U.S. Marine Corps Cpl. Victoria Fontanelli, an administrative specialist with 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit, moves through a simulated village inside the Infantry Immersion Trainer as part of training for the Female Engagement Team, at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif. Oct 16, 2019. (U.S. Marine Corps/Cpl. Brendan Custer)
Six years after the Pentagon officially opened combat roles to women in 2013, 613 female Marines and sailors now serve in them, according to new data released by the Marine Corps.
"Females are now represented in every previously-restricted occupational field," reads a powerpoint released this month on the Marine Corps Integration Implementation Plan (MCIIP), which notes that 60% of those female Marines and sailors now serving in previously-restricted units joined those units in the past year.
Marine infantrymen may soon be able to see through the floor of an MV-22 Osprey and track terrain features as they approach their attack objective.
It sounds like science fiction, but Marine Lt. Col. Rory Quinn of the Pentagon's Close Combat Lethality Task Force says it could become reality if the Marine Corps decides to field the Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS), a sophisticated Microsoft technology that the Army is developing to give soldiers a new level of situational awareness in combat.
The Army is working to improve its small arms training to better simulate combat by having soldiers engage several targets at once, grab magazines from their pack to reload, and fix weapons malfunctions while on the range, the service recently announced.
"It's exactly what we would do in a combat environment, and I think it's just going to build a much better shooter," Command Sgt. Maj. Robert Fortenberry, the senior enlisted leader at the U.S. Army Infantry School at Fort Benning, Georgia, tasked with overseeing the Army's efforts to update marksmanship training for the first time in decades.