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Thursday, June 12, 2014

New study by IDF reserve colonel says women don't belong in combat

A new book by an IDF reserve colonel that studied women's role in combat units says that the women shouldn't be there.
"The study found that a particularly high percentage of women who served in combat roles suffered physical harm during their service and will suffer for the rest of their lives from ruptured discs, stress fractures in the pelvis, uterine prolapse and more,” Sagi told Maariv/NRG.
While men also suffer injuries during their military service, he said, studies prove that the female rate of injury is much higher and that the seriousness of the average injury is greater, with entire platoons sometimes unable to function because of the physical state of the female soldiers. The injuries referred to are incurred in training and routine deployment – not actual combat.
"The idea that there is no difference between men and women in the army is a ridiculous one that has been disproved in all of the world's militaries,” Sagi insisted. “One cannot defeat evolution. In days in which a meaningful reduction of the defense budget is required – there is no doubt that the matter of placing women in combat roles requires reassessment.”
"People will read the book and discover that they have been misled in everything pertaining to women's service in the military,” he predicted. “The integration of women in the army has not succeeded, but everyone keeps shouting at us, that we must open before women the remaining units that have not yet been opened to them. I do not know what will help understand that this is a serious mistake.”
The book describes ludicrous measures by which women's lesser suitabilty for combat roles is masked. These include lowering the bar of requirements for women wishing to enter combat units, placing benches next to walls that trainees jump over (only for the women to use), running laps in circles (instead of straight-line runs from point A to point B) to make it less obvious that the women are lagging behind the men, and more.
The IDF told Maariv/NRG that Sagi's claims are “completely baseless” and that women's integration into combat units has been a success. “Female combat soldiers are dealt with in a supervised manner, which takes into account their medical, physiological and social needs,” the army said.
 Waiting to see if the same people come out of the woodwork as did the last time I raised this issue.

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At 2:01 AM, Blogger Sunlight said...

It actually turns out that a (very) few women can pass the initial strength, etc. tests. But, as the linked article says, they start to break down. There's an article... I'll see if I can come up with it again... written by a woman US Marine, who deployed to mountainous Afghanistan, kept up, carried her stuff, but started breaking down. She had trouble lifting her toes while walking (after a long time up there), had trouble getting in and out of a jeep. She concluded that women can do the job, but can't keep it going indefinitely. Given the upgrades women have made in capabilities, I'd think it could be a longterm process, but without pressing the services to put them into units or assignments where others could be harmed by their muscles breaking down. You talk about an interesting biotech R&D field...even for the guys, they're designing exoskeleton type things, etc. If we can remove the contentiousness (and not press those last jobs or too long in the other jobs), I think there's a lot to learn and work toward before we get out there to Mars, for example...

At 2:25 AM, Blogger Sunlight said...

Hmm.. Here's a video interview of her. USMC Capt Katie Petronio.


Here's her article. The one posted on the Marine website is behind a member wall, but here it is on somebody's blog:


It's not either or. The Marines have female engagement teams in Israel's part of the world, which, they say, have been excellent. So, I think we should take the pressure off of it and let it meander on, without forcing things. It's the political forcing that is a bummer.

At 10:57 AM, Blogger Yitzchok said...

They are ideally suited to serving in submarines and intelligence, but it is not politically correct to put people where they belong.

At 1:02 PM, Blogger Jesterhead45 said...

Personally believe that while they should undergo training (in weapons, etc) for practical reasons with future potential advances in military exoskeletons allowing them to maintain their capabilities in combat long term, they would be more suitable at indirect warfare fields as Yitzchok Mickler above mentions along with piloting combat / medical drones.

At 2:04 PM, Blogger Chana said...

Agreed, Yitzchok Mickler. The army has the obligation, not just the right, to use it's recruits in the way most conducive to winning wars. And that definitely does not include bending statistics to produce the politically correct solution.

At 4:17 PM, Blogger Sunlight said...

Well, USMC Capt. Petronio basically says what Chana and Yitzchok say. Winning the war is the end point for field ops. But that doesn't mean that, without degrading the tip of the spear by forcing lower standards for political aims, expanding the capabilities of humans, through early age training or technology, would not be a beneficial goal. So an immutable delineation of "suitable" or "where they belong" will block off potential upgrade pathways. As Capt. Petonio points out, the political committees are out of touch in their zeal.


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