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#1616 - 08/06/15 08:12 AM Re: Women joining Air Force Special Operations Units, your thoughts? [Re: denroy17]
RIKR Offline

Registered: 04/28/15
Posts: 23
Loc: Colorado Springs, CO
As of yesterday the USMC closed the doors to women for the Infantry Officer's Course. Only two women made it past the initial PT test and they were both dropped in Week 1. The USMC considers it a failed experiment and closed the doors on it.
US Special Operations Team Leader
MFF, Mountain Warfare, Combatives & SOF Medical Instructor
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#1621 - 08/06/15 12:02 PM Re: Women joining Air Force Special Operations Units, your thoughts? [Re: RIKR]
Jay_Pew Offline

Registered: 02/22/15
Posts: 37
Loc: USA
Not to knock on the Infantry, because I have boat loads of respect for them, but if women cannot pass an infantry PT test, let alone the entire course, how are they going to possibly endure the rigors of special operations selections and pipelines?

#1624 - 08/06/15 01:38 PM Re: Women joining Air Force Special Operations Units, your thoughts? [Re: Jay_Pew]
Yukon Offline

Registered: 11/16/14
Posts: 884
Loc: Anchorage AK
Originally Posted By: Jay_Pew
but if women cannot pass an infantry PT test, let alone the entire course, how are they going to possibly endure the rigors of special operations selections and pipelines?
There is no occupation-specific infantry test required for award and retention of any US Army or USMC Infantry MOS. That is part of the confusion contributing to the women integration political and social engineering drama.

The non-existence of an occupation-specific infantry test is why the Air Force's supporting the Army Combat Weather Teams, Tactical Air Control Parties, and Combat Control Teams lacked any occupational-specific or mission ready fitness standards.

BTW, the current enlisted TACP AFCS was previously known as ROMAD duty positions until 1977. Prior to 1977 ROMDs were part of both Tactical Air Control Parties and Combat Control Teams. Subsequently, during 1985 the TACP-ROMAD AFSC expanded to include allowing 7-levels, if trained-and qualified, performing JTAC duties, which was further expanded to allowing 5-levels, if trained-and qualified, to perform JTAC duties.

A onetime course standard is not a for duration of an enlistment or a career occupation-specific standard in a military occupation. Career occupation standard means there is at least an annual fitness test the individual must accomplish to retrain award of MOS/AFS/NEC and be certified as being fitness capable of perform duties of the occupation.

Further, special operations is a misnomer as there is minimal commonality to apply to every possible military occupation existing under a Special Operations unit designations or task force. For example within the Air Force both TACP and Pararescue are assigned to both conventional and special operations designated units whereas CCT and SOW are mostly, if not entirely, assigned to AFSOC owned units. The context being "Battlefield Airmen" better describes the utilization in the operational environment driving the occupational-specific fitness standards.

Basically, I'm providing simple explanation as to why caution in speculating by making unrealistic comparisons between military departments of what may or may not be decided and implemented by Secretary of Defense between now and 1 January 2016.

The only certainty is the lifting of ground combat exclusion policy put significant money into researching occupational fitness standards for combat jobs that has never existed in such lots of money for such purposes since WWII. The Air Force research effort just recently, July 2015, completed hasn't yet been submitted to the Secretary of the Air Force. The research study was run by retired Major (exercise physiologist) Neal Baumgartner, PhD.

Feature: As U.S. moves to allow women in combat, researchers help set the bar

#1641 - 08/08/15 03:58 PM Re: Women joining Air Force Special Operations Units, your thoughts? [Re: denroy17]
Yukon Offline

Registered: 11/16/14
Posts: 884
Loc: Anchorage AK
Some interesting historical tidbits of info:

Women in the Army Medical Department, Chapter XIX, page 349.
One of the lessons learned in World War I and again after the collapse of France in 1940 was that excessively long hours of work do not ultimately pay, even when considered solely on the basis of output and apart from the effect on health. . . . All of the available evidence from England and this country indicates that working hours in operations involving a fair amount of physical effort should not exceed 60-65 per week for men, and 55-60 per week for women.

Women in the Army Medical Department, Chapter XIX, page 348.

