Answer to CAPT I.M. Anonymous, USN (Ret.)©
Gerald L. Atkinson
20 October 2001
CAPT I.M. Anonymous, USN (Ret.) is the name I have assigned (for obvious reasons as you will see below) to a real life patriotic American who has 26-years experience as a surface warfare naval officer. In an e-mail conversation, he states, "I now have a son who flies navy helicopters, and a daughter who flies in Navy F-14's." CAPT Anonymous is not a rabid feminist, nor is he a 'collaborator' in the sense that he is bent on advancing the radical feminist agenda. He reasons from his extensive past experience:
"I recall one animated discussion in JCS on the subject [of women in the military], which was ended
summarily by a guy who had been a placement officer in our beloved BuPers. He declared that the
issue was moot, and the reason was that there were not going to be enough qualified males coming
along in the projected population to fill the needs of the armed forces at any projected level,
including the Clinton-savaged force levels we see now. [By qualified he meant simply physically
and mentally qualified to enter military service]. If that's still true, will there not be a need for some
kind of organized effort to figure out how to integrate women into the armed forces? Perhaps not
the Hillary-inspired, semi-Orwelllian, feminazi approach, but something?"
CAPT Anonymous finishes with a plea, one which sounds quite reasonable on the surface. "I guess what I'm saying is this: I would ask those who oppose the feminization of the military to be careful about not getting so strident that they end up nullifying the sincerely patriotic efforts of the women who are trying hard to serve their country. It is, after all, their country, too. They should only have to face forward when confronting mortal enemies."
CAPT Anonymous is a member of a small but very vocal group of patriotic Americans who are reacting to a primal human male instinct -- a father's strong natural urge to support and protect his daughters. This tendency, thank God, is in all of us. It is part of the family bond that is larger than just the father. It envelops all members of the home and, to a lesser extent to the extended 'family.' It is a part of each of us. We can't help it. It is a moral 'good.' It is an important ingredient in any strong, healthy society.
But there are times and ideas that transcend the concept of fatherly pride, family cohesion, and love of our daughters. One of these ideas is our national security, that is, the protection of our Constitution, our way of life, our survival against enemies foreign and domestic. And the idea of women-in-combat is directly related to this larger idea. Let me explain by citing an example, a metaphor.
The Korean War POW Experience
The example I am about to attempt should not be taken literally. That is, it should not be taken as the 'principle' involved. It provides only a vague similarity to the 'principle' addressed. Consequently, it can be attacked on various pedantic grounds that have nothing to do with the 'principle' involved. Take from the metaphor only what is intended. If you do this, you will see what I am getting at -- a kernel of truth concerning the 'methods' by which others can use our human passions, our human emotions to coerce our actions.
And that is just what is being done in America today to convince us that an unprecedented social experiment -- women-in-combat -- is not only right, and necessary, but also mandatory.
The metaphor that is applicable here must be introduced by an account of the experience of our Korean War prisoners of war (POWs). Allegedly, the mostly young, poorly trained and uneducated GIs performed questionably during their imprisonment by the Chinese. The alleged misconduct by captured GIs is recorded in the extensive debriefings of the soldiers upon their return. These reports describe the 'indoctrination' or 're-education' methods used by the Chinese.
These 'behavior modification' techniques are quite similar to those that are being used now on our military personnel, including our Pentagon leaders. This should have been expected. Why? Because these same techniques have been perfected in America over the years by Americans and used in our teacher training programs and in our universities during the past 30 years. So they offer no surprises. These techniques are now being used every day, in nearly every walk of our lives. These attempts to change the worldview of the populace have become mainstream in America. They are encompassed in the phrase, 'sensitivity training.'
Most Americans have not yet recognized that these methods, when misapplied, are morally corrupt.
These techniques, when applied by the Chinese, worked on our Korean War POWs. According to the best data available: Only 5 percent RESISTED the enemy indoctrination; 15 percent were consistent, dedicated, hard-core COLLABORATORS with the enemy; The other 80 percent were rendered 'PASSIVE' by their captors' 'sensitivity training' methods and stood for nothing but their own survival.
