Women in the military

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from History of women in the military)
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Four American F-15 Eagle pilots from the 3d Wing walk to their jets at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson.

Since 1914, the role of women in the military has been controversial, particularly their role in combat. It is only recently that women have started to hold a more prominent role in contemporary armed forces, with increasing numbers of countries expanding the role of women in the military.

From the beginning of the 1970s, most Western armies began to admit women to serve in active duty in all military branches.[1] In nine countries women are conscripted into military service.[2][3] Today (2018), there are only a few countries that allow women into the military on a completely equal basis. These countries include Australia, Canada, Germany, Norway, Sweden, Denmark and some others.[4]


World War I[edit]

A group of female motor ambulance drivers from the British Voluntary Aid Detachment in France during 1917

Thousands of women served as nurses, cooks, laundresses and other support roles in the armies involved in World War I.[5]

The only nation to deploy female combat troops in substantial numbers was Russia. From the outset, female recruits either joined up in disguise or were tacitly accepted by their units. The most prominent were a contingent of front-line light cavalry in a Cossack regiment commanded by a female colonel, Alexandra Kudasheva. Others included the famous Maria Bochkareva, who was decorated three times and promoted to senior NCO rank, while The New York Times reported that a group of twelve schoolgirls from Moscow had joined up together disguised as young men.[6] In 1917, the Provisional Government raised a number of "Women's Battalions", with Bochkareva given an officer's commission to command the first unit. They fought well, but failed to provide the propaganda value expected of them and were disbanded before the end of the year. In the later Russian Civil War, the Bolsheviks employed some female infantry, while female soldiers are also recorded in the White Guard.[7]

In Serbia, a few individual women played key military roles during World War One. Scottish doctor Elsie Ingles coordinated a retreat of approximately 8,000 Serbian troops through Romania and revolutionary Russia, up to Scandinavia and finally on transport ships back to England to fight another day[8][9]. Another woman, Milunka Savic, enlisted in the Serbian army in place of her brother. She fought throughout the war, becoming possibly the most decorated woman in military history[10][11].

In the 1918 Finnish Civil War, more than 2,000 women fought in the Women's Red Guards.[12]

In the Spanish Civil War, thousands of women were integrated into mixed-gender combat and rearguard units, or fought as part of militias.[13][14]

World War II[edit]

Then-Princess Elizabeth served in the British Army, during the 1940s.
Roza Shanina, a Soviet sniper during World War II, credited with 54