The difficulty for Wacs was that they were both female and enlisted. As females, a 12-hour day was no more appropriate for Wacs than for nurses, and even less appropriate when Wacs were used for strenuous physical labor. As one female medical officer observed, "Wacs are replacing enlisted men but you are not turning women into men by an Act of Congress. . . . Wacs are enlisted women but they are still women." On the other hand, Wacs were enlisted personnel, and if they worked only an 8-hour day the damage to the morale of enlisted men on the same wards was reported to be considerable because of the discrimination involved, and one-for-one replacement was made even more difficult.

#1673 - 08/11/15 04:00 PM Re: Women joining Air Force Special Operations Units, your thoughts? [Re: denroy17]
Yukon Offline

Registered: 11/16/14
Posts: 884
Loc: Anchorage AK
DOD Is Expanding Combat Service Opportun...ration Progress, GOA Report to Congress, July 2015.

Some excerpts:

From these laws and guidance, we identified five specific elements the services must follow in validating their gender-neutral occupational standards. Two elements are from statutory requirements: (1) ensure gender-neutral evaluation and (2) ensure standards reflect job tasks. Three elements are from Joint Staff guidance: (1) validate performance standards; (2) ensure eligibility reflects job tasks, and (3) integrate while preserving readiness, cohesion, and morale.

The Air Force review identified 7 disqualifying medical conditions that were applicable only to female airmen (including pregnancy), and 10 conditions applicable only to male airmen. It also identified one standard, for anemia, that is enforced differently between males and females due to underlying physiologic differences and baselines.

The Air Force Air Education and Training Command is planning to complete by July 2015 a study that analyzes and validates physical tests and standards on Battlefield Airmen career fields. A second Air Force study is expected to revalidate physical and mental occupational entry standards across specialties; this study is expected to be completed in September 2015.

The special operations components—the Army Special Operations Command, Naval Special Warfare Command, Marine Corps Special Operations Command, and Air Force Special Operations Command—are validating standards for those military occupational physically demanding tasks and the physical abilities needed to perform them. By observing performance of the tasks and surveying subject-matter experts to confirm the specific tasks required for each occupation, the planned approach intends to confirm that the appropriate tasks have been identified and described.

In March 2015, the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness provided implementing guidance for this statutory requirement,and directed the Secretaries of each military department to provide a written report regarding their validation of individual occupational standards by September 30, 2015.

Subsequently, service officials have stated that some of those recommendation timeframes have shifted to a later point to synchronize with the Marine Corps recommendations that are now scheduled to occur in late September and early October 2015, as shown in figure 3. One reason provided by Air Force officials to support the timeline shifts was to consider impacts of another services’ recommendation to open a closed occupation or position, such as when there is no viable career path in an occupation because the majority of positions serve with another services’ closed unit.

My input: The test bolded above pertinent to no visible career path is most applicable to TACP, SOW and Combat Weather Parachutists and AF EOD because all the positions of concern exist to support other services' closed units.

#1713 - 08/17/15 05:36 PM Re: Women joining Air Force Special Operations Units, your thoughts? [Re: denroy17]
Yukon Offline

Registered: 11/16/14
Posts: 884
Loc: Anchorage AK
History made: Army Ranger School to graduate its first female students ever By Dan Lamothe, The Washington Post August 17 at 7:15 PM

Two female soldiers will graduate from the Army’s grueling Ranger School on Friday, becoming the first women to ever complete what is considered one of the U.S. military’s most difficult and premier courses to develop elite fighters and leaders, a senior Army official said.

The accomplishment marks a major breakthrough for women in the armed services at a time when each of the military branches is required to examine how to integrate women into jobs like infantryman in which they have never been allowed to serve. But even as the two new female graduates will be the first women allowed to wear the prestigious Ranger Tab on their uniforms, they still are not allowed to try out for the elite 75th Ranger Regiment, a Special Operations force that remains closed to women and has its own separate, exhausting requirements and training.

[Will the Army open its elite Ranger Regiment to women? A controversial decision awaits.]

The women will receive the Ranger Tab alongside dozens of male service members in a ceremony at Fort Benning, Ga., the home of Ranger School’s headquarters, a senior Army official said Monday night. The official spoke on condition of anonymity while the Army finalized a news release.