The Chinese indoctrination methods are strikingly similar to the methods now incorporated in the 'sensitivity training' that is given to our military personnel by professional 'facilitators.' These methods were developed in the United States by Kurt Lewin during and immediately after World War II. His disciples, utilizing his T-group, small-group encounter techniques, are legion in this country today. They are called 'facilitators' or 'change agents.' This process seems to be as effective in 'feminizing' our military as it was in breaking down the resistance of our GIs while in Chinese captivity.
What do we learn from the Korean War POW experience?
(1) We learn that small, peer pressure encounter groups -- using 'sensitivity training' techniques -- are very effective in breaking resistance to conform to another's will.
(2) We learn that those 80 percent of the individuals who were rendered PASSIVE under the enemy's indoctrination program, had little knowledge of our country's history, heritage and unique place in the panorama of nations in history.
(3) We learn that many of these young men (18 to 24 years old) were simply not hardened to the real world. That is, according to one of the ex-POWs, "...some American mothers had given their sons everything in the world, except a belief in themselves, their culture, and their manhood. They had, some of them, sent their sons out into a world with tigers without telling them that there were tigers, and with no moral armament."
And when they were placed in the hands of a brutal, ruthless, barbaric enemy, they had nothing to sustain them -- nothing to prepare them for survival in a land of 'tigers.'
(4) We learn that many of those in the PASSIVE 80 percent were not their brother's keeper. That is, they did not have a strong Christian morality.
Anyone alive in America today will recognize these same failures rampant across our culture. We have been and are now being manipulated by our power elites toward the same end.
An Army psychiatrist Major Wm. E. Mayer, who participated in the debriefing of our repatriated Korean War POWs studied the 're-education' techniques used by the Chinese to PASSIFY them. The metaphor for our women-in-combat idea appears in his denunciation of the Chinese techniques after having studied them at length. Major Mayer states, "And the education program followed a printed curriculum. And every student, as these men were called by the Communists, every student got a copy of the curriculum. It was a 12-phase program which was to occupy about 24 months for the majority of prisoners. It occupied the 24 months seven days a week. From about seven in the morning until sometime reasonably late in the evening. It followed a pattern of long lectures, very repetitious ones, rather simple ones, attended every morning standing up outdoors, for the majority of prisoners. This way, nobody fell asleep."
"And the lecture made a few points over and over -- from different points of departure, you might say. Then finally at about noon, the soldiers were dismissed and formed into discussion groups of about ten or twelve each. First, these were monitored by the Chinese and then self (POW) monitored. Each man was required to take part in a discussion of the content of the morning's lecture -- in his own words."
"Now, he didn't have to agree with it. He just had to recapitulate it. And there wasn't any penalty for failing to do this. They didn't pour water in your nose or pound on various parts of your anatomy with hoses. They just didn't let anybody in your group go to chow until everybody took part."
"In this too, they're always thinking, these people. This too, you see, shifted the blame from the Communists, ultimately, to the other ten GIs in your discussion group. It was they who would say, 'Look buddy, start taking part in the discussion -- we want to eat!'"
"And this was done consistently. Just like the executions in China are not done by the authorities. They are done by all the citizens in the village by popular demand -- in public trials, by acclaim."
"And this is a generalization of guilt. And this offends me as a psychiatrist. They are USING MY STUFF and they are DOING IT IMMORALLY."
This is a long-winded way to get around to the metaphor I wish to exhibit. But it provides necessary background for the direction in which I am heading.
Those forces in America who are pushing the radical feminist agenda with respect to women-in-combat are using an emotion-based technique to render America's fathers at least PASSIVE with respect to the idea of women-in-combat. With some, this technique has lead to COLLABORATION with the 'enemy.' That is, they are using our natural proclivity to support our daughters in the enterprise on which they have set their hearts. In this case, by flying combat aircraft in the 'feminization' of our nation's combat arms.
