Can women fulfill front-line combat positions in the military?

Mill

Lifer
Oct 10, 1999
28,558
3
81
Well it says frontline ground combat. Jessica Lynch was part of a supply and maintenance convoy. So, I guess they are not allowed to be basic foot soldiers?
 

ThaGrandCow

Diamond Member
Dec 27, 2001
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Women are not allowed to be in a 'combat' position. The lame excuse given to us during training was the hygene issue (once a month... but in many situations you won't have a shower for weeks at a time, making that area primed for infections). My personal opinion is that they don't want males and females to become involved emotionally/sexually and distract each other in a combat enviornment.
 

Mill

Lifer
Oct 10, 1999
28,558
3
81
Originally posted by: freegeeks
public opinion would never accept it that women are coming back in body bags

Public opinion will accept anything if their livelihood is threatened enough. If we needed women soldiers to protect us from an invasion, you can bet the public would allow it.
 

dopcombo

Golden Member
Nov 14, 2000
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Hmm. Would females be able to carry a medium machine gun on top of 40kg of weight?
Cos I believe most infantry boys carry something similar?
As well as section weapons, anti-tank weapons, signal sets, etc?

I dunno. It already seems like quite a heavy load for a man to carry...

Esp when women have smaller frames in general.

OTOH, that is conventional warfare. Nowadays, it seems like most battles are LIC situations where most soldiers only carry a small load with their primary weapon for short periods of times...
 

ThaGrandCow

Diamond Member
Dec 27, 2001
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Originally posted by: Mill
Originally posted by: freegeeks
public opinion would never accept it that women are coming back in body bags

Public opinion will accept anything if their livelihood is threatened enough. If we needed women soldiers to protect us from an invasion, you can bet the public would allow it.

Public opinion would accept it AFTER military top officials accepted it and put a spin on it. I'd venture to say that the majority of people that have the skill to come to these forums have a decent ammount of knowledge (with certain exceptions) and can make their own educated opinions, but there still is a large part of the population that are idiots and only believe what they are fed by higher powers. Until the military officially endorses females in specific combat positions, you won't see them accepted by the general populace.

Until then, you can expect to see them in 'administrative or non-combatant' positions. It's too bad, out of my class of combat engineers we had 5 women. 3/4 of the training dealt with combat operations (bridge building in hostile situations, obstacle laying, demolitions w/explosives, urban SWAT tactics, mine sweeping, etc...) so even though they learned it it's totally worthless to them. Plus when we were doing live exercises the women showed just as much strength, knowledge, and will as the men that were working with them. I'd actually put my life in their hands before some of the other people I went through training with. Sadly, that won't be happening anytime while I'm still an active Marine.
 

Gooberlx2

Lifer
May 4, 2001
15,381
6
91
Yeah, they're not allowed to be infantry, medics, etc...basically any frontline combat position where you're on foot (i think).

Public opinion will accept anything if their livelihood is threatened enough. If we needed women soldiers to protect us from an invasion, you can bet the public would allow it.
True, but there would just about have to be a land invasion on mainland USA for that to happen, at which point we'd be using old people and teens/children too.

Originally posted by: ThaGrandCow
Women are not allowed to be in a 'combat' position. The lame excuse given to us during training was the hygene issue (once a month... but in many situations you won't have a shower for weeks at a time, making that area primed for infections). My personal opinion is that they don't want males and females to become involved emotionally/sexually and distract each other in a combat enviornment.

I think both scenarios are true there. Men and women could easily become sexually/emotionally attached, causing problems. And I also agree with the whole menstruation thing. I know girls who are completely immobilized by their cramps for a couple days at a time......to the point where they regularly have to call in sick during that time. ....And it would be unsanitary for them to not be able to clean during that time as well.

But in the end it comes down to physical strength and ability. And public opinion (and I have to admit, mine too) is that women are physically not as able to do combat as men. Yes, you'll have your GI Jane super-woman every now and again...but not for the most part.

