Jump to content


Getting an "Insecure Connection" warning for Exisle? No worry

Details in this thread

Women in combat

Women in Combat Military Women

  • Please log in to reply
87 replies to this topic

#41 Rhea

Rhea

  • Islander
  • 16,433 posts

Posted 14 May 2003 - 01:00 AM

For G (I evidently got excited and didn't hit the quote button):

Hmm...one day when I have more time I might do a comparison for you, both anthropological (as in different recent cultures) and archaeological, to prove that women didn't always sit by the fire and nurse babies.

But I'll give you a cogent example: the Celts. Under Brehon law women had rank, owned property, held office, ruled their lands and charted their own destinies. Women also fought in battle alongside the men.

The fact that you think it's somehow inbred or every culture thinks that way is because you're looking at it from inside a culture that would LIKE you to think so. Any 1st year anthro student could tell you it just ain't so.  Typical male and female roles vary widely from culture to culture, never mind era to era.

Edited by Rhea, 14 May 2003 - 01:01 AM.

The future is better than the past. Despite the crepehangers, romanticists, and anti-intellectuals, the world steadily grows better because the human mind, applying itself to environment, makes it better. With hands...with tools...with horse sense and science and engineering.
- Robert A. Heinlein

When I don’t understand, I have an unbearable itch to know why. - RAH


Everything is theoretically impossible, until it is done. One could write a history of science in reverse by assembling the solemn pronouncements of highest authority about what could not be done and could never happen.  - RAH

#42 Rov Judicata

Rov Judicata

    Crassly Irresponsible and Indifferent

  • Islander
  • 15,720 posts

Posted 14 May 2003 - 01:03 AM

I'll finally weigh in with my take. It's very simple.

Discrimination can bite me. Yes, yes, there's muscle mass issues, etc.... but let's judge those things on a case by case basis.
St. Louis must be destroyed!

Me: "I have a job and five credit cards and am looking into signing a two year lease.  THAT MAKES ME OLD."
Josh: "I don't have a job, I have ONE credit card, I'm stuck in a lease and I'm 28! My mom's basement IS ONE BAD DECISION AWAY!"
~~ Josh, winning the argument.

"Congress . . . shall include every idiot, lunatic, insane person, and person non compos mentis[.]" ~1 U.S.C. ß 1, selectively quoted for accuracy.

#43 Mary Rose

Mary Rose

    Charlie's Asthmatic Angel

  • Moderator
  • 22,369 posts

Posted 14 May 2003 - 01:59 AM

I'm all for equality.  Women deserve the oppurtunity to serve their country.  I don't see how our lives are any more valuable then men.  There are inherent differences and I don't favor lowering standards to make it easier on women.  If you can't cut it, you can't.  I know I wouldn't be able to.  

So, I guess this means I'm for it.  Although it would be nice if we never had to have another war ever again.  I know that ain't happening any time soon.
Mary Rose, Official Missionary for the Church of Beka angst.  Please join us for worship at the EI fanfic board.  Jill-- on what my name badge should say.
Proud Andromeda and Forever Knight fanfic writer
    Posted Image           Posted Image           Posted Image
Proud parent of thriving Beka and Tracy muses
Posted Image

#44 CJ AEGIS

CJ AEGIS

    Warship Guru!

  • Islander
  • 6,847 posts

Posted 14 May 2003 - 04:00 AM

Quote

Enmar: Artillery: Canons are more and more automatic these days and even if they arenít theyíre still operated by a team, not a single person that has to carry everything. I think well trained women can be a part of such a team. Inside tanks, on the other hand, shells are about half the size of canon shells and smaller body can make maneuvering inside the tank to load them much easier.

You still have to get the shells from where they are stored into artillery piece.  That consists of a large amount of manual labor by moving around very large shells by hand.  As noted above the infantry is counting with their lives on having a certain number of shells coming in when they call in a fire mission.
"History has proven too often and too recently that the nation which relaxes its defenses invites attack."
        -Fleet Admiral Nimitz
"Their sailors say they should have flight pay and sub pay both -- they're in the air half the time, under the water the other half""
        - Ernie Pyle: Aboard a DE

#45 AnneZo

AnneZo
  • Islander
  • 688 posts

Posted 14 May 2003 - 06:17 AM

Rhea, on May 13 2003, 07:39 PM, said:

Actually, that report says women are currently doing many combat tasks formerly done by men and doing them well. What they were specifically addressing was *front line combat* and some of the reservations about putting women into front line combat are societal rather than physical (and yes, some are physical). One example given was a fear that a cohesive combat unit couldn't be formed in a mixed-sex squad, although they were of the opinion that same-sex squads might work.
Yeah, well, they said "cohesive combat units" couldn't be formed with people of different races not that long ago.

