Lies, Lies, and More Damned LiesÓ
Gerald L. Atkinson
15 December 2005
This is the third in a trilogy of new essays on the subject of women-in-combat on this website. The first essay, ‘The Indian Wars’ provides an historical background for our current guerilla war in Iraq with Islamic terrorists. It takes us back in time (1744-1820) when the settlers of the then-Northwest Territories (from the Appalachian Mountains to the Mississippi River were in a bitter fight for survival with the Indians. The savagery of that conflict is described in some detail. It is to the courage, bravery, fighting spirit, and ability to adapt to Indian ways and tactics that the Frontiersmen of that age persevered in turning back that ‘insurgency’ and made the land safe for the settlers from the brutal, barbaric Indian tribes. Had they failed, there would have been a perpetual state of ‘insurgency’ facing the white settlers, much as we have witnessed over the past four or so decades in the Middle East and/or the tribal nature of the present day inhabitants of Afghanistan or the Northern Territories of present day Pakistan. There would be no United States of America.
The second essay in the current series, ‘The Tale of Two Gauntlets,’ places in context what our armed forces have lost in the ‘warrior spirit’ in the scant two hundred years from the time of the Indian Wars to today. It describes in detail the cruel and inhumane gauntlet run by Simon Kenton (a Frontiersman) who was captured by Shawnee Indians and the ‘powder puff’ gauntlet voluntarily traversed by Paula Coughlin (a female naval aviator) at the Tailhook ’91 bacchanal in Las Vegas, Nevada in September 1991. The enemy in Kenton’s days were the Shawnee Indians who used the gauntlet as a form of torture before burning the victim at the stake. The ‘enemy’ in Coughlin’s gauntlet were men, young naval aviators, who stand accused by radical feminists of ‘oppressing’ women. At a time when America faces a test of survival in a dangerous world where our potential ‘enemies’ will have access to nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, the nature of the two gauntlets and their makeup – just who is the ‘real’ enemy in this modern world, Islamic terrorists of global reach or the American patriarchy – is instructive of the forces at work feminizing our culture and, in particular, weakening our nation’s military.
This, the third essay in the series deals with the continuation of the lies by radical feminists and their supporters during the current conflict in Iraq – a ‘different’ kind of war.’ The background for this essay is set by several essays on this website, posted in previous years. The first big lie was the misleading account of one of the first female deaths in ‘combat’ in Afghanistan (see Women in Combat After 9-11). The second big lie was an account of women’s heroism in waging the war in the air over Afghanistan (see War as Radical Feminist Propaganda). The third big lie, regarding the seamless interchangeability of men and women in combat, is exposed in the essay, Thoughts on Women in Combat. The fourth big lie, and probably the most outrageous one during the Second Gulf War in the rush to Baghdad, was the phony ‘heroism’ of Private Jessica Lynch, whose support group was ambushed in Nasiryah, Iraq in 2003 (see The Jessica Lynch Corner).
Does America Have What It Takes?
Victor Davis Hanson, a scholar of the ancient Greek classics, asks a fundamental question regarding the current conflict with the ‘insurgents’ in Iraq – are we ‘too soft for a new kind of war?’ He relates the story of Lt. Col. Erik Kurilla . “[He] was shot three times and wounded in Mosul, Iraq, as he led his men into a terrorist enclave. He jihadist who shot him survived and was given first-rate American medical care for his wounds. It turns out that the terrorist was captured earlier in December 2004, on suspicion of being involved in a deadly suicide attack on an American base. Then he was turned over to the Iraqis, sent to the notorious Abu Ghraib jail and released. Once free, he returned to killing Americans and his rendezvous with Col. Kurilla.”
For bickering Americans back home, Abu Ghraib is a ‘Stalag,’ but for the terrorists it’s apparently a rest stop before resuming their hunt for Americans. This recent incident once more reflects how confused we are in the West over the proper way to obtain the needed ends. While we worry we have gone too far in our harshness (see the essay at Lt. Col West and our Feminized America), our enemies are convinced our softness has us too far gone to win this war.”
“This fight is quite different from past conflicts. The jihadists have no uniforms. Their first, not last, resort is terrorism. They know they cannot win unless they murder and demoralize civilians [just as the Indians did in the 18th century Indian Wars in America], preferably in the U.S., as we saw September 11, 2001.”
And then Hanson reveals a more important difference. “But there is another difference that involves us and not just the enemy. In the past, a poorer and less sophisticated United States largely embraced a tragic vision of dealing with the world as it was rather than what we hoped it might be. Our forbears believed they did not have to be perfect to be good. To them, war, like poverty and depression, was another of the tragedies of the human experience, where there were no good choices – the least ghastly being victory at all costs.” The Indian Wars during the mid-18th –century are good examples.
Hanson continues, “So this war against Islamic fascism is a perfect storm of sorts, involving an enemy that uses stealth and counts on Western society’s own liberty and magnanimity to destroy itself at the pinnacle of its affluence and sensitivity…We also lament the Patriot Act, supposed Islamophobia and new restrictive immigration guidelines. Meanwhile in July, five men were arrested with thousands of dollars in cash, videos of landmarks and maps of the New York subway system – four of them in violation of immigration laws and all from Egypt.”
Then Hanson cuts to the chase. “‘End of history’ post-Cold War Westerners have convinced themselves their primordial past is long gone, just when bin Laden et al, came from it to assure them it decidedly is not. Of course, we have had this debate over competing therapeutic and tragic visions of human nature at home since the 1960s. We still argue over carrot-and-stick dilemmas, such as incarceration versus rehabilitation or workfare versus welfare. But now the debate is not about public policy, but rather our very survival – as we struggle to find the proper way to defeat a vicious enemy without losing our liberal soul. In Britain, a liberal Tony Blair has already chosen to get tougher after the London bombings: ‘Let no one be in any doubt: The rules of the game are changing.’ Indeed, they must and are.”
Hanson wrote a piece in the Wall Street Journal which described the trials, tribulations, and mistakes made by civilian and military leaders during World War II. He reminds us that  “Just Three-and-one-half years after America’s abrupt entry into the war the Nazis were not merely checked or defeated – but rather annihilated in one of the most brutal and extraordinary achievements in history…Pleasant mediocrities like Mark Clark were sometimes promoted: scary authentic military geniuses such as George Patton were occasionally ostracized…[Nevertheless], how did our forefathers pull it off, and are there any wartime lessons that we can distill from their accomplishment? What destroyed the Nazis was the combination of American material and the zeal of large democratic conscript armies, that, despite little preparation or experience, within mere months proved as formidable as their more experienced German adversaries…The generation that was forced to ignite enemy cities, send billions in aid to a mass-murdering Stalin, bomb French rail yards, and deploy soldiers who sometimes fought with obsolete equipment, felt that they did not have to be perfect to know that they were good – and far better than the enemy. For them, war was never an easy utopian alternative between the perfect and the bad, but instead so often, a horrific conundrum of bad choices versus those far worse – victory going only to those who had greater preponderance of right, made the fewer mistakes, and outlasted the enemy.”
Hanson’s view is reinforced by another prominent young historian, Niall Ferguson – a Scott. He reminds us that  “The U.S. faces two problems [in Iraq] that the United Kingdom did 85 years ago. The British were able to be ruthless: they used air raids and punitive expeditions to inflict harsh collective punishments on villages that supported the insurgents.” Early Americans – in the days of Andrew Jackson – used precisely the same strategy against the Shawnee and Cherokee Indian tribes who carried out savage, ruthless, and brutal attacks on settlers in the then-Northwest Territories – their very survival was at stake. While such a strategy may not be applicable in the age of an insurgency in Iraq which does not ‘directly’ affect the survival of American citizens – as the Indian uprisings threatened the survival of the settlers – it is not only applicable, but absolutely necessary – in the event of either an attack on the American homeland by weapons of mass destruction or a credible threat of such an attack. America must face this prospect in the coming age of a tragic ethos.
America’s Emerging Therapeutic Culture
Hanson’s fundamental point is that our American culture has become a therapeutic culture rather than the tragic culture, one that expected and was prepared for hardship, suffering, and courage in the face of a fierce enemy. A national newspaper reports  that ‘Mental Ills Rise Among Soldiers Back From Iraq.’ The report states that “About 17% of U.S. soldiers surveyed by the Army who saw heavy combat in Iraq and have returned home suffer from at least one major mental-health problem…The report ‘forces us to acknowledge the psychiatric cost of sending young men and women to war,’ [says a professor of psychiatry].” The report also stated that a control group of soldiers from a comparable unit stateside reported only 9% had mental health problems, presumably due to their imminent deployment to Iraq. This report exemplifies not only the underlying pulse of therapeutic America, but also the fiction that women soldiers are actually in combat in Iraq. The latter is simply an outright lie – as we shall see later.
Many veterans of our previous wars may be shocked to find that, even warships far removed from the fighting on the ground in Iraq, have officer psychologists assigned to ship’s company to administer therapeutic care to the crew. When interviewed on the USS Abraham Lincoln after its return from an extended nine-and-one-half month deployment, Navy Lieutenant Rose Rice, Lincoln’s psychologist was quoted , “We ask a tremendous amount of these young sailors, and some are better equipped to handle it than others.” The story gives examples of this ‘new age’ therapeutic Navy. “The Navy tries to smooth the bumps during the ride home with reunion classes, re-establishing-intimacy classes and safe-driving classes for sailors who haven’t been behind the wheel in nearly a year. ‘We caution all of them: One, you’ve changed, and so have the people back home. And two, reunions don’t fix everything,’ psychologist Rice says.”
“The message: Don’t fantasize about a perfect homecoming. Don’t try to catch up overnight. Don’t try to change the household routine. Act like a guest for a while. Don’t be judgmental. Spouses at home, don’t lay a big honey-do list on your sailor right away. Returning dads, don’t morph into Mr. Disciplinarian as you walk through the door. Red flags should go up on the subject of intimacy. ‘We tell them, ‘Maybe you need to have some dates before you get sexually intimate,’ says Lincoln’s chaplain, ‘You want to have a good time in bed? Start by helping with the dishes.’”
As a combat veteran of the air war over North Vietnam and a Navy carrier aviator with four deployments overseas – two of which were spaced only two months apart, resulting in 20 out of 22 months at sea, I find such therapeutic piffle outrageous. In a few short decades our military has been infected with a feminization syndrome that is a blight on the men who serve. Such a development has been foisted on a military by the elites of a civilian population which has, itself, gone therapeutic. There were no psychologists on our ships. There were chaplains. There were ‘warriors.’ We did not need ‘counseling’ to come home and ‘wash the dishes.’ We wrote letters home to our wives and families and we received letters back in return. And there were no women aboard our combat ships. They came only during a relatively long period of peace, wherein politicians and weak-kneed military leaders who valued their careers above their sacred oath to defend and protect our Constitution from enemies within and abroad, succumbed.
Betsy Hart, a syndicated columnist, writes , “We’re all familiar with what happens at schools whenever there is trauma – a suicide, a shooting, a natural disaster, the death of a classmate in a car accident. Within hours, trained grief counselors inevitably descend on the school-children, urging them to delve deep into the tragedy and share their feelings about it…That’s silly…[The trauma counselor’s message] is ‘This is all about you and you are fragile – you might not be able to handle this’ … That’s the message of ‘therapism’ in general…[It’s not about coping] … the ethos of therapism [is] pathologizing normal human emotion, promoting the illusion that we are very fragile beings, and urging grand emotional displays as the prescription for coping.”
Hart reminds us of what “…the British historian Paul Johnson calls the spirit of the American Creed. ‘The Americans are, above all, a problem-solving people. They do not believe that anything in this world is beyond human capacity to soar to and dominate. They will not give up.”
