Military branches will have to wait until January of next year before learning if females will be allowed to work in direct combat jobs. Ashton Carter, Defense Secretary, said recently that he has received reports from all branches concerning the issue, but will not decide on what action to take until early 2016.
In the meantime, he says that he will take input from service secretaries as well as from service chiefs. He also reported that he needs more input from Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford as Dunford moves from being the Commandant of the Marines Corp to his new positions as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The new Marine Corp Commandant is Marine Gen. Robert Neller.
Carter has already told the Pentagon that the various services will need to convince him to not institute the new policy. The proposed policy of allowing women into combat jobs was first brought up in 2013 by Leon Panetta who was Defense Secretary at that time. The Panetta proposal would open all MOS’s to women, including billets in armor, infantry, and artillery.
Carter recently said: “As I said before, everyone who is able and willing to serve and can meet the standards we require should have the full opportunity to do so.”
While he says that he has received the various reports, he has not said publicly what each report contains other than none of them contain any specific recommendations. He did say, however, that one thing he is most interested in seeing in the near future from the various branches is how each would implement changes if changes are made.
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