I am not a psychiatrist but I am a father of daughters (and sons), one of whom could qualify for Navy carrier aviation. She has the requisite intelligence and physical skills, in the same degree as her father -- a combat carrier naval aviator who has been shot at and hit by a resourceful and determined enemy.
I have the very same pride of fatherhood for my daughter as CAPT Anonymous has for his. In fact, had she decided to take the same route that his daughter did -- fly F-14s -- there is no doubt that I would support her in any way possible. That is just human nature. And it is good.
But just as Major Mayer protested, I also protest the methods used by the radical feminists and their supporters in Congress and the former Clinton administration to magnify this pride, from a small contingent of fathers whose daughters choose to participate in this social experiment -- women-in-combat -- to the rest of us.
In short, as a proud father THEY ARE USING MY STUFF, and they are USING IT IMMORALLY.
A Father's Argument for Women-in-Combat
I have encountered two fathers who have daughters in combat naval aviation who have responded negatively to my efforts to reverse the 'feminization' of our nation's combat arms. One father, CAPT Norman J. Justesen, Jr., a United Airlines pilot, is a COLLABORATOR in terms of the Korean War POW metaphor. This former naval aviator receives this classification because of his efforts (successful, I might add) in 'shaming' the leadership of the Tailhook Association into ‘censoring’ a review of my book, "From Trust to Terror: Radical Feminism is Destroying the U.S. Navy," from their monthly publication, the 'HOOK.' He was also quite successful in forcing the Tailhook Association leadership to issue a formal rebuke to me for using the membership mailing list (which I had purchased as a then-member) to legally and in good conscience reach my 'friends' in the organization concerning the subject. In fact, the Tailhook Association leadership touted just such a use of the list in their promotion of it to the membership. These actions by CAPT Justesen were definitely taken in COLLABORATION with the 'enemy.' And, in a sense, so were the actions taken by the leadership of the Tailhook Association. But that is another story.
The other, CAPT Anonymous, while, not involved in such activities, has, nevertheless, been rendered PASSIVE with respect to the idea of women-in-combat in the exactly the same way the Korean War POWs were rendered PASSIVE by the emotionally coercive psychological techniques used by the Chinese. But this, as explained above, has come about by using different aspects of these techniques -- the emotional tug on a father's love for his daughter.
Both of these proud fathers, however, use the same argument to justify their daughters' choice. They assert that it is their 'right' to serve their country -- the same right as any man. They also qualify this 'right' by stating that their daughters met the same qualifications -- mental and physical -- for their chosen profession. This may or may not be the case, but it is beside the point.
Their argument piggy-backs the women-in-combat idea on the main thrust of the 'cultural Marxist' attack on America's traditions and institutions, including the historical accounts of our Founding Fathers -- discrimination. If traditionalists (realists) do not accept the radical feminist notion of 'equality' in all respects between men and women, we are immediately labeled as 'sexist,' therefore guilty of 'discrimination' against women. Our GUILT, therefore is used in an attempt to PASSIFY us as well.
And do you know what? It works! A huge fraction of American men have been rendered PASSIVE with respect to the women-in-combat idea. Even when they know, instinctively, that it is a very bad and destructive idea. I have heard Elaine Donnelley, who has championed the case against women-in-combat, chastise men, including military men (active-duty and retired), for remaining publicly PASSIVE regarding this idea while they send her money and support her efforts behind the scene to reverse the policy of allowing women to take combat roles.
So, what is the evidence supporting our opposition to the idea of women-in-combat? Qualified or not. Let's look at it from the narrow perspective of the father of a daughter who has chosen this profession.
Arguments Against a Father's Support of Women-in-Combat
I will limit the evidence to the narrow confines of the fathers' argument -- it is their daughters' 'right' and that their daughters are 'qualified.'
First of all, NO PERSON, indeed, no woman has a 'right' to serve their nation as a combatant in our nation's combat arms. Such a right is not guaranteed by our Constitution. In fact, just the opposite is true. It is a 'privilege' to serve as a combatant. A privilege is granted. One does not choose. One is chosen -- on the basis of what provides the best overall fighting military force.
