2013 January 24

Pentagon Approves Women in Combat


Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel on this day announced that women in the military service would be allowed to serve in combat. The new policy reversed the traditional ban on women in combat situations. Many other countries around the world had already allowed women to serve in these positions. They include Canada (1982), Germany (2001), (Norway (1985), and United Kingdom, (1991). The Pentagon had previously dropped its ban on women serving on submarines on April 29, 2010. A number of conservative spokespersons, however, continued to oppose women serving in combat.

In actual practice and because of the nature of the wars, many U.S. female service members had been in combat situations in both the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, and had been wounded and killed as a result.

Watch a New York Times report on women in combat: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GhQG3xX2k0I

Learn more: Evelyn Monahan and Rosemary Neidel Greenlee, A Few Good Women: America’s Military Women from World War I to the Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan (2010)

And more about women in the military: http://www.military.com/topics/women-in-the-military

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