New Era Cap Houston Colt 45s

Some officers who headed to war had to leave behind women who had been key members of their staffs, said Maren Leed, an expert on military strategy at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and a former adviser to senior leaders at the Pentagon. Others, while in war zones, had to wrestle with compromising their unit's effectiveness by leaving women behind when they went on missions.

New Era Cap Houston Colt 45s

New Era Cap Houston Colt 45s

That experience, more than anything else, explains the historic change in policy signed by Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and Army Gen. Jordan Cap Cement

"The reality is that there are women pilots, military police units commanded by women officers," Reed said. "They've distinguished themselves on the battlefield."

Now the Pentagon bureaucracy will churn out the papers and policies over the next four years to move women even closer to the fight. Each service must submit its plan by May, and all of the jobs unless an exemption is approved by the Defense secretary must be opened by 2016.

not consistent with the way warfare had changed," Leed said.

New Era Cap Houston Colt 45s

Sen. Jack Reed, a Rhode Island Democrat, Army veteran and member of the Armed Services Committee, said in an interview that the new policy reflects what's happening on modern warfare.

New Era Cap Houston Colt 45s

New Era Cap Houston Colt 45s

"The policies were just Jordan Caps Images

Combat engineers soldiers who build things and blow up others will be among the first to be open to women. Field artillery, too, is likely to welcome women soon.

New Era Cap Houston Colt 45s

Martin Dempsey, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

it's from that point on that I realized something had changed, and it was time to do something about it. "

"Who are you?" Dempsey asked. "And she leaned down and said, "I'm Amanda." And I said, 'Ah, OK.' So, female turret gunner protecting division commander. And New Era Uk

New Era Cap Houston Colt 45s

Story HighlightsField commanders say they have seen women fighting and dying for yearsCombat engineers, soldiers who build and blow things up, among the first fields to open to womenIf women meet the standards, they will be able to join units

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta watches Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey sign a memorandum ending the 1994 ban on women serving in combat roles in the military on Thursday at the Pentagon.(Photo: Cliff Owen, AP)

WASHINGTON Female troops fighting and bleeding and dying on battlefields in Iraq and Afghanistan have changed the way many in the Pentagon and Capitol Hill including those at the very top ranks view their abilities.

"Yes I support it," he said in an e mail. "It is about time!"

New Era Cap Houston Colt 45s

A decade of war proved women's mettle for combat

New Era Cap Houston Colt 45s

Ask Peter Chiarelli, who retired last year as the Army's No. 2 officer, had commanded troops in Iraq and also served as then Defense secretary Robert Gates' military adviser at the height of the fighting.

Look for some of the first changes in the Army, which has about 120,000 of its 550,000 active duty slots open to women. Infantry, artillery and armored formations account for most of the closed spots. Overall, women make up about 15% of the Army's soldiers.

That the move has been greeted more as a foregone conclusion than a controversy says a lot.

It took 10 years, but that something has happened. With strokes from their pens, Dempsey and Panetta on Thursday opened 237,000 jobs previously barred to women. Most of the posts are in New Era Cap Houston Colt 45s ground combat units.

More than 280,000 women have served in Iraq and Afghanistan since 2001, and 152 of them have died.

Dempsey's aha moment occurred when he led the 1st Armored Division as a two star general in Baghdad in 2003. He hopped into a Humvee, chatted with his driver and then slapped the leg of the turret gunner.

New Era Cap Houston Colt 45s

New Era Cap Houston Colt 45s

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