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WSU professor comments about ground combat in KPCC-FM radio interview

November 28, 2012

A federal lawsuit filed on Tuesday challenges the Pentagon's long-standing policy barring women from serving in direct combat positions. The 1994 combat exclusion policy bars women from being assigned to ground combat units, which are smaller and considered more dangerous because they are often in the thick of battle for longer periods than the other units. Supporters of lifting the ban say women are already being wounded and killed in war, and the policy keeps them from being recognized for their battleground experience, which could lead to promotions and higher pay. Opponents include some female troops who question whether women are physically capable of handling the rigors of being assigned to ground combat units. The first and so far the only two women to volunteer for the Marine Corps' grueling 13-week infantry training course at its base in Quantico, Va., were unable to complete it. Wayne State University law professor Kingsley Browne said physical differences do matter in battle - particularly in ground combat.