They got over it.  :)

#46 AnneZo

AnneZo
  • Islander
  • 688 posts

Posted 14 May 2003 - 06:22 AM

G1223, on May 13 2003, 08:44 PM, said:

Yes it's learned behavior 10,000 yrs of it we should be able to unlearn it in what 5 maybe 10 min's
Actually, in many cultures, females routinely fought alongside men. In some cultures female warriors were more feared than the males because they could be so much more violent and bloodthirsty.

It all depends on the culture and the times you're talking about.

(Edited to say I see someone else got to this remark first and did a better job with it. :) I'm not an anthropologist and was feeling too lazy to go search for source links.)

Edited by AnneZo, 14 May 2003 - 06:24 AM.


#47 ElJay

ElJay

    Harperchondriac

  • Islander
  • 4,821 posts

Posted 14 May 2003 - 04:03 PM

Good point, Annie Zo and Rhea.  I'll add just a bit to it, if I may.  Check out your American Military History and you will find that women, often disguised as men, fought bravely in every conflict this nation has ever had, right from the very beginning.  Most served with distinction and many were only found out when they were wounded and needed medical aid.  Some managed to serve out their entire time with no one the wiser.  Apparently, they didn't slow things down too badly.  If anyone wants names and quotes, I'll gladly dig out my "Women In Military Service to America" calender for the year 2001 (I think) and supply them.  Or check out WIMSA's website, if you'd like.  It needs the support.  Edited to add link:    http://www.womensmemorial.org/


SSGT L. J. Knickerbocker
(formerly USAF)
Charter Member WIMSA

Edited by ElJay, 14 May 2003 - 04:05 PM.

US VETERAN AND PROUD OF IT!

Chivalry is a matter of both deeds and words.

#48 Kosh

Kosh

    Criag Ferguson For President!

  • Islander
  • 11,149 posts

Posted 14 May 2003 - 04:10 PM

AnneZo, on May 13 2003, 11:04 PM, said:

Rhea, on May 13 2003, 07:39 PM, said:

Actually, that report says women are currently doing many combat tasks formerly done by men and doing them well. What they were specifically addressing was *front line combat* and some of the reservations about putting women into front line combat are societal rather than physical (and yes, some are physical). One example given was a fear that a cohesive combat unit couldn't be formed in a mixed-sex squad, although they were of the opinion that same-sex squads might work.
Yeah, well, they said "cohesive combat units" couldn't be formed with people of different races not that long ago.

They got over it.  :)
The perfect responce.
Can't Touch This!!

#49 Rhea

Rhea

  • Islander
  • 16,433 posts

Posted 14 May 2003 - 05:03 PM

Kosh, on May 14 2003, 06:57 AM, said:

AnneZo, on May 13 2003, 11:04 PM, said:

Rhea, on May 13 2003, 07:39 PM, said:

Actually, that report says women are currently doing many combat tasks formerly done by men and doing them well. What they were specifically addressing was *front line combat* and some of the reservations about putting women into front line combat are societal rather than physical (and yes, some are physical). One example given was a fear that a cohesive combat unit couldn't be formed in a mixed-sex squad, although they were of the opinion that same-sex squads might work.
Yeah, well, they said "cohesive combat units" couldn't be formed with people of different races not that long ago.

They got over it.  :)
The perfect responce.
I agree absolutely. That was another on my "get over it" list. :p :p
The future is better than the past. Despite the crepehangers, romanticists, and anti-intellectuals, the world steadily grows better because the human mind, applying itself to environment, makes it better. With hands...with tools...with horse sense and science and engineering.
- Robert A. Heinlein

When I don’t understand, I have an unbearable itch to know why. - RAH


Everything is theoretically impossible, until it is done. One could write a history of science in reverse by assembling the solemn pronouncements of highest authority about what could not be done and could never happen.  - RAH

#50 Enmar

Enmar

    a Sabra

  • Islander
  • 2,021 posts

Posted 14 May 2003 - 05:56 PM

ElJay, on May 14 2003, 04:50 PM, said:

If anyone wants names and quotes, I'll gladly dig out my "Women In Military Service to America" calender for the year 2001 (I think) and supply them. 
Yes, plllllllllease? :wideeyed:
Feminism is the radical notion that women are human beings.

