As a female Marine combat veteran of the Iraq war, or just as someone with common sense, I urge Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter to maintain the combat exclusion. We need our combat units to be the most lethal fighting force our tax dollars can buy. Adding women creates more danger for everyone and risks compromising missions.
Men make the infantry standards all the time. Women fail to make them a lot of the time.
Even on lower fitness standards, women have far higher rates of injury, illness, non-availability, non-deployability and attrition than men. Commanders of coed units know too well the added burdens of trying to juggle sexual dynamics, accommodations, relationships, fraternization, rape, pregnancy, hygiene and much more while maintaining troop welfare and good order and discipline, let alone mission accomplishment. These are liabilities that can result in mission failure and high casualties in the combat units, all to satisfy a tiny group of women selfishly petitioning for their own career advancement.
Source: Jude Eden, http://www.nytimes.com