This is exactly the fighting spirit which exemplified the frontiersmen who fought in the Indian Wars of the mid-to-late 18th century. See the essay on the Indian Wars on this website, which tells the story of Simon Kenton – the Frontiersman. Kenton saw and experienced the most cruel form of torture imaginable carried out by Indians on American frontiersmen and settlers at the time – every bit as savage as anything we have yet seen perpetrated by the insurgents in Iraq on our civilians and our soldiers. Allan W. Eckert describes Kenton’s mental state at the time . “The hatred of the Shawnee was strong, his memory long and his vengeance great. Every man on this expedition [who witnessed the results of the torture], particularly Simon Kenton, would carry the picture of this atrocity with him for the rest of his life and many a night’s sleep from this time forward would be interrupted by horrible nightmares.” No psychology. No whining. No crying. Simply an acceptance of the tragic fate of human nature at its worst. And a creed to live by that says ‘I won’t give up.’ And after a long life of 81 years, Simon Kenton died in the comfort of his bed. On the gravestone of this heroic American is inscribed, ‘Full of Honors, Full of Years.’
The Biggest Lie of All: Women in Combat in Iraq
The drumbeat for women in combat started anew immediately after the American response to the 9-11 terrorist attack. As chronicled at the hyperlinks above, the radical feminist organizations and the co-opted mass media have pressured the nervous nellies in the Congress and even the Bush administration into praising the women in uniform and overplaying their mostly support role to that of ‘front line troops in the center of battle.’ Deaths of female soldiers in the most benign roles – e.g. a crew member of a cargo aircraft lauded for her ‘combat’ role when the transport aircraft on which she was a crew member crashed on landing at night in Pakistan, not Afghanistan.
Military public affairs officers wrote glowing praise pieces about females in military police units training in Kuwait as ‘swat teams,’ breaking down doors and entering to apprehend terrorists presumed to be inside. The swagger of the female MPs interviewed gave the impression that they were, indeed, on the ‘front lines’ performing ‘combat’ operations in Iraq shoulder-to-shoulder with their male counterparts. The truth is that this picture is pure fiction. Female MPs have not engaged and do not now engage in such activities in Iraq. This mission was carried out by all-male combat troops in Fallujah and elsewhere in Iraq where the insurgency was most active. They were infantry combat troops who carried the offensive operations of urban warfare to the insurgents – not MPs. The only females involved were those who later were added to the ‘cleanup’ operations when it was safe enough for women to accompany the male ‘warriors’ into homes where Iraqi females had to be searched – by females rather than males. An obviously worthwhile public relations motivated act.
Examples abound . A newspaper stridently shouts “She broke down the doors of Iraqi arms dealers in house-to-house raids in Fallujah. She seized caches of weapons and took prisoners. She fired her machine gun from a Humvee and came under fire while wearing the uniform of the U.S. military. But the Department of Defense won’t say Sgt. Maria Freudigmann was in combat…[she] fought alongside the Army’s 3rd Infantry Division combat troops [all male] while serving in Fallujah with the Rhode Island National Guard’s 115th Military Police Company.” Of course, the Sgt. did not break down any doors. She did not take any prisoners. Only the all-male combat troops did. She simply guarded the prisoners and their weapons caches after they were taken by the all-male infantry combat troops. The same article goes on to describe the female soldier’s primary duty in Iraq as “The U.S. Army soldier searching this Iraqi woman at a checkpoint…also is female (as caption to a picture of such activity).”
Another example. The headline touts “In the Line of Fire: For the first time women are shooting back and doing heavy lifting in a real war.” The story is not even close to the headline . “Pvt. Safiya Booth is a machinist assigned to an infantry division in Iraq…It was her first raid of an Iraqi home, and [she] had no idea what to expect. Tucking herself behind a group of men from her Army unit, her soft features and wispy body hidden by full battle gear, she walked through the front door, trying to be as anonymous as possible. When no shots were fired, she exhaled…Inside, she saw a group of Iraqi women cowering in a corner. While her male colleagues searched for weapons and questioned the men there, her job as a female soldier was to put the women at ease and, if necessary, search them.”
But there is more to this ‘puff piece’ on women-in-combat than meets the eye. Tucked way back in the last several paragraphs are more believable revelations on the subject. “Private Booth, an American, was raised in Jamaica and joined the Army straight out of high school for the adventure. By trade she is a machinist who makes and repairs hoses, and had she stayed with her home unit, the 203rd Forward Support Battalion, she would be working in the motor pool on a medium-sized base with many other women and lots of amenities like a state-of-the-art gym, a movie theater and a 24-hour café that sells the Army’s version of Frappuccinos. There are even designated bathrooms and showers for women.”
“But now she is attached to the First Battalion, 30th Infantry Regiment of the Third Infantry Division – an infantry unit technically off limits to women – on a base where the roads are pockmarked from mortar and rocket attacks…The challenges women face at Camp Normandy are far from limited to warfare. Being outnumbered by almost 100 to 1, with no women-only bathrooms or showers, they have had to find creative ways to get along. Private Boothe’s female roommate made a pink-and-green wooden sign with ‘Female’ on it, and they prop it against the shower room’s door when inside…Most of the facilities on the base are geared toward men…panty liners are sold, but only because they are good for cleaning rifles, Private Booth said…Although she said her superiors try to make her feel comfortable, it’s almost impossible in such an atmosphere. ‘They sent me this box of maxipads when I first got here,’ she said, pointing to a large carton sitting untouched in her room.”
“While other women try to blend in with the men, many husbands and boyfriends are upset by the ratio of men to women. Private Boothe said her fiancé, who works [it’ just a job, eh?] at a base 25 miles away, is concerned that other men might become interested in her…[A sergeant in her company] says ‘The only problem I have with females is if they don’t want to do something, it’s too easy for them to say, ‘Guys, can you do this for me?’”
The mass media plays to the emotions of their presumably anti-war faction allies in America by highlighting – with pictures of female amputees – the terrible price our female soldiers are paying in Iraq for their ‘right’ to bear arms against our enemies. Heart rending sob stories abound across the nation in the print media about the impact on families who grieve over the loss of their daughter, sister, wife, or mother who gave her life in Iraq while engaging in ‘combat.’
Examples abound. USA TODAY carried a front page story with an accompanying full page continuation that is a frontal assault set piece for ‘women-in-combat.’ It features the story of Lt. Dawn Halfaker, a female Army MP whose armored Humvee was struck by a rocket-propelled grenade. She lost her right arm in the explosion. The story capitalized on her loss by showing a photo with her in a T-shirt, armless at the shoulder, carrying her prosthesis . “She is one of five American military women at Walter Reed who have lost limbs from combat injuries in Iraq, a war that marks the first time large numbers of female troops have faced prolonged exposure to daily combat. A decade ago – in the midst of a heated national debate over which military jobs women should occupy – Halfaker’s story might have ignited a battle over whether women should experience the hazards of ground fighting. Today, she and other severely injured female soldiers say, reality has overtaken the debate.” What a crock of piffle! First of all, Halfaker was not in combat – taking the fight to the enemy. She was the victim of a roadside bombing, much more akin to a random gangland shooting in Washinton, D.C. or an armed car-jacking in the District or adjoining Prince George’s County. More on that later.
Nevertheless, the story has a bit of reality in it – if you sift through the pro-radical-feminist propaganda. It states that “The public has long since gotten used to seeing men return home without arms and legs or otherwise mangled…But seeing images of severely wounded women is another story. [Another female amputee at Walter Reed] says she was told that some of the doctors and nurses treating her were unnerved when they saw what the explosion had done to her body. ‘I think they had not seen a female that badly mutilated [both legs amputated and an arm severely wounded],’ she says. ‘I’ve been told it was emotionally difficult for them.’”
The story continues. “Juanita Wilson, an Army staff sergeant, lost her left hand when an improvised bomb exploded near her Humvee…near Baghdad…Wilson, 31, says she has observed one major difference among amputees at Walter Reed. The men, she says, care much less about their appearance and will often move about without their artificial limbs. She won’t. ‘I just don’t think America is ready to see a woman without an arm,’ Wilson says.” What a revelation! So the female victims of the elitist radical feminist agenda want to hide the fact-of horrible wartime injuries on our female soldiers. From what? From whom? The generally inattentive and propagandized American populace. That’s who. This completely contradicts the fact that the so-called ‘debate’ over women-in-combat – which never actually occurred in the general population (in our churches, in our schools, in our neighborhoods, in our families) – has been an artifact of a centralized political movement, radical feminism.
This fact is actually backed up in the article – but hidden in the last several paragraphs. “While women account for about [only] 2% of all combat deaths in Iraq, they play a larger role in the all-volunteer military. About 15% -- nearly one in six – of all active troops are female, nearly double the percentage from 1980…The Pentagon has barred cameras from Dover Air Force Base in Delaware, where caskets carrying the bodies of U.S. troops [men and women] arrive back in the USA…[Halfaker’s mother] says the numbers of women killed or seriously wounded – compared with the numbers of men – are so low that they remain largely off the public’s radar screen.” So why do we not see the truth regarding the women who serve in Iraq?
One is reminded of the campaign of special interests in the U.S. to ban the showing of pictures of the hideous practice of partial birth abortions. Newspapers have refrained from even showing pictorial diagrams of the murder of the baby as its head protrudes from the birth canal – including the crushing of its skull. Of course, if Americans were allowed to actually ‘see’ this procedure, they would be emotionally filled with revulsion. The truth of this fact is well known. Those who rail against the tobacco industry have promoted the public accounts of lung cancer patients – those with only months left to live – over television and in the print media. These ‘truth-telling’ visual and oral accounts work to end these very harmful practices. The same would occur if Americans at large were reminded of the risks taken for a job, a career for women in the military. The military has, indeed, become a socially engineered jobs corps for females. And for what payback? To break through the so-called glass-ceiling, a quest for power.
Nevertheless, the drumbeat of the radical feminist press continued for Lieutenant Dawn Halfaker and a female-fellow-amputee. The New York Times printed a front page story, continued on one-and-one-half full pages to connect her story to another female amputee [loss of a hand] . “They had shared a dream of playing professional basketball. Now these two women – one a black enlisted soldier from Chicago’s tough South Side, the other a white officer from a pleasant San Diego suburb – were robbed of the natural gift that helped shape their identities [the former a star player for Notre Dame University, the latter a star point guard for the USMA at West Point]…Lieutenant Halfaker and Specialist Danielle Green [were in rehabilitation together at Walter Reed Hospital]. Halfaker and Green, two of the first three women to lose limbs in the war, were treated like stars at Walter Reed.”
Growing up, Danielle Green lived with her grandmother on welfare; her mother was a drug addict, she said, her father absent. She pulled herself out of that life and became a high school all-American…She won a full basketball scholarship to Notre Dame…and graduated in 1999. But she always longed for a family she could rely on. In 2002 she enlisted in the Army to find one because her boyfriend…did not want to marry her.”
“She learned quickly that the Army was a disappointment, she said. In January 2004 she dreaded leaving for Iraq with the 571st Military Police Company…When Specialist Green returned [from leave] to Baghdad, she played basketball to relieve tension but could barely sleep after several soldiers were injured by a mortar attack on the base mess hall…[One day] she was alone atop a two-story police station, M-16 rifle at her side, feeling as if she would melt in the 110-degree heat. Suddenly, two rocket-propelled grenades hit a barrier on the ground and exploded. She grabbed her rifle, but it was too late. A third grenade pierced her arm.”
“She went down, screaming, ears ringing; sand was in her mouth, eyes and ears, splintered wood embedded in her left cheek. Her rifle, which she had never fired in combat, was in pieces, her battle fatigues soaked with blood because her left leg had also been hit.” [She lost her left hand]…[And now] she wakes up drenched in sweat after dreaming about Notre Dame.”
“Ms. Green said she went there with a hot-shot attitude and wanted to be coddled by [the basketball coach]. Instead, they clashed. Now she is convinced that if their relationship had been better, [the coach] might have recommended her for an assistant coaching position. Ms. Green might never have enlisted in the Army. She might never have lost part of her arm.”
