General Warns: Military Will Face 'Great Pressure' to Lower Standards for Women in Combat to Please ‘Agenda-Driven’ in D.C.

By CNSNews.com Staff | January 9, 2016 | 11:45 AM EST
Marine Gen. John Kelly, commander of U.S. Southern Command (Screen Capture)

(CNSNews.com) - Marine Gen. John Kelly, commander of the U.S. Southern Command, said at a Pentagon press briefing on Friday that he believes that future generals will face “great pressure” to lower the standards for women in combat in order to get more women into combat roles.

“My greatest fear---and we see this happen a lot over the 45 years I've been in the Armed Forces--is right now they're saying we are not going to change any standards,” said Kelly. “There will be great pressure, whether it's 12 months from now, four years from now, because the question will be asked whether we've let women into these other roles, why aren't they staying in those other roles?

“Why aren't they advancing as infantry people—persons--I guess? Why aren't they becoming, you know, more senior?” he said. “And the answer is--I think will be--if we don't change standards, it will be very, very difficult to have any numbers, any real numbers, come into the infantry, or the Rangers or the Seals, but that's their business.”

“So,” said Kelly, “I think it will be the pressure for not probably the generals that are here now, but for the generals to come, and admirals, to lower standards because that's the only way it'll work in the way that I hear some people, particularly, the agenda-driven people here in Washington--or in the land--the way they want it to work.

Here is the complete transcript of the question a reporter asked Kelly and Kelly’s answer:

Question: I have a question. I have a question. Women in combat. Of course, the Marines were against opening all ground combat jobs to women. They were overruled by the defense secretary. The Marine report found that mixed-gender units were less lethal, slower, more prone to injuries than all-male units.

Talk about the way ahead on this. How can they put this into effect, what concerns you in the way ahead with this?

Gen. Kelly: I would just offer that I believe, given the mission in of the United States Armed Forces to fight the nation's wars, I believe that every decision we make, whether it's a personnel decision, Tom, or an acquisition, a new airplane, a new whatever widget, I think every decision has to be looked at only one filter, and that is, does it make us more lethal on the battlefield?

Will it end up -- will it result in less casualties on our side? Will it end up in less casualties on the other side, because they're human beings, too. Some of them very much deserve to be killed but others don't, and so that's the filter.

So if you look at anything we are contemplating doing, does it make us more lethal? If the answer to that is do it -- is yes, then do it. If the answer to that is no, clearly don't do it. If the answer to that is, it shouldn't hurt, I would suggest that we shouldn't do it, because it might hurt.

So that's in my opinion. The way I think you do this is, since we're all ordered to do it, is you simply do it. My greatest fear -- and we see this happen a lot over the 45 years I've been in the Armed Forces is, right now they're saying we are not going to change any standards. There will be great pressure, whether it's 12 months from now, four years from now, because the question will be asked whether we've let women into these other roles, why aren't they staying in those other roles?

Why aren't they advancing as infantry people -- persons, I guess? Why aren't they becoming, you know, more senior and the answer is, I think will be, if we don't change standards, it will be very, very difficult to have any numbers -- any real numbers come into the infantry, or the Rangers or the Seals, but that's their business.

So we have very small numbers anyways. And then, the only science I know on this was not the Marine study, it was the study that the Marine Corps contracted the University of Pittsburgh, I think. The other aspect is, because of the nature of infantry combat, infantry training, and all of rest, there's a higher percentage of young women in the scientific study that get hurt, and some of them get hurt forever.

So I think it will be the pressure for not probably the generals that are here now, but for the generals to come, and admirals, to lower standards because that's the only way it'll work in the way that I hear some people, particularly, the agenda-driven people here in Washington -- or in the land, the way they want it to work.