Female Marine: Women in Infantry Is a Bad Idea
'We are not all created equal,' writes Capt. Katie Petronio
By John Johnson, Newser Staff
Posted Jul 6, 2012 12:22 PM CDT
Members of a 'female engagement team' take position before making contact with locals in an Afghan village.   (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

(Newser) – The Marines are moving toward the notion of putting more women in combat roles, and one Marine in particular—a woman—thinks it's a lousy idea. "As a combat-experienced Marine officer, and a female, I am here to tell you that we are not all created equal," writes Capt. Katie Petronio in the Marine Corps Gazette. She's worried that nowhere near enough study has been done on "gender-specific medical issues," especially on the toll they may take on females in the long run—a view she holds based on "firsthand experience" in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Petronio also complains that it's well-meaning civilians who seem to be leading the push for change, without firsthand knowledge of the consequences. This would be a huge change for the Corps, and a disastrous one, she argues. "For the long-term health of our female Marines, the Marine Corps, and US national security, steer clear of the Marine infantry community when calling for more opportunities for females," writes Petronio. Read her full essay here.

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Showing 3 of 70 comments
Jan 24, 2013 9:47 AM CST
Don't send women to war because it is "bad for their health". Send men instead, theirs seem to benefit a lot from it.
Jul 7, 2012 5:42 PM CDT
If it is all-out war women need to fight. If it is for profit bogus war (like Iraq and Afghaniranilandistan) no one should be fighting. Women can kill sleeping children as well as men.
Jul 7, 2012 4:29 PM CDT
There are many skills necessary for combat. No one is going to be good at everything. Some will have better aim, some better social skills that help morale. Some will be stronger, some more flexible. Some will have superior sensory skills, and some will be able to think quickly and accurately on their feet. Some will be healthier, some won't react to pain and hunger. Some can speak the local language, and charm everyone they encounter. Why is it that STRENGTH is the defining criterion for people on this thread? Could it be because that is the default mode for sexist thinking? Ultimately, in men's eyes, strength is the ONE thing that differentiates them from a woman, so it is always their fall-back excuse for sexism. Strength is only one of a number of considerations. I would rather be in combat with someone who didn't complain, had common sense, and that I could trust.