And in a paragraph near the end of the several page article, we finally find what a misfit Ms. Green was for the U.S. Army. Obviously, as is the case for most of the females who enter the military under the New Age radical feminist agenda, they join because they want a job, not because they view it as a special calling. The story continues, “Lately, though, Ms. Green has been thinking a lot about the war. She said she has ‘never been patriotic’ and is conflicted about American involvement in Iraq: she is against the war but supports the troops. She is indebted to the soldiers who risked their lives to save her on the rooftop last May.” For God’s sake! What in the world was she doing on the rooftop – alone? What was this misfit doing in the U.S. Army? We do not need ‘warriors’ like Ms. Green in today’s Army. So why was she there? So some elite feminists can break through the so-called ‘brass ceiling.’ The radical feminists and their allies – military and political civilians – have sown the seeds for the destruction of our nation’s armed forces.
If one pays close attention to the Letters to the Editor section, one finds a far different view than the one shared by the radical feminist elites in America. For example, in a letter in the USA TODAY, a mother writes , “My daughter is in the U.S. Army and will be going to Iraq [soon]…She does not want to be involved in a combat position as a result of supplying troops – and neither do most of her fellow female soldiers in the unit. She did not sign up for this combat-type role and is very upset about the situation in Iraq. Do people realize the vast number of casualties that occur during such convoys? Was that a part of USA TODAY’s recent poll of American views on women in combat? I believe the poll’s findings are inaccurate and dangerous to all of these women who were recruited to the military without this information.”
Another mother told the Associated Press , “Pfc. Rachel Bosveld, 19, was a member of the 527th Military Police…she was killed in a mortar attack…on a Baghdad police station…[She was] an artist who loved to draw forest scenes, play her violin and act in her high school drama club…She enlisted in the Army when she graduated [from high school], following in the footsteps of her father, who served in the Army…Her mother tried to talk her out of it…‘I would have done anything to have her choose a different career’ Mary Bosveld said. She said, ‘I know, Mom, but I have to do this…I want to keep up the family tradition.’ When she first got to Iraq, she was ready to ‘kick butt,’ her father said. But when a rocket-propelled grenade hit the Humvee she was driving, [it burned up from inside] and she dislocated her shoulder trying to open the door. When she did free herself, her unit started taking small-arms fire…From then on, her father said, ‘her letters counted the days until she could leave. ‘More and more people want us to go home,’ one letter said. ‘Believe me, we want to go home.’”
The radical feminists and their sympathizers in the nation’s mass media also continue to capitalize on the suffering of females who are caught in the crossfire of battle to make their story ‘heroic’ in the sense of a ‘female’ hero. The national media and public affairs officers in the U.S. Army acted purposefully to fake the heroism of Private Jessica Lynch during the ambush of her unit in Nasiriyah, Iraq during the Second Gulf War in 2003. And the Army conspired to hide her brutal injuries, including torture by breaking her legs – as they did with Johnny Spann in Afghanistan. By the time the entire story got out, the American people made a hero of her before the full details – including her rape by the Iraqis – were made public. Jessica Lynch did not want to be made a hero, but they did it anyway. They took advantage of Jessica Lynch then and they have done it again with a female Army officer.
Examples abound. The Saint Louis Post-Dispatch ran a series of multi-page sob-stories during June of 2005 on Captain Tammy Duckworth who was seriously wounded in Iraq when her Blackhawk helicopter was downed by a rocket-propelled grenade in November 2004. She wanted to be considered a soldier, not a female soldier. Nevertheless, ‘One Daughter’s Fight,’ told the story  of Tammy, who “…had always been a daddy’s girl. [She] flew Black Hawks to serve her country – and please her father.” In a photo caption of Tammy beside her Black Hawk helicopter, we read “Tammy Duckworth displays some of the ‘candy bombs’ she would drop to Iraqi children as she flew over the country in her Black Hawk helicopter.” And the sob-story gets worse in its continuation in the next day’s paper.
The second article told the story of how her family took the news of her helicopter being shot down in Iraq, the rescue, and her hospitalization at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C.. “[Her father], a veteran of World War II and Vietnam…had set high standards that his daughter always sought to achieve. But despite her successes in school, athletics, her civilian job and the military, Duckworth never recalled her father ever telling her that he was proud of her. They were words she longed to hear.”
“Less than two weeks before her downing, [her father] had posted a picture of his daughter and a brief note on a Web site operated by their local newspaper…The note mentioned Duckworth’s local roots and her duties in Iraq. ‘We are very proud of Tammy and pray for her daily, so long as she is involved in combat actions.’ He wrote. But Tammy hadn’t seen the note.”
“The Black Hawk came down less than a half-mile from where it had been hit…[the co-pilot] feared that whoever had shot them down would come quickly to finish off the crew. While Duckworth thought she had been flying the aircraft, it was actually [the co-pilot] who had guided the crippled Black Hawk to the ground…[After evacuating the wounded from the aircraft and placing them on a medivac helicopter], Army helicopters fired Hellfire missiles into the downed aircraft to prevent it from falling into enemy hands. The explosions destroyed the aircraft and with it Duckworth’s helmet bag in which she carried Christmas ornaments and small American flags that she had planned to give to her parents and in-laws when she got home.”
The second article ends when Duckworth is told that she had ‘lost her legs.’ “[Her husband] told her that she had lost most of her right leg and that her left leg below the knee was gone. Her right arm had been shattered. The nerves in her left shoulder had been damaged. She had limited movement in that arm and hand. She had shrapnel wounds in her face…[but] she was alive and they could look forward to a long happy life together.” The pathos of the sob-story continues.
The third story in the series takes a full page and one-half to tell the story of how her father finally told her he was proud of her . The essence of this story is that her father, of a generation of men who were stoic and could not express their ‘feelings,’ finally broke down on his deathbed and said, “You know, I’m so proud of you,” as his eyes moistened with tears. ‘Well, thank you, Daddy. That means a lot to me,’ Tammy replied.” This tear-jerker of a sob-story has at its base the radical feminist agenda of ‘feminizing’ America’s men, starting with the old Dinosaurs who fought and won World War II. In spite of the fact that this brave, courageous young woman lost her legs in her quest to please her father and “did not want to be labeled a ‘female’ soldier, but just a soldier,” she was taken advantage of by radical feminists who would never do what she did in Iraq, they egregiously took advantage of her, as they did with Private Jessica Lynch to forward a cultural Marxist agenda of women-in-combat in the U.S. military.
The final radical feminist attempt to put the nail in the coffin of those who would oppose women-in-combat appeared at about the same time frame as the above articles in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The article entitled, ‘Should Women Be In Combat?, made a faint attempt to present a balanced view of the subject. But it simply used interviews to restate the radical feminist position that answers in the affirmative – using the insurgency in Iraq as the data source. The silly notion there are ‘no front lines’ in this conflict defies common sense as well as logic. If America balked at women serving in ‘front line’ units – where the risk of being killed or wounded are quite high, as in conventional warfare – it is absurd to allow women today to be subject to that same risk in a conflict that has ‘no front lines.’ You can’t simply use lawyerly rhetoric to mask the fact that America does not want to see its mothers, wives, daughters, sisters, and other family members sacrificed in a job that has high risk of death or debilitating injury. The enemy has learned to attack the most vulnerable units in Iraq – those containing a large number of females. More on that later.
Nevertheless, no matter how illogical and contrary to common sense, the mass media used data from the Iraq conflict to make the very same radical feminist arguments for women-in-combat. For example, the article claims that  “The question should be: Is a person capable of doing the job? Aren’t we past that yet? [A male soldier in retort says he] ‘has a beef with the fact that physical testing standards are lower for women soldiers.’ [The article rejoins], with 22,000 women currently deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan, it is clear that they are vital to the war effort.”
The story proclaims “These are historic times for women in the military, and first-woman stories have been making news since the war started. In June, Sgt. Leigh Ann Hester, 23, of the Kentucky National Guard became the first female soldier to be awarded the Silver Star since World War II. She killed three insurgents who attacked her convoy near Baghdad.” Of course, the article doesn’t mention the fact that, when initially under attack, Hester gave her hand grenade to a male soldier because she knew she could not toss it far enough to reach the enemy. More on that ‘hero’ story later.
“In October 2004, Spc. Jessica Cawvey, a single mother of a 6-year-old daughter, was the first military mother from Illinois to die in Iraq. An explosive device exploded next to her truck.” How macabre! Let’s all give a radical feminist cheer of victory for this lauded first – the death of the mother of the an innocent young child. I wonder why they didn’t attempt to get an interview with Cawvey’s 6-year-old daughter to see if she was as overjoyed as the radical feminist journalist who wrote the article. I wouldn’t put it past the mass media to do such a reprehensible thing. After all, the agenda is everything.
But it gets worse. “And, of course, there was Pfc. Jessica Lynch, the first rescued prisoner of war.” See the full story of the lies, cover ups, and more lies that accompanied this story at ‘The Jessica Lynch Corner. Jessica Lynch was no hero, as the media and military made her out to be. They lied about the source of her injuries – she was tortured and she was raped. And she was in the Army in spite of the fact that she was nearly blind without her heavy, thick glasses. And she never fired her weapon during the ambush of her unit.
The article does, however, give some data that is of interest. “Of the 1,731 U.S. troops who have died in Iraq [as of sometime in late 2004] 39 have been women; nearly 300 women have been wounded. Six women have died in Afghanistan.” Of course, all who have died did not do so while engaged in combat. Some died as a result of vehicle accidents and other non-combat related activities. Nevertheless, this is less than 2.35% of all deaths. But seldom is the point analyzed that women make up about 10% of the force deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan. This is a very telling statistic. If women are really in ‘combat’ in these countries, they should have incurred about 10% of the casualties. Obviously, women are not in combat in Iraq no matter how strident the radical feminist rhetoric has become. More on this point later.
The article goes on to say that “Sgt. Lien believes that if women are capable and want to serve in combat, they should have the opportunity. ‘I wouldn’t do it, but I’m sure there are women who could do it,’ she said. Lien said that she got along well with the male soldiers in her company because they knew she could do her job. [There we go again – it’s just a job.] But some who study the military worry that mixing men and women in combat situations won’t work.”
“Mackubin Thomas Owens, and associate dean of academics at the Naval War College in Newport, R.I., believes that the presence of women in a combat environment would increase friction and have negative impact on unit cohesion. ‘All the social engineering in the world cannot change the real differences between men and women or the natural tendency of men to treat women differently tan they do other men,’ Owens believes…‘A guy soldier told me he couldn’t handle seeing a female soldier die,’ [a female solder] said. ‘It’s just how everybody’s been raised.’ [A male soldier added], ‘They [females] go outside the wire with us every day. They held their ground, and they did their job without flinching. We have to have females in our unit – it’s part of the job of law enforcement.” There we go again, only worse. If the job is law enforcement, then what in hell are these people doing in Iraq? This certainly is not, repeat not, combat.
Nevertheless, this stalwart male MP continues, “When we apprehend females we need females to process them. They have to be searched. I think anybody who’s got an issue with it is absolutely narrow-minded. They’re dinosaurs, and they should retire.” Cute, but completely beside the point of women-in-combat. This is not, repeat not, a combat situation. Not even are military radical feminist supporter can make such a point without being laughed out of the theater of operations. Where do we get such men?
Another soldier interviewed gives a slightly different story. “[He’s] observed a tendency on the part of some leaders to treat women soldiers differently. ‘I’ve seen some poor female soldiers, but you’ve also got guys looking for an easy way out,’ he said. ‘When a guy does it, you tell him to get his butt to work. But you can get in trouble if you talk that way to a female soldier.’” Soldiers who are not sucking-up to enhance their careers are likely to tell the truth about women-in-combat.