But who knows....no doubt there's been no real study done to see if women coming out of bootcamp are just as able to the men for field combat duty (in a long haul scenraio).....'cause they've never been allowed anyway.
 

fumbduck

Diamond Member
Aug 21, 2001
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Originally posted by: Gooberlx2
Yeah, they're not allowed to be infantry, medics, etc...basically any frontline combat position where you're on foot (i think).

Public opinion will accept anything if their livelihood is threatened enough. If we needed women soldiers to protect us from an invasion, you can bet the public would allow it.
True, but there would just about have to be a land invasion on mainland USA for that to happen, at which point we'd be using old people and teens/children too.

Originally posted by: ThaGrandCow
Women are not allowed to be in a 'combat' position. The lame excuse given to us during training was the hygene issue (once a month... but in many situations you won't have a shower for weeks at a time, making that area primed for infections). My personal opinion is that they don't want males and females to become involved emotionally/sexually and distract each other in a combat enviornment.

I think both scenarios are true there. Men and women could easily become sexually/emotionally attached, causing problems. And I also agree with the whole menstruation thing. I know girls who are completely immobilized by their cramps for a couple days at a time......to the point where they regularly have to call in sick during that time. ....And it would be unsanitary for them to not be able to clean during that time as well.

But in the end it comes down to physical strength and ability. And public opinion (and I have to admit, mine too) is that women are physically not as able to do combat as men. Yes, you'll have your GI Jane super-woman every now and again...but not for the most part.

But who knows....no doubt there's been no real study done to see if women coming out of bootcamp are just as able to the men for field combat duty (in a long haul scenraio).....'cause they've never been allowed anyway.



How do you reason what you said with other countries, such as Israel, requiring women for the draft? And Israel is constantly at war.
 

xSauronx

Lifer
Jul 14, 2000
19,586
4
81
Originally posted by: Mill
Originally posted by: freegeeks
public opinion would never accept it that women are coming back in body bags

Public opinion will accept anything if their livelihood is threatened enough. If we needed women soldiers to protect us from an invasion, you can bet the public would allow it.

i think the US has enough men to shove into service before women are anywhere near so necessary
 

ThaGrandCow

Diamond Member
Dec 27, 2001
7,956
2
0
Originally posted by: Gooberlx2
Yeah, they're not allowed to be infantry, medics, etc...basically any frontline combat position where you're on foot (i think).

Public opinion will accept anything if their livelihood is threatened enough. If we needed women soldiers to protect us from an invasion, you can bet the public would allow it.
True, but there would just about have to be a land invasion on mainland USA for that to happen, at which point we'd be using old people and teens/children too.

Originally posted by: ThaGrandCow
Women are not allowed to be in a 'combat' position. The lame excuse given to us during training was the hygene issue (once a month... but in many situations you won't have a shower for weeks at a time, making that area primed for infections). My personal opinion is that they don't want males and females to become involved emotionally/sexually and distract each other in a combat enviornment.

I think both scenarios are true there. Men and women could easily become sexually/emotionally attached, causing problems. And I also agree with the whole menstruation thing. I know girls who are completely immobilized by their cramps for a couple days at a time......to the point where they regularly have to call in sick during that time. ....And it would be unsanitary for them to not be able to clean during that time as well.

But in the end it comes down to physical strength and ability. And public opinion (and I have to admit, mine too) is that women are physically not as able to do combat as men. Yes, you'll have your GI Jane super-woman every now and again...but not for the most part.

But who knows....no doubt there's been no real study done to see if women coming out of bootcamp are just as able to the men for field combat duty (in a long haul scenraio).....'cause they've never been allowed anyway.

I'll have to disagree with you here. As a combat engineer we had to go through multiple months of training, almost every day out in the field. My specialty put me in an area where I was trained in combat and also non-combat operations, so I was trained with some women.

Due to the rules of the training, the women (5 out of 30 of us) had to still learn the combat parts of the training, even though they'd probably never use them. The women all came through just as well as the men did. Every single one of them did their job and pulled their own weight. Not one of them had to ask a man for help or ever complained of cramps or other menstral symptoms in the 3 months we were together. I'd even venture to say that I would rather go into combat with those women than I would with some of the men I trained with. Women in the military are locked on just like the men are. Any of the ones who would be held back by things such as cramps during their period are weeded out by their recruiters or during boot camp.
 

