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Mujeres en las fuerzas armadas: en inglés

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Mensaje por ivan_077 Diciembre 9th 2014, 03:06

Women in the Armed Forces: Misconceptions and Facts
By Maj Gen Mrinal Suman
Issue Vol 25.1 Jan-Mar2010 | Date : 03 Dec , 2014

The recent debate about the entry of women officers in the armed forces has been highly ill- informed and subjective in nature. People have taken stands and expressed opinion without analysing the matter in its entirety. It is imprudent to consider it as an issue of equality of sexes or gender bias or even women’s liberation. It is also not a question of conquering the so-called ‘last male bastion’.

That would amount to trifling a matter that concerns the well-being and the war-potential of a nation’s armed forces. Armed forces have been constituted with the sole purpose of ensuring defence of the country and all policy decisions should be guided by this overriding factor. All matters concerning defence of the country have to be considered in a dispassionate manner.

No decision should be taken which even remotely affects the cohesiveness and efficiency of the military. Concern for equality of sexes or political expediency should not influence defence policies.

World Scan

India has limited experience as regards induction of women in the armed forces. The first batch had joined in 1992. Therefore, our knowledge of the complexities and long-term effects of the issues involved is highly limited. On the other hand, women have been serving in the militaries of developed countries for a long time. These countries have acquired a deep understanding of all the issues involved.

The United States

The United States is considered a pioneer and a trend-setter as regards induction of women in the services. There are approximately 200,000 American women on active duty in the US armed forces. They constitute nearly 20 percent of its strength. Women are also participating in Iraq operations in large numbers, albeit in support functions as they are forbidden to be placed in direct ground combat with enemy. They, however, are assigned ‘combat support’ duties on voluntary basis.

Prior to November 1975, if women became pregnant, they were given the option to terminate pregnancy or seek discharge. A number of important steps were initiated during President Clinton’s time. Women were permitted to join as combat aircraft pilots and could also be assigned for prolonged duty on combat naval ships. The scope of combat-risk assignments for women was redefined to open additional appointments to them.


Though Israel has conscription for women (as well as men), a large number of them are exempted for various reasons. Women are generally not allotted active battle field duties. They serve in many technical and administrative posts to release men for active duty. Although they make excellent instructors as well, most women occupy lower and middle level appointments. Only a handful reach senior ranks.


A major enlargement of women’s role in the British armed forces took place in early 1990s. A number of new duties were assigned to them. Today, 71% of all jobs in the Navy, 67% in the Army and 96% in the Air Force are tenable by women. Women are primarily excluded from the duties which require battling enemy at close quarters.

Out of the total strength of 196,650 of the three services, women number 17,900 (3,670 officers and 14,230 other ranks). Thus they constitute 9.1% of the total strength, 11.2% of the officer cadre and 8.7% of the other ranks. Service-wise, the Navy has a women population of 9.4%, the Army 7.1% and the Air Force 11.9%.


For Canadian women it has been a long and slow struggle to be part of the armed forces. For over a hundred years, women were considered suitable only for nursing duties. However, things changed rapidly during the recent past and today women account for close to 13 percent of the total strength of the Canadian forces. Women are permitted in all corps and can rise upto senior decision-making levels.


Bulgaria has adopted a highly flexible model. As per the law, women in Bulgarian Army are appointed to professional military service in the Armed Forces on appointments proposed by the Chief of the General Staff. They have equal training standards and equal professional rights as men. Women constitute about 7 percent of the total force.


Though established in 1955, the Bundeswehr allowed women to join medical units and musical bands in 1975. It was only in 2001 that women won the right to join the Bundeswehr as soldiers. Today, there are nearly 12,000 German women in uniform on voluntary basis as compulsory military service for women is banned by law. Women constitute almost 6 percent of the total strength.

Some Other Countries

In the Australian Army women are still not allowed in the field/battle. In Russia, women generally serve in nursing, communications and logistic support functions. According to some estimates, their number is close to 95,000. Slovenia became an independent state in 1971 and inducted women in its armed forces soon after. Presently, women account for 18 percent of the total strength of the Slovenian Army.

Like all Islamic states, Pakistan does not permit women in the armed forces. It is feared that women would create distraction and cause disruption of internal order. There is also a great deal of concern for the safety of women from the organisational environment itself.

Major Issues Experienced

Women in all militaries are confronted with social, behavioural and psychological problems at all levels. According to many surveys carried out women are not fully satisfied with the ethos of military profession. Some of the major issues concerning women in all defence forces are discussed below.

