Written by Jude Eden
Under Sequestration, equipment isn't the only thing on the chopping block. Personnel will be as well, and all will have to prove their value in the positions they hold or want to hold. With the conflicting directives of cutting fat vs. compliance with female quotas in the combat units, it is qualified and experienced men who will be purged first. Combined with the inevitably lowered standards in these units to accommodate women, it is combat readiness that will suffer the most.
Between Leon Panetta's unconstitutional order that combat units be opened to women and impending Sequestration this week, America can kiss goodbye its military superiority and ability to fight wars effectively.
As readiness goes, so goes our security both at home and abroad.
The top military brass is already under pressure to show diversity and prove it doesn't discriminate. Indeed, that is now its foremost mandate, not military readiness.
With the repeal of laws barring women from combat units and special forces, they will now be forced to prove they're giving women a "fair" shake by discriminating against more qualified men, since no comprehensive testing was done to prove women can make it through their training, and the only two we know of who attempted such, two in the Marine Infantry Officer course, failed in the first day and the first week of training respectively. It won't matter that the women can't make those standards that most of the top men in every branch can't achieve.
It will go something like this at the officer level: "Suzy-Q failed the training? You're up for promotion, aren't you? Take another look at Suzy-Q." And from DOD to the top brass: "We expect X% pass rate for females. Anything less will be seen as discrimination. Next year's budget will reflect the success of this program. Understood?" The military will have to lower the standards of its toughest units in order to fill quotas of women to show they're not discriminating.
Cutting spending is vital for every department of government, including the military. The Marines have always been in the lead when it comes to working with the least, then cutting even more. With so many other ways to cut the excess – from non-vital programs like the National Endowment for the Arts to stopping the fraud and waste so pervasive in government programs from Social Security to Medicare – Sequestration is totally unnecessary. But this was Obama's idea, and it put the military in the cross-hairs from the start. It's easy to see why.
This administration thinks the military is too masculine, too white, too conservative, too straight. They've repealed DADT, opened the toughest units to women who can't make it through one week of their training and sold our equipment to our enemies. This is just the next phase in destroying the last bastion of merit and strength our country has against enemies both foreign and domestic.
Jude Eden blogs at Poltical Animal and is a graduate of Hillsdale College in Michigan and the Hallmark Institute of Photography in Massachusetts. She served in the Marine Corps from 2004-2008 and deployed to Fallujah, Iraq in 2005-6.
She is a cancer survivor and cellist now living in North Carolina with her Brazilian husband.