The Spokesman-Review

Letters to the Editor

Nobody built for combat

In response to Kathleen Parker’s column (Jan. 27), “Women are not built for combat.” She answers no relevant question. To paraphrase Donald Rumsfeld, “We don’t go to war with the bodies we wish we had.”

Sent to war in 1967, I was considered physically and morally fit, not only to fight, but to lead. Considered unfit were women and gay men, regardless of aggressive readiness. The morally strong refused to be killers or fodder.

News flash for anyone concerned about the vulnerability of our troops: Women in the U.S. military are more likely to be raped by male comrades than otherwise injured, captured, decorated or promoted. Men in combat are more likely to kill innocent civilians than protect our country. Men, too, are not built for combat.

Promoters of war have taught us men are made to fight or fail. Women, with exceptions, have been kept from combat, not for physical reasons, but because they might be too tender-hearted toward some foe or seeing war’s reality, might refuse to send sons into battle.

Today’s women, like our congressional delegation, have proved they are ready to “man up” and wage dirty, illegal wars with the best of us.

Rusty Nelson


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