Many groups of people, qualified both physically and mentally, are 'discriminated' against for combat service. Age, physical disabilities, sexual behavior, and other factors are 'discriminated' against in the collective wisdom of providing the very best national defense against our enemies, foreign and domestic.
By this, I mean, the accumulated wisdom of the centuries of warfare in the history of mankind and over 225 years of American civilization has dictated that women not be allowed to serve in combat positions -- even if 'qualified' to perform certain physical and mental tasks. This has been based on prudent judgment of our past leaders, military and civilian, who have determined that such involvement would lead to a 'weakening' of our nation's deterrent and fighting force capabilities.
For example, many men age 50-60 are fully mentally and physically 'qualified' to perform the tasks required of an F-14 fighter pilot. A perfect example comes to mind of the 60-year-old astronaut who piloted one of our recent Space Shuttle flights. He is as mentally and physically qualified as any active-duty young female aviator in any of our armed forces. But our collective wisdom tells us that a nation does not win wars with 60-year-old warriors, even if a few are qualified.
There are many physically handicapped men who could fly combat aircraft in our armed forces. You need only read the book, "Reach for the Sky," by Paul Brickhill to learn of Douglas Bader who flew Hurricane and Spitfire fighters in the Battle of Britain in World War II to know this. Bader shot down more than 22 German ME-109s and bomber aircraft during that extended battle. His expert flying skills and leadership abilities allowed him to lead a squadron, then a wing in the Royal Air Force where he invented (actually re-invented from WWI RAF experience) the tactics that proved so successful in the campaign that saved Britain in those dark days.
But wait! Douglas Bader had no legs. He had lost both legs in an aviation accident years before he flew in World War II. His story is one of magnificent spirit, determination, fortitude, and heroism for an individual. But it is not a story that inspires confidence in a nation which has a vast reservoir of physically and mentally able MEN to let its cripples man the first line of defense.
If Douglas Bader could do this then, there are many 'physically challenged' men who could be trained to be competent, excellent Navy fighter pilots in this age. In fact, research at the time revealed that leg-amputees did not ‘black out’ at high g-forces required in air-to-air combat because the blood does not pool in their legs as it does for those with the normal complement of legs. But we don't do this. We 'discriminate' against physically handicapped combat aviators. We know that, except in dire circumstances, a nation does not have to resort to such extreme measures to man our armed forces. You don't win wars, in the eyes of the scientific Gaussian distribution -- the infamous Bell Curve -- with cripples. The exception proves the rule.
The same distribution applies to females. The average male is a far better combat pilot than the average female -- in both aggressiveness and in physical skills. And in a protracted war with an enemy who is determined, plentiful in manpower, and with modern technology, we must fight with our ‘average’ combat warrior. The normal attrition of the ‘best’ in such a war (for example, with a modernized China – not a tribe of ragtag Arabs in the desert or some other such Third World ‘opponent’) will be a reality in the world of sustained warfare with two relatively closely ‘matched’ opponents. America (its leadership and its people) has become too much attuned to fighting wars with Third World nations, islands, warlords and tribes in its mental calculus for the requirements for ‘manning’ its armed forces.
And the case against homosexuals serving openly in the armed forces has its own poignant history.
The case against women-in-combat is made clear in all its dimensions by Stephanie Gutmann in her book, "The Kinder, Gentler Military: Can America's Gender-Neutral Fighting Force Still Win Wars?" This book is a 'must read' for anyone who wishes to find the destruction that the social experiment with women-in-combat has sown in our armed forces. Each chapter in her book highlights a facet of the problem of the 'feminization' of our Armed Forces. It is a stinging indictment of an experiment which is obviously failing.
Ms. Gutmann visited boot camps, aircraft carriers on station overseas and talked to men and women there, including the drill sergeants, combat aviators, men and women who man our combatant ships, and veterans of the Gulf War. She was able to get the 'real' story, the story behind the scenes of the politically correct censors who exert pressure (I call it terror) to keep 'outsiders' from finding the truth of this disastrous experiment.
