The decision to integrate female service members into combat arms units has some worried that it might lead to a spike in incidents of sexual assault. A bunch of men and women cozying up over bowls of chili mac in the woods, drenched in rain and mud and misery, miles from civilization. Something is bound to happen — or so the theory goes.
But now that the integration process has finally begun, concerns over sexual assault and fraternization appear to have been eclipsed by a focus on maintaining the status quo. After much deliberation, the Marine Corps has decided: the first female infantry Marines will share foxholes and tents with male infantry during field exercises.
“We’re not changing any of our tactical posture or breaking unit cohesion or adjusting anything to accommodate mixed genders while we’re operating in a field environment replicating tactical conditions,” Maj. Charles Anklam III, executive officer for 1st Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, told Marine Times.
The first three female infantry Marines — a rifleman, a gunner, and a mortar Marine — joined 1st Battalion in early January. As Marine Times reports, they were assigned their own rooms, showers, and bathrooms in the barracks. In the field, however, it will be business as usual.
When it comes to doing what infantry Marines get paid to do — be in the shit, essentially — males and females will be treated as equals. As in, Marines with ovaries will live, train, and fight with their unit, just as Marines with testicles do. And, at least in 1st Battalion, 8th Marines, they will also be held to the exact same standards — physical, mental, tactical, etc. — that apply to their male counterparts.
“I joined the Marine Corps to lead Marines and sailors,” Lt. Col. Reginald McClam, the battalion commander, told Marine Times. “I didn’t take an oath of office that said I was going to lead male Marines or female Marines or male sailors or female sailors. I said I would lead Marines.”
A new bill would give troops with infertility related to their military service greater access to advanced reproductive treatments, including up to three completed cycles of in vitro fertilization, or IVF, and cryopreservation of eggs and sperm for those heading to a combat zone.
U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Joseph L. Osterman, the commanding general of I Marine Expeditionary Force, speaks to Marines with the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) during a visit aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Boxer (LHD 4). Marines and Sailors with the 11th MEU are conducting routine operations as part of the Boxer Amphibious Ready Group in the eastern Pacific Ocean. (U.S. Marine Corps Photo by Lance Cpl. Dalton S. Swanbeck)
The Marine Corps' top general on the west coast is readying his Marines for the next big war against a near peer competitor, and one of his main concerns is figuring out how to alter the mindset of troops that have been fighting insurgencies since 9/11.
"If anything my problem is getting people out of the mindset of [counterterrorism] and making sure they're thinking about near peer adversaries in their training programs," Lt. Gen. Joseph Osterman, commanding general of I Marine Expeditionary Force at Camp Pendleton, California, told Task & Purpose in an interview on Friday.
A Ruger AR-15 semi-automatic rifle, center, the same model, though in gray rather than black, used by the shooter in a Texas church massacre two days earlier, sits on display with other rifles on a wall in a gun shop Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017, in Lynnwood, Wash. (Associated Press/Elaine Thompson)
A new bill introduced in the Missouri House of Representatives would require a significant number of state residents own "at least one" AR-15 semi-automatic rifle with the help of a hefty tax break — except it won't ever get off the ground.
The casket carrying the remains of Scott Wirtz, a civilian employee of the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency killed along with three members of the U.S. military during a recent attack in Syria, sits in a military vehicle during a dignified transfer ceremony as they are returned to the United States at Dover Air Force Base, in Dover, Delaware, U.S., January 19, 2019. (Reuters/Kevin Lamarque)
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S.-backed forces have captured ISIS fighters tied to a January suicide bombing in Syria that killed four Americans, U.S. officials say, generating concrete leads for Washington about the deadliest attack to date there against U.S. personnel.