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Just Because Fantasy Becomes Reality Doesn’t Mean It’s Still Not Fantasy

Leon Panetta, er…. Barack Obama removed the ban on women in combat today. Instapundit linked to this great piece on that issue from “Outside the Wire”:

During my time with Army and Marine Infantry units in Iraq and Afghanistan I have seen women carry their full load on big, multi-day missions. But then they go back to the large FOB while the guys continue to go out on the daily missions.

Marine Officer Katie Petronio wrote abut the struggle of physical reslience during her deployment to Afghanistan commanding a Combat Engineering platoon in Afghanistan.

“By the fifth month into the deployment, I had muscle atrophy in my thighs that was causing me to constantly trip and my legs to buckle with the slightest grade change. My agility during firefights and mobility on and off vehicles and perimeter walls was seriously hindering my response time and overall capability. It was evident that stress and muscular deterioration was affecting everyone regardless of gender; however, the rate of my deterioration was noticeably faster than that of male Marines…”

Her rate of deterioration was faster because she only produced a fraction of the muscle repairing testosterone of the male Marines. Petronio, who was a varsity athlete in college and “benching 145 pounds when I graduated [college] in 2007” was falling apart at the fifth month of her deployment. Army units deployed for 12 months until recently.

Many elite female athletes can outperform male soldiers when the women have adequate rest, recovery time and nutrition–but rest, recovery and proper nutrition are in short supply at Combat Outpost Zerok. Combat is not like sports season where you only have one or two games a week for three months, or training for one or two big events a year. It is every day for 365 days, then a period of recovery before resuming pre-deployment training and then another 365 days. (330 days with leave and R&R).

Many who support opening up combat arms to women so that they have equal career opportunities do not understand that to reach the top of the infantry ranks rquires incredible physical reslience. On the enlisted side, Company First Sergeants are in their late thirties and still going after years of deployments. On the officer side battalion and Brigade Commanders must maintain their prime physical conditioning into their forties–after years of deployments.

The number of women who at the age of 40 are capable of keeping up with young men in a combat environment is very small.

Go read the whole thing. If we continue to let the social engineers run the military we are in for a peck of trouble.

12 comments to Just Because Fantasy Becomes Reality Doesn’t Mean It’s Still Not Fantasy

  • Texacalirose

    Oh, the stories I could tell just in a city police department. Keep.your.powder.dry.don’t.give.up.your.guns.over.and.out.

  • -fritz-

    I hear the same type stories from firemen friends about the girls in the department. They have the heart and want-to, but lack the strength and stamina!

  • Dr. Schplatt

    Ignoring for a moment, women’s abilities or lack thereof. What about men? Will this change the way men respond in a combat situation? I think most people would understand that men are naturally hardwired to respond a certain way towards women that results in a drive to protect them at all costs. That’s a lot of added responsibility that I’m not sure helps.

  • Daniel Crandall

    This was a topic of conversation at the end of the day at work yesterday. Needless to say the squishy Leftists I work with failed in their efforts to think about the issue and could only respond by calling clear thinking individuals (most people know them as conservatives) “misogynists”.

    • Texacalirose

      Why so negative!! Just think of all the jobs at Selective Service that have been created. Right? Right? Ask your anti-misogynist associates about that.

      • This is actually part of the administration’s ongoing Jihadi Incentive Program, one of the most successful initiatives of the last four years.

        • Exactly where my mind first raced: great fodder for those infidel lovers.

          To the actual removal — and I fully admit my lack of feet-on-the-battleground know-how — but till proven otherwise, I’m going to cautiously take the same position I do with gays or anyone else who wants to put themselves on the front-lines. You want to fight and defend our fine nation? More power to you and thank you for your service. Now please do it to the fullest of your ability without undermining your fellow soldiers/sailors/air-men/women.

  • David Marcoe

    I worry about the psycho-social factors. Schplatt’s right–the hard data is there in spades–but more than that, there’s the additional differences in the way men and women think. We joke about women being “more in touch with their emotions” and men being “emotional idiots,” but it’s that stereotypically male ability to close off or delay emotional responses, particularly in high-stress situations (and a healthy dose of natural aggression), that gives men an edge in combat.

    However, it likely wouldn’t play out in the heat of combat, but rather build up over time. Imagine a hypothetical female NCO or officer in a command situation, with the accumulation of stress and fatigue. Regardless of character and intellectual ability, how would being a woman influence her decision-making?

    And before anyone cites Joan of Arc, she is literally a miraculous exception to the rule, and she expelled all women she found in the camp of the French forces when she took command.

  • INFJ

    As a mama bear type I would not hesitate to risk my life or take a life to defend my children. On the battle field I would be so torn up over the death or wounding of a comrade that I would be useless as a fighter. A man would become enraged by the same situation and fight all the harder . As David said, “The male ability to close off or delay emotional responses…that give men an edge in combat”. Psychologically, as well as physically,women are not suited for combat.

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