#51 ElJay

ElJay

    Harperchondriac

  • Islander
  • 4,821 posts

Posted 15 May 2003 - 03:50 PM

Glad to, enmar.  Until I can find that calendar, these links should prove to be interesting reading:

http://www.womensmem...Highlights.html

http://www.womensmem...DidYouKnow.html

http://www.womensmem...g/WHM982.html#3

I'm not really trying to be a pain about this, but the fact is, we've ALWAYS been in service and often in "harm's way" ... it just wasn't acknowledged.  Joan of Arc was not an isolated case.

Edited by ElJay, 15 May 2003 - 04:05 PM.

US VETERAN AND PROUD OF IT!

Chivalry is a matter of both deeds and words.

#52 CJ AEGIS

CJ AEGIS

    Warship Guru!

  • Islander
  • 6,847 posts

Posted 15 May 2003 - 10:06 PM

Quote

Enmar:
1. Training programs were designed for men and other programs, designed for them, might prove more effective for women. This isnít fair because it takes men as default and helps prove women canít do itÖ itís a cyclic proof.

Dividing boot camps into "boys" and "girls" is a huge mistake that I hope we never have to see.  It would be giving any type of meaningful integration a knock into the trash right there.  That plays right into the hands of those who say cohesive units canít be formed.  You might be able to throw together an integrated program that manages to work well for both sexes but any type of division is a mistake.  

Quote

Enmar: 2. Muscle mass isnít everything. Again, IIRC, womenís muscles are more effective when theyíre the same size as menís.

IIRC correct that still doesnít totally compensate for the muscle mass issues though.  Indeed as I said earlier women should be allowed in to any role they want once they manage to make the same basic requirements a male fulfilling the same job would have.  I think usmarox provides an enlightening personal story about the current problem with women in the military.  You should be allowed in only when you can carry your own weight at that job and fulfill the standards required to do it.
"History has proven too often and too recently that the nation which relaxes its defenses invites attack."
        -Fleet Admiral Nimitz
"Their sailors say they should have flight pay and sub pay both -- they're in the air half the time, under the water the other half""
        - Ernie Pyle: Aboard a DE

#53 ElJay

ElJay

    Harperchondriac

  • Islander
  • 4,821 posts

Posted 16 May 2003 - 02:43 AM

^^ No problem with that at all.  I've always been all about equal opportunity (including equal responsibility)  I've seen and worked with too many people of either gender who weren't competent to do their jobs.  In fact, the reason I am no longer in service is an injury that rendered me unfit to perform my war-time duties--faced with that, I requested disability discharge rather than risk the safety of my commrades.

Enmar, I found the calendar, finally.  The specific article I wanted was February, 2002; "In Disguise and Anonymous," but much more information is available at the WIMSA website.  It starts with a name familar to most of us--Molly Pitcher, who accompanied her husband to the revolutionary war and stepped up to the cannon when he fell in battle.  Another "Molly," Margaret Corbin, aka "Captain Molly," took command of her husband's cannon when he was taken down at the battle of Fort Washington in 1777.  She was wounded during the battle and taken prisoner by the British when the Americans surrendered.  She was granted a pension by the Continental Congress in 1779 for her service and is buried at West Point.

From the WIMSA website: "Another "lost heroine" is Tyonajanegen, a member of the Oneida tribe married to an American Army officer of Dutch descent. According to the account of a nineteenth century historian, Lyman Draper, who interviewed eye witnesses to the Battle of Oriskany near Ft. Stanwix, Tyonajanegen rode into battle at her husband's side. During the battle, Tyonajanegen loaded her husband's gun for him to fire after a wound in the wrist rendered him able to fire but not load the gun."

Jennie Hodgers enlisted under the name of Albert D. J. Chashier with the 95th Illinois Regiment.  She fought in some of the worst battles of the Civil War, but survived undetected.  She apparently maintained her new persona for many years, only being discovered many years later, when she was brought to a Veteran's hospital for treatment.