Ms. Gutmann's seminal book deals with all of this and, in addition, provides a history of how we got to where we are -- women in combat. She listens, she watches, she observes, and she writes. The result is fascinating reading -- and depressing. But at least she knows what the real problem is -- the 'feminization' of the U.S. military.
Examples of what Ms. Gutmann found are provided in summary form below: First, dealing directly with the choice of terminology used in framing the women-in-combat debate, the Pentagon chooses words to de-fuse the fact of the experiment's failure. That is, the politically correct New Age Pentagon does not use the term 'feminization.' This terminology is not 'acceptable.' Listen to Ms. Gutmann:
"It was 1995...when I told the [Army public relations officer] that I was doing a story on 'sexual integration
in the military,' there was an awkward silence and then a strained laugh. 'The term we use now,' the
Pentagon flack finally said primly, 'is gender integration.'"
Ms. Gutmann then tells us why the Pentagon brass had officially decided to use the word 'gender' instead of the word 'sex.' "Gender, a trendy, academic word, has been used to mean behavior and self-image learned from one's society, a society determined to keep women 'in their place.' The word sex, on the other hand, suggests sex differences that are hardwired, basic, primal, dictated by chemistry and hormones, as stubborn as the tides."
The first 'definition' was the product of radical feminist activists in the Executive Branch and Congress to whom "...the brass handed over their soldiers to social planners in love with an unworkable...vision of a politically correct utopia, one in which men and women toil side by side, equally good at the same tasks, interchangeable, and, of course utterly undistracted by sexual interest...In the nineties ['women’s issues'] took precedence...the military brass's interest in numbers [quotas for women] became an obsession, a kind of madness."
Ms. Gutmann tells us how this 'feminization' of our military came about. "With more women coming in and moving up, the last all-male bastion had to make a decision. Assuming they [the military brass] were now committed to creating a force that looked like America, would they ask women to change themselves to fit into military culture and infrastructure, or would the institution change itself to ensure that women came and stayed? The significant fact about the nineties is that after decades of operating on the first premise, the institution became convinced it had to adopt the latter...the old attitude was something like 'Let's just treat 'em the same; you gotta join us, these are the requirements: You gotta run, you gotta jump, you gotta fight; you shoot, move, and communicate'...In the nineties...that has shifted to 'What can we do so we can join you?'"
This is what many of us would call a 'real world' definition of the word 'feminization.' Whether CAPT Anonymous' daughter is mentally and physically 'qualified' or not to engage in combat in the Navy's F-14 fighter, JUST THE FACT THAT SHE IS THERE HAS DEGRADED THE TRAINING AND QUALIFICATION STANDARDS -- FOR ALL NAVAL AVIATORS, MEN AND WOMEN. And this degradation has led to a mass migration of young male ‘warriors’ from naval aviation – and all other combat units in our armed forces where females have been allowed to take combat roles. Our special forces are the exception to this rule. They do not allow women to serve in front-line roles even though females have taken non-combat roles in these forces.
All this is not CAPT Anonymous’ fault. It is not his daughter's fault. He acts on a noble impulse -- a father's natural pride in his daughter. She acts out of a sense of patriotism, to follow in the family tradition of serving her country. She may even act out of a spirit of 'adventure' that men have traditionally responded to in 'proving their manhood.' The fault is not with them. The fault is with human nature. We cannot escape it. This is not a perfect world.
This is a product of the fallibility of man. When once noble ideas and concepts are begun, they may (absent the wisdom that comes from learning from failed experiments) degrade over time to the LOWEST COMMON DENOMINATOR. This process occurred, for example, when politicians sought a welfare system that protected the lowest economic class from destitution and produced a class of people (white and black) who denounced individual achievement and looked to the government for their well-being – and extended this concept to one or two generations of welfare-dependent people, mostly women. It occurred when a generation of Americans embraced a counter-culture revolution which included ‘sexual liberation’ for females – producing vast numbers of illegitimate children, absent ‘fathers,’ and angry alienated women.