Sexual Harassment

This is one single concern that has defied solution so far – how to ensure safety and protect dignity of women in the forces. Almost all women view this as their major fear. The American and the British societies are highly emancipated and liberal with women having equal status in all fields. Yet, the level of sexual harassment of women in their forces is startling.

What hurts women most is the attitude of military officials who dismiss complaints as frivolous and due to over-sensitivities of women involved. Even serious accusations of sexual assault are many times treated in a perfunctory manner. Moreover, many officers tend to adopt an attitude of acquiescence by resorting to ‘boys will be boys’ apology. In the US, only two to three percent perpetrators are court-martialled and they are also let off with minimal punishment.

Low Acceptance

Acceptance of women in the military has not been smooth in any country. Every country has to contend with sceptics who consider it to be a counter productive programme. They tend to view it as a political gimmick to flaunt sexual equality, or, at best, a necessary liability.

Additionally, every country has to mould the attitude of its society at large and male soldiers in particular to enhance acceptability of women in the military.

Lack of Job Satisfaction

Most women feel that their competence is not given due recognition. Seniors tend to be over-indulgent without valuing their views. They are generally marginalised and not involved in any major decision-making. They have to work twice as hard as men to prove their worth. Additionally, a woman is always under scrutiny for even minor slip-ups.

Many women complain that despite their technical qualifications, they are generally detailed for perceived women-like jobs. Either they get routine desk work or are asked to perform duties related to social minutiae.

Poor Comfort Level

Most women accepted the fact that their presence amongst males tends to make the environment ‘formal and stiff’. Mutual comfort level between men and women colleagues is low. Men miss their light hearted banter which is considered essential to release work tensions and promote group cohesion. They consider women to be intruding on their privacy.

Doubts about Role Definition

The profession of arms is all about violence and brutality. To kill another human is not moral but soldiers are trained to kill. They tend to acquire a streak of raw ruthlessness and coarseness. This makes the environment highly non-conducive and rough for women.

Women, in general, are confused about the way they should conduct themselves. If they behave lady-like, their acceptance amongst male colleagues is low. On the other hand, their active participation in casual repartee carries the danger of their losing colleagues’ respect.

Essential Prerequisites for Smooth Induction of Women

The experience of countries that have inducted women in their armed forces has been mixed. They have had and are still grappling with considerable adjustment problems even in societies that are liberated and profess gender equality.

The profession of arms requires both mental and physical prowess. That is the reason why even advanced countries are wary of inducting women in fighting units. They have been taking precautions to ensure that women are neither pitched against enemy in face-to-face direct combat nor exposed to the risk of capture by the adversary. No wonder then that despite the much touted huge presence of women in US forces in Iraq, there has not been a single woman casualty so far whereas close to 3,000 men have lost their lives. They have been kept sheltered in safe appointments.

It is imprudent to replicate the model or path followed by others. Every nation has to weigh its options against the backdrop of its own social and environmental mores. Every country has its own social/cultural moorings, type of hostilities encountered, level of technology and larger manpower issues. it is now commonly accepted that women should be encouraged to join the services only under the following circumstances:

When a country is short of men or there are not enough men volunteering to join the forces.
When the armed forces of a country are technologically very advanced and there is a huge requirement for highly qualified personnel for high-tech support functions. Women can be gainfully employed for the same.
Where societal and cultural ethos have matured to the extent that barriers of gender prejudices have vanished and both sexes have adjusted to the desired level of mutual comfort.
Where militaries are not deployed on active combat duties and are generally assigned comparatively passive tasks. A number of countries like Canada and Australia induct women in their forces as they are aware that they will never be required to participate in an operation at home or abroad.

The above parameters act as a universally accepted benchmark to determine the need and extent of women’s’ employment in the forces.

The Indian Experience

Earlier, entry of women was limited to the Army Medical Corps, the Army Dental Corps and the Military Nursing Service. It was in 1990 that a decision was taken to induct them into the non-combat wings of the armed forces as short-service commissioned service officers. They are inducted into Engineers, Signals, Army Service Corps, Ordnance, Education, Intelligence, Legal Branch and EME (Corps of Electrical and Mechanical Engineers). Presently, the Indian Army counts 2.44 percent women in its ranks, the Indian Navy 3.0 percent and the Indian Air Force 6.7 percent.

The Indian experience has been too short to facilitate conclusive appraisal. The initial feedback has been varied. New insights are being gained into the complete gamut of related issues.

Four categories of people are intimately connected with women’s presence in the services – women officers themselves, their commanding officers, colleague male officers and the soldiers. Their views and response should be seriously considered while moulding policies to address all concerns.