The event is expected to draw not only family and friends, but hundreds of well-wishers and media from across the country. The female graduates are expected to speak to the media for the first time Thursday alongside instructors and other soldiers at Ranger School.

The women have not been identified by the Army, but both are officers and graduates of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y., Army officials said. The female graduates started Ranger School on April 20 alongside 380 men and 17 other female soldiers in the first class to ever include women. The female soldiers were allowed into Ranger School as part of the Army’s ongoing assessment of how to better integrate women.

Some skeptics, especially in the military, have questioned whether the women were given an easier path to graduation. But senior Army officials have insisted that is not the case, and opened Ranger School to media for a few days during each phase to underscore the point and allow Ranger instructors and others involved in their evaluation to speak.

The course includes three phases: The Darby Phase at Fort Benning, the Mountain Phase in northern Georgia’s Chattahoochee National Forest and the Florida Phase on and around Eglin Air Force Base on the Florida Panhandle. About 4,000 students attempt Ranger School each year, with some 1,600 — 40 percent — graduating. They include some service members who serve in the Ranger Regiment, but also many others who serve in jobs ranging from military police to helicopter pilot.

The course is 61 days for students who complete each phase on the first try. But only a minority do so. In the April class, for example, 37 of the 380 male students — about 10 percent — advanced directly through training, graduating earlier this summer. The remainder of the students — including all of the women — have struggled more than that.

The nineteen female students were whittled to eight in April during an initial assessment that includes everything from chin-ups to push-ups to an exhausting 12-mile road march through Fort Benning’s hills while carrying a full combat load. All eight women then failed the first Darby Phase twice, and only three were allowed to try Ranger School again. They did so as a “Day 1 recycle,” an option that is offered on occasion to both men and women who excel in some aspects of Ranger School, but fall short in something specific that can be improved.

Two of the three women left then passed through the Mountain Phase on the first try in July, and completed the 17-day Florida Phase over the weekend. The third woman was held back in the Mountain Phase last month; her status was not immediately clear Monday night.

#1719 - 08/18/15 11:09 AM Re: Women joining Air Force Special Operations Units, your thoughts? [Re: California275]
AStelmack Offline

Registered: 08/14/15
Posts: 19
Loc: Grand Forks AFB, ND
Cali I 100% agree with your post. Women have proven time and time again that they have the physical capacity and abilities to perform. Look at the cross-fit women's champs: they're insanely fit, hell more than I am. I know a female who crushes the PT test every year and I would be willing to be she could easily complete the PJ PAST entry level requirements. However, she lacks mental fortitude, which is what I'd like to get into:

Male/Female brain differences
When it comes to performing activities that require spatial skills, like navigating directions, men generally do better. "Women use the cerebral cortex for solving problems that require navigational skills. Men use an entirely different area, mainly the left hippocampus -- a nucleus deep inside the brain that's not activated in the women's brains during navigational tasks," Geary tells WebMD. The hippocampus, he explains, automatically codes where you are in space. As a result, Geary says: "Women are more likely to rely on landmark cues: they might suggest you turn at the 7-11 and make a right at the church, whereas men are more likely to navigate via depth reckoning -- go east, then west, etc."

(this is also why men are better drivers, which is in another article)

Men's brains generally have more grey matter, that is, brain tissue used for thinking spacially. We're better at geometry and precognition, however not as good with fine motor skills or language skills. In a combat situation when ***** will hit the fan, and you've got a landscape riddled with obstacles and moving targets, and a team is taking heavy fire, genetically a man will outperform a counterattack better than a woman.

This differences in how human's brains are wired from males and females and the difference in grey & white matter are also directly related to the desire for one to succeed in stressful situations. This is why men have been shown as the guardians of a family/castle/large track of land and women are nurturing and build excellent relationships between friends and families.

Women should not be allowed in combat roles. This isn't because I'm some misogynist who wants them behind an oven, but because it's degrading to the integrity mission effectiveness and our ability to control a war zone. For ~250,000 years, males have been the primary hunters and fighters not because of "***** YEAH BEER AND TITS AND FOOTBAWL PLATINUM MAN CARD" but because as a species, that is our role in this world.

