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For First Time in History, Women Can Become Navy SEALs

The military makes a big push to become a big tent.

Image via Wikimedia

For far too long (let’s call it: forever) American women have had a hard time being accepted in the military. Considered not strong enough—or simply, too anxiety-provoking for some men to handle—they’re often been relegated to secondhand positions, or simply not included at all. Just recently, however, Admiral Jon Greenert, chief of Naval Operations, came out with a big announcement: for the first time ever, women will now be able to become Navy SEALs.

Image via Flickr user Official US Navy Page

Navy SEALs often perform some of the military’s most physically intensive, intricate work. But as Greenert himself recently told Defense News, that’s absolutely no reason to exclude women: “Why shouldn’t anybody who can meet these [standards] be accepted? And the answer is, there is no reason … We’re on a track to say, “Hey look anybody who can meet the gender non-specific standards, you can become a SEAL.”

Like their fellow male officers, women will be required to meet the stated standards and undergo thorough training. It’s a job that carries huge responsibilities—Navy SEALs were critical in the fight to capture Osama Bin Laden, and played highly specialized roles in Iraq and Afghanistan. And it’s part of a growing trend in the military to become more inclusive: just recently, two women—for the first time ever—graduated from the Army’s ranger school. Only two years ago, the military finally lifted the ban on women serving in combat roles. While glaring disparities and violence remain, these are huge leaps forward for an industry that needed so many.

(Via: The Navy Times)

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