Archive for the ‘US Military’ Category
QUANTICO, VA. — Fifteen female Marines began enlisted infantry training this week as part of the Marine Corps’ ongoing research into which additional jobs it should open to female personnel, officials said.
The women will attend the Infantry Training Battalion course at Camp Geiger, N.C., on an experimental basis, focusing on the 0311 infantry rifleman program of instruction after the first few weeks of training, said Leon Pappa, a retired lieutenant colonel with Training and Education Command who oversees the research. They will not receive the 0311 military occupational specialty if they graduate, but Marine officials will note it in their record for tracking purposes.
“We’re not changing the standards on how we track performance,” Pappa told reporters in a meeting here Wednesday. “We’re doing it the same way we do it for the males.”
I’ve already explained how women in combat MOSes is a bad idea, in Parts One, Two, Three, Four, Five, and Six. One of the biggest consistent arguments, not just from me, but from plenty of other combat vets, is that not only is there no real benefit to adding women in combat-specific roles for a variety of physical and social reasons, but also that when they invariably fail, some social engineer will change it so that women will succeed. 2+2 will be made to equal 5.
Combat is a heartless monster, and while training can be gender-normed to uselessness by political correctness, combat will not accede to social planners’ designs.
Someone will have to carry a substandard troop’s weight. There are already substandard men who sneak by. That there will be a whole category of substandard women, protected by politics, will help no one, and will harm the mission, the men who have to carry the extra weight, and the women who should never have been put there to begin with. It will also hurt the superhuman amazon who might have been able to pass an unchanged standard and do the job with a waiver – she won’t be challenged to meet a grueling standard, she’ll be able to pass the weaker one.
Retiree-who-doesn’t-have-to-fight-with-them Pappa says that there’s no change in standards on how they track performance. That doesn’t mean the requirements are necessarily the same, just the tracking is the same. Because buried in the bottom of the story is this, about women who failed the Infantry Officer Course:
The research is similar to work that began here last year at the Infantry Officer Course. Female volunteers have been allowed to try the grueling course, but none has passed. The next version of IOC begins next week, and the Corps expects four female volunteers to participate, Pappa said. (ST: Emphasis mine.)
Note those few words there – “the next version of IOC“. Not “the next session”, not “the next class”, not “the next group of candidates”. The “next version of Infantry Officer Course”.
If you were going to buy a new car and had to order it from the factory to specific specs just how you wanted it, and you asked “when will it be here?” and they said “the next group of cars comes off the line next month”, you’d probably be thinking your car was on the way pretty soon, built to exacty what you wanted. If you asked “when will it be here?” and they said “the next version of cars comes off the line next month”, you’d be wondering what changed. What happened to the car you ordered, that you wanted built to your specifications? You’re not getting “the next order of cars” or “the next allotment” or “the next run”, you’re getting “the next version“.
The behind-the-scenes is most likely what has played out every time. Retiree Pappa is tasked with making sure women pass the course. Instructors at the IOC are told “the women will pass the course”. Their jobs, their careers, their futures are on the line. Politics will order a lowered standard, and failures will be passed.
Everyone in the military has seen it in one form or another already (what immediately comes to mind is one male academic failure who failed his MOS school final, but was passed anyway because he was well-liked… he went on to show himself to be a coward in Iraq).
No one in the military will benefit, everyone will be hurt. The only benefit is in the cocktail party leftist political correctness social engineer circles, politicians and elite snots who will pride themselves on creating a more equal military, patting themselves on the back with false comparisons to righting historical wrongs that their own progressive party inflicted on others. They’ll say how wonderful and progressive they are, and good men and women will die for their desire to see “progress” where such a thing is a physical impossibility.
Robert Maginnis, a retired Army lieutenant colonel and West Point graduate, fears that won’t happen. He spells out what he sees as the dangers of opening combat billets to women in his new book, Deadly Consequences: How Cowards Are Pushing Women into Combat. His key concern is that, under political pressure, the military will ease its standards, resulting in a less-capable force. Battleland recently conducted this email chat with him. …
What do you see as the three biggest risks to letting women serve in the combat arms?
There are a multitude of risks—far more than most people realize, especially those without military experience. Among the many risks I discuss in “Deadly Consequences” are these three:
– First, standards will be lowered. As a practical matter, there has to be a certain minimum number of women in combat units for the policy to succeed. That can be accomplished only by “gender norming” the standards for combat service. Lower standards will inevitably degrade combat effectiveness, and the nation will be less secure. There is also good evidence that the policy will harm military recruitment and retention.
– Second, women who serve as ground combatants, whether by choice or under compulsion, will suffer disproportionate physical and psychological harm.
– Third, the already serious problem of sexual assault in the military will get worse. Notwithstanding the Administration’s wishful thinking, this prediction is borne out by the statistics.