Bill Newcom marched 600 miles with 'his' unit, the Missouri Volunteer Infantry and served for more than a year before being discovered to be a woman.  She was "released from duty as a soldier" in 1847, but not mustered out until October of 1848.

In spite of these examples, it wasn't legal for women to join the US Military until the the creation of the Army Nurse Corps in 1901, when the manpower shortage made it absolutely essential to allow women to serve to fill slots that would otherwise be left "unmanned."

Edited by ElJay, 16 May 2003 - 02:51 AM.

US VETERAN AND PROUD OF IT!

Chivalry is a matter of both deeds and words.

#54 Delvo

Delvo
  • Islander
  • 9,273 posts

Posted 16 May 2003 - 02:54 AM

Enmar, on May 13 2003, 03:32 PM, said:

IIRC there are two problems with this claim:
1. Training programs were designed for men and other programs, designed for them, might prove more effective for women. This isn?t fair because it takes men as default and helps prove women can?t do it? it?s a cyclic proof.
2. Muscle mass isn?t everything. Again, IIRC, women?s muscles are more effective when they?re the same size as men?s.

I don?t like "honourary men" or variations on it. It isn?t cute, its about good=men and there's no other way to pronounce your appreciation
On point one: Training is just training. Granted, strength training is strength training and speed training is speed training and endurance training is endurance training, but there's no such thing as male or female training. There's no way to design a training program that women will show a better result from than men, or vice versa. PC though it is not, men just outperform women under the same training because men and women are different critters.

On point two: Actually, no, about women's muscles being more effective at equal size. But it wouldn't matter, because it's RESULTS we're talking about here, and women's muscles being the same size, or even near enough for such a supposed advantage to show up in actual performance, typically is not the case. Also, yes, muscle mass isn't everything, but it also isn't the male body's only superiority to women's. Men also have better speed, endurance, durability, reflexes, gemetrical thinking, and such. This doesn't add to the case for excluding women, because there are always the rare ones on both sides, but it does mean that as long as standards are equal, there will never be anywhere near as many women in the armed forces as men, even if you not only let them in but also give them incentives like higher pay than men. It just can't work.

On that last point without a number: Well, in the armed forces, good=men. Yes, that's how it is. Military activity is a manly thing, so men are better at it, and being better at it is being more manly. Don't pretend that's a prejudice, though; it's just an acknowledgement of the fact that we're talking about a particular context here, not life in general, and any particular contex can turn out to be something that some people are better suited to than others.

#55 Delvo

Delvo
  • Islander
  • 9,273 posts

Posted 16 May 2003 - 03:21 AM

Rhea, on May 13 2003, 04:47 PM, said:

women didn't always sit by the fire and nurse babies... I'll give you a cogent example: the Celts. Under Brehon law women... fought in battle alongside the men... Typical male and female roles vary widely from culture to culture, never mind era to era.
There's a difference between what people can be pressed into doing and what is best and the "natural" or "default" behavior. I recall one guy at another forum who  claimed that it's healthy to fast/starve and gorge, instead of eating what most people think of as normal amounts of food every day. He claimed that it's our natural condition because for most of our pre-history, food wasn't available very consistently. But he was fogetting to distinguish between what's BEST and what's TOLERABLE when circumstances require it.

Another example: Very seldom do humans eat a meat-eating animal. They can and will do it, if protein is very scarce in their area, but most of the time, they have options, and when there's an option they go for plant-eaters. Why? There's a slight difference in the nutrients you get, but primarily it's a matter of efficiency; you're nutritionally better off eating 20 sheep yourself than feeding a dog 20 sheep and only getting to eat 1 dog for yourself out of the deal.

This is another such case. You might notice that, while most cultures assign men to the hunting and fighting, and some include the women, there are none that assign it only to women. So clearly the two are not interchangible here; a closer look is warranted at why they might make the decisions they did, when nature itself clearly tends to steer the outcome in a certain direction. Given that men are ALWAYS included and women sometimes aren't, it makes sense that women are included when they have to be, and aren't when there's a choice. The Celts' military habits, for example, are known from their encounters with Rome, which was so vastly surperior to them that the Celts were driven to desperation in the face of being helplessly mowed down. They needed to field as many combatants as they could possibly get. It would be an interesting study for someone to examine what other factors go into it, what things the various examples like this might have in common. But the fact can't be escaped, that men and women generally tend to divide labor in ways that are natural and determined by our inherently different natures. Different cultures just tweek the details.

