Apparently the "Battle Over Women in Combat Rages On", but in reality there is no possible way for women to serve in frontline combat positions.
And while women now serve on combat ships, fly combat missions and conduct door-to-door searches through dangerous Iraqi neighborhoods, limits remain. They're still restricted from infantry units, armor and field artillery companies in wartime.And for good reason. The primary purpose of the military is to kill people and break things and efficiently as possible, and women simply are not as capable as men are. Furthermore, frontline troops often live in dirt and grime for months at a time without showers or good hygiene, something that would be impossible for women.
There's no right to serve in the military. Neither you nor I has a right to join the armed forces, regardless of our gender, religion, race, height, strength, intelligence, wealth, or any other factor. Every other consideration must be subsumed to the single overriding mission of the military -- to kill people and break things. Equality is irrelevant.
In an earlier post on this topic I pointed to some statistics that show that women have nearly 750% more injuries and accidents than men do in combat training. Furthermore, the social and biological factors of having women in combat could be very hard to deal with.
The issue of violence against women was crystallized when former prisoners of war appeared before the Commission, including one of the two women captured during Operation Desert Storm. Testimony about the indecent assault on one of the women drew further attention to POW training programs already in place that "desensitize" male POWs to the brutalization of women with whom they may be held captive. An interview with trainers at the Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape training center at Fairchild Air Force Base uncovered a logical but disturbing consequence of assigning women to combat:Maybe I'm a just a male chauvinist pig, but I don't particularly want to see that type of thing. Regardless of training, male soldiers will not see the women they serve with as "just one of the guys", and will inevitably take extra precautions to try and prevent their death or capture. This may lead to circumstances where a commander does not surrender when he otherwise would, for instance, or vice versa. Women may not understand this fact or like it (and some men may argue against it for PC reasons) but it's biological and not merely cultural.
"If a policy change is made, and women are allowed into combat positions, there must be a concerted effort to educate the American public on the increased likelihood that women will be raped, will come home in bodybags, and will be exploited. The consequence of not undertaking such a program would be large-scale disillusionment with the military should the United States get in a protracted military engagement."