One of the arguments that feminists use most is that women are already dying in combat zones, so it’s only fair to formalize what they are doing. There is no question that the 144 servicewomen who have made the supreme sacrifice in combat zones since 9/11 should be honored. However, it would not honor these women to increase the chance that other servicemen and women will also die as well. Being killed by a crash or by an explosion is not the same as surviving physically-demanding combat patrols while carrying packs of 60 to 140 pounds. As Jude Eden put it, “Being in a combat zone, dangerous as it is, is still worlds away from the door-kicking offensive missions of our combat units.” Although a willingness to die for one’s country is a noble and necessary condition for being an effective combat soldier, it is certainly not the only condition. Combat roles require the ability to project combat power, kill the enemy, and survive to fight another day. Women do not have these abilities to the extent that men do. The role of women in the military should not be determined by what is politically correct but rather how effective women can be at real combat jobs.
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