As stated above, in October 2004, Spc. Jessica Cawvey, a single mother of a 6-year-old daughter, was the first military mother from Illinois to die in Iraq. An explosive device exploded next to her truck. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch ran another full one-and one-half page story – another sob story for the radical feminist movement – on this event . It was accompanied on the front page by a huge picture in color of Ms. Cawvey, holding her little daughter, Sierra – on the day she graduated from boot camp . “[Cawvey] died in a roadside explosion in Fallujah…She was attached to the 1544th Transportation Company, a National Guard unit based in Paris, Illinois…The unit served nearly a year in Iraq and suffered the most casualties of any Guard unit of its size – 5 killed [of which three were women] in action…out of 148 soldiers deployed [34 of which were women]…An estimated 10 percent of U.S. forces in Iraq are women, many assigned to support duties like the truck drivers, mechanics, etc of her unit.” These statistics tell another story – which will be told herein later.
The story in the newspaper, however, is an out-and-out tear-jerker of a sob-story with a radical feminist slant. Her father responds to the debate on women-in-combat, with fully 15 percent of our military comprised of women, in a supportive way, as one might expect of any loyal father. He “…thinks he knows what his daughter would say about the issue: She would want to be able to do her job. I, of course, would have liked to see her in a safer job, but I would have supported her in what she wanted to do,’ he said.” Shortly after her unit came home on leave, following the deaths of two soldiers in her unit, “…the Conveys had noticed a change in their daughter, who had spent four months driving convoys in Iraq. Then-Spc. Cawvey (she was promoted posthumously to sergeant) had already survived a close call in which she was thrown from her truck after the driver became impaired…Her parents said she had matured while in Iraq, but they noticed something else, too. ‘She tried as best as she could to hide from us the fact that she was scared all of the time over there,’ said her father…She was jumping at loud sounds, like fireworks…A car backfired once, and she flinched.’” This is beginning to sound like the affect on young children of gang warfare in Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, New York City, Detroit, St. Louis, and other such urban areas of the good old USA. More on that later.
The newspaper goes on to build on the more sensible parts of the Jessica Cawvey story. “She was a ‘daddy’s girl,’ who for a time referred to [her father] as ‘Daddy better,’ – meaning ‘Daddy better than Mom.’ … [Jessica’s parents] have helped rear Sierra; her father is not in the picture. ‘Jessica was always a very good mother,’ said Sandy Cawvey. ‘She had a goal. She said, ‘I’m going to finish school. I’m going to make good money. I’m going to support my daughter.’” Isn’t that just the berries. Single moms are the New Age ‘warriors’ in today’s Army. And their motivation is to ‘make good money.’ So much for our vaunted all-volunteer force! A question is: where is her former husband? And why is her 23-year-old brother, as well as her former husband, not in the Army instead of Jessica? Young American men must answer that question.
The story continues. “Because Jessica was just 17 and had a child when she enlisted in May 2001, the Cawveys had to give their permission.” For God’s sake; is the Army so hard up that they have to enlist single mothers to ‘man’ the ranks? Jessica’s parents thought, however, that “…why not? ‘She’s being responsible. She was going to school full time and she also had a job,’ said Sandy Cawvey. ‘I just thought it was good for her to get a little extra money, and it would help her through college. Nobody ever thought that she would go to Iraq and die.’ … I don’t think she would have enlisted if she knew she would get called to war.’ … One of Jessica’s fellow-female guardsmen, when asked why she and Jessica enlisted, said with a laugh, ‘for the college money – and to get in shape.’”
But after the 9-11 attacks on America, the friend said, “‘We were excited to go – we’d never been anywhere. And this was something we could do that was fulfilling…You were actually doing something. You were helping people. For Jess and me, this was huge. We could be heroes.’” For goodness sake, heroes – driving supply trucks? Preposterous. But that is what many portions of today’s Army has become. Fantasy soldiers. Innocents, driven by radical feminist elites to gain political power over the male ‘patriarchy’ and escape the oppression of women in America by men. Balderdash!
The sob-story continues. “The Cawvey’s keep the medals and ribbons their daughter earned during her military career in a special wooden box. Sierra recognizes many of the ribbons, and as she showed them to a visitor, she called them by name: ‘Good Conduct … Purple Heart … Bronze Star …’ Why did she get that one?’ asked her grandma, pausing, ‘Because she died.’” Out of the mouths of babes, sometimes comes the truth, if not wisdom.” In another tear-jerk paragraph, the newspaper story states “Dressed in desert tan camouflage, Jessica had bent down to give her daughter a kiss before heading back to Iraq. Sierra was wrapped in a bright blue print blanket that Jessica had made for her birthday. Sierra still sleeps with that blanket and with a pillow her mom used in Iraq. ‘This was the last time she ever saw her,’ said Sandy Cawvey. ‘It was her last kiss goodbye.’ The night before, say the Cawveys, Sierra had pestered her mom to pinkie swear that she would come back home. Jessica was hesitant; they believe she knew she might not return.’” And we still believe that single moms should serve in risky and dangerous parts of the world, even in support units, much less in full combat where the actual ‘fighting’ takes place just so some elite, pompous, angry radical feminists can break through the ‘glass ceiling?’ If they do, the will do so over the bodies of the young innocents like Jessica Cawvey – pawns in the radical feminist movement to power; raw, naked power.
The farther one gets, however, from the fantasy world of the ‘pinkie swears’ of a child for her mother, the ‘candy bombs’ for Iraqi children dropped from Black Hawk helicopters, and the sob-stories written by radical feminist journalists for radical feminist editors who attempt to curry favor with the radical feminist sympathizers in the Congress and Executive Branch, and in the Pentagon and the active duty military, and the radical feminist special interest groups, the closer one gets to reality. Reality is the world where the real combat soldiers live and work. They do not live in a world of jobs or careers or law enforcement. The live and die in a world of ‘fighters.’ They are in the mold of Simon Kenton (the Frontiersman) and Andrew Jackson (the Indian fighter) who fought our nation’s Indian Wars of the mid-18th century to early 19th century and opened the then-Northwest Territories for settlement – from the Appalachian Mountains to the Mississippi River. Those people did not dream of heroism for themselves by driving the equivalent of modern day trucks or modern day law enforcement or prison guard duty. They took the fight to the enemy on foot, by canoe, and on horseback. They fought on the enemies turf, using the enemies own fighting ways. They fought with knives, tomahawks, and long rifles. They fought with their bare hands. They were fighters. They were warriors. They were not pretenders who used false rhetoric to claim ‘combat’ status. They also had no front lines. They did not send their women into ‘battle’ as pawns for their own self-interest. They protected their women, reproduced, and passed their fighting heritage down to their male progeny.
Such real fighters still exist today. For example, some live near and are based at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina . “Residents of this sprawling military town…are not likely to make a public display of grief over the deaths of local marines in a suicide attack in Iraq. They have adopted a grit-your-teeth defense mechanism to such news; after all, more than 100 marines from the local base, Camp Lejeune, have died in Iraq since the start of the war. But an attack…on a military convoy in Fallujah that killed six American troops and injured 13 others has opened wide fissures of opinion just below the studied calm. Four of those killed and 11 of those injured were women, and across town this weekend, at church services, at cookouts and in diners, families were talking about what the role of women in combat should be.”
A female Navy medical corpsman spouts the accepted radical feminist line that ‘the sex of the dead should not matter, only their sacrifice.’ She also stated, however, that “I never thought I’d be in battle either, fighting a war, running from mortar attacks.” But her husband, Lemoyne Sanders, 31, who spent four years in the Navy, said that behind sandbags or in an urban firefight, he would rather have a male soldier next to him than a women. ‘You’ll never get a woman to be as physically strong as a man,’ he said, adding: ‘Women get pregnant. It’s just different.’”
The article continues. “The military’s use of women has not so much evolved with the times as it has been molded by them. [That is, it did not happen that women proved they were equally or more adept at ‘fighting’ as men, but came as a result of political pressure during peacetime where the standards were lowered to allow women to hold more jobs – and the military became a grand experiment in creating a jobs corps.] A 1994 Pentagon policy restricted women to units that were not, at the time, likely to see much combat. But the continuing insurgency in Iraq, with its lack of defined front lines and its constant surprise attacks, has thrust women into harm’s way.” Indeed, America has become involved in a conflict that more nearly resembles the Indian wars mentioned above than any war since then.
“On Thursday, a suicide bomber drove a car into a convoy carrying at least 20 marines and soldiers. Most were women assigned to search Iraqi women at checkpoints. It was the largest number of women in the American military killed in a single attack during the war…With roughly 12,000 marines deployed overseas from Camp Lejeune and more scheduled to ship out soon, most people here are affected personally by the war. But memorials are hard to find on base or off. Most people say they like to think more of the future than the past. ‘Our command pushes, and we push, to settle things together and not in public,’ said Sgt. Joseph Calabria, 28, a marine who returned in January from his second tour in Iraq. ‘That’s how we stay strong.’”
The article notes, however, that the deaths of the women…have not gone without notice. In many cases, the deaths have emboldened both sides in the debate over women in war. Interviews with women, mothers of daughters who are in the service spout the worn radical feminist rhetoric. Younger women interviewed gave the view that women in the service are ‘pioneers’ and should be appreciated. Strange how the definition of a ‘pioneer’ has changed so drastically since the days of Simon Kenton and Andrew Jackson when the enemy was savage Indians and now the ‘enemy’ are males who oppress women via the vast controlling ‘patriarchy.’ They found a male marine administrator [read clerk, a job] who has worked closely with women who said, “The women of the future can look up to them, not because they died but because they served.” A clever dodge of the subject at hand.
But many marines at Camp Lejeune, particularly men, “…descried women in Iraq as a distraction from the mission, citing the immutability of human sexual desire. They also expressed concern over whether a woman would be able to pull a wounded man from a firefight, or be able to handle torture. Others questioned whether the women who have died deserved special attention. ‘It’s just an example of why they shouldn’t be there in the first place,’ Cpl. Stephen Koch, 25, a marine infantryman, said… ‘it’s tragic that five women died, but hundreds of males die all the time. Do we see them get front-page news?’”
When the interviewer found a wife of a marine who had died in Iraq, who said that every death in Iraq had equal value, he also found a counter. “Some people found it hard to accept that war could now take mothers, not just fathers. ‘No one can take the place of a mother, ‘ said Lily Cantrell, 52, a manager at the Kettle Diner, ‘A mommy is a mommy.’ … The husband of the female Navy corpsman in this story said that his ultimate fear is that her being a woman will make her a target of terrorists. ‘I’m scared I’m going to turn on the TV and some insurgent will have her blindfolded,’ he said. ‘I don’t know what I’d do.’”
That husband is not the only one who dreads the possibility of his wife falling into enemy hands in Iraq. It has the same effect on the commanders who must choose who goes and who doesn’t go ‘outside the wire’ – the impregnable fortress – outside of which danger lurks. Ray Doeksen of Chicago writes to the ethicist, Randy Cohen, of the New York Times asking his advice . “As a convoy commander in Iraq, I had serious reservations about the effectiveness of a young single mother in my unit, but what really appalled me was the thought of her leaving a child orphaned. When she was assigned to a particularly dangerous convoy, I replaced her with an unmarried man. He didn’t know why; I just said I was shorthanded and asked for volunteers. Did I act ethically?”
The ‘ethicist’ replied “‘You did the right thing for the wrong reason. If this female soldier was indeed unqualified for the assignment, she would be a danger to herself, her comrades and the mission. You could replace her on those grounds, but not because of her home life.’” Sound advice at first blush, but it raises the larger issue, not addressed, -- that is, what in the world was she or anyone else doing in the unit if they were ‘unqualified’ for the mission? Have the standards been so lowered so far that this is an issue? The answer is a definite yes. Pvt. Jessical Lynch was a case in point here. The Army had to revise completely the training and qualification standards on the Army support troops as a result of the lessons learned from her unit’s ambush and poor performance while under attack. More on that issue later.
