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Women in Combat
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George Bush has said there will be no women in combat. This is a statement pretty much divorced from reality, if it is intended to mean that women in the military will not be put in hazardous situations. If that's what he means, then he needs to look at the Iraq situation, where women in uniform are in life-and-death hazard every day. Just as women in uniform have been at risk in previous military actions.

The difference would be, I guess, that women on the front lines would be able to fight back rather than be passive victims of violence. Heaven forbid that we should violate women's gentle, passive, nurturing essence by giving them the means to defend or (gulp!) attack. Women must be protected and sheltered because they bear the young and they are too weak and emotional to be good soldiers. Plus the men around them would be so distracted by their hormonal demands that they couldn't keep their so-called minds on the battle. They'd be busy protecting the women.

The Greeks encouraged lovers to serve together in a military unit. The idea was that lovers would fight all the more fiercely if the person they loved was right next to them. The existence of hormones hadn't been dreamt of in their philosophy.

Another thought occurs to me. What if the "no women in combat" meme is predicated on an underlying value that women's lives are somehow more valuable than men's lives? Therefore, they must be protected more than men. Do you suppose that is one of the neocons' family values?

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