#56 Delvo

Delvo
  • Islander
  • 9,273 posts

Posted 16 May 2003 - 03:33 AM

AnneZo, on May 13 2003, 10:04 PM, said:

Yeah, well, they said "cohesive combat units" couldn't be formed with people of different races not that long ago.

They got over it.  :)
Actually, back then, it was probably true. It's not a matter of getting over anything, it's a matter of taking reality as it is and responding accordingly. If many of your society can't get along with each other because of prejudices, you're free to try to ditch the prejudices, but you can't use the armed forces to do it. Try to force people together who aren't ready for it, and you create an army/navy/whatever that can't do its job. Armed forces aren't about the way things should be; they're about doing what works. Put me in charge of an army for a country where the unfreckled are prejudiced against the freckled, and I'll exclude the freckled, not because I hate freckled people (I actually like freckles on the opposite sex), but because my job is to make the army as effective as it can be, not to use it for the country's internal sociopolitical debates or to force my sociopolitical ideas on anyone. If that's what you want done, organize some kind of campaign in the civilian arena in your country and leave the armed forces out of it, lest you diminish their ability. Fixing internal social ills isn't a military job.

#57 bandit

bandit

    Bond, Fuzzy Bond

  • Islander
  • 1,026 posts

Posted 17 May 2003 - 03:20 PM

i dont think women should be allowed into infantry positions in the front lines, not becouse they are more valueble, or that they need to be protected, it is far more simple.
upper body strength.
it is a proven medical fact. women are simply not as strong in ther arms and chest as a man.
if you dont see how this is pertinant, carry a 50 pound bag of something on a 10 mile hike, you will get the point.
now, in tanks, or helicopters, ext where you arent lugging around 130 pounds of gear on your person all day, that is fine.
but not light infantry.

Edited by bandit, 17 May 2003 - 03:21 PM.


#58 AnneZo

AnneZo
  • Islander
  • 688 posts

Posted 17 May 2003 - 03:34 PM

CJ AEGIS, on May 15 2003, 11:13 AM, said:

Dividing boot camps into "boys" and "girls" is a huge mistake that I hope we never have to see.  It would be giving any type of meaningful integration a knock into the trash right there.  That plays right into the hands of those who say cohesive units canít be formed.  You might be able to throw together an integrated program that manages to work well for both sexes but any type of division is a mistake. 
I agree.  The only way to teach them to work together is to train them together.  Make no differences, right from day one.

#59 AnneZo

AnneZo
  • Islander
  • 688 posts

Posted 17 May 2003 - 03:37 PM

Delvo, on May 15 2003, 04:40 PM, said:

Actually, back then, it was probably true. It's not a matter of getting over anything, it's a matter of taking reality as it is and responding accordingly. If many of your society can't get along with each other because of prejudices, you're free to try to ditch the prejudices, but you can't use the armed forces to do it. Try to force people together who aren't ready for it, and you create an army/navy/whatever that can't do its job. Armed forces aren't about the way things should be; they're about doing what works. Put me in charge of an army for a country where the unfreckled are prejudiced against the freckled, and I'll exclude the freckled, not because I hate freckled people (I actually like freckles on the opposite sex), but because my job is to make the army as effective as it can be, not to use it for the country's internal sociopolitical debates or to force my sociopolitical ideas on anyone. If that's what you want done, organize some kind of campaign in the civilian arena in your country and leave the armed forces out of it, lest you diminish their ability. Fixing internal social ills isn't a military job.
That's true, but one of the ways they got over their mistaken belief that people of different races couldn't form integrated groups was to form such groups.

Fixing internal social ills might not be the job of the military, but it's also not the military's job to perpetrate sterotypes and bigotry.

As I understand it (from long-ago reading), most officers were, in fact, quite surprised by how quickly most of the integrated groups adjusted.

#60 Talkie Toaster

Talkie Toaster

    There's no Shepard without Vakarian

  • Islander
  • 1,136 posts

Posted 17 May 2003 - 05:29 PM

AnneZo, on May 17 2003, 04:41 AM, said:

I agree.  The only way to teach them to work together is to train them together.  Make no differences, right from day one.
But in this case, 99% of female inductees will not make the grade when they have finished training.
Blessed is the mind too small for doubt.



Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Women in Combat, Military, Women

0 user(s) are browsing this forum

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users