No one is drafting women into these roles, but allowing them in this day and age w/ the pressure of women to leave gender studies and liberal arts degrees and seek more opportunities in the STEM world is synonymous with Vogue saying red pumps will get you laid better than blue flats, so wear that.

tl;dr It's just a political move to shut up the SJW landwhales on Tumblr and political correctness + anal annihilation = you being a bigot for thinking conservatively.

#1721 - 08/18/15 12:21 PM Re: Women joining Air Force Special Operations Units, your thoughts? [Re: denroy17]
ShortyZ99 Offline

Registered: 11/19/14
Posts: 32
Loc: Virginia

#1722 - 08/18/15 12:59 PM Re: Women joining Air Force Special Operations Units, your thoughts? [Re: denroy17]
Yukon Offline

Registered: 11/16/14
Posts: 884
Loc: Anchorage AK
The U.S. Army Ranger School is not a Military Occupation Specialty initial entry neither is it a specific assignment into a duty position course in terms of qualifying individuals to be rangers, commandos, raiders, marauders or elite infantry. The context being is it cannot and should not be considered as having any similarities connections to being occupation-specific training as is provided for award of any of the Battlefield Airman AFSCs, Army Special Forces Branch MOSs ( 18B--Special Forces Weapons Sergeant , 18C--Special Forces Engineer Sergeant, 18D- Special Forces Medical Sergeant 18E--Special Forces Communications Sergeant) Navy Special Warfare NECs, or Marine Raider MOSs).

The military combat capability concern isn’t about a difference between men and women, masculinity and femininity. Neither is it about leading all levels of organizations in a peacetime military.

Each level of combat unit organization requires a different quality of leading. There is a demarcation between enlisted and NCO for the same reasons as there is a demarcation between Company Grade Officer, Field Grade Officer and Flag Officer. Unfortunately the demarcations between the three commissioned officer command grades of Company, Field, and Flag also comes with different size of organization being tactically led in the fight to win as well as a larger scope from tactical leading the smaller tactical unit with command in an immediate area to strategically lead larger numbers of tactical units in a larger area of operations to dominate and control.

The Korean War and subsequently the South East Asia conflicts, to a lesser degree, demonstrated beyond question being designated (appointed) leader in the peacetime military is less demanding than obtaining and sustaining unit integrity in the face of the enemy or in extraordinary demands to march significant distances under harsh conditions to reinforce and strengthen sieged positions.

Anybody can make it through a demanding inconvenient 61-day course that has train-up prerequisites (course prerequisites are needed necessity), the problem is readiness and availability of the individual to be utilized after getting this training. It is here there is much similarity to obtaining and sustaining adequate or sufficient quality or level of physical fitness to be there fighting. In this regard the 1947 FM 21-20, Physical Training concisely and precisely identified that although individuals can be trained up to needed levels of physical fitness within 10-15 weeks, keeping individuals at this level of fitness is difficult when most individuals lack the willingness to sustain their physical fitness. The same is true pertinent to having and sustaining willingness to command and lead troops in action.

The purpose of the Ranger School was never to train elite infantry soldiers to fight or to be commandos, raiders or marauders but to develop through training simulations the mental agility to employ already possessed infantry competencies and needed level of physical fitness (course prerequisites). Thus the successfully completing the course is not about being the roughest, toughest, meanest bastard or bitch in the unit, but about having competence in having sufficient situational awareness and mental, emotional, cognitive wherewithal to not only understand the tactical situation but to also lead others in the engaging in activities to successfully overcome becoming a rout, defeat, surrender, or complete decimation of the unit.

In this regard career has operational capability significance due to career cannot be separated from individual be both available and ready to competently perform “ALL” duties of the military occupation.

Both the Korean War and the Southeast Asia conflicts found military with too many officers and NCOs being both reluctant to lead others into combat and lacking adequate/sufficient level of combat fitness to be in combat. This is the reason why the US Army Ranger School was created in 1952; this is the operational capability why the pass/fail human performance standards shouldn’t be diluted for career opportunity diversity purposes. When purpose of Ranger School gets diverted or transformed to favoring being more promotable regardless of awarded MOS and without respect to developing competent capability and willingness to lead others in action then there will no longer be an operational capability need for the Ranger School to exist.