Women Officers

Women who are mentally robust, physically fit and highly motivated resent preferential treatment being meted out to them. They want to be treated at par with their male colleagues so that they get a fair opportunity to prove their worth. They demand same selection criteria, same training standards and same work schedules. They do not want to be treated as weaklings as it offends their sensitivities and self-respect. They take exception to some women seeking kid-glove treatment to escape hardships.

However, most of the women opting for a career in the services belong to families where their upbringing has been in a highly sheltered environment. A career in the military is at the other extreme. They admit having limited knowledge of military life at the time of joining. Subsequently, life in the military comes as a big shock to them. While some adapt to it well others find the task to be too daunting. Additionally, many women officers are unsure of their identity – they want to be officers and yet be given the deference of service wives. It has been a cause for despair for many.

Women normally get commissioned at the age of 23 to 25 years. Soon, thereafter, family pressures start building up on them to get married. Many women confess that managing married life with military service is difficult, though marrying a service officer helps. Subsequent pregnancy and motherhood prove very demanding.

Commanding Officers

The first posting of all newly commissioned officers is to their assigned units. It is for the Commanding Officers (COs) to induct, mould and employ them. Therefore, views of COs carry utmost importance as they indicate an objective appraisal of actual position on ground.

Most of the COs find women officers to be highly committed and sincere. They admire them for their enthusiasm despite the environmental difficulties faced by them. Safety of women under their command becomes their primary concern and they find it quite taxing, especially in field areas. The second common problem faced by them relates to their useful employment.

CO of an engineer regiment recounted – “My unit was in Punjab when a young lady officer was posted to it. Soon thereafter the unit was ordered to move to insurgency affected Poonch area. I did not know how to employ her and where to house her. Ultimately, I had to send her on long leave to tide over the problem.”

Another CO of a services unit said – “All young officers have to train, exercise and play games with their respective platoons. They are also required to visit troops’ barracks at lights-out to ensure that all mosquito nets are down and even check the cleanliness of latrines. I could not ask or expect the lady officer to do any of these duties”.

By turn, every officer is detailed as a duty officer and has to visit the Quarter Guard and all sentry posts at midnight to ensure their alertness. All unit commanders rue the fact that lady officers cannot be assigned any of these duties. Thus the male officers have to undertake additional work load, which they resent.

Referring to the recent increase in women’s service, some COs pointed out that at 14 years of service a lady officer will be second in command of a unit and will officiate as its commanding officer. In an Engineer or Signal unit she will be an advisor to the Divisional Commander. Without having commanded a platoon or a company and without having attended essential professional courses, it will be unfair to expect her to be able to deliver the goods.

Some COs also expressed concern about the physical fitness of women officers and their being highly prone to back problems, pelvic injuries and stress fractures.

Many COs showed reluctance to have women under them due to concern for their safety and dignity. They also tend to be over-cautious in assigning duties to them lest they be exposed to any harm.

Male Colleagues

Almost all male colleagues admire women officers for their courage and determination. They understand and appreciate challenges faced by them in trying to adapt to an environment which is totally male dominated.

However, they want the women officers to do their share of work and duties. They resent preferential treatment given to their women colleague. One officer was outspoken enough to state – “They have joined the military on the plank of equality of sexes but this plank vanishes the day they join the training academy. Thereafter, they again become the weaker sex needing special dispensations.”

An officer recounted that a lady officer posted to an Ordnance Depot declined to carry out periodic stocktaking of stores lying in isolated sheds unless provided with escort for security. Other officers had to do her job.

When told about women making up shortage of male officers, most young officers scoff at the speciousness of the argument. According to them, there is no shortage of male volunteers to join the services but the required number of candidates do not come up to the standards laid down. The services do not want to dilute the standards even marginally in the fear of compromising the quality of intake. But when it comes to women, standards are reduced to extremely low levels.

In army there is a concept of field and peace postings. Every officer looks forward to a good peace posting to be with his family and sort out family issues. But a large number of peace postings at junior officers’ level are held by the women, thereby depriving male officers of their due share. It has become a sore point with many.


Most soldiers view women’s induction as a fall-out of Government policies and generally take it lightly. They are convinced that women can never lead them effectively. Some Junior Commissioned Officers were blunt enough to state – “An officer, who cannot run with us, cannot train with us and cannot exercise with us can barely be expected to lead us”.

Notwithstanding the above, India is proud of the fact that women in the Indian services are being treated in a manner befitting their dignity and self respect, despite the fact that the Indian soldier is drawn from rustic stock where women to date are confined to household chores. In this regard, India can rightfully claim to have a record which is far better than that of any advanced nation in the world.