Skyclad1uhm1

Lifer
Aug 10, 2001
11,383
87
91
Originally posted by: dopcombo
Hmm. Would females be able to carry a medium machine gun on top of 40kg of weight?
Cos I believe most infantry boys carry something similar?
As well as section weapons, anti-tank weapons, signal sets, etc?

I dunno. It already seems like quite a heavy load for a man to carry...

Esp when women have smaller frames in general.

OTOH, that is conventional warfare. Nowadays, it seems like most battles are LIC situations where most soldiers only carry a small load with their primary weapon for short periods of times...

They can carry their handbag too all the time, compared to the weight of that a machinegun weights nothing.
 

SgtBuddy

Senior member
Jun 2, 2001
597
1
0
Carrying a machine gun is one thing, Carrying your buddy out of a gunfight is another. I surveyed my element and the two women in it couldn't drag me more than 20 yards. Some of the puny guys couldn't either.
 

freegeeks

Diamond Member
May 7, 2001
5,460
1
81
Originally posted by: fumbduck
Originally posted by: Gooberlx2
Yeah, they're not allowed to be infantry, medics, etc...basically any frontline combat position where you're on foot (i think).

Public opinion will accept anything if their livelihood is threatened enough. If we needed women soldiers to protect us from an invasion, you can bet the public would allow it.
True, but there would just about have to be a land invasion on mainland USA for that to happen, at which point we'd be using old people and teens/children too.

Originally posted by: ThaGrandCow
Women are not allowed to be in a 'combat' position. The lame excuse given to us during training was the hygene issue (once a month... but in many situations you won't have a shower for weeks at a time, making that area primed for infections). My personal opinion is that they don't want males and females to become involved emotionally/sexually and distract each other in a combat enviornment.

I think both scenarios are true there. Men and women could easily become sexually/emotionally attached, causing problems. And I also agree with the whole menstruation thing. I know girls who are completely immobilized by their cramps for a couple days at a time......to the point where they regularly have to call in sick during that time. ....And it would be unsanitary for them to not be able to clean during that time as well.

But in the end it comes down to physical strength and ability. And public opinion (and I have to admit, mine too) is that women are physically not as able to do combat as men. Yes, you'll have your GI Jane super-woman every now and again...but not for the most part.

But who knows....no doubt there's been no real study done to see if women coming out of bootcamp are just as able to the men for field combat duty (in a long haul scenraio).....'cause they've never been allowed anyway.



How do you reason what you said with other countries, such as Israel, requiring women for the draft? And Israel is constantly at war.

even in Israel when it gets really messy, they don't send women to the frontline


IMO women could do the job as good as men but I stand by my statement that public opinion is not going to accept it.

period
 

Cerb

Elite Member
Aug 26, 2000
17,484
33
86
One thing I read awhile back, that I cannot find again, was that a few nations that allowed or still do allow women in combat positions had a problem with men going back and trying to save the women in situations where they should have left them alone. Overall, both genetic (potential inborn psychological differences) and cultural factors make it impractical. There is nothing physically barring them from it, but it would need to be all women and all men groups, no mixed, and that would be a logistical nightmare.
That or a major change in how we treat gender in our society, neither of which will likely happen soon--possibly until there is a real invasion here.

If the public opinion and thinking changed, I seriously doubt sanitation would be an issue--there's bound to be ways, but it's too male dominated at this point for any solutions.
 

ajskydiver

Golden Member
Jan 7, 2000
1,147
1
86
I'm all for women in combat roles when women have to meet the same standards that men do - specifically the physical requirements...I got out in '95...the APFT requirements changed in '98 (some good news).

Males must perform a minimum of 42 pushup (60 pts)
Females their minimum is 19 (60 pts)...42 is their "max" (100 pts).

