18 August 2016


by Andy Weddington
Thursday, 18 August 2016

Nature is indifferent to the survival of the human species, including Americans. Adlai E. Stevenson

A couple days ago I read that a female U. S. Marine lieutenant was dropped, for the second time, from IOC.

She was not able to complete the demanding hikes. 

IOC - Infantry Officers Course. 

No surprise.

Two and half dozen or so women, voluntarily over the past three or four years, have attempted and have not come anywhere near completing the rigorous curriculum that grants graduates the opportunity to lead Marine infantrymen. 

Why can't women complete the course?

Strength. Speed. Endurance.

Simple as that. 

I graduated from IOC 36 years ago. It was not an easy course. Lessons learned have made it necessarily so more difficult. It must be considering what's at stake.

But women in the infantry is the Obama administration's agenda. 

As such, a few enlisted women have completed basic infantry training. 

Basic infantry training is challenging. But make no mistake, there is no comparison to what is demanded of officers who will lead infantry Marines. None.

And let's too be clear that a school, training, is not daily life in a Marine infantry battalion. 

The Marine Corps has not flexed as to changing standards for graduating IOC.

Navy Secretary Ray Mabus has publicly said standards will not be lowered but qualified that position, at least has been written in articles, with 'unless changing world conditions so require.' 

Standby for the Marine Corps to be so educated - probably in another memo of gobbledygook.

The past couple of weeks I've watched a bit of the Olympics.

I marvel at the fitness and skills of the athletes.

But wonder why the IOC, in these righteous days of gender-neutrality and norming, is stuck in the old paradigm of separate competitions for men and women? 

The IOC - International Olympic Committee.

Did they not get the Obama administration memo?

Why is there not competition to determine the best athlete?

A review of Olympic records, over decades, in track and field and swimming is telling.

Guess what?

In the same events, women records did not come close to the men. And, as a rule, the longer the distance the greater the time interval.


Why is that?

Strength. Speed. Endurance.

The fact is were the competition solely for best athlete, at least in physical events, women would not medal. 


The competition is for a medal - sweat and pain and tears equity. 


The "competition" is to survive.

Some earn medals - sweat and pain and tears equity and sometimes loss of blood, limb, and life. 

And we're playing around with the readiness of our ground combat forces as if they play games. 

As difficult as it may be for some Americans to believe, we, as party to the human species, are not exempt from the laws of Nature.

So time again for a reminder. 

The wise words of a man, a Marine, who damn well understood the difference between games and combat and the requirements for strength, speed, and endurance.

He survived the horrors of combat. Some Marines he led did not. And that is why we all must listen. And listen closely. 

General, Sir, the floor is yours for the closing word:

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