One of the big travesties of the Obama administration was its direct war on combat efficiency of military units. Particularly, the decision to assign women to combat arms units–and to allow female officers in the combat arms–is one fraught with consequences that will be paid in blood. All along the way, we were told: “Oh, no, the standards won’t change.” We all knew that was bullsh** based on basic human physiology. As I wrote a year ago:

When Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter ordered all combat positions open to women he did so knowing, or at least he should have known, that his decision was going to result in dead American soldiers. The only reason he opened those positions was to appease the Social Justice Warriors who run the Obama administration and the Defense Department. Women are not needed in combat units because there is no shortage of recruits to fill those positions. Women contribute little to nothing to combat effectiveness because they simply are not as physically capable as men. If you pry Joe Schlub off the sofa and rip the Xbox controller from his hand then stand him side-by-side with a female athlete of the same height and weight (I’m talking about a chromosomal woman, not one of the multitude of genders recognized on Facebook) she will have, at most, 66% of his lean muscle mass.

physiology

When you move into men and women who are in decent shape, the performance differential becomes even more stark. For instance, the world record in the Women’s 800m is held by Jarmila Kratochvílová her time is 1:53.28. Below are the top 10 Women’s 800m times:

women 800

Now let’s look at the 800m times from high school boys in the state of California in 2015:

boys 800

Why the top 49 times? Because the top 10 women 800m times, ever, would place between 16th and 48th place among high school boys times in California.

If you want to do a more apples to apples comparison, the top Women’s 800m time would be over seven seconds slower than the 6,258th best Men’s time.

Men and women are not physical equals. And we are playing a very dangerous and very lethal game right now by fantasizing otherwise. Testing by the US Marine Corps that pitted all-male squads against co-ed squads found that all-male squads significantly outperformed the co-ed squads even though the test had been structured to aid the co-ed squad… this is something out enemies probably won’t do:

All-male ground combat units in the Marines were faster, more lethal and less injured than units with mixed genders, according to a Marine Corps study that looked at integrating women into all service jobs.

Read my other posts on the subject here and here then march me off to the re-education camp.

As I pointed out in my pull quote, the Marines approached the problem empirically and can document that co-ed squads are less capable and suffer more injuries than all-male squads. But still, the decision was made to move forward with the integration of infantry units. But there was a problem. Women couldn’t pass the selection course. So the Marines fell back on that old military standard of “we didn’t lower the standard, we changed the standard.”

With no notice and little formal explanation, the Marine Corps altered one of its notoriously grueling rites of passage late last year, changing the combat endurance test on the first day of its Infantry Officer Course from a pass/fail requirement to an unscored exercise.

Officials with Marine Corps Training and Education Command confirmed to Military.com Friday that Marine Corps Commandant Gen. Robert Neller had made a decision in November to transform the test from a high-stakes hurdle to an assessment from which students can drop without risking their place in the course.

While officials said the test has had a historically low attrition rate since it was made a passing requirement in 2012, the change stands to have significant implications for women attempting the course. Of the more than 30 female officers who have attempted IOC, most have dropped during the combat endurance test on the first day.

This is the second time the standard has been changed. Originally, no one was allowed to repeat the course. Then women were given a second chance.

I don’t like the idea of women in combat, but that is my personal opinion. There are combat roles where women perform well and in some, where they act as augmentees to special forces units in civil action missions, they have proven exceptional. But there are some positions which require brute strength that is produced by testosterone. By lowering the standard in those positions, and Marine infantry is definitely one of them, you place lives at risk by consciously inserting someone into a unit who can only perform at 60 percent or so of the physical endurance of everyone else. That is a leadership failure that is negligent and will eventually be proven to be criminal.

As a friend of mine writes (he was a soldier in my company when I was a captain and has since retired as senior NCO in a Tier One SOF unit):

Once you have decided that men and women must be physically capable of performing the same job, you must set the physical standards to the ability of the majority. Since men and women AREN’T the same physically, that will always be lowered to match the abilities of the majority of women.

If we’re talking about UPS then that means the standard for lifting boxes over your head has to be lowered. That has repercussions, but you’ll still get your package. In warfighting the repercussions are different.