Same standards for both with situps!

Males 15:54 for 2 mile run (minimum)...max is 13:00 (100 pts).
Females 18:54 for 2 mile run (minimum)...their max is 15:36 (100 pts)...their max is nearly as slow as the male minimum.

Same job...same pay...same risks...same standards - that's just my opinion.

~AJ
 

DuffmanOhYeah

Golden Member
May 21, 2001
1,903
0
0
Originally posted by: ThaGrandCow
Women are not allowed to be in a 'combat' position. The lame excuse given to us during training was the hygene issue (once a month... but in many situations you won't have a shower for weeks at a time, making that area primed for infections). My personal opinion is that they don't want males and females to become involved emotionally/sexually and distract each other in a combat enviornment.

Decent point. But Im guessing the over-riding factor is that women are just physically inferior. Im sorry, people can go ahead and flame all they want, but its true.
 

clamum

Lifer
Feb 13, 2003
26,255
403
126
If they can pass the training required for them to do so and they're willing, why not?
 

alkemyst

No Lifer
Feb 13, 2001
83,967
19
81
GI Jane quotes aside.

It has nothing to do with sex between soldiers...other than a front line only soldier (and even then) in a time of war there will be female soldiers/civilians around them.

It has everything to do with a soldiers reaction to seeing a woman hurt and/or killed and the effect it has on moral and then the subsequent reaction of the civilians back home as the bodies come in.

Å

 

alkemyst

No Lifer
Feb 13, 2001
83,967
19
81
Originally posted by: DuffmanOhYeah

Decent point. But Im guessing the over-riding factor is that women are just physically inferior. Im sorry, people can go ahead and flame all they want, but its true.

Just how 'strong' would a female have to be anyway? I am sure you are looking at the average woman and thinking her as a soldier....but if you looked at the average man, he wouldn't make the cut either.

There is a thing called 'physical conditioning'....women can come pretty close to men once both are physically fit. In both sexes there are extremes that defy what the average in each can do.

Å
 

DuffmanOhYeah

Golden Member
May 21, 2001
1,903
0
0
Originally posted by: alkemyst
Originally posted by: DuffmanOhYeah

Decent point. But Im guessing the over-riding factor is that women are just physically inferior. Im sorry, people can go ahead and flame all they want, but its true.

Just how 'strong' would a female have to be anyway? I am sure you are looking at the average woman and thinking her as a soldier....but if you looked at the average man, he wouldn't make the cut either.

There is a thing called 'physical conditioning'....women can come pretty close to men once both are physically fit. In both sexes there are extremes that defy what the average in each can do.

Å

Oh thats just not true! All the way up the scale women are physically inferior. Take any percentile you would like, and I GUARANTEE you that women are far out-classed by men. Im not trying to be derrogatoy or mysogynistic, but speaking to physical capability, women just cant cut the mustard.
 

GreasyBurger

Banned
May 25, 2003
285
0
0
Here's what I think about women in combat positions (MOS)

1) Enough with the B.S. double standard in APFT and other physical activities
2) Make them sign up for the Selective Service System and draft them for front line positions just like men
3) Same hair cut because you don't join the military to look good for the men. You are there to do a job
 

amcdonald

Diamond Member
Feb 4, 2003
4,012
0
0
Isn't this related to the arguement against acknowledged homosexuals being in frontline combat?
Don't both of these variables tend to distract from the necessary comaraderie? I'm not a scientician, but I would think that if there was a woman fighting next to me I might be naturally inclined to look after her moreso than the other guys. Even if she's dog ugly.
And believe it or not, women are just not as strong as men... except for the biological freak exceptions on both sides.

My friend who was an MP said there were a few gay men in his basic training group... No one made it through that he knows of though. He said if anyone got caught looking for too long in the shower they got beat up pretty bad and quickly ostracized.
 

I believe there were a couple studies done that showed that when women were hit in combat and went down, the men in the unit tended to be more distracted than they would usually be for a fallen man. They tended to pause for even a longer amount of time if they saw a dead woman, just because.