Yes, and they should be integrated with the males
Yes, but keep their units seperate from male units
No, but women should be given some basic infantry skills beyond basic training
No, women should never serve in a role where they may encounter combat
Just because YOU feel the need to be coddled and protected does not mean all women should be like you. And I will proudly serve next to any woman who PROVES she can hang. And guess what, that applies to the guys as well. If you can't hang, I don't want you. male, or female.
People aren't meant to be autonomous. And the vast majority of people, if they are not given explicit orders about where to go and what to do, make monumentally short-sighted and stupid decisions that not only waste and ruin their own lives, they harm everyone around them and society as a whole. Luckily, the vast majority of people also instinctually defer to anyone that appears capable of giving them direction.
Nearly all human misery can be attributed to human beings acting without firm leadership-- in most cases, people are safer, healthier, and happier under the worst kinds of tyranny than they are under any kind of anarchy.
And as much as I respect women, their intellect and their strength and their bravery, they are too valuable to be allowed to throw themselves upon grenades to protect men. Good men recognize this subconsciously, even if they support "equality" and womens' right to stand and die for their country.
LIONESS PROGRAM ‘PRIDE’ OF THE CORPS
‘‘Twenty years ago, seeing a female [Marine] at a checkpoint with a bunch of 03s [infantrymen] would’ve been really uncommon,” Baker said. ‘‘Now, it’s almost become a norm. It really isn’t a big deal to see women on the frontlines or at these checkpoints.”
With ‘‘lionesses” continuing to serve in Iraq, the significance of women Marines serving side-by-side with combat units has been accented by their ability to perform their duties as well as any other Marines manning the checkpoints.
‘‘I don’t think there was a Marine out there who didn’t understand the importance of having females there,” Baker said. ‘‘No one I know ever questioned their abilities or their knowledge. We didn’t look at them as females serving at a checkpoint, we just saw another Marine.”
Jezebel - Lionesses: Female Soldiers Are Seeing Combat - Military
A new PBS documentary, Lioness, sheds new light on the role of women in combat. (It's reviewed in today's Times.) While technically prohibited from direct ground combat, female soldiers in Iraq frequently find themselves occupying a "gray area" that's never existed in prior wars. As one soldier puts it, “We’ve had grenades thrown at us, shooting at us with AK-47’s. It’s a fight-or-flight thing. When someone is shooting at you, you don’t say, ‘Stop the war, I’m a girl.’”
I watched that documentary. It was very well done.
“We must picture hell as a state where everyone is perpetually concerned about his own dignity and advancement, where everyone has a grievance, and where everyone lives with the deadly serious passions of envy, self-importance, and resentment.”
― C.S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters