t is not exactly the most ladylike world to have women in the military in combat roles. The U.S. military thinks it’s OK. There’s a large number of Americans who would not like to see their daughters in combat. That goes for their sons also.

In many wars in world history women had to be in combat because of the situation their countries were in, and from what we know, they performed well. Many of them died while fighting in combat with their enemies.

Beginning in World War II, women in large numbers performed in the military with honor and distinction. We remember the many women who became pilots and ferried military aircraft to England, North Africa and a host of other countries. Women handled many other military tasks. Women weren’t assigned to combat, however. The same has been true in our other wars up to now. Some were exposed to combat such as shelling, air raids and pilots could encounter enemy aircraft.

ombat is an ugly world, and the living conditions, especially for ground troops, usually are crude and filthy. The services can never prepare troops for the way a soldier has to live in combat conditions, except the special forces, special opt teams like the Seals, get a big taste of it in their training. But for the ordinary GI, the training is such that at the end of a week, or weeks, you know you can clean up and get a fresh set of fatigues. In combat, you can live in filth for weeks, even months. We wouldn’t like to see any woman in those conditions. We know some women could handle it.

We don’t like the idea of women being exposed to a situation in which they could be taken prisoner. That’s a worry. They may survive but what happens to them by the brutal enemy is something we don’t like to think about.

Women have proven their grit in the military. They can handle most tasks with solid performances. We don’t doubt there are women who would perform well in combat.

here are some assignments that would call for men only due to the strength required. But when it comes to courage, women are as strong as men.

Women have proven their

abilities in most fields of endeavor in civilian life and in the military. Quite often they have handled assigned tasks as well or better than the males.

OK. Back to the basic question. Should women be allowed to serve in combat?

We say if they are qualified for whatever branch of the military they are in, and if they volunteer, we say let them serve in combat. The key word is “volunteer.”