So now the Secretary of Defense has announced the military will allow women in combat. This egalitarian move supposedly clears the way for better promotion opportunities for women in the Army, heretofore, barred by law from combat roles.
The prohibition of women in combat not only had to do with clear, cogent arguments (often made convincingly by women in the military who know better) that the differences between the male and female physique bring more risks to troops in hand to hand front line war-fighting and could threaten a mission but more with unit morale and long term sustainability in the desolate environments.
No one ever denied that women, or men who are fit for military service but who may be unfit to do a full body lift of a 225 pound wounded soldier, running from incoming fire, while weighed down with a 75 pound ruck sack and weapons on your shoulder, should be denied promotions because of their inability for “tip of the spear” service, if their primary role is being performed with distinction (yet even that is the Army’s business and not ours anyway: it is not a democracy in the military, believe me).
Yet, like so many other recent changes in core military policies, and using the Armed Forces as a veritable petri dish for social experimentation, this new change will, no doubt, get mixed in with the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, women serving on submarines, and other gigantic shifts in US military operations, with little to no opposition.
When these monumental changes, and the extraordinary amounts of money that will be spent on indoctrinating troops into accepting them, are compounded with the threat of dangerous cuts to the military because of sequestration, and the inability to plan for the defense of our nation (read the current cover of the Army Times to see just how real those deep, budgetary cuts are impacting Army plans), we get not only a threat to the military’s mission, but the Administration has the gall to make these radical, leftist moves on the military while this nation is at war.
Who are we kidding? We can withdraw from one front, but in this new century global war waged by radical Islamic terrorists, the “front” is always moving. Western Africa now looms as a new battle front. We are at war and to deny it is naive, but to make sweeping changes in military operations plus use the military budget as an expendable pawn in a political chess match is like lobbing hand grenades into our own barracks! Enough is enough. It is getting to the brink of self-destruction.
No. It is not time for putting women onto the front line. It is time for our strongest young men, who always must stand first, to know that we are not playing social games while they are climbing through mountains in far-away places chasing Taliban, or fighting door to door in African terrorist-infested urban centers. It is time to support them, and the men and women who provide cover for them, with our prayers, our thanks, and most of all, by letting them do their job without constantly sending them through more sensitivity training classes or threatening to cut off essential supplies. It is wrong.
So who will stand in the Congress and call this latest plan what it is: another liberal agenda being forced on the US Armed Forces. And who in Congress will have the courage to actually say, “Enough is enough. We are at war.”
At minimum, can’t reasonable people who disagree affirm this: “Men and women of good will may differ on important issues. Let us not debate those most arguable issues and implement extraordinary changes in operations while our troops are being fired on. There is a time for everything. Now is not the time to make another sweeping change to the military.”
Michael A. Milton, Ph.D., is a graduate of the Eisenhower Command and General Staff College, the Defense Language Institute, a former Top Secret Navy security service member, and a veteran with more than two decades of experience in the Armed Forces. He is also the author ofSilent No More: Why the Church Must Speak Biblically to State and Culture.