and strength is hugely over-rated. Our adversaries are tiny people with low strength, but somehow they have kept inside our OODA loop.

https://hotmilkforbreakfast.wordpres...itary-success/

3. Our enemies have figured out that there is a revolution in personal mobility. We've known for decades that light infantry and airborne infantry are pretty worthless on a modern battlefield. As a result, we should be more focused on providing ways to deliver guys with guns and their gear to where they need to go rapidly, not on who can hump 100 pounds 10 miles or not. The net effect of this is that the ability to out think the enemy becomes much more important than the size of one's bicep. Relative female incapability would act as a forcing function in this.

4. Professionalism: Our military suffers most of all from unprofessionalism. MIxed gender cohesive communities and teams have existed throughout history. The reason why SHARP is such a big deal with the US military is that we are still stuck in mass conscripted army mode; what we really need is a smaller, switched on military without "up and out" and the rampant careerism and stupid rotational policies that accompany it. Soldiers too unprofessional to co-exist in a mixed gender unit can be fired or imprisoned, as is appropriate.
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Old 11-21-2015   #227
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 120mm View Post
After a substantial hiatus from SWC, during which time I spent over 3 years in Afghanistan and 6 additional months in Iraq, living and working mainly outside the wire, and always with females, I am absolutely committed to the concept of ending the exclusion policy.

1. The exclusion policy violates civil rights: I don't care if women cannot qualify, it is frankly anti-American to exclude ONLY on gender.

2. Physical size and strength is hugely over-rated. Our adversaries are tiny people with low strength, but somehow they have kept inside our OODA loop.

https://hotmilkforbreakfast.wordpres...itary-success/

3. Our enemies have figured out that there is a revolution in personal mobility. We've known for decades that light infantry and airborne infantry are pretty worthless on a modern battlefield. As a result, we should be more focused on providing ways to deliver guys with guns and their gear to where they need to go rapidly, not on who can hump 100 pounds 10 miles or not. The net effect of this is that the ability to out think the enemy becomes much more important than the size of one's bicep. Relative female incapability would act as a forcing function in this.

4. Professionalism: Our military suffers most of all from unprofessionalism. MIxed gender cohesive communities and teams have existed throughout history. The reason why SHARP is such a big deal with the US military is that we are still stuck in mass conscripted army mode; what we really need is a smaller, switched on military without "up and out" and the rampant careerism and stupid rotational policies that accompany it. Soldiers too unprofessional to co-exist in a mixed gender unit can be fired or imprisoned, as is appropriate.
Great to have you back. Couldn't disagree more though. Putting "rights" before the mission is one of the many reasons we're 0-2 since Desert Storm.

Good link above, one of the better pro-female integration arguments I've seen. The author makes great points on PPE and endurance over strength. But the whole debate is backwards, because we (or, more likely, the "infantrywomen" advocates) have laid out individual physical ability as the be-all and end-all of the debate. It should really be third, behind cohesion and attrition (injury, pregnancy, and everything in between).

All else aside, I personally don't know how anyone who has led teenaged soldiers/Marines/sailors/airmen from this sex-saturated generation, or even someone who has lived in a college dorm in the last couple decades, could think women in combat arms units is a good idea.
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Old 11-21-2015   #228
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Great to have you back. Couldn't disagree more though. Putting "rights" before the mission is one of the many reasons we're 0-2 since Desert Storm.
And that's because we value strength and stupidity. In fact, we're 0 - whatever since WWII. Which was the last war we allowed women to fight. We don't lose war because we allow women in the military, we lose war because the MEN that lead our military (and government) are idiots.

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Good link above, one of the better pro-female integration arguments I've seen. The author makes great points on PPE and endurance over strength. But the whole debate is backwards, because we (or, more likely, the "infantrywomen" advocates) have laid out individual physical ability as the be-all and end-all of the debate. It should really be third, behind cohesion and attrition (injury, pregnancy, and everything in between).
Thanks. I wrote it.

Injury is caused by excessive PPE and wrong-sized gear. And our stupidity in embracing Light Infantry. BTW, the guys who are kicking our asses are weaker and smaller than western women, and do NOT deploy as light infantry, but intelligently use motorcycles, four wheelers and light pickups to get to where they kill us. While we waddle around in michelin man gear, with our engorged biceps, and supplement fed bodies which are fundamentally worthless in modern combat. Oh, and our airborne/light infantry fetish.

BTW, the pregnancy thing ended post Gulf War I. Females who go outside the wire just do not get pregnant.

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All else aside, I personally don't know how anyone who has led teenaged soldiers/Marines/sailors/airmen from this sex-saturated generation, or even someone who has lived in a college dorm in the last couple decades, could think women in combat arms units is a good idea.
That's because the teenaged, cannon fodder army of yesterday is born to lose. Get rid of "up or out", stop treating soldiers like children and start expecting them to do their jobs, and all the other b.s. falls away. We don't have an integration problem; we have a professionalism problem.
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Old 11-26-2015   #229
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Originally Posted by 120mm View Post
And that's because we value strength and stupidity. In fact, we're 0 - whatever since WWII. Which was the last war we allowed women to fight. We don't lose war because we allow women in the military, we lose war because the MEN that lead our military (and government) are idiots.



