Small Wars Journal

women in combat

Women in Combat: An Open Source Backgrounder

Open source research indicates a significant trend for countries opening combat occupations to women. Some countries have been slow to remove gender barriers for women in combat while others have progressively dismantled all roadblocks. Many militaries have not succeeded in facilitating female military participation despite gender integration efforts.

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U.S. Marine Corps to Assign Women to Ground Combat Element Units

All Marine Message (ALMAR) 012/12 announces the "Assignment of Women to Ground Combat Units." In addition to the below excerpt, there are portions of the ALMAR on other exploration to be done at entry-level training and steps to allow volunteer females to attend the Infantry Officers Course and Infantry Training Battalion before primary MOS training.  NY Times also ran a story on this today. (ALMARs are published in all capitals in case the teletype machine makes a comeback and I don't have time to retype in normal case!)

 

CURRENT GROUND ASSIGMENT POLICIES RESTRICT THE ASSIGNMENT OF WOMEN SERVING IN AN OPEN PRIMARY MOS (PMOS) TO CERTAIN UNITS IN THE GROUND COMBAT ELEMENT (GCE).  THE EXCEPTION TO POLICY WILL ALLOW US TO BEGIN ASSIGNING ACTIVE DUTY, UNRESTRICTED, FEMALE COMPANY GRADE OFFICERS, GUNNERY SERGEANTS, AND STAFF SERGEANTS IN THEIR CURRENT PMOS' TO ARTILLERY, TANK, ASSAULT AMPHIBIAN, COMBAT ENGINEER, COMBAT ASSAULT, AND LOW ALTITUDE AIR DEFENSE BATTALION STAFFS IN ORDER TO FACILITATE OUR RESEARCH EFFORT.  FEMALE MARINES POSSESSING AN ADMINISTRATION, LOGISTICS, COMMUNICATIONS, SUPPLY, OR MOTOR TRANSPORT MOS MAY BE ASSIGNED TO THE ABOVE UNITS AS PART OF THE NORMAL ASSIGNMENT PROCESS DURING CALENDAR YEAR 2012.  FEMALE NAVY MEDICAL OFFICERS, CHAPLAINS, AND CORPSMEN (E-6 AND E-7) MAY ALSO BE ASSIGNED TO THESE BATTALIONS.  FEMALE MARINES AND SAILORS WILL BE ASSIGNED TO BATTALION STAFFS IN THEIR PMOS.  THE DEPUTY COMMANDANT FOR MANPOWER AND RESERVE AFFAIRS WILL DIRECT AND MONITOR ALL ASSIGNMENTS UNDER THIS EXCEPTION TO POLICY.