The Way Ahead

Every army is but a part of its own people. It reflects a nation’s social, cultural and historical predispositions. Many social scientists call the military a mirror image of a nation or a microcosm. They are of the view that military’s functioning and behaviour are conditioned by the societal influences that the members are exposed to in their formative years prior to joining the military. There is, thus, a need to delve deep into the psychology of soldiers to understand their attitudes. It is only then that an objective study can be carried out of military’s ethos and functioning.

It is a universally accepted fact that militaries are not created to generate employment and hence have nothing to do with gender equality. They are tasked to ensure national defence and that is the sole reason for their existence. They need only the fittest – men or women. Armed forces require personnel who are physically strong and mentally robust to be able to handle battle-field pressures. The fighting potential of a force depends fundamentally on its cohesion, mutual trust and faith in the leadership. Nothing should be done to weaken these traits.

The whole concept of women’s induction in the services has to be viewed in a holistic and objective manner. The first step should be to ascertain whether the required preconditions, as mentioned above, exist to warrant women’s entry into the Indian services. Here is a brief appraisal:

India is not short of male volunteers.
India is still a second generation technology force which is trying desperately to graduate to the third generation, whereas the US and the Western nations are already well into the fourth generation. Indian defence forces are manpower intensive needing physical ground effort.
Indian society is passing through a phase of transition from traditionalism to modernity. Societal and cultural ethos continue to be mired in sex discrimination.
A major part of the Indian Army is deployed on combat duties at all times. Peace tenures are rare and there are very few periods of comparative lull.

In view of the above, the following are suggested:

Women must continue to play a dominant role in the Armed Forces Medical Services and the Military Nursing Service. They have done India proud by rising to three-star ranks. Their contribution in providing medical support to the soldiers has been invaluable.
Their expertise, talent and dedication should be profitably utilised in areas which are totally non-combat in nature and where their competence can be fully harnessed. As is being done at present, they should continue to serve in Legal and Education Branches of the services. They could even be considered for the grant of permanent commission at a later date.
A majority of uniformed officers in the Survey of India, Military Engineering Service Militarised Cadre, Director General Quality Assurance and such organisations should be women. The current provision for 14 years service should remain in force.
The current policy of non-induction of women in combat arms should continue. Additionally, their entry into Engineers, Signals, Supply Corps, Ordnance and EME (Electrical and Mechanical Engineers) should be deferred for the time being and reviewed after a few years, once the environment becomes more conducive for their smooth absorption in the organisation.

The services are not opposed to the entry of women per se but demand that a number of crucial issues, as discussed above, be addressed as well. Decisions which have a far reaching effect on the functioning of the armed forces must be taken with due diligence and after a careful study.

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si no lo meti en el otro era porque el otro esta enfocado hacia México.

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Mensaje por Lanceros de Toluca Diciembre 11th 2014, 21:34

It is a universally accepted fact that militaries are not created to generate employment and hence have nothing to do with gender equality. They are tasked to ensure national defence and that is the sole reason for their existence. They need only the fittest – men or women. Armed forces require personnel who are physically strong and mentally robust to be able to handle battle-field pressures. The fighting potential of a force depends fundamentally on its cohesion, mutual trust and faith in the leadership. Nothing should be done to weaken these traits.
Make the Mexican military authorities understand this shit...

Lanceros de Toluca
Alto Mando
Alto Mando

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Mujeres en las fuerzas armadas: en inglés Empty These 2 badass female Army Rangers just made history — here's the grueling training they endured

Mensaje por belze Agosto 30th 2015, 00:50

These 2 badass female Army Rangers just made history — here's the grueling training they endured

Amanda Macias

Aug. 22, 2015, 8:00 AM

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1st Lt. Shaye Haver, center, and Capt. Kristen Griest, right, pose for photos with other female West Point alumni after an Army Ranger school graduation ceremony, August 21, 2015, at Fort Benning, Georgia.

There isn't a more fitting motto for America's elite Army Rangers regiment than, "Rangers lead the way!"

For the first time in military history, two women graduated from the excruciating 62-day Ranger School at Fort Benning on Friday.

Capt. Kristen Griest, 26, and 1st Lt. Shaye Haver, 25, were awarded the prestigious black and gold Ranger tab along with 94 of their male counterparts.

Ranger candidates arrive for training in the best shape of their lives and survive on a meal a day and just a few hours of sleep — all the while completing some of the toughest military training in the world.