#1726 - 08/18/15 07:04 PM Re: Women joining Air Force Special Operations Units, your thoughts? [Re: denroy17]
Yukon Offline

Registered: 11/16/14
Posts: 884
Loc: Anchorage AK
U.S. May Allow Female SEALS By Wendy Laursen 2015-08-18 19:32:50 MARLINK

In an interview on Monday, Jonathan Greenert, U.S. chief of naval operations, said the Coronado’s Naval Special Warfare command will soon report on whether it can accommodate women as SEALs.

The elite Navy Sea, Air and Land teams could include women as soon as 2016. Greenert said, “I see no reason (not) to say, ‘Here are our standards. Who wants to be a SEAL? You’ve got to meet the standards,” Greenert said. “Frankly, that’s the path we are headed down, but we’re not done yet.”

The Pentagon is almost finished a review of the physical standards for men and women and the effect of admitting women into elite combat forces. The review is part of a broader Department of Defense mandate reversing a 1994 ban on women in combat. The ban was lifted in January 2013.

However, the Associated Press revealed earlier this year that surveys undertaken within the U.S. military found that some men in U.S. special operations forces do not believe women can meet the physical and mental demands of the job. They fear that the Pentagon will lower standards to integrate women into their elite units. There were also concerns raised that women might be treated more harshly than men and may suffer sexual harassment.

Other branches of the U.S. military are already opening up more opportunities for women. The Army Ranger program was open to women for the first time in 2015. Of 96 graduates, two women completed the training that began in April.

In June, the U.S. Navy chose its first group of enlisted female sailors to serve in the U.S. Navy's submarine force. The initial applications were to fill four chief petty officer and 34 rating conversion positions across the two crews of the USS Michigan.

Women Can Become Navy SEALs For The First Time: Another milestone for women in the military. Marina Fang, Associate Politics Editor, The Huffington Post Posted: 08/18/2015 09:36 PM EDT

Women for the first time will be able to become Navy SEALs, another milestone for women in the military, the Navy's top officer announced Tuesday.

Adm. Jon Greenert, chief of Naval Operations, said that as long as women meet the requisite standards and pass the rigorous training, they should be granted the opportunity to join the Navy’s most elite teams.

"Why shouldn't anybody who can meet these [standards] be accepted? And the answer is, there is no reason," Greenert told Defense News. "So we're on a track to say, 'Hey, look, anybody who can meet the gender non-specific standards, then you can become a SEAL.'"

Navy SEAL teams, considered the service's most selective and physically demanding, conduct special operations and are prepared for combat on all surfaces -- sea, air and land -- the origin for the SEAL acronym. Navy SEALs were crucial to U.S. military operations against Cuba and the Soviet Union in the Cold War. They were active in the Vietnam War, and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Navy SEALs also had a central role in the CIA operation that killed al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden in 2011.

The announcement opening Navy SEALs to women comes one day after the Army said that, for the first time, two women will graduate from the Army’s prestigious Ranger School, a training program that prepares soldiers for front-line combat roles. In January, Army officials decided to open the program to women on an experimental basis. Like their Navy counterparts, they emphasized that as long as women met the standards and passed the training, there was no reason to bar them from participating.

"If you meet the standards that we've established, then you should be able to perform in that [military occupational specialty]. And I think that's where we're headed,” outgoing Army Chief of Staff Ray Odierno said last week.

The Pentagon lifted an official ban on women serving in combat roles in 2013 and ordered leaders in each branch of the military to examine ways to open more doors, particularly in combat roles. Military leaders have begun to set gender-neutral standards for attaining certain jobs.

Many women were on the front lines in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, which helped convince military leaders to re-evaluate long-standing restrictions.

By January, all branches of the military must allow women to serve in front-line combat positions.

On Tuesday, Army, Navy and Air Force officials all announced that they are prepared to honor that mandate and officially open all combat positions to women. The Marine Corps, meanwhile, may seek an exception for ground combat roles, despite the mandate.

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