Skip to comments.Allen West: “Now is not the time to play a social experiment with our ground combat forces”
Posted on 01/25/2013 9:19:06 AM PST by SeekAndFind
I don't know if part of the rationale for yesterday's kinda-sort out-of-left-field announcement that the Pentagon is lifting the ban on women serving in direct combat is supposed to be some kind of barrier-breaking, legacy-building last hurrah for Leon Panetta, but if that's the case, I'm not sure that that legacy will be a very positive one. There's been no dearth of criticism for the idea from veterans, including from one former Republican Congressman Allen West:
However, to make the insidious policy decision that we shall now open up combat billets to women is something completely different. GI Jane was a movie and should not be the basis for a policy shift. I know Martha McSally, have known women who are Apache and Cobra helicopter pilots, and served with women who were MPs, but being on the ground and having to go mano y mano in close combat is a completely different environment.
I completely disagree with this decision and can just imagine all the third and fourth order effects and considerations for implementation, such as standards for training. Unless the Obama administration has not noticed we are fighting against a brutal enemy and now is not the time to play a social experiment with our ground combat forces. President Obama, as Commander-in-Chief, should be focused on sequestration and the failure of his policies in the Middle East. This is the misconceived liberal progressive vision of fairness and equality which could potentially lead to the demise of our military.
The WSJ ran a pretty persuasive op-ed to a similar effect from former Marine Ryan Smith, who points out that social norms are not something you can just toss aside, especially in assessing a combat unit’s cohesion and efficiency:
We had not showered in well over a month and our chemical protective suits were covered in a mixture of filth and dried blood. We were told to strip and place our suits in pits to be burned immediately. My unit stood there in a walled-in compound in Baghdad, naked, sores dotted all over our bodies, feet peeling, watching our suits burn. Later, they lined us up naked and washed us off with pressure washers.
Yes, a woman is as capable as a man of pulling a trigger. But the goal of our nation’s military is to fight and win wars. Before taking the drastic step of allowing women to serve in combat units, has the government considered whether introducing women into the above-described situation would have made my unit more or less combat effective?
How exactly this is going to play out technically is still to be determined; lifting the ban on women in combat isn’t quite the same as instantly opening all combat roles to women. The services will have until January 2016 to defend cases in which they think women should be kept out of certain roles, but there will definitely be plenty of political fallout and intentional cultural boat-rocking in the meantime — because President Obama and the Democrats now have another specific item to tout whenever they want to revive their “war on women” meme, besides the Lily Ledbetter Act: Actual war on women.
While I think that there are a myriad of unintended consequences and a few very disturbing CNN broadcasts of women-involved combat casualties (especially if and when we ever get a conservative President back in office), this isn’t the driving problem to me in what is killing this country.
I’m going to let the Democrats own this. I’m going to let them own this the next time some soldier reservist momma who’s been collecting a weekend paycheck complains that she actually has to go fight some Tallyban.
My feelings....there is a hesitation by a female in shooting someone else...it may be only a second....P>I simply wouldn't have the same trust and/or confidence with a female by my side.
This kind of “now is not the time...” argument always loses. It’s a bad way to make your case, because it indicates that you think sometime in the future it MIGHT be time to consider the stupid policy change being floated. The proper thing to say here is “this is madness. Don’t do it”.
HOGWASH...they want to be equal...let'em be equal.
Not kinda-sorta - completely. I was in a senior leaders VTC this morning and the top officer in my career field said the announcement was completely unexpected and took everybody by surprise. Only saving grace was that there’s apparently a significant “initial period of study” involved before actual implementation.
Some liberal yo yo in the Department of Defence must be a fan of Star Troppers, complete with it’s co-ed showers scene and think that sexual harassment and non-fraternization laws would actually prevent unwanted sexual conduct between soldiers. This is wrong on so many levels. The Canadian army has supposedly given full integration to women soldiers in combat. The reality is that the female soldiers get special treatment in terms of physical standards, permissible sick days, quality of their quarters, and assignment to the most dangerous assignments.
Since 2002, Canada has suffered 132 deaths by enemy action (direct fire, landmines, IED, suicide bombers) and an additional 16 in combat situations through other means (friendly fire, vehicle and aircraft accidents). Only two of these deaths involved female soldiers and both were through explosives, not direct enemy fire. And yes, there have been serious fraternization problems, even among senior officers, in both Afghanistan and on naval ships (both male and female commanders).
What a world we live in! Sheila Jackson Lee sits in Congress and Allen West is on the sidelines!
I replayed Company of Heroes last night where they have an animated cut scene of the landing craft going into the beach. Watching all the soldiers get mowed down by machine gun fire jumping out of the landing craft made me think - imagine those were women with cramps. The ruling powers are truly loons.
I disagree. I’ve never liked the idea of protected classes in this society and the first thing people need to do to prove to me that they’re my equal is to disavow any special privilege that comes from being in a protected class, and that includes military service for women. Combat roles should not only be “allowed,” but required as much as they are of any male service member.
That includes the military draft, playing against males in sports instead of having your own division, etc.
You want to be treated as an equal? Prove to me you are an equal.
This whole thing boils down to a Clint Eastwood as Harry Calahan in the movie The Enforcer: What do you think this is some kind of encounter group?
It was only a matter of time before we got to this point in time. While they say there will be no special treatment or standards, now, when the time comes there will be plenty. Yeah, a woman can pull a trigger equal to or sometimes even better than a guy but the fact remains that is a small part of what combat units do.
From my perspective, this is a bad idea.
The IDF found after the 73 war on the Golan that women could not turn off the emotions once Syrian male soldiers surrendered and in numerous cases Jewish women who came to the front lines executed the enemy even after they had surrendered, oftentimes after the women were placed over them as guards. The fact remains to be seen whether American can be trusted to observe the rules of the Second Geneva Conventions (we are not party to the Third GC) when dealing with enemy combatants/soldiers and their surrender as the survival instinct may just override ration thoughts - of course we could employ women to do the dirty and unlawful executions as a matter of policy and they not allow prosecution under the guise of emotional strain.
Women units for Infantry would be nice if organized as the soviets did in WWII.
The nice thing about radically forcing this type of change upon society is that men will no longer hold doors for women, or defer in social situations. Test tube babies will make women less the fair sex and we will most likely see old men and women living lonely lives as they will not value the relationship of marriage.
Apparently that time is whenever we have a Demrat prez.
That's what I've been saying from the gitgo. If these idiots want equal then give them equal. I guarantee that they would back off, sit down and shut up. Equal treatment is the LAST thing these pukes want.