But then, as is the case with all of these powder puff ethicists, Cohen continues, “Few commanders have sufficient knowledge of the private lives of all their troops to consider such a factor equitably. Perhaps one of your soldiers was a single dad. Another might care for a dozen siblings, And even if you knew all that, how would you balance such diverse circumstances?” And then the ‘ethicist’ punts the problem to a professor of military ethics at the U.S. Army War College who pontificates, “It’s too much to expect commanders to make such complicated calculations…How can any commander know how much their soldiers are loved and valued by their parents, children, siblings, friends, fellow soldiers et al.?” The ‘ethicist’ then states that “…such reasoning comes uncomfortably close to valuing some lives over others.” For God’s sake, hasn’t this guy ever heard of the Titanic? Has he never heard of the choice between the life of a mother during a troubled delivery over that of her child? Life abounds with such ‘ethical’ judgments. And we make them on the basis of our best judgment (good or not) and our moral values.
But then this idiot New Age ‘ethicist’ completely misses the point by punting the problem up to a higher level ‘decision maker.’ “That you replace this young woman with a volunteer doesn’t get you off the hook. Because you withheld pertinent information, the replacement was unable to make an informed decision.” This is abject nonsense. The replacement doesn’t need any more information. He jus goes ahead and carries out the mission. But the ‘ethicist’ isn’t yet satisfied with his answer so he punts again. “When deciding who is eligible for military missions, it is reasonable to consider domestic obligations. But such decisions should be a matter of policy applied consistently and transparently. It should not be an ad hoc matter for individual commanders, who would do better to treat all their soldiers equally.”
What is missing here is the lack of recognition that the basic problem is with human nature. It dictates by millennia of ingrained and inbred morality and survival of the species that males are to protect women if at all possible. Why? Because they are the only means by which humankind can be procreated. Survival is at the root of this answer. It always has been. And it always will be. Human nature is immutable.
But the lesson here is that the commander is not alone in his dilemma. Every commander in Iraq and any other war zone is faced with the same dilemma. If women were not in the war zone, there would be no additional command decision problem. The fact that women are there creates a vulnerability that the enemy – and any other foreseeable enemy – does not have. And the statistics of Iraq casualties show precisely this vulnerability and how our military commanders are not sending women ‘outside the wire’ as often as male soldiers. The women are being protected by the male officers, as one would expect. The casualty figures support this conclusion.
Combat Deaths in Iraq
Many of the nation’s leading newspapers publish a personalized list of combat deaths in Iraq – complete with a picture of each deceased and a short summary of where the death occurred. Some do it to honor those who serve and others are suspected of using this graphic tool to fuel the flames of an anti-war movement such as that conducted by most of today’s elites during their coming-of-age years as the Vietnam War was at high tide. Nevertheless, few of these combat deaths are tallied according to sex – that is male or female. One has to look closely at each picture to attempt to ascertain the number of females who have died in Iraq from combat-related activities. After a convoy was attacked resulting in the deaths and wounding of a large number of female marines, the radical feminists conducted a full-court-press to rationalize why so many women were at risk in Iraq. The women were assigned to units which ‘frisked’ Iraqi women at checkpoints. Most of these stories used the number of female deaths in near-combat situations to stridently call for more ‘combat’ roles to be opened to women. After all, women were dying in Iraq, just like men. The deaths seemed to be a rallying cry for more, rather than less, participation by our mothers, wives, daughters, and granddaughters to be placed at risk. Consequently, the number of female casualties became an important statistic for public consumption in carrying out the radical feminist agenda.
Josh White, an online correspondent for the Washington Post explains why the 2,000 death number was so much emphasized during 2005 . “We saw 2,000 as an opportunity to look at the toll on America and to remind people that each and every one of those people died in service to this country.” He further went on to explain that “The total number of troops killed and wounded in Iraq (presumably as of October 2005) is as follows: 2,000 dead; more than 15,000 wounded. Non-hostile causes account for a little less than 19 percent of the total fatalities [but are still included], including accidents, illnesses, etc.” This is an astonishing revelation. A 50-year-old reservist who resides ‘inside the wire’ in an impregnable fortress, surrounded by protective combat troops, who never leaves the compound, but who dies of a heart attack counts as a ‘combat death’ just as an infantryman who is killed knocking down doors in Fallujah or elsewhere in hand-to-hand combat with the enemy.
Irrespective of this statistical travesty, White reports that “The latest specific breakdown by gender…when the count was at 1,987…44 of the total number of fatalities were women, or a little more than 2 percent. It is true that some non-combat and combat support positions are at risk of being killed in action, and part of it is because there is no true ‘front line’ of this war – anything outside of a U.S. base is considered front line. This means that truck drivers, MPs, civil-military affairs soldiers, medical personnel, and many others are put in harm’s way whenever they go ‘outside the wire.’”
It is of interest, in fact of primary importance, to understand this little-understood statistic. Females make up about 10 percent of the force deployed in Iraq. If women are really in ‘combat,’ that is, taking the fight to the enemy in offensive operations, why do they not make up about 10 percent of the deaths? To take seriously the rhetoric of the radical feminist press in America, one would believe that women are actually in combat in Iraq – after all, they are on the ‘front lines,’ just like the men. That is why the mass media publishes so much of the heart-rending sob stories of individual female deaths in front page stories across the nation – as described above. These stories hide the fact that women are not ‘in combat’ in Iraq. They are the pawns in a deadly political game of coverup by the nation’s press, the politically correct higher echelons of the military, our political ‘leaders’ in Congress and the Executive Branch.
The female soldiers who die – those in units delineated above – are in fact the most vulnerable elements of our armed forces in Iraq. And the insurgents are not stupid. They take advantage of these military vulnerabilities. They did so in the case of the ambush of Private Jessica Lynch’s 507th Maintenance Company in April 2003. Although this was not admitted by the Army, in fact it was covered up at the time, it leaks out in interior-page stories in some of the press – when it can find a staff writer who is not politically correct. For example, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reveals that  “The Army has stirred something new into basic training – an extra ration of rigor…[The recruits] spend less time on spit and polish and more on machine guns and grenade launchers…The paradigm of training has changed…We now train them for war. Traditionally, the Army has paid less attention to combat skills for soldiers who were headed for support units…Now, the Army is putting the weapon first…The new training may well be a legacy of Jessica Lynch…[who was] hardly at the tip of the spear…Her rescue sparked dramatic headlines, but her unit’s poor showing in combat raised hard questions about the Army’s training.”
So, now the truth starts to emerge. After two decades of turning the all-volunteer Army into a jobs corps for women, we finally see the vulnerabilities that this has created in our armed forces – vulnerabilities that affect even the men in their units, since the training and qualifications standards have been lowered to accept women. Ethicists counsel commanders in Iraq on whether or not it is permissible to send a man in place of a single mother on a particularly dangerous mission ‘outside the wire.’ Units, comprised generously with female soldiers, which use trucks to convoy supplies overland in Iraq, are found to be specially vulnerable to attack by insurgents using roadside bombs and selective ambushes. Some military officials who, after a large number of women suffered and died together after an insurgent strike, suspect that  “…[the raid] was carefully planned and might have been aimed at the women.” This was later found to be true.
It appears in the statistical data on ‘combat deaths’ – with face pictures -- which appear in our nation’s newspapers, that indeed there is a subtle movement in the military to minimize the number of female ‘combat deaths,’ in spite of the effort by the radical female mass media to hype their sob-stories to further their agenda. The New York Times published a pictorial accounting of the first 1,000 troops to die in Iraq. The Washington Post  followed with a pictorial account of the next 995 to die – in their race to publicize the first 2,000 such deaths. If one counts – by face and first name recognition – these fatalities, one gets 16 out of the 995 as female. That is about 1.6% of the total ‘combat’ deaths were female soldiers.”
The same accounting by the Washington Post  for their latest update for the period from 5 September through 15 October 2005 lists 99 fatalities, one being a female (Spc. Jessica Cawvey, as described above). This is about 1% of the total for the period were female. And you know what, while Cawvey got a huge front-page spread in a national newspaper, not one of the 98 men received even a mention – other than a picture with a face and a miniature biographical sketch of how he died.
The latest accounting available came with the next 99 names of ‘combat’ deaths in Iraq from The Washington Post . Of these deaths only one, a soldier who died of “non-combat-related injuries at Camp Victory in Kuwait” was a female. Consequently, the statistical data show that only about 1% of the last ‘combat’ deaths in Iraq were female soldiers, and one of those died in Kuwait of a non-combat injury.
So, what conclusion can be drawn from this data? There are only approximately 40,000 real combat troops (primarily infantry, marines, special forces, and other ancillary units which actually ‘fight,’ that is, take the offensive initiative to seek out and kill the enemy) in Iraq out of approximately 138,000 troops deployed (about 29 percent). Of these real world combat troops, there is only a miniscule scattering of females, e.g. the Black Hawk helicopter pilot who favored dropping ‘candy bombs’ to Iraqi children below. Of course the Black Hawk helicopter only carries troops and supplies into battle – it is not used to strafe, rocket, or otherwise kill enemy troops. These 40,000 are the combat troops who daily go ‘outside the wire’ to take the fight to the enemy. They are fighters! The rest are only pretenders. While MPs and convoy support personnel do go ‘outside the wire,’ they do not, repeat not, carry the fight to the enemy. And of these, only the MPs carry out law enforcement duties in Iraq. The fact of the matter is that the MPs can be compared to the policemen who patrol ‘mean streets’ in urban areas in the U.S., such as Washington, D.C. and other major cities. The death rates for these people are approximately the same in the U.S. as they are in Iraq. And the death rates for female soldiers in Iraq are lower or comparable to those of young blacks and children in gang-infested areas of the U.S., including Washington, D.C. More on that later.
But one would not know the truth of this matter from the nation’s radical feminists and their sympathizers in the mass media. To them, the women soldiers are doing all the fighting and all the dying. They are the ones who get front-page sob stories. They are the ones who are taking the fight to the enemy. They are the ones who are getting special consideration. It is phony. It is a big lie. And no one has the guts to tell the real story – except the real ‘fighters’ themselves, when not threatened by the perfumed princes from above.
Outside the Wire in Iraq
One can find the truth about the subject of women-in-combat in Iraq if one takes the time to sift through seemingly innocuous newspaper accounts and even in lauditory accounts of female ‘combat’ performance in Iraq. For example, in a front page story (continued on a full page inside) of the heroism of Sgt. Leigh Ann Hester, the first female awarded the Silver Star since World War II, The Washington Post  tells the story. “The two soldiers crept along the trench line, bullets thumping into the dirt around them. One was a lanky family man, 36, …the other was a petite, single woman, 23, …Sgt. Leigh Ann Hester handed Staff Sgt. Timothy Nein a grenade. He had the better arm. Nein hurled it at the insurgents, who were crouched in the same trench, firing their AK-47 rifles at the Americans…” This only corroborates the fact observed nearly everywhere women were trying to qualify in the use of hand grenades. Many could not toss it beyond the lethal range of the thrower and anyone in the thrower’s vicinity. None could toss the hand grenade as far as the average man could. This has been verified even in Special Forces units where women have been assigned administrative jobs.
The other striking fact, hidden deep in the story, is that “The military awarded three Silver Stars, three Bronze Stars and two army commendation medals to the squad last week. Receiving the Silver Star, along with Hester and Nein, was a platoon medic, Spec. Jason Mike, a 5-foot-9, 250-pound former fullback at Jacksonville University in Florida…A bronze star was awarded to Spec. Ashley Pullen, a 5-foot-2and one half inch Humvee driver…Pullen, 21, smiles constantly, occasionally paints her toenails pink and tilts her head back to see over the dashboard of her vehicle.” Can you imagine the quite frequent situation where combat requires soldiers in a unit to carry the body or injured comrade (some weighing 250–or-so pounds) over large distances to a relief point where a medic takes over to save a life. It simply cannot be done with anyone – male or female – who is so diminutive. Indeed, the standards have been lowered. We know it. The Army knows it. But the radical feminists and their weak-kneed hostages – our political and PC military leaders – continue to allow this vulnerability to exist.
As another example, Thomas Ricks, an honest Washington Post Staff Writer, records ‘Lessons Learned’ as written by real combat soldiers, the male ‘fighters’ upon their return to the U.S.  “As one of the biggest troop rotations in U.S. history gets underway in Iraq, with almost 250,000 soldiers coming or going, the seasoned units that are leaving are doing their best to pass on such hard-won knowledge to their successors, in e-mails, in essays, in PowerPoint presentations and rambling memoirs posted on Web sites or sent to rear detachments…Taken together, these documents tell a story of an unexpectedly hard small war that has been punctuated by casualties that haunt the writers.”
