EDITORIAL: Women in combat
Jan 27, 2013 (The Sentinel - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
The military should determine fitness requirements on a mission-specific basis that's gender-neutral. It took a big step toward that this week when the U.S. Army said it would allow women to serve in combat. To disqualify from combat an able soldier because she's a she instead of a he is as offensive as it is outdated.
Since the war on terror began, 152 women have been killed in combat. While that pales in comparison to the more than 6,400 men who have been killed, it's notable because that happened during a so-called ban on women serving in combat. Retired Army Col. Tom Faley of South Middleton Township puts it best when he says: "The nature of war has changed. There are no front lines anymore. Nurses are subjected to bombings and IEDs. It's really splitting hairs."
On a strictly gender basis, women are just as capable as men when it comes to serving in combat. There are strong women and there are weak men. A soldier's fitness for combat should be judged based on their ability to perform a mission, not based on their body parts.
Faley said that in his role as chief of theU.S. Army Cadet Command for six years, he ran cadets through numerous physical tests. "The women were outperforming the men. They were running circles around the males and were doing better in sit-ups."
If that's the case, who wouldn't want those women fighting on our side
Military leaders say they will not lower their physical standards simply as a result of this change in policy. And that's fine. All soldiers, regardless of their brand of reproductive organs, should have to prove their fitness for combat. But that's where the process should end.
If women want to serve their country in combat, and they've proven their ability to do so, the only thing holding us back is backward thinking.
___ (c)2013 The Sentinel (Carlisle, Pa.) Visit The Sentinel (Carlisle, Pa.) at
www.cumberlink.com Distributed by MCT Information Services
[ Back To Technology News's Homepage ]