chapter
4 Pages

Introduction

WithRita J. Simon

This introduction presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of this book. The book provides an historical perspective by tracing the role and conditions of women in the military since 1940. It argues for broader inclusion of women and other groups who, in the past, have been restricted from full participation. The book reviews the debate on whether women should serve in the military at all, and especially in combat positions. It discusses the high pregnancy rates among women and whether their comparative physical strength makes them more of a liability than an asset to the country’s military strength and readiness. The book also reviews the highly publicized incidents involving women pilots. It examines the power that wars possess to awaken strong identities in both men and women. The book concludes that the military as measured by readiness, would be worse off without women.