When it was announced earlier this year that the US military would be opening up to women combat positions that had previously been off-limits for them, I heard the same skeptical, sometimes sexism-veiling refrain over and over again: I’m fine with women doing these jobs, as long as they can pass the same physical tests as the guys. Well, meet the first handful of women Marines who have done just that:
For the duration of training, the female students were required to meet the same standards as their male counterparts. The women’s physical strength as well as their ability to keep up with men on the battlefield were highlighted on what many consider the most demanding course event — a 12 1/2 mile march in combat gear.
The hike lasted no more than 5 hours while each student hauled almost 90-pounds of gear, at nearly a 4 mph pace (almost a jog), rifle included.
The women still must pass a Combat Fitness Test with male scoring in the next two days, but the test is largely superficial for the women, despite being officially scored. Every Marine in every job field usually takes both a basic Physical Fitness Test and CFT at the beginning and end of their course curriculum.
These women have already passed both tests with male standards upon entry to the course.
Unfortunately, qualifying doesn’t mean entry into the infantry ranks quite yet. These four are just part of a 100-Marine pilot program aimed at testing the viability of women in Infantry training.
These women seem pretty damn viable. You can read more about them here.
Chloe Angyal came out of the womb opinionated.