There is nothing to gain from this. There is much to lose.
On the battlefield, there is no agency to appeal to for gender bias. The enemy, the weather, the conditions, the misery do not care that things aren’t fair.
Torsion bars don’t care if you’re too weak to change them. Track doesn’t care if you’re too weak to break it and rebuild it.
You can yell at artillery shells all you want that they’re sexist for weighing too much, but they will not care.
90 pounds of gear on your back does not care… and the inability to do any combat job gets passed on to someone more competent, who then has to carry two loads instead of one.
Your buddy who needs your help does not get lighter just because you’re a girl (or a weak man who only meets a girls’ standard).
Men who do these jobs have to be physically strong athletes. Those who can’t meet the standard are a continuing drag on their unit and/or are mustered out.
The few individual women who could meet the standard (and could probably get waivers and be welcomed into units that might find utility for them) are not who is being looked at here. This is a push for cocktail party circuit politicians to say “look at the good social justice thing I did for women” that will put girls into positions that break many men, and will break women much faster and much worse.
Playboy, Penthouse and other sex-themed magazines will no longer be sold at Army and Air Force exchanges _ a move described by the stores’ operators as a business decision based on falling sales, and not a result of recent pressure from anti-pornography activists.
The 48 “adult sophisticate” magazines being dropped are among a total of 891 periodicals that will no longer be offered by the Army and Air Force Exchange Service at its stores on U.S. military bases worldwide.
Good news is the Navy and Marine Corps haven’t dropped anything yet. With different deployment schedules and different institutional cultures, hopefully they don’t.
Remember, though, Hagel already declared war on pinups and is out to make the military into something else.
Morality in Media, a Washington-based anti-pornography group, called the decision “a great victory” in its campaign against sexual exploitation in the military, and said it would continue to urge operators of Navy and Marine Corps exchanges to follow suit.
Ah, yes, morality enforced by government, in this case, removal of products by a government-run store.
Hopefully the first part of the story is correct and this is an economic decision and not a morality one. Given Hagel’s declared war on pinups, I’m very skeptical of the explanation. If falling sales dictate removal of titles, that’s the market making a decision. If it’s Morality in Media and other anti-freedom groups pushing for further restriction on morale-improving leisure materials (I won’t say reading) and being successful as it dovetails with Hagel’s politically correct agenda, they fall in the same category as any other group that wants more state control.
They’re just going to “nudge” people into proper behavior with coercive paternalism. Government orders you to eat your vegetables. Government orders you to work harder. And government says put a coat on, it’s chilly out.
As usual, Col Kurtz had this to say:
We train young men to drop fire on people. But their commanders won’t allow them to write “fuck” on their airplanes because it’s obscene!
Afghanistan has pretty much now become the sequel to Vietnam.
We won every battle in Vietnam, had the NVA on their heels, utterly destroyed the North Vietnamese during the Tet Offensive, but it went down in history as a loss due to the political will to fight disappearing.
In Afghanistan, we did the same – victory after victory until politicians started meddling with the war and hamstringing rules of engagement until the political will to fight evaporated.
And now we’re leaving. We got a little bit of payback and some experience at the cost of lost lives and limbs and blood and years that we can’t get back.
The end of a war brings its own logistical challenges. Getting the troops home from the theater of war takes plenty of planning, especially in an environment still significantly unsecure, as in Afghanistan (and in Iraq, for that matter), but the question of retrieving heavy equipment is even more complicated. With the drawdown date set by Barack Obama approaching, the Pentagon has decided to scrap billions of dollars in equipment rather than deal with the logistical and economic consequences of retrieval:
Facing a tight withdrawal deadline and tough terrain, the U.S. military has destroyed more than 170 million pounds worth of vehicles and other military equipment as it rushes to wind down its role in the Afghanistan war by the end of 2014.
The massive disposal effort, which U.S. military officials call unprecedented, has unfolded largely out of sight amid an ongoing debate inside the Pentagon about what to do with the heaps of equipment that won’t be returning home. Military planners have determined that they will not ship back more than $7 billion worth of equipment — about 20 percent of what the U.S. military has in Afghanistan — because it is no longer needed or would be too costly to ship back home.
Not only is it a waste in lives, but now it’s a waste in materiel.
We’ve done this before after WWII, and it was a waste then (though at least we recycled some of it).
Here’s an idea – let private industry bring back that equipment.
Humvees and MTVRs sold on the open market may pay the cost of shipping back to the US, as well as quadcons and empty hescos and the piles and piles of equipment that are still worth something.
Since we ignored MacArthur’s maxim “There is no substitute for victory” and decided that some kind of withdrawal without victory is acceptable, at least we should take the time to bring back our stuff.
Otherwise we may as well just run this photo again: