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Women in Combat

 
 
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 11:43 am
After a lengthy debate, the House Armed Services Committee approved a bill amendment yesterday that would bar women in the military from serving in direct ground combat roles. The U.S. armed forces currently operate under a 10-year-old policy that prohibits women from direct ground combat, but allows the services discretion to open some jobs to women in combat as needed. Democrats opposed the amendment, saying that it was rushed through without input from the military, and that it would tie the hands of commanders who need flexibility during wartime. (AP)

Thoughts?
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Type: Discussion • Score: 0 • Views: 655 • Replies: 13
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boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 11:59 am
Hmmm.

Would staffing a checkpoint be a direct combat role?

Would going on patrol of a city/town/village be a direct combat role?

Would guarding a building be a direct combat role?
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CerealKiller
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 12:05 pm
boomerang wrote:
Hmmm.

Would staffing a checkpoint be a direct combat role?

Would going on patrol of a city/town/village be a direct combat role?

Would guarding a building be a direct combat role?



It could become one, so I'll say yes.
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boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 12:16 pm
If that's the case then I think this is a really bad idea and here's why:

When my brother came home from Iraq he told me a story about a group that was assigned to man checkpoints around a certain neighborhood. Everyone going in and out had to be searched. The searches were causing big problems.

My brother met with one of the neighborhood big-shots and learned that the real problem was that male soldiers were searching the Iraqi women and that this was just causing terrible angst.

They went around and gathered all of the women soldiers, pulled them out of their various jobs and assigned them to man the checkpoints.

Things calmed down right away.

It seems to me if staffing a checkpoint is a combat role and women can no longer fill that role at the discretion of their commander that we had better prepare for some trouble.
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Noddy24
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 12:18 pm
This bill would also mean that female officers would not have combat experience which is important at promotion time.
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boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 12:28 pm
Excellent point, Noddy.

The military is have enough trouble recruiting without alienating half the population.
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Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 12:36 pm
Noddy24 wrote:
This bill would also mean that female officers would not have combat experience which is important at promotion time.



I know of some armed forces (in other countries), with female soldiers/officers, ALL have no combat experience at all (or only minor), and they get promoted as well :wink:
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CerealKiller
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 12:41 pm
IMO for the most part women don't belong in combat, but it is not because they are women.

I say set the same standards for both sexes to weed out inferior combat soldiers...not weed them out because they are women but because they are sub-standard soldiers.

Lets face it women in combat are going to be fighting men, not other women. You put 70lbs of gear on a 95lb woman who can barely carry it and then expect her to fight larger men is a recipe for disaster.

Bottom line: A woman or man needs to be qualified at the same standards because being a combat soldier is such a critical job.

I think they had a better policy before...allowing for exceptions. Now they have a more rigid policy. Doesn't make a lot of sense if a woman is willing and qualified.
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CerealKiller
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 12:45 pm
boomerang wrote:
If that's the case then I think this is a really bad idea and here's why:

When my brother came home from Iraq he told me a story about a group that was assigned to man checkpoints around a certain neighborhood. Everyone going in and out had to be searched. The searches were causing big problems.

My brother met with one of the neighborhood big-shots and learned that the real problem was that male soldiers were searching the Iraqi women and that this was just causing terrible angst.

They went around and gathered all of the women soldiers, pulled them out of their various jobs and assigned them to man the checkpoints.

Things calmed down right away.

It seems to me if staffing a checkpoint is a combat role and women can no longer fill that role at the discretion of their commander that we had better prepare for some trouble.


I can see your point and it's a good one, but the women's role there seem to be more as a cooler than a bouncer.

Will she be able to fight and defend herself if necessary or will someone have to do it for her ?
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boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 02:17 pm
I don't buy the strength argument as strength is really more a matter of conditioning than any inborn quality. Most women over the age of 18 weigh well more than 95 pounds and most women can carry a wiggling, screaming 50 pound child to hell and back when required. Besides, modern warfare does not require much hand to hand combat.

I think gender views between America and Middle Eastern cultures is signifigant and that many of the problems we see during this war could be eased by gender segregation, say, at the checkpoints or in the prisons.

Women qualified and volunteering for combat should not be denied that opportunity.
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boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 02:21 pm
If you can do the job easier and better with a "cooler" why bother with a "bouncer"?

Isn't it better to eliminate the problem than to react to the problem again and again and again?
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rodeman
 
  1  
Reply Sat 21 May, 2005 08:40 am
boomerang
I hate to disagree and sound like a dinosaur, but......It is a matter of strength. Whether it's a soilder, firefighter, or a policeman.

A 120 lb woman fireperson is not going to drag, carry over the shoulder, etc. a 200 lb man (probably fighting you all the way because of panic) out of a building.

It's all about upper body strength. If a woman can do it, I'm fine with that.
0 Replies
 
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Sat 21 May, 2005 08:43 am
Quote:

They went around and gathered all of the women soldiers, pulled them out of their various jobs and assigned them to man the checkpoints.


This sentence strikes me as funny somehow.
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boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Sat 21 May, 2005 08:47 am
My point is that not all men are strong and not all women are weak.

Perhaps I should have said "staff the checkpoints" instead of "man the checkpoints"!
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