One of those lessons was provided by a female MP. “‘There is no textbook answer for what you will encounter in Iraq,’ warns Lt. Jessica Murphy, a military police officer. ‘The enemy does not play by a set book of rules or tactics – they literally change every week…Complacency is the number one killer of soldiers,’ reports Murphy. ‘This is the one that bites most units…even units being shot at can start treating missions as routine.” One wonders about the story of the female MP who lost here hand to a rocket-propelled grenade while sitting alone atop an Iraqi police station (while trying to stifle the 100-degree heat) with her rifle nearby. The grenade didn’t just appear out of the blue. It had to be fired by an insurgent. He had to be visible. Those things are bulky and cannot be hidden inside a garment. Complacency? Focus of attention?
Another more telling lesson learned comes from a young Captain, an engineer in the 10th Mountain Division. [He] “sought to make sure that all soldiers went on missions outside the base – that is, beyond ‘the wire.’ To a surprising degree, support troops, such as mechanics, cooks, and clerks, tend not to leave their bases. ‘I felt it was important to get soldiers outside the wire regularly,’ both to remind them of where they were and to sharpen their combat skills,’ he writes in another report posted on the Company Command site, where many of the documents discussed in this article are posted.”
Inside the Wire in Iraq
Despite the approximately 138,000 U.S. military personnel in Iraq, only about 40,000 of them are infantry/combat arms actually operating ‘outside the wire’ in a pro-active manner – taking the fight to the enemy . They are the ‘fighters.’ They are the real ‘warriors’ in Iraq. The rest are support personnel. For those ‘outside the wire,’ Kirk Semple of the New York Times describes their lives. “There is no escape from the cruel realities of war in Iraq. Wrapped in body armor and the ubiquitous threat of death, they choke on dust and heat and make do with Meals Ready to Eat. On long combat missions, they may go weeks without a shower and sleep wherever they can: on the ground, in empty buildings, in their cramped vehicles.”
Life ‘inside the wire’’ in Iraq is an altogether different version of the modern New Age ‘warrior,’ a large number of which are women. Kirk Semple describes their life . “First Lt. Taysha Deaton of the Louisiana National Guard went to war expecting a gritty yearlong deployment of sand, heat and duress, but ended up spending her nights in a king-size bed beneath imported sheets and a fluffy down comforter. She bought the bed from a departing soldier to replace the twin-size metal frame that came with her air-conditioned trailer on this base in western Baghdad [Camp Liberty]. She also acquired a refrigerator, television, cellphone, microwave oven, boom box and DVD player, and signed up for a high-speed Internet connection. ‘We had no idea conditions were going to be this great!’ said Lieutenant Deaton, 25, the public affairs officer of the 256th Brigade Combat Team and an ambassador of the exclamation mark. ‘My first thought was, oh my God! This is good!’”
Semple describes just how good it is for these support troops. “Camp Liberty, one of the best-appointed compounds in the constellation of American military bases in Iraq, has the vague feel of a college campus, albeit with sand underfoot, Black Hawks overhead and the occasional random mortar attack. The soldiers live on a grid of neat gravel pathways, and the chow hall offers a vast selection of food and beverages, ethnic cuisine nights, an ice cream parlor and, occasionally, a live jazz combo. Camp Liberty, like many other bases, also has Internet cafes, an impressively stocked store, gymnasiums with modern equipment, air-conditioning everywhere and extracurricular activities like language and martial arts lessons.”
“Not that life is this comfortable for everyone. Small outposts in the rural hinterlands can be crude, at best, with nothing beyond the very basic amenities and soldiers required to wear their full ‘battle rattle’ – body armor and helmet – all day because insurgent attacks are so frequent.”
But ‘inside the wire’ at the major forward operating bases (FOBs) things are much different. Semple writes “…resourceful soldiers in this war have taken [the quest for extravagance] to astonishing levels, accumulating all the accoutrements of home: personal electronics, bed linens, furniture, household appliances and beauty products.” Oops. Is this a misprint? Beauty products? Doesn’t this tell you who the primary customer base is on these military installations? Yes, the FOBs are primarily there to protect the personnel from support units, made up to a large degree of females. Yes, our female ‘warriors’ are tucked safely ‘inside the wire’ at our FOBs. This, despite the propaganda on the front pages of our nation’s newspapers, is the truth about ‘women-in-combat- in Iraq.
Semple continues. “Never in the field of human conflict has so much stuff been acquired by so many soldiers in so little time. Gadgetry proliferates [among these support troops] stationed in Iraq: laptop computers, MP3 and DVD players, digital cameras, televisions and video game consoles. On bases in greater Baghdad, many soldiers have cellphones and some have satellite dishes that pull in scores of stations. Personal DVD collections numbering several hundred are not uncommon; the legendary ones top 1,000. One Louisiana National Guardsman stationed on Camp Liberty converted his trailer into a recording studio, and a New York National Guardsman living nearby has spent some of his free time during the last year producing a record by a singer in New York using an electric keyboard, sequencer, laptop computer, sampler, drum machine and mixer in his room; he and the singer use sound files sent via the Internet to exchange musical ideas and recorded tracks.”
Such extravagance in a ‘front line’ war zone has been observed by others. David Zucchino of the Los Angles Times reports , “In Iraq, there is the FOB – the forward operating base – and there is life outside the FOB. A soldier’s existence in Iraq is defined by the FOB, and by the concertina wire that marks its boundaries…The war beyond the wire is so draining that the more than 100 FOBs in Iraq are fortified refuges for the [troops there]. [They are] little oases in the middle of a dangerous and confusing world…Many soldiers spend a year in Iraq without ever leaving their bases.”
“At the flat, dusty airport FOB called Liberty…every need – food, laundry, maid service – is attended to by a legion of workers from non-Muslim nations, mostly Indians, Filipinos and Nepalese…Administrative specialists who never leave the FOB are known, with some condescension, as FOBBITS. Like every soldier here, a fobbit could be killed at any time by a random rocket or mortar round. But on most days the greatest danger to a fobbit’s health are the three heaping, deep-fried daily portions of mess hall food.”
The ingenuity of the American fighting man is displayed in Iraq – as it has been in every prior American armed conflict. In prior conflicts personnel whose Army units stationed to the rear of the ‘front lines’ were labeled FEMFs – that is, Rear Echelon MFs – with the MF being the extremely derogatory expletive-deleted of the time. The modern term for people in those units in a guerilla war [low-intensity conflict, or ‘insurgency] is FOBBITs. A FOBBIT is defined as a noun meaning , “a soldier or other person stationed at a secure forward operating base; hence a person who is reluctant or afraid to leave a military base.” The etymological note reads: forward operating base + hobbit.
Variations with specific detail have been coined by America’s ‘fighters,’ among those 40,000 troops who actually take the fight to the enemy, as opposed to those approximately 100,000 who are deployed in Iraq but hardly ever go ‘outside the wire.’ Examples abound. Steve Smith at FOB Bernstein, Iraq writes, “Fobbits and other Iraqi critters: Those of us who conduct missions ‘outside the wire’ on a regular basis have come up with a variety of terms to refer to those who remain safe and comfortable on base. The most common one lately has been ‘Fobbit,’ referring to those short, fat, hairy creatures that live in little holes and rarely venture into the outside world (see Tolkien for more info). I’ve also seen some units refer to them as FOB Dwellers, with one platoon of Bradleys stenciling the letters FUFD on their back hatches (FU FOB Dweller). Prior to deploying, non-combat troops were usually referred to as REMFs, where RE stood for Rear Echelon (and MF you can guess), but that term seems to have been replaced by Fobbit here [in Iraq].”
“1st Lt. Jason Scott, [a fighter] stationed at Brassfield-Mora at Patrol Base Uvanni in central Samarra, narrows down the definition. ‘A Fobbit is someone who never goes out of a FOB except to go to another FOB.’ Sgt. Christopher Caulk, 37, a medic at Brassfield-Mora is more specific. ‘If a mortar round hits your FOB and you can’t hear it because your FOB is so big, you’re a Fobbit…If you’re out in a Bradley (fighting vehicle) and you close the hatch when you receive small-arms fire, while the gunner at the Humvee is fighting back with his 50-cal (machine gun), you’re a Displaced Fobbit. You’re out on the front line but you belong on a FOB.
“Edward Lee Pitts (AP) [an embedded journalist with U.S. fighting units in Iraq] says ‘If you think leaving ‘the wire’ might be a fun adventure, you might be a fobbit, and if the second time you’ll be off the FOB is on leave, you might be a fobbit.’ Sri Lausier at Camp Liberty, Iraq writes, ‘I am a sentry in our FOB…I am what people call a Fobbit, because I never leave the ‘wire.’”
So now we know who the ‘fighters’ are in Iraq. They are those who are carrying the fight to the enemy. They are what William S. Lind, an expert on Fourth Generation Warfare, one of the three kinds of soldiers in our military – fighters, filler and fodder. The fighters are among the 40,000 (all male) troops who regularly venture ‘outside the wire’ in Iraq. The filler and fodder are the FOBBIT dwellers who live all or nearly all of their time in Iraq safely within the comfortable confines of ‘the wire.’ This truth comes from the troops themselves. It is not radical feminist propaganda which memorializes the female filler and fodder with front page sob-stories about individual casualties which are a scant fraction of the total. And America, living in a fantasy dreamland of safety within our shores never finds the truth of the matter. And many don’t care if they did find the truth. They are what I call the PASSIVE among us. They have been propagandized and ‘sensitivity trained’ to the point of caring less for the truth.
The truth about who is actually fighting the ‘insurgency’ in Iraq is also hidden deep inside the nations newspapers and never reaches the light of day on TV. It is hidden in the re-enlistment figures during the last two years – while the fighting in Iraq has brought home to us that people are dying in combat in Iraq. The truth is that the ‘fighters, described above, are re-enlisting in record numbers, while the filler and fodder (those who join the Army for a job or a career in our socially engineered military) are not joining the Army as they did in peacetime.
According to The Washington Post , “Across Iraq, U.S. soldiers risking their lives daily in combat are also re-upping by the thousands, bolstering the Army’s flagging manpower at a time when many young Americans are unwilling to serve. Since 2001, the Army has surpassed its retention targets by wider margins each year, showing an unexpectedly robust ability to retain soldiers in a time of war. While the force is facing a shortfall in recruitment of new soldiers, it raised its retention goal this year by 8,000 people and still exceeded it, with yearly 70,000 soldiers, or 108 percent of the target, choosing to stay in the Army.”
“On palace rooftops and pock-marked streets, GIs are reenlisting in rituals that range from dramatic to harrowing. Soldiers have taken the oath in gaudy former residences of Saddam Hussein and in the spider hole near Tikrit where [he] was captured…One cavalryman re-enlisted on a median of Baghdad’s treacherous airport road; others made the pledge during a lull in fighting in the battle for Fallujah in November 2004. More than 4,000 soldiers from…the 3rd Infantry Division have re-enlisted in the past year, including 117 who raised their hands together at a mass ceremony north of Baghdad in April.”
No sob stories here. Just stories of America’s ‘fighters,’ the ones who are actually in combat in Iraq. Not the pretenders. Pfc. Nicholas Outen is one such fighter. The Post story covers his re-enlistment. “At a dusty base in Baqubah, a city on the Diyala River just north of Buhriz, Outen tended to his wound and reflected on his reasons for staying in the Army. ‘I’m only good at a few things – camping in the woods and shooting a weapon. So I figure I can use my talents,’ said Outen, a member of his high school marksmanship team…Outen knows ‘without a doubt’ that he will be back in Iraq. But he manages to find a bright side even to being wounded. As a Purple Heart recipient, ‘I’ll get free license plates for life.’”