And, now, we see this same phenomenon at work when politicians sought and still seek (for their own personal political gain) a military that 'looks like America.' That is what happens when goals become steadfast quotas for certain preferred groups, rather than individuals. That is what is happening right before our eyes. That is the result of CAPT Anonymous' daughter simply BEING THERE!
These same faults have placed American society over the past 30 years in the hands of those who have destroyed our public schools, invaded our universities, weakened our churches, debased our public discourse, and defiled our body politic. Why would we not expect the same thing to occur, at its appointed time, to our prized military -- an institution which has won every war in which it has been engaged, including the Cold War?
Ms. Gutmann was able to break through the curtain of fear that runs deep in our military culture of the nineties. She tells us that "Right now, as I write this in 1999, the military is in crisis. 'The Army is broke like it's never been broke before,' says a highly placed Army officer; he is the part of a chorus one hears service-wide down the ranks. Morale among service people is at rock bottom."
"A former F-14 pilot, John Gadzinski, now flying for a commercial airline, says, "...there is a 'no-kidding, core reason' for [experienced aviators leaving the Navy], and it is one the brass haven't wanted to hear. 'It's about the command climate, stupid.'"
"It is the reason that dare not speak its name. One learns that there is one iron rule governing military reporting these days: People on active duty do not tell reporters the truth if the truth is something they know their COs will not want them to say. Many, many service people have ruined or lost their careers testing this rule. 'We live,' one soldier commented, 'in a politically correct fishbowl.'"
"'It's becoming like Mao's cultural revolution,' says ex-Army officer John Hillen. 'Everybody knows it's a system built on a thousand little lies, but everybody's waiting for someone that's high-ranking who's not a complete moral coward to come out and say so.'"
So, there you have it. In plain English. Without hiding the truth behind semantic foggery. The major problem with the U.S. military morale is plain and simple --it is its radical 'feminization' during the 1990s.
Ms. Gutmann also found the 'conventional wisdom,' politically acceptable explanation for low morale in our armed forces -- pay, optempo, shortage of personnel and resources in units, and 'problems' with new recruits and their basic training.
But Ms. Gutmann asks the primary question. Why is the military of the nineties having a serious problem with morale? She provides the answer. "The explanation is that there is a powerful demotivator out there that the service chiefs either don't fully see or simply, stubbornly refuse to acknowledge. It sits there like the proverbial nine-hundred-pound gorilla in the services' living room. It's a reason that tends NOT to show up on official data-gathering radar screens (government surveys, for instance)...because it is intangible, abstract, qualitative) and (and this is a big 'and') very politically incorrect in the very politically correct world of today's military."
"Understand only one thing about the current military social climate and you will understand a lot: The social climate of the armed forces has become ...'like Mao's cultural revolution, a culture built on a thousand little lies.' In an atmosphere of official avoidance, doublespeak, and euphemism, one reads management's pronouncements not for what they say but for WHAT IS CONSPICUOUSLY AVOIDED..."
"This means that when one is searching for the truth about the motivations and core feelings of today's servicemen and women, one has to look around the margins, between the lines, and several levels below the Potemkin village displays of happy, efficient workers that the brass set up for visiting reporters and government officials. One finds ... opinions in unsigned letters on the letters page of the Navy Times, in op-eds written under pseudonyms in Navy periodicals, on Internet bulletin boards...in interviews with active duty folks when they have begun to trust you and when they feel confident you won't use their names."
Ms. Gutmann then takes apart a Navy Times survey which used 'forced answer' questionnaires to make the observation that when a category 'other' was further investigated, the results (unpublished but available if one looked deeper) were quite different than advertised. In fact the 'other' category had been selected by 50 percent of enlisted respondents and 54 percent of officers -- a higher rate than any of the other 'forced choice' categories. "Given a chance to speak their minds, people wrote about 'change in the culture' which to varying degrees alarmed them, infuriated them, alienated them. In fact, 'Loss of confidence in leadership' and 'Job isn't fun' combined with 'change in the culture' to make up a block that simply dwarfed the economic reasons [for leaving the Navy]."
