Ms. magazine  -- more than a magazine a movement

SIGN UP FOR MS. DIGEST, JOBS, NEWS AND ALERTS

FEMINIST WIRE NEWSBRIEFS

ABOUT
SEE CURRENT ISSUE
SHOP MS. STORE
MS. IN THE CLASSROOM
FEMINIST DAILY WIRE
FEMINIST RESOURCES
PRESS
JOBS AT MS.
READ BACK ISSUES
CONTACT
RSS (XML)
 
feminist wire | daily newsbriefs

May-16-05

House Subcommittee Approves Ban on Women in Combat

In an effort to keep women from "direct ground combat," the House Armed Services subcommittee on military personnel approved a measure to ban women from some combat support units. The legislation was proposed as an amendment to the 2006 defense authorization bill, according to the Washington Post, and would require that the Army bar women from serving “in any company-size unit that provides support to combat battalions or their subordinate companies.”

The amendment passed along party lines, 9-7, led by House Armed Services Committee Chairman Duncan Hunter who claimed that “the American people have never wanted to have women in combat and this reaffirms this policy,” according to the Washington Times. The Army Times reports that the ranking Democrat on the subcommittee, Representative Vic Snyder (AR), opposed the measure because “no reports have been brought to our attention citing evidence that having women in these roles is currently causing a problem for our military,” and the measure could block women from thousands of posts that are now open to them. Representative Loretta Sanchez (D-CA) told the Post that with this amendment, “you are sending a message that women can’t do this job.”

The amendment passed over the objections of Army personnel. In Iraq and Afghanistan, women have engaged in battle, been killed or wounded, and the Toledo Blade reports that over 60,000 women have been deployed in support of the Iraq war since 2002. “The Army has to understand the regulation that says women’s can’t be placed in direct fire situations is archaic and not attainable,” Lt. Col. Cheri Provancha told the Post. “You can’t tell me I’m not being shot at. You can’t tell me I can’t handle combat.” The Post quotes a letter from Gen. Richard A. Cody, the Army’s Vice Chief of Staff, in which he said “the proposed amendment will cause confusion in the ranks and will send the wrong signal to the brave young men and women fighting the Global War on Terrorism.” According to the Post, Jennifer Guay, the first woman to be assigned as an infantry combat medic, emailed her thoughts on the amendment, saying “I refuse to have my right as a soldier taken from me because of my gender. It is my right to defend my country… I am well aware of the danger… Let me (us) do our job.”

Media Resources: Army Times 5/12/05; Toledo Blade 5/15/05; Washington Times 5/16/05; Washington Post 5/12/05; Washington Post 5/13/05


© Feminist Majority Foundation, publisher of Ms. magazine

If you liked this story, consider making a tax-deductible donation to support Ms. magazine.

 

 

Send to a Friend
Their
Your
Comments
(optional)


More Feminist News

10/31/2014 Federal Judge Exempts Another Catholic University from Birth Control Coverage - A federal judge ruled Tuesday that Ave Maria University, a Catholic university in Florida, does not have to comply with federal rules meant to ensure that covered employees can exercise their right to obtain birth control at no cost. The Affordable Care Act requires all new health insurance plans to cover all FDA-approved contraceptives - such as the pill, emergency contraceptives, and IUDs - without charging co-pays, deductibles or co-insurance. . . .
 
10/31/2014 Women of Color in Tennessee Are United in Opposition to Amendment 1 - Just days before the general election in Tennessee, a coalition of community leaders, clergy, and advocates led a press conference encouraging women of color to vote no on Amendment 1, a dangerous and far-reaching measure on the state's ballot. SisterReach, a grassroots organization focused on "empowering, organizing, and mobilizing women and girls in the community around their reproductive and sexual health to make informed decisions about themselves," organized the press conference "to call attention to the unique concerns Black and poor communities throughout Shelby County and across the state of Tennessee face on a daily basis" and to emphasize how the upcoming election "could further limit [black women's] reproductive, economic, political, and social autonomy." "We assemble today to impress upon black women and women of color, many of whom are heads of households, to get out and vote," said SisterReacher Founder and CEO Cherisse Scott at the event. SisterReach has been educating voters about the particularly dangerous impact of Amendment 1 on women of color. . . .
 
10/30/2014 Medication Abortion Access Threatened by Oklahoma Court Ruling - An Oklahoma state district court judge has refused to block a state law restricting medication abortion, clearing the way for the law to go into affect on November 1. The Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice, together with a local abortion clinic in Tulsa, challenged HB 2684 in September, arguing that the law was an unconstitutional restriction on non-surgical abortion in the earliest weeks of pregnancy. . . .