Vital Signs

The New Reality

The Washington Post calls it “The New Reality.”  Today, women aren’t just flying fighter aircraft or serving on ships, away from action on the ground: They fight in ground combat units, lose limbs, and die in battle.  Amputee Lt. Dawn Halfaker, the main subject of the Post’s article (“Limbs Lost to Enemy Fire, Women Forge a New Reality,” by Donna St. George, April 18), says that old folks sometimes ask whether pushing women into combat roles is appropriate.  She offers the tough-dame, feminist answer: “Women in combat is not really an issue.  It’s happening.”

Since we launched our “War on Terror,” 60 women have been killed in Afghanistan and Iraq, 34 of them in combat.  Almost 400 have been wounded; 11 are amputees.  Historians have concluded, the Post reported, that our war in Iraq has produced America’s first women amputees, and certainly our first women killed in battle (while serving in roles other than nurses).

Under pressure from the feminists for the last 30 years, the Pentagon has “co-located” women in “non-combat” units, such as military police, perilously close to front-line action; because the war in Iraq has no front lines, many women have been grievously maimed or killed.

Sadly, no one seems to care, particularly not conservatives—not the professional...

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