"Ranger School is a gut check," Jack Murphy, a Special Operations 75th Ranger Regiment veteran and managing editor of the military-focused publication SOFREP told Business Insider.

"... When you see another soldier wearing a Ranger tab on his or her uniform you know that you have both slogged it out through some extremely challenging training, which automatically builds a certain amount of trust in each other," Murphy added.

Last year 4,057 students attempted the notoriously difficult Ranger School, and only 1,609 earned the Ranger tab, according to the US Army.

'They carried their own weight and then some'

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US Army Photo/Amanda Macias/Business Insider
Capt. Kristen Griest, left, and 1st Lt. Shaye Haver, right, became the first female soldiers ever to graduate from Ranger School on August 21, 2015.

On April 20, West Point graduates Griest, a military-police officer from Connecticut, and Haver, an Apache helicopter pilot from Texas, entered into the first gender-integrated Ranger School, alongside 380 men and 18 other female candidates.

"I never actually thought anything was going to be too difficult that it was worth leaving the course," Griest said at a news conference. "I was thinking really of future generations of women that I would like them to have that opportunity, so I had that pressure on myself," she added.

Haver said she was motivated by the solidarity she felt with her fellow Rangers. "The ability to look around to my peers and to see they were sucking just as bad as I was, kept me going," Haver said at the news conference.

"They carried their own weight and then some," wrote fellow Army Ranger Rudy Mac of the two women.

"If I remember correctly, Ranger Griest carried the M240 for her squad on day one of patrols and another female in her squad carried the radio as the RTO. The next day of patrols, they switched, with Ranger Griest humping the radio, and the other female student carrying the M240 ... Physically, they were studs," Mac added.

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"I went to school with Shaye [Haver], and I knew she was a physical stud. But I was skeptical of whether or not she could handle it because this is my third time at a Ranger School," fellow Ranger candidate 2nd Lt. Michael Janowski said at a news conference.
"I was the 320 gunner [a grenade launcher], so I had a lot of weight on me, and I was struggling. And I stopped, and I asked at halfway point, ‘Hey, can anyone help take some of this weight?’ I got a lot of deer-in-the headlight looks, you know. A lot of people were like, ‘I can’t take anymore weight.’ Shaye [Haver] was the only one to volunteer to take that weight. She took the weight off me, and she carried it the last half of that road. Literally saved me. I probably wouldn't be sitting here right now if it wasn’t for Shaye. So, from that point, no more skepticism," Janowski said.

Welcome to Ranger School

The US Army divides the grueling course into three phases: "Benning," "mountain," and "Florida."
During the Benning phase of Ranger School, which takes place in Georgia, a soldier's physical stamina, mental toughness, and tactical skills are evaluated and fine-tuned.

On the last day of the Benning phase, Ranger candidates conduct an arduous 12-mile march while carrying a 35-pound ruck sack — and without the luxury of drinking water. About 50% of students will pass this phase of the course, according to the Ranger School website.

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US Army Photo

During the appropriately named mountain phase, Ranger students are sent to the northern Georgia mountains to continue to learn how to sustain themselves in adverse conditions.
"The rugged terrain, severe weather, hunger, mental and physical fatigue, and the emotional stress that the student encounters afford him the opportunity to gauge his own capabilities and limitations as well as that of his peers," according to the US Army.

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US Army Photo

The last phase consists of fast-paced field-training exercises in which candidates are evaluated based on their execution of high-stress raids, ambushes, and close-combat attacks.

All students must pass an intense physical fitness test that includes 49 push-ups, 59 sit-ups, a 5-mile run with a 40-minute time limit, six chin-ups, a timed swim test, a land-navigation test, several obstacle courses, three parachute jumps, four air assaults on helicopters, and 27 days of mock combat patrols.

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Capt. Kristen Griest, right, participates in an obstacle course at the US Army Ranger School in Fort Benning, Georgia.

Here is a video of the Ranger candidates:

After graduation

Unlike their male Army Ranger counterparts, both women will not be able to apply to the 75th Ranger Regiment, the premier tier of Army special operations with its own unique set of physical requirements.
However, the Pentagon is scheduled to make a decision on which combat roles will be opened to women later this year, CNN reports.

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In an interview with Foreign Policy, Sgt. Maj. Colin Boley, the operations sergeant major for the Airborne and Ranger Training Brigade, said he was initially opposed to accepting women into training, but Haver and Griest changed his mind.

"I didn't think that they would physically be able to bear the weight, and I thought they would quit or get hurt, and they have proved me wrong," Boley told Foreign Policy.

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