"And, for all the talk about 'booming civilian economies', only 25 percent of officers, the people more likely to have the kind of technical and managerial skills that could be traded in for big bucks in the civilian sector, reported 'better opportunities as a civilian' as their reason to resign. 'Loss of confidence in leadership' and 'other' both received nearly double what 'Better opportunities as a civilian' received."
Ms. Gutmann also found that "...the sheer monotony of managing gender integration...and making sure that your personnel do not engage in sexual misconduct just don't provide the same thrill -- no, more important, the same pride and sense of accomplishment -- as meaningful operations at sea.
Indeed, even though CAPT Anonymous' daughter has probably followed all of the rules, moral and service-imposed -- just the fact that SHE IS THERE, along with a horde of other women, has caused untold friction and harm in the command structure at the operating level. The commanders, chief petty officers and leading petty officers, who had absolutely no say in approving this situation, are spending all of their time on disciplinary problems that stem directly from the 'feminization' of the nation's combat arms.
This seriously degrades operational readiness and destroys the combat efficiency of the force.
One super-fine naval aviator (coincidentally, the same person who was the flight instructor ‘hero’ of my ‘From Trust to Terror’ book), age 37 and only six years away from locking in a military pension, honestly revealed the truth for Ms. Gutmann. He "...insisted his [decision to leave the Navy] was 'not a money issue.' I joined the Navy with the intent to fly. Money wasn't a factor. I felt I made plenty of money for what I did, and I didn't stay in for so long because of the money but because I was enjoying what I did, but unfortunately I've seen the way that it's going and I'm like 'I don't want to do this!' My reasons for leaving just show the state of the Navy and why people are getting out.' The nut of what drove him out, he said, was 'the overall pressure of senior leadership saying we should be politically correct. It's no fun anymore; we can't be men.'"
So, there you have it. The men are getting out, leaving in droves because they 'CAN'T BE MEN.' The 'feminization' of the U.S. military is, indeed, destroying it.
CAPT Anonymous is not causing this. His daughter is not causing this. But just by the fact that SHE IS THERE is causing it to occur. The frailties of human nature and the 'politicization' of our armed forces down to the recruit level, is destroying our nation's ability to protect us from our enemies. And we are, sometimes, our own worst enemy.
This is not a perfect world!
Ms. Gutmann presciently quotes Amelia Earhart, circa 1930, "Men would rather vacate the arena [of combat] altogether than share it with women."
Gutmann writes, "Amelia was right. The nineties have been all about soldiers 'vacating' the arena. Two years of 'quality of life' improvements, bonuses, and revamped ad campaigns have not boosted recruitment or ended the 'exodus' of attrition [of the real ‘warriors’]. With Congress now pushing to see a 'return' on their 'investment' of bonus money, the brass are desperate enough to try new methods. Exit interviews are slated to become more in-depth; outside contractors have been hired to use focus-group data (not a common tool in military research) because the focus group is the only method that stands a chance of drawing out the answers that the rigid yes/no, pick-one-from-column-A questionnaires miss. ONE PRAYS THAT THE FOCUS-GROUP LEADERS ARE ABLE TO HEAR THE THINGS PEOPLE SAY BETWEEN THE LINES AND TO PURSUE THOSE LEADS TO THEIR SOURCE, and then that the Pentagon will listen to the politically incorrect answers that will emerge."
Ms. Gutmann then tells us that the answer is already known. "Actually, if the Pentagon really wanted to know why everybody has been heading for the exits (and I theorize that they do but won't say what they know until 'a study' says it for them), THE ANSWER IS EVREYWHERE."
"In a recent Internet newsletter, for instance, one that the official-types surely read, U.S. Army captain Jeff Church supplied the answer: 'It's not just about money. The U.S. military has never made anybody but flag officers wealthy. People used to stay in because they felt like they were WARRIORS, making a difference, with commanders they RESPECTED, in units they were PROUD of. THESE FEELINGS DON'T EXIST TODAY.'"
