Feminization of the Nation

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The Article

Below is a piece I published sixteen years ago when feminism was in a more strident ideological phase and all western democracies were being pressured internally by tax-funded interest groups to fight discrimination and “sexism” by recruiting more women for military service, and even for active combat. (I put that word in quotation marks because a comment on natural gender differences is not “sexist” if it is true. It is just an observation of fact). What follows is lifted from my book The War Against The Family (1992), and what strikes me on re-reading it is the extent to which society has accepted and even normalized this state of affairs. So we can now only guess what future historians will say about the tired democracies of the western world. Perhaps something like this: they were characterized by shrinking and aging populations they attempted to beef up with mixed immigration from civilizations often at war with their own values, even as they annually aborted 25% of their own unborn citizens, and were so blinded by a strange egalitarian creed that they cheerfully sent many of their most attractive potential mothers off to fight alongside their lusty sex-starved male soldiers, where they risked being killed in war. What follows is the picture from the recent past. If anyone can point to a concise update on the current situation of women in the militaries of the Western world such as was provided by Mitchell’s book Weak Link, below, I would like to hear of it.

The inclusion or exclusion of women in military combat represents the cutting edge of feminist ideology (and the greatest challenge to the radical feminists’ effort to feminize society). For the military is the quintessential male world. The first group of eight Canadian women combat recruits, all of whom failed to meet minimum standard (Toronto Star, August 15, 1988) complained of the discomfort, dirt, inability to shower, and the fatigue (men kept them awake regaling each other with macho stories, or awakened early – to get going). Meanwhile, several of the men said it was the best time of their lives.

For many of the reasons discussed, men and women have radically different attitudes toward war, and killing in general, and no good military unit will survive in all-out battle if the two attitudes are confused in ways that adversely affect troop deployment, military strategy, or staying power while the enemy is engaged. The American experience is very important to Canadians, first, because we are just now trying what the Americans have been doing for years; and because, as things now stand, we couldn’t fight our way out of a wet paper bag, and in the event of a real war, would have to beg American protection. As their troops go, we go. Finally, this is a subject that affects families deeply, because, once a nation accepts the extraordinarily indefensible and self-defeating premise that women are the same as men, and are therefore as capable at war, and therefore they must be drafted into service, guess who loses? The children, once more the victims of radical feminist ideology. For who will ever forget the heartbreaking photo of soldier Hollie Vance that flashed around the world (Associated Press, August 23, 199O), as she held her seven-week old baby to her breast, and said "I never dreamed of going into combat," before shipping out for Operation Desert Storm. Seven weeks! Never dreamed of combat? That photo, sure to become a classic, symbolizes the essence of the conflict between the idea of mothers at war, and the family. Combat is all that most male soldiers think about. They practice it with sticks and stones as children.

As it is the job of nations to protect their families, it is the job of armies to protect nations. But by all accounts, the influence of radical feminism on the U.S. armed services runs deeply indeed, and is eroding the service from within. It is bound to do the same in Canada. Following are a few more insights from hardened female soldiers who served in Iraq, and Panama. By the way, I have no problem with women filling support roles in the military. And I know that women can be good pilots, and under certain conditions, killer soldiers. But their mere presence in training and actual combat is a subtle and multifaceted disaster for combat troops. Even if they were every bit as good, their presence would be a disaster, for the simple reason that, contrary to the feminist ideology, women are women, and men are men. They are different. To have women in the trenches, cheek to jowl with men, who have wives at home, is an offence against the whole meaning of male warfare. Mere sexual attraction between them – something drawn to near-crazed proportions after weeks or months without the comfort and warmth of a female body – is an enemy weapon within. Such instinctual attraction is out of the question between rough, smelly, unshaven soldiers, who anyway are repelled in a cult-like way by the homosexual alternative. So they think only of war. Drive the unsatisfied sexual instinct downward, so that it will come raging back up as the killer instinct, all the more dangerous because it is the enemy there, over that hill, that is keeping the soldier from his sex, his woman, his children, his country, and all that he hold’s precious. In this way, female troops in intimate action with males will always weaken the resolve of any male soldier worth the name; for the distant aching dream called girlfriend, or wife and home is daily threatened and potentially diminished by the presence of female troops, and thus so is his reason for fighting. Even for those without wives or girlfriends the attraction of softness, sexuality, romance, and all its promise dissolves the killer instinct of a battle unit, and softens the hatred of the enemy, compromises courage, and impairs judgement – even badly so if the soldier wants to protect a weaker female instead of helping his unit. "We do not do what you do in the United States," one Israeli General remarked: "We have to take war seriously."

"It’s like this: I’m a woman and a mother before I am a soldier," sobbed Spec.4 Robin Williams, mother of two, as she talked about her family back home. "Out here I think more about my family than my job, and, yes, that could affect my performance if things got intense here." (Los Angeles Times Syndicate, August, 199O). It could affect her whole unit and cause needless death, is what she means. Careerist and feminist soldier Lori Moore, after a week in Iraq, said "I hate to say it, because it doesn’t fit with the whole scheme of the women’s movement, but I think we have to reconsider what we are doing."(New York Times, August 199O). "Children," she rightly observed, "are the unsung victims of Operation Desert Shield." She ought to have said that they are the unsung victims of feminism. She quit the army in mid-battle, with a less than honourable discharge, to rejoin her family. Meanwhile, Spec. Rose DeBerry, who served as a military police officer in Panama, said "I don’t think women are physically and emotionally prepared to go into combat units." Her friend, Staff Sgt. Christine Brown, said "I think the test [a real battle] would be a set-up for failure." (Toronto Star, March 21, 199O). Army Pfc. Sherry Kaiser, 2O, who refused to be shipped out, said, "If they want to court-martial me, they’ll have to, but on what grounds – that I want to take care of my baby?" What kind of army is this?

