Military Madness

The recent brouhaha caused by the allegation that female members of the National Guard unit headquartered in Danville, Ky., had posed nude or seminude for pictures while handling military equipment remarks the detrimental effect that militant feminism and the idiotic obsession with unisex philosophy has had on the nation’s military. While it remains an imposing fighting force, it is beset with social-engineering problems that have unnecessarily weakened it.

As noted in the Heritage Foundation publication of November 6, 1997, “the Army's initial experiment with gender-integrated training lasted from 1977 to 1982. The experiment ended after it became apparent that male recruits were not being challenged sufficiently and women were suffering too many stress fractures.” Also noted in the article: “President Clinton's assistant secretary of the Navy, Barbara Pope, has averred that ‘We are in the process of weeding out the white male as the norm. We're about changing the culture.’”

Therein lies the problem. The notion that men and women are exactly alike and would therefore function with equal success – except in Pope’s view implying the superiority of the “female norm” – was totally discounted by 1982 in the gender-integrated boot camps, but the lesson was totally ignored during the Clinton administration, when they were again integrated sex-wise. According to the New York Times of March 17, 1998, “Defense Sec.William S. Cohen rejects recommendation of special panel that armed forces segregate men and women for much of basic training … .” Neither Clinton nor Cohen had served in the military, but that didn’t mean that they had to lack plain, common sense.

Also on the social side, Clinton’s first Defense Secretary, Les Aspin, had to deal with the thorny question of servicewomen in combat. In April 1993, he announced that the services were to allow women to compete for assignments in combat aircraft; the Navy was to open additional ships to women and draft a proposal for Congress to remove existing legislative barriers to the assignment of women to combat vessels; and the Army and Marine Corps were to look for opportunities for women to serve in such components as field artillery and air defense. This was social engineering at its wackiest. The Marines, in obvious disobedience to this day, have not even allowed gender-integrated boot camps, but the Army, Air Force, and Navy have hewed the line.

Social engineering was a Clinton specialty with regard to the military, which he famously admitted loathing. During the 1992 campaign, he promised that homosexuals would be acceptable in the military in his administration. When he exercised the executive order to implement this promise, among his first acts as president, he ran into an unyielding cadre of commanders, who said “Enough!” The order was rescinded and the “don’t ask, don’t tell” approach was adopted, a relatively meaningless face-saving device. Military morale tanked during the 1990s.

This is not to say that there’s no place for women in the armed services. Indeed, whereas in 1973 the services were 2.5% distaff, women made up 15.2% in 2004, but the nude-picture fiasco, as well as the Abu Ghraib pictures involving women troops doing unseemly things along with their male partners in obscenity, might not have happened, obviously, if the sex-mixing had been foreclosed. The point: gender-integration in operating units practically screams for dysfunctional outcomes. Gender-segregation practically guarantees that this sort of morale-destructive lewdness will not occur.

The more serious matter has to do with the efficiency of the fighting force. The military is designed to break things and kill people, objectives that through millennia men have proven themselves to do quite sanguinarily, whether in the right or wrong. This is because they are emotionally equipped for the task and strong enough to carry it out. Assuming enough sense to function, if either the will or strength to win is absent the fight is lost. Collectively, women lack the strength, though not the intelligence, to be good fighters. They also lack the “killer instinct,” as chauvinistic as that sounds.

The seriousness is exponentially multiplied when the genders attempt to function together in combat, especially guerrilla warfare in which the enemy is all around – no front lines. Men, on whom the burden actually lies, instinctively protect their female colleagues at a time when their job is killing the enemy. Women, collectively lacking the strength and the will to be killers, become part of the burden.

War is not an exercise in social engineering, and no GI, male or female, should be used as a pawn in the damnable political-correctness game. In any case, men (vast majority in Congress, the military, and the administration) who will place women in a position to be abused in their own service and/or captured and face the brutality of torture, gang-rape, and merciless death by an enemy are flawed creatures, undeserving of their positions.