Thanks. I wrote it.

Injury is caused by excessive PPE and wrong-sized gear. And our stupidity in embracing Light Infantry. BTW, the guys who are kicking our asses are weaker and smaller than western women, and do NOT deploy as light infantry, but intelligently use motorcycles, four wheelers and light pickups to get to where they kill us. While we waddle around in michelin man gear, with our engorged biceps, and supplement fed bodies which are fundamentally worthless in modern combat. Oh, and our airborne/light infantry fetish.
I think your cav bias is showing. Agree on the PPE, agree on the biceps and supplements. But there are places only light infantry can go. If anything, our insistence on "commuting to work" has been the problem. And I say this as a guy with a USMC LAR background.

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BTW, the pregnancy thing ended post Gulf War I. Females who go outside the wire just do not get pregnant.
I doubt this is true. I KNOW this is not true when it comes to FOBs, carriers, etc.

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Originally Posted by 120mm View Post
That's because the teenaged, cannon fodder army of yesterday is born to lose. Get rid of "up or out", stop treating soldiers like children and start expecting them to do their jobs, and all the other b.s. falls away. We don't have an integration problem; we have a professionalism problem.
That's the mentality where any problem, no matter how intractable or self-inflicted, is simply "a leadership challenge." We've got enough of those as it is. If the problem is professionalism, why do those closest to Army SF say the problem will be even worse there?:

http://warontherocks.com/2014/11/her...is-a-bad-idea/
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Old 11-26-2015   #230
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Granite_State
All else aside, I personally don't know how anyone who has led teenaged soldiers/Marines/sailors/airmen from this sex-saturated generation, or even someone who has lived in a college dorm in the last couple decades, could think women in combat arms units is a good idea.
This is a problem of normative structures, not of the objective material impact of women participating in combat. The U.S. is introducing by piecemeal a foreign concept into a closed society. This is like dipping your hand into the cold pool water and waiting and hoping that the rest of your body will warm up to it. But the normative structures are changing - rapidly - not least because of the changing role of the military in U.S. society which has been brought to the forefront of our attention by war.

The recent changes in the military retirement system and other proposed personnel policies reflect a military entering into a new stage of modern professional and work ethic. This is a consequence of a host factors, among which is the underlying cultural and intellectual reliance on a 'volunteer force'. This is more about labor economics than culture because the culture will change as the economics change. The U.S. labor market is extremely competitive and the state no longer has the social capital or the political will to compel military service. Thus by consequence of economic restraints, the military needs more women to enter into service.

This is also about expectations of combat performance as well as attrition. The U.S. has the world's third largest population and could easily field a mass army capable of 'victory' in any conventional war. In this context, women are not necessary and so the luxury of domestic cultural norms regulating female roles can be maintained. However, we do not want mass casualties. We do not want to fight a large conventional war. We want a 'smart', technological, flexible military. This is reflected in our recruiting standards which make between a quarter and a third of applicants ineligible. These are aspects of the American military mind that dictate the economic necessity of women in combat.

There is also an underlying question tugging at all of this and that is: what wins wars? Is it the heroism and skill of the individual soldier and do women by their nature lack something necessary for victory on the battlefield? That sounds very romantic and certainly protects the pride of manhood. Or is it by cold calculation of a combination of technological prowess, material wealth, and the massing of combat power on a single target? I would venture to guess that if we were to replace all the men in the military with women, keeping all else equal, our military outcomes would be the same.

EDIT: One other thought. There was a study awhile ago (I'll try to find it if I can) that examined the differences in men and female athletes and found that a substantial difference in their abilities can be linked to the segregated upbringing of the sexes. Girls are simply not held to the same expectations of boys when it comes to athletics and this is reflected by the amount of time, resources, etc dedicated to their training and development as they grow up. This results in differentiated outcomes. The same is true for military service - though that is changing some. Unless there is a fundamental difference in the female temperament or nature, women and men being held to the same standards (this is different than saying women should be held to men's standards) should not affect anything.
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Old 12-03-2015   #231
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Default Pentagon Will Open All Combat Roles to Women

Pentagon Will Open All Combat Roles to Women

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Old 12-03-2015   #232
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http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-w...mbat-positions

As anticipated.
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Old 12-03-2015   #233
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Default Statement from USSOCOM on SECDEF’s Women in Service Review Decision

Statement from USSOCOM on SECDEF’s Women in Service Review Decision

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Old 12-03-2015   #234
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Default Carter Opens All Military Occupations, Positions to Women

Carter Opens All Military Occupations, Positions to Women

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Old 12-30-2015   #235
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Default As Pentagon Opens Combat Roles to Women, What are Special Forces' Concerns?