Three out of four female soldiers interviewed after Panama by journalist Charles Moskos opposed the idea of armed combat for females. And that was a military operation in which even top Brass were lying through their teeth to cover up for two female sergeants who were crying, and refused to go back on duty after a scary driving mission beca
use they were "tired out." Somehow, they avoided what would have been a routine court-martial for a male. Before Desert Storm began, young women soldiers all over America were desperately trying to find last-minute care for their infants, many of them still breastfeeding. When the naval frigate Acadia docked in San Diego, it had 36 pregnant crew members; the Yellowstone had 2O. And still, a deeply indoctrinated navy spokesman protested: "They have a right to get pregnant." But the real truth was that a whole lot of them got pregnant so they could avoid duty, or be relieved of it. Abortion was always on stand-by for after their release.

So the feminists have won the battle at home – but I think they would lose a war. Everywhere there are tears, pregnancy, and double standards of performance for men and women, utterly betraying the "sameness" idea underlying the whole fiasco. In his book Weak Link: the Feminization of the American Military, author Brian Mitchell reveals the utterly shameful military fiasco feminism has wrought. For by now, he tells us, no other military on earth depends so heavily on women as the U.S. [1O.3% in 1990]. Canada is second [9.2% in 1990, a total of 15% of all military occupations in 2006, most in support roles, with just 225 women in “combat arms” – a term that does not disclose much]. The U.S. services report that in general women soldiers have higher rates of attrition than men, are three times more likely to be discharged for homosexuality, miss twice as much duty time as men for medical reasons, are four times more likely to complain of spurious physical ailments, and have injury rates fully 14 times as high as males submitted to the same drills. In any one year, up to 17% will be pregnant – some small units have reported up to 5O%! Someone is firing more than bullets! A 1982 Army study found that "barely one tenth of Army women possessed the strength to meet minimum physical requirements" for 75 per cent of Army jobs – yet, 5O% of women were assigned to those jobs anyway. Psychologically, military women were found to be less aggressive and daring, less interested in military history, less respectful of military tradition, more likely to suffer "emotional distress", and … they routinely scored lower than men on all the subjects deemed most important for military success. The one item on which they beat the men every time was: they were better behaved! Their continued presence in the military, Mitchell says, is due to the fact that "women enjoy preference and protection in a variety of forms. Nowhere are women required to meet the same standards as men, and nowhere are women subjected to the military’s sternest trials of mind and body that many men face." Mitchell rightly discerns that any decent (i.e. battle-effective) military is by nature contrary to every principle of feminism. It is inherently hierarchical, anti-egalitarian, status-and-class oriented, performance-and-merit oriented, and altruistic. It’s last concern is the individual soldier and his "equal rights".

Everything is geared to the survival of the hierarchical group. In this sense, the military is a mirror of the very values feminists are up against in an effective society, and Mitchell says "the feminization of the American military is perhaps the greatest peacetime military deception ever perpetrated." Have women changed the military? You bet. The double standard is everywhere. They get shower curtains, men do not. Men get their heads shaved, women do not. They are exempt from boxing and wrestling. The military has invented all sorts of euphemisms to disguise double performance standards, speaking of "equivalent training" or "equal effort" instead of about accomplishment, or performance. In all services, women have lower standards for strength testing, running, carrying heavy equipment, and the like. Only 32 percent of women could pass the standard endurance run passed by 97 per cent of the males. So to avoid "stigma" to the women … the Army eliminated the run. Jogging shoes have replaced combat boots on morning runs, mental pressure on recruits is disallowed (too many females broke down, or cried), peer ratings to discern leaders were deemed unfair to women, so these got eliminated. Mitchell shows that one of the biggest reasons for women in the military schools, where women are outnumbered 9 to 1, is marriage. Up to half of a class is likely to marry another midshipman after graduation. So the gals are getting their Mrs. degree, but "nothing can explain why 6O to 7O per cent of the women at West Point score below the mean [average] in easy military subjects like map-reading, military heritage, and tactics, except that they do not much want to be soldiers." The list goes on. When it comes to important military assets like strength and endurance, the men outscore the women by so much it’s, well, dangerous (473 per cent on leg-work output). Even outside of battle, the Army reports that 65% of female aircraft mechanics could not perform required tasks such as changing aircraft tires and brakes, removing batteries and crew seats, breaking torque bolts, and so on. Female missile mechanics could not lift warheads. Yikes!

Clearly, anyone who reads Weak Link, will be convinced that the intrusion of feminism into the military is designed not to improve the effectiveness of the armed forces, but to advance the ideological warfare of feminism on the home front, even as it weakens the services from within. This has been a sad story, and it is not meant to demean the many courageous women who have served, or lost their lives for their countries. Rather, it is meant to suggest that if we persist in having women in the military, let’s do it in a way that strengthens the military, rather then weakens it. Let’s have the same high fighting standards for all, and let the chips fall where they may. Most of all, let’s remember that more women in the military likely means more children getting second-best at home, or pushed into the arms of aging, tired grandparents. A nation faced with this dilemma should make the smartest choice to protect itself: send the best fighters out to fight; and send the best nurturers home to nurture, instead of nurturing the fighters.

William D. Gairdner
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