Quick hit: Meet the first three women Marines to graduate from infantry training

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.

Avatar ImageChloe Angyal came out of the womb opinionated.

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Chloe Angyal is a journalist and scholar of popular culture from Sydney, Australia. She joined the Feministing team in 2009. Her writing about politics and popular culture has been published in The Atlantic, The Guardian, New York magazine, Reuters, The LA Times and many other outlets in the US, Australia, UK, and France. She makes regular appearances on radio and television in the US and Australia. She has an AB in Sociology from Princeton University and a PhD in Arts and Media from the University of New South Wales. Her academic work focuses on Hollywood romantic comedies; her doctoral thesis was about how the genre depicts gender, sex, and power, and grew out of a series she wrote for Feministing, the Feministing Rom Com Review. Chloe is a Senior Facilitator at The OpEd Project and a Senior Advisor to The Harry Potter Alliance. You can read more of her writing at chloesangyal.com

Chloe Angyal is a journalist and scholar of popular culture from Sydney, Australia.

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