Navy SEALs to Allow Female Enrollment for the First Time
3:00 pm, June 19th | by Grace Rasmus
Women will now be able to serve in the most physically challenging combat positions in the U.S. military, including the Navy SEALs, the Army Rangers, and the Marine Infantry, according to the Times.
While we’ve known since January that women would finally be allowed to officially serve in combat roles, it was unclear which positions would be open to female military members. The Defense Department announced yesterday its plans to involve women in the very top levels of its various branches without adjusting the physical standards required for membership.
Women have been unofficially fighting (and dying) in combat in Afghanistan and Iraq for a while now, but, according to Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), the lack of official recognition severely limited women’s chances to climb up the military ranks.
“Officially recognizing women in combat will strengthen our country both morally and militarily,” the Senator said. “By officially opening combat roles, more women will be able to advance their careers to the senior ranks and increase the diversity of our military leadership.”
Recently Congress has been fighting over the issue of sexual assault in the military. A Pentagon poll estimated that about 26,000 assaults took place last year. As women start entering combat positions in greater numbers, hopefully Congress will start taking real action to fix the sexual assault epidemic.