“Sgt. Colton Ryan Neal stood before the Never Forget Garden Memorial – a tiny plot of grass meticulously kept alive amid the gravel, armored vehicles and dirt barricades of his Baqubah base – and raised his right hand. Engraved on a plaque behind him were the names of three fellow soldiers from Bayonet Company, which is why he chose this spot to re-enlist for six years. ‘Those are the real heroes right there,’ said Neal, 21, … who wears a metal band on his wrist for each of his fallen comrades. Surrounded by his platoon, Neal said he had planned to leave the Army but changed his mind after coming to Iraq. ‘We’ve had plenty of IEDs [bomb explosions] and firefights together, shooting over each other’s shoulder. That pulls you together,’ he said. ‘I wouldn’t say I love them any more’ than family, he said, ‘but I don’t love them any less.’” This, in a nutshell, is what separates the ‘fighters’ from the pretenders – those who venture every day ‘outside the wire’ from those who are pawns in the radical feminist agenda of attaining political power in America on their innocent backs. Women-in-combat is an agenda that has been foisted on America by its ‘enemies within’ at the same time that we are in a battle of survival with a determined, vicious, brutal, and evil enemy abroad.
While the ‘fighters’ are re-enlisting in Iraq for all of the right reasons, the filler and fodder – including women – are avoiding the promised military jobs corps as the casualty roles grow slowly (compared to America’s previous wars of survival) above the 2,000 mark. The Associated Press informs us that  “To the daily drumbeat of casualty reports from Iraq, young blacks and women are marching away from offers to join the Army…The share of blacks in the Army’s recruiting classes has plummeted by about one-third over the past five years, despite the more generous enlistment bonuses offered to prospective recruits and an increase in the number of recruiters…In the past, barriers were about inconvenience or preference for another life choice. Now they have switched to…fear of death or injury.”
“The number of female recruits as a share of total Army enlistments has dropped 13 percent over the past five years and is in continued decline…Statistically, the fear factor is about twice as strong among potential recruits as a whole than it was in 2000…The fear is evident in a high proportion of survey respondents, who said their main reasons for not joining the military included: ‘I might be killed in combat’ and ‘I might be captured or tortured.’… Blacks make up about 23 percent of today’s active-duty Army, but the share of blacks in recruit classes in recent years has dropped, from 22.7 percent at the time of Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks to 19.9 percent in 2002; 16.4 percent in 2003 and 15.9 percent last year…As of Feb. 9, 2005 the figure was still dropping, to 13.9 percent.”
The Wall Street Journal digs a little deeper into the matter . “The timing of the drop in the share of black recruits roughly corresponds with the mass movement of troops to the Middle East and outbreak of the Iraq war…By contrast, the percentage of white recruits has held relatively steady. White enlistees made up 65.2%…of the recruiting pool in fiscal 2004 and 62.7%…of the recruits in fiscal 2002…Black Americans accounted for 24% of the Army as of fiscal 2003, but make up about 13% of the U.S. population…Black recruits have historically been over-represented in ‘behind-the-line’ support roles…statistics from fiscal 2003 show that 67% of all black soldiers were in [all units, support and combat]. At the time that the Iraq war began, only 16% of black soldiers were in combat arms units. This gravitation toward support roles reflects what some potential black enlistees hope to receive from a career in the Army: stable employment with good benefits and the ability to develop skills that can be easily transferred to the civilian sector. Frontline positions, such as those in the infantry, don’t provide much in the way of marketable job skills.” Could there be no more clear admission than this that our all-volunteer force has drifted over the past three or more decades into a jobs corps for minorities and females. The social engineers among us have sown this vulnerability into the bowels of the sole means of our protection from enemies abroad.
The Wall Street Journal describes this vulnerability. “…the war in Iraq has turned such distinctions on their head. Almost from the outset, enemy fighters concentrated their attacks on rear-guard soldiers, and soldiers in support functions make up many of the more than 2,000 [at the present time] Americans that have been killed there.”
Finally, the nation’s major newspapers are recognizing that ‘something is wrong in Denmark.’ The New York Times editorializes , “Supporting the Troops: The Death Spiral of the Volunteer Army;” it supports this story with one headlined , “Army’s Top Recruiter Says 2006 May Be Biggest Test;” and USA TODAY trumpets recruiting troubles with the headline , “Army offers one-and-one-quarter year hitch: Recruit shortfall produces shortest enlistment ever.”
At the same time the Army was caught cheating in their recruiting practices . “Allegations of improprieties by United States Army recruiters have risen sharply in recent years.” Since 1999, over 4,000 allegations of improprieties resulted in over 1,300 cases substantiated. Of these, 267 recruiters were relieved of their duties…Recruiters and some senior Army officials, however, said that for every impropriety that is found, at least two more are never discovered.
All of this is strong evidence that the ‘feminization’ of our all-volunteer force has weakened it to a point that anyone with common sense can see. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that this force is not, repeat not capable of defeating a resourceful and dedicated enemy with one hand tied behind its back in its present configuration. Instead of recognizing this fact, our military leaders continue to bow to the radical feminist agenda. For example, the Army recently authorized a ‘Close Combat Badge’ for troops in its vulnerable support units . “The Army is creating a badge for soldiers who come under fire in close combat in Iraq and Afghanistan but who are not otherwise eligible for special recognition because they are from armor, artillery or other non-infantry units.” That is, of course, for the FOBBITS described above. “Until now, only infantrymen who participated in direct combat missions and came under fire were given the Combat Infantryman Badge, a coveted distinction that counts in their favor when eligible for promotions. There is no equivalent recognition for artillerymen or others who came under fire. The new badge, called the Close Combat badge, will settle an emotional debate that has raged within the Army [between the FOBBITS and the ‘fighters’] … The disparity at issue was that infantrymen and non-infantry soldiers [many of whom are women hoping to someday break through the brass ceiling] who face the same risks in the same gun battle at close range are treated differently by the Army in terms of badges.” Although the Army professes that  “[the new badge] will not be given to members of support units attacked while performing their missions, even though supply convoys have been a regular target of the insurgency in Iraq,” it will gradually be awarded to them. Just wait and see. The Army now specifies that “In particular, the badge will be for soldiers who serve with armored, cavalry, combat engineering and field artillery units at the brigade size or smaller that come under attacks and ‘close with and destroy the enemy with direct fires.” Political correctness in the military will trickle down to the FOBBIT units where such badges will be awarded to females in such units in tomorrow’s socially engineered Army. Only time will tell.
A former Army Special Forces retiree responds to all of this political correctness in today’s all-volunteer Army . “I am one of the U.S. contractors working in Iraq making the big bucks. Personally, I have not run into any animosity between contractors and U.S. Army or Air Force personnel. Most Army folks I talk to just want to get out, officer and enlisted, and get a job with us. I had read some of the letters Army people have written about contractors just wanting the money, anything for the buck, no patriotism,, etc. What a load of garbage. They are just green with envy. Why? I’ll tell you.”
“I did 20 years in the shameful disaster called the U.S. Army, retiring last year as soon as I was eligible. I did seven years in the regular Army, then did 13 years as an 18B/D, Special Forces Weapons, then as a medical sergeant. I had once loved the Army, but the Army turned into a welfare system for the dregs of American society. I see the Army over here in Iraq and I want to vomit.”
“We are gong to lose this fiasco and hard. I see Army people here in a combat zone woefully unprepared for what they face. I see women who can’t pull the charging handle back on an M2 .50-cal, yet are up in the turret of a Humvee. I see self-serving officers and idiot lobotomized sergeants-major having troops starch uniforms in this 120+ degree heat. Doing police calls in the garbage dump called Iraq. Soldiers carrying their weapons unloaded, wherever they go on base with no ammunition, yet having to clear these weapons upon entering any building, constantly. Why? I see female troops lugging the M-249 SAW with obviously great difficulty.”
“I see the majority of troops here never leaving the Green Zone or a secure area [Fobbits], deathly afraid of what is ‘outside the wire,’ which by the way is where the contractors work daily. They take up their day snapping digital pics in the Camp Victory parking lot near combat vehicles trying to look like they are in combat while eating at Burger King. I see girls in maternity uniforms, in sneakers, on profile, waddling around Camp Victory; male soldiers wearing sneakers on profile. It’s business as usual for the U.S. Army.”
“I now see how combat soldiers, those who venture out of the secure areas, are looked down upon with animosity, treated not too nicely by the pogues back on base. However, you can bet these pogues all got their paperwork in for the new joke CAB, the Combat Action Badge.”
“As contractors, we don’t have brain-dead officers making up idiotic rules. We can carry our weapons ‘hot’ anywhere on base. We are trusted not to shoot each other or have accidental discharges. We are treated like adults, can have a beer when we are off duty. We don’t have laundry lists of SOPs written by clueless officer bureaucrats of what to do taped on the inside doors of our vehicles. I could go on and on. The lunacy I have seen here could fill volumes.”
The ‘Queens for a Year’ in Iraq
There are other questions which arise out of the FOBBIT culture in Iraq. That is the extent to which sex is ubiquitous in deployed mixed-sex units and how it affects the morale of our soldiers. The New York Times Magazine interviewed Kayla Williams, a former Army sergeant whose fluency in Arabic landed her a military Intelligence billet with the 101st Airborne Division, about sex in the military . When the interviewer asked “‘[Your book] brings a chic-lit sensibility to your stories about life in Iraq and essentially characterizes our male soldiers as so many frat boys groping women,’ Ms. Williams replied, ‘I just couldn’t believe that guys would hit on me when I was the dirtiest that I ever was in my life, with dirt caked into my hair. We only had enough water to bathe once a week.’”
The interviewer then asserted, “Your book describes an appalling game played by the soldiers, in which they toss rocks at you and aim for your breasts,’ to which Kayla responded, ‘They would throw rocks at each other’s penises for fun. It was very strange to see. But in a way it was natural. When you’re in Iraq, you search for just about anything to ease the mind-numbing tedium of having nowhere to go and nothing to do.” And what do you think took up this vacuum? Sex, of course – plenty of sex!
When asked ‘What is the Army policy on sex between soldiers?’ Kayla responded, ‘It isn’t covered in [the general orders], which says you can’t drink alcohol or have porn or keep pets, which everyone does anyhow. My personal chain of command said if you’re married, don’t do it, and if you’re not married, just don’t get caught. A lot of girls got sent home pregnant.” Her book actually details a much more graphic picture of rampant sex in the military. And it is not a pretty picture – either for morale or unit cohesion.
In her chapter entitled, ‘Queen for a Year,’ Ms. Williams gets right to it . “Sex is key to any woman soldier’s experiences in the American military. No one likes to acknowledge it, but there’s a strange sexual allure to being a woman and a soldier. I mean while in Iraq. At war. While deployed. Take this one girl. I heard from reliable sources in Iraq [that] she gave head to every guy in her unit…This particular girl got caught in the act, I guess you would say. More than once. Reprimanded for dereliction of duty…Or the 20 girls from this one unit who got sent home from Iraq pregnant. Knocked up.”
Williams observes that for women at war “…you’re automatically a desirable commodity, and a scarce one at that. We call it ‘Queen for a Year.’ Even unattractive girls start to act stuck-up. It’s impossible not to notice…[You won’t find the phrase] in the dictionary or any compilation of military terms. But say it among soldiers, and they’ll know immediately what you mean. That’s what we’ve called American women at war since nurses traveled to Vietnam in the sixties. There’s this ‘deployment scale’ for hotness. Let me explain. On a scale of ten, say’s she’s a five. You know – average looks, maybe a little mousy, nothing special. But okay. Not a girl who gets second glances in civilian life. But in the Army, while we’re deployed? Easily an eight. One hot babe. On average, every girl probably gets three extra points on a ten-point scale. Useful. After you’re in-country for a few months – how should I say this? – the dynamics of being deployed.”