As Pentagon Opens Combat Roles to Women, What are Special Forces' Concerns?

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Old 03-10-2016   #236
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Default Report: Opposition to Women in Combat Units Among Marines

Report: Opposition to Women in Combat Units Among Marines

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Old 03-12-2016   #237
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Have there been any research into the role(s) women have played in the Ukrainian Army in the on-going Russia-Ukraine conflict?

From a 2015 article:

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“I always felt ashamed that I wasn’t in the war when some 18-year-old guys, even if they’re not patriots, have to go,” said Lera Burlakova, 29, who quit her job as a journalist last December to serve as a front-line soldier with the Karpatska Sich volunteer battalion in Pisky.

“If you want to look in the mirror and not turn away, you have to go,” she added. “But I don’t think all people have to do it. Some people are really scared, and that’s the way they are. And maybe they shouldn’t be there, in the war, and die without reason.”

Women are still officially barred from front-line service in Ukraine’s regular army, and most of the women who have served in combat have done so as members of civilian volunteer battalions.

So, as Ukraine continues to rein in the volunteer battalions by integrating them into the regular army or National Guard, new questions are emerging about the future role of female soldiers who have proven themselves in combat and are consequently reluctant to be relegated to support roles behind the lines.

“We have a war, and women are serving,” Burlakova said. “And if a woman wants to be in combat, if she passes the tests, doesn’t break, and has already taken part in the war … then yeah, of course she should be allowed—she shouldn’t have to be a cook.”
http://dailysignal.com/2015/08/11/me...omen-warriors/
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Old 03-16-2016   #238
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It is interesting that those proposing women as suitable for service throughout the military and especially in combat elements such as infantry are not also proposing women compete against men in gridiron and ice hockey.

Women are certainly capable of learning and employing the infantry skills needed for short duration security and clearing patrols in the vicinity of basecamps. But operations outside the wire in front-line infantry units include periods of fatique, hardship and rugged labour that are just as demanding and brutishly intense as contact sport. The typical workloads in armour, artillery and engineers are less in the face but pulling tracks, humping shells and earth moving are – despite what politicians may suppose – sufficiently heavy and sustained to stretch the 95 percentile of women beyond their capacity and endurance.

However, political correctness is one hell of a weapon and its advocates are keen to change camouflage cream to pink. One current campaign is to renovate US Army and USMC training into a modern syllabus for touch football and cheerleading where many women could succeed. Of course the PC advocates are not game to suggest contact sports or armed conflict can be gentled down. But that is their basic and fatally incorrect assumption.
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Old 03-16-2016   #239
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It is interesting that those proposing women as suitable for service throughout the military and especially in combat elements such as infantry are not also proposing women compete against men in gridiron and ice hockey.
The assumption here is that women, if given equal training and resourcing, could not compete with men in gridiron and hockey. From a very young age, boys and girls are segregated in athletics, and this has compounding effects over the years as boys on the whole receive more training than girls. This is also true for the military.

There is also another assumption in your comment: that whatever abstract level of proficiency required for 'combat' is somehow inherently gendered. There exists somewhere and by some measurement a minimum standard necessary for 'combat', however defined, regardless of one's sex. There are many men who fail to meet this standard and by your arbitrary formulation here, men should be as equally disqualified as women from combat arms. Military standards are not looking for "the best" like in profit-driven professional sports, but for 'good enough' among those who volunteer for service.

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But operations outside the wire in front-line infantry units include periods of fatique, hardship and rugged labour that are just as demanding and brutishly intense as contact sport
What does this have to do with anyone's gender? Were Soviet women less capable of killing German invaders than their male comrades? Did women not share with men the hardship of the Indian frontier? How about the hard labor in factories or mines?

The opposition to women in combat arms is based on an antiquated, patriarchal, and romantic view of the 'right place' for the sexes - a view that is quickly being dismantled by the necessities of the modern era's demands on society. Wars are no longer won by personal courage and individual strength (ah blasphemy!) but by the cold calculation of the massing of combat power on the enemy. What about the genders makes one better than the other at pulling the trigger of an assault right, flying a drone, or driving a tank? And as technology continues to find new means of automation and miniaturization, like exoskeletons, the 'justifications' for excluding women from combat arms become increasingly irrelevant to modern warfare. The military - given its importance for the national security - is no place to stake the last stand of dying male machismo in American society.
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Old 03-17-2016   #240
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The opposition to women in combat arms is based on an antiquated, patriarchal, and romantic view of the 'right place' for the sexes - a view that is quickly being dismantled by the necessities of the modern era's demands on society.
That's one hell of an assertion. Would you like to back that up with evidence? I have not seen any significant moral or philosophical contributions to the debate, nor have I seen any serious sociological or anthropological studies of the wide-ranging implications of this move. This is bemusing as primarily this debate should not be about combat effectiveness, but about the wider ramifications of treating men and women as not just equal, but the same.
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