Ms. Gutmann concludes, "All this could be borne, the servicemen say, if the U.S. military was still the institution they once joined. But the services made one, single SUICIDAL MISTAKE at the beginning of the last decade: They threw away the mystique, the one thing that gave them an edge over the civilian economy with which they now find themselves in competition. As ex-naval officer Patrick Vincent put it, the brass 'REFUSED TO DEFEND THEIR OWN CULTURE;' they even began to systematically criminalize the warrior spirit as its manifestations (seen through the template of political correctness) were deemed anachronistic, abusive, insensitive, elitist."
"And the effect on the young men who would join this culture and stay was that the military became '...just another civil service job...With the loss of the military, there is no frontier to which a MAN can escape.'"
Indeed, Ms. Gutmann has cut to the heart of the problem. She has found the answer as well. We must 'de-feminize' the armed forces of the nineties -- a flawed dream of those New Age Boomer civilians who were slowly but surely replacing our constitutional republic, handed down to us by our Founding Fathers, with a socialist utopia of their own 'enlightened imagination.'
Ms. Gutmann has another proposed action that would 'clear the air' for those active-duty and retired naval aviators who have seen their proud profession held up to ridicule and disrespect by the nation's mass media and its political leadership. Listen to what Ms. Gutmann poses as the price that should be paid for 'cooperation' of the Tailhook Association and the 'feminized' active-duty Navy. [pp.281-282].
"It is not overly dramatic to say that the memory of Tailhook is like a great festering toxic waste dump in the middle of the military consciousness. That the stench of the 'Witchhook' lowered morale and has driven people out of the forces. If [then-]Commander in Chief Clinton could find it in himself to hold a very public ceremony pardoning Civil War soldiers who were, it is now believed unfairly court-martialed, he should be able to do something along those lines for men who are still living. [He and the joint chiefs of staff]...should hold a televised ceremony apologizing to all the men (and in this case it is exclusively men) who were treated like common criminals and/or unfairly separated and/or held back from promotion because they attended, had friends who attended, or commanded someone else who attended the Tailhook symposium and convention of 1991. The Tailhook Association should also receive an official apology. Paula Coughlin has received some restorative balm in the form of $5 million from the Hilton Corporation; the Navy has been tortured for a decade; after a ceremony of absolution, this thing should be buried."
I have tried to make my case against women-in-combat to CAPT Anonymous, the father of a female naval aviator and a reasonable man. I do not propose that CAPT Anonymous give up his support of his daughter. To the contrary, I urge him to continue to give full support in her quest. It is as nature demands. I would do the same for my daughter in the same situation.
But it is our hope that the number of such fathers will remain small. Although they are vocal and possess a huge 'emotional' punch, our hope is that the rest of us will follow our cerebral cortex rather than our limbic brain to decide what is best for our nation. We must not be PASSIFIED by their message.
We should and must be proud of our daughters. We should, as fathers, even be proud of those few who are bravely attempting to enter a frontier that has unknown hazards. These are truly courageous young women. The problem is that they are being misled by a group of radical feminists, both inside and outside the military who 'know not of what they speak.' Such daughters are but pawns in a power struggle that America neither needs nor wants. For radical feminism is truly a struggle for raw power in American politics -- a totalitarian movement that follows more closely the socialist French revolution than any other ideological movement since the late 1700s.
It is only when our nation's daughters come to realize that the 'enemy' is not some figment of the radical feminists' imagination -- the patriarchy, that is, men, that we men can rest assured that the nation's women can take their quest for adventure, their urge for conquest (over something), their desire to achieve 'equality,' somewhere other than in our nation's combat arms. The 'enemy' is, indeed, the radical feminist agenda.
Only then, can we make the wise decisions that will guarantee the survival of American civilization in a dangerous and clearly more and more unstable world.
As for CAPT Anonymous the PASSIVE and CAPT Justesen the COLLABORATOR, the 'enemy' is not those of us who oppose women-in-combat. The 'enemy' is on the other side of the issue. It is unfortunate that they FEEL that opposition to their daughters BEING THERE is tantamount to 'enemyhood.' We understand and are sympathetic to his position, but we THINK we are correct in trying to do what is best for the rest of America – its survival.