Ms. Williams described how it worked. “You could get things easier, and you could get out of things easier. For a girl there were lots of little things you could do to make your load while deployed a whole lot lighter. You could use your femaleness to great advantage. You could do less work, get more assistance, and receive more special favors. Getting supplies? Working on the trucks? It could be a cinch – if you wanted it to be. It didn’t take much. A little went a long way. Some of us worked it to the bone. Who says the life of an Army girl had to be cruel? Lots of girls succumbed to temptation. The younger girls were the most susceptible. Many thrived and fed on the male attention they were getting for the first time in their lives.”
More explicitly, Ms. Williams describes the sex scene for a female in the military. “None of this means life in the Army while deployed to a combat zone has to be celibate…Sex is not specifically prohibited for deployed soldiers. It’s just implied that it is not allowed. Yet the PX in Iraq sells condoms. The general attitude is: ‘Don’t get caught.’ The one rule is: ‘Be discreet.’ Probably most of the single girls do it. Most of the single guys, too, if they ever get the chance. It becomes a simple matter of supply and demand. And even though it’s not okay, it’s true – if a girl was indiscreet, if she got caught, or people knew, everyone lost respect for her. Like she was some slut. It was different, of course, for the guys. Somehow everyone got it that getting laid was okay for the guys. So get real. The Army is not a monastery. More like a fraternity. Or a massive frat party. With weapons. With girls there for the taking – at least some of the time.”
“The guys are there for the taking too. And we took. I took. But mostly I chose to be a bitch. I was nowhere as young as most of the other girls over there. Nowhere as innocent – at all. I’d hung around guys all my life; my punk rock scene in high school was overwhelmingly male. I’d dealt with sex from a young age. I’d been married. In Iraq I felt like I could deal with being Queen for a Year. But still it got to me. It still made me angry. Sometimes. I remember walking through the chow hall at the airfield was like running a gauntlet of eyes [please see the Tale of Two Gauntlets in this Web Site]. Guys stared and stared and stared. Sometimes I felt like I was some f___ing zoo animal. Guys hitting on us or saying inappropriate things just constantly. Then sometimes I got in the mood. I’d enter the chow hall with a swing to my step. Check me out. Don’t touch. So occasionally it went to my head.” Is it no wonder that the serious ‘fighters’ in Iraq are so disparaging of the ‘chicks’ who play their little mind games as they prance around in the FOBBITs?
Ms. Williams isn’t finished with her ‘chick-lit’ expose of what women-in-combat is really like in Iraq. “[Sex] worked both ways…[Even the men] looked better [to the women]…Location, location, location. It played with all our minds. It was like a separate bloodless war within a larger deadly one. Let me tell you a story.”
“‘Hey, Kayla! Show us your boobs!’ I was on a mountain near the Syrian border. At this time, I may well have been the most forward-deployed female soldier in Iraq. You could lose yourself in the view from up there, especially at dusk or dawn, when the sheer impact of the vista made your head spin. I was alone, Alone with the guys, that is, for a week. They’re frustrated. Horny. Talking openly about j__king off. We sat in the blazing sun – hot – not doing much. ‘Show us your tits, bitch!’ Trash talk. ‘No.’ ‘C’mon, Kayla. Lift your T-shirt. For a second. Please! Let us se what you’ve got!’ ‘No.’”
“I had no principled objection. I’d modeled nude for art classes in college. I had no qualms about showing my body. Then the guys made what I considered their first real mistake. They started to ante up. Ten bucks. Twenty. Forty, Sixty-five. Eighty bucks. It went to eighty-seven dollars, and then a smart-ass threw in some M&Ms he’d stashed. They came to me with their proposition. ‘C,mon Kayla. This is hard-earned American money. Uncle Sam’s almighty dollar. Plus M&Ms. We know how much you like M&Ms. Now show us your damn tits!’
“‘F___ off, a__holes!’ It was over. Because I might remotely have done it for free. I would never do it for money. What did the guys think I was? A whore?” The answer is obvious. Here was an ‘outside the wire’ combat platoon of America’s fighting men of the 101st Airborne Division being ‘teased’ by a self-described female ‘bitch’ on the modern-day ‘front lines’ of a war in Iraq. A self-described ‘Queen for a Year. This is not exactly the stuff of radical feminist propaganda that is so prevalent in our nation’s mass media. But it is the truth. One can only imagine what may have occurred had Ms. Williams ‘done it’ for FREE. Gang rape on the mountain top? In Iraq? While deployed? In combat? One can also imagine that this style of behavior is prevalent all across the entire spectrum of women-in-the-military. At the U.S. Air Force Academy which has been accused of covering up the rapes of scores of women over the years? At the U.S. Naval Academy which records the complaints of female midshipmen as ‘sexual harassment’ and ‘abuse.’ Now, thanks to Ms. Williams, we find out the truth of the matter of women-in-combat in our Armed Forces.
Of course the fiction of ‘women-in-combat’ was obvious in the promotion of Ms. Williams’ book. On the book’s cover she is pictured in camouflage field uniform – with rifle at the ready – standing in front of what appears to be an armored vehicle. An Army Intelligence officer, whose only duty was as an interpreter of Arabic conversation, posing as a ‘fighter,’ as a ‘woman-in-combat.’ What a farce! In fact, this HOBBIT is a pretender who is not even trusted to carry a loaded weapon anywhere that she might accidentally discharge it among her fellow soldiers and who couldn’t hit a bull in the rear-end with a base fiddle with it if she tried and who couldn’t drive the armored vehicle if she had to. This self-confessed ‘Queen for a Year’ in Iraq was not only a detriment to the morale of her fellow soldiers, but created a situation wherein their unit could have taken serious casualties while under the sexual ‘spell’ cast by a woman who had no business being there – in a war, with no ‘front lines’ in which the enemy attacks our most vulnerable spots. This is the truth of ‘women-in-combat.’ A radical feminist fantasy. A vulnerability in our fighting forces. A dangerous viral infection in our public discourse.
Woody Zimmerman, who writes a weekly column in the Online Atlantic Highlands Herald, describes America’s current cultural obstacles to winning wars. He writes  “Since World War II, some cultural changes have affected our ability to fight and defeat a dangerous enemy. Here are two important examples; the disappearance of evil and a feminized culture. Media disinterest in identifying and fighting evil now extends to terrorism here and abroad. Increasingly, reporters describe terrorists as ‘angry, disadvantaged losers’ or ‘freedom fighters.’ Even our American media now refer to ‘bombers’ or ‘militants.’ ‘Terror’ and ‘evil’ are missing from our lexicon…To defeat terrorism, we’ll need to see that people who masquerade as ‘religious,’ while blowing up buildings and beheading people, are not misunderstood. They are not victims. They’re evil.”
“As World War II demonstrated, there comes a time when a nation must fight to survive – when it needs strong, confident men to step up. Notwithstanding feminist delusions, young women cannot fill that role. They generally lack the strength (and often the temperament) for combat soldiers. Modern cinema loves the invincible female – nemesis of the depraved, disgusting male…The media follow female golfers around, hoping they will win PGA tournaments, but reality is stubborn. Women can’t make the football team. Girls are not as strong as boys…Feminist delusions and suppression of boyhood help neither society nor the young men we shall need to fight the nation’s real, vicious and mostly male enemies.”
Comparison to ‘Combat Zones’ in Urban America
The most foul depiction of the female ‘combat’ fatalities in Iraq is the lack of context. The ‘Faces of the Fallen’ do not give anywhere near the true picture. The scarcity of female ‘combat’ fatalities – less that 2.5% overall since the beginning of the conflict in Iraq, and about 1% in the last several monthly periods in when females deployed in Iraq are about 10% of the force – can be placed in context more clearly by comparing it to other dangerous occupations. For example, the fatality statistics for police officers in the U.S. have averaged about 164 per year over the past decade . In 2004 the fatality figure was 154. Of those fatalities, only 51 deaths were attributed to shootings. The rest resulted from traffic accidents.
Of the police officers who died, only eight were female. Most, if not all, of these were attributed to traffic accidents. The 51 police officers who died are slightly more than the total female ‘combat’ deaths in Iraq. Many of the 40-some odd or so of these deaths were due to automobile accidents and other non-combat categories. The media does not tabulate separately this statistic. But the real-life context provided by these police officer statistics is that it is no more dangerous for our female soldiers in Iraq on the so-called ‘front lines’ than it is for our nation’s police officers in large metropolitan areas. And our police officers do not get awarded a Combat Action Badge for operating ‘outside the wire’ in America. And our nation’s police officers do not consider themselves in ‘combat’ – especially not the female police officers. If we took the radical feminist propaganda regarding our female soldiers seriously, we would have to recognize the unpleasant fact that our nation’s police officers operate in the very same kind of dangerous urban environment that our women (the few) who go ‘outside the wire’ in Iraq experience. Urban America equivalent to urban Iraq? Wow! What a revelation! Wake up America!
Taking this comparison to another level, it is clear that many of our nation’s children live in an urban environment much like the female soldiers (the few who go ‘outside the wire’ in Iraq) do while ‘deployed’ in Iraq. The Washington Post tells this story . “So far this year, there have been 86 homicides, 808 robberies and 337 carjackings in Prince George’s County [Maryland]. As of July 4, 131 people had been sexually assaulted in the county this year…the terror takes on a different, no less frightening, form: the daily drumbeat of random carjackings, killings and robberies that has become a fact of life for many residents of Southeast and inside the Beltway in Prince George’s.”
The individual stories of gangland killings and woundings – collateral damage every bit as deadly as car bombings in Iraq – grace the Metro section of The Washington Post every week . “Just before 10 p.m. Thursday…9-year-old Donte Mannings ws shot in the head, struck by a lone gunman who opened fire on at least a dozen children playing on a Columbia Heights street dogged by drug dealing [in Washington, D.C.]. Donte was the only one hit. Last night the third-grader was in critical condition at Children’s Hospital with a bullet lodged in the back of his head.”
In another story, the Post describes a ‘war zone’ every bit as dangerous as that in urban Iraq . “Nearly three months ago, 11-year-old Demetric Austin…was playing basketball in his Southeast Washington neighborhood when the random bullets started coming, grazing his arm and back. Since then, he has been afraid to go outside and frightened in his own apartment, where he checks and rechecks the locks and nervously peers outside through a crack under a curtain. Many nights, he is afraid to sleep alone, sobbing outside his mother’s door until she allows him to drag his mattress inside.” Does this sound suspiciously like those support troops who spend their days ‘inside the wire’ in Iraq? In this case, it is children who are afraid to go outside – in Iraq it is the HOBBITs, many of whom are our female ‘women-in-combat’ so proudly heralded by the nation’s mass media and public affairs officers in the Army.
The Post story continues, “His family moved two weeks ago to another public housing complex in Southeast, as notoriously dangerous as their previous one. Not much has changed. ‘I’m going to just stay in the house, do homework, play my games and watch television,’ he said. ‘I’m going to stay to myself.’ Demetric is a survivor in a recent surge of vilence against youths [in Washington, D.C.]. [The Mayor] attended funerals for two juveniles slain in separate crimes on city streets: Donte Manning, 9, and Lavelle Kendell Jones, 16. Donte spent weeks on life support before dying; like Demetric, he was hit by random gunfire while playing outside, close to home.” It is now clear that our ‘women-in-combat,’ on the whole, are no more engaged in combat than are thousands of young children who play on streets near their homes in Washington, D.C. They are subject to no more risk than the children. They take no more casualties than the children. And yet, there is no nationwide campaign to highlight their sacrifice. There is no radical feminist propaganda machine racing to get their stories on the front page of our nation’s leading newspapers. There are no medals awarded. Yet, both stories have one common thread – fear. But those who live ‘inside the wire’ in Iraq, the HOBBITs, are eulogized, made to seem as heroes. While the children who are confined to their homes out of fear – ‘inside the wire’ so to speak – are never publicized (outside of the local Metro section) and are forgotten. Why do we hear and see so much in the mass media about the former? Why are we kept in the dark about the latter. Wake up America! You are being brainwashed!
For the conclusion to this essay and the footnotes for the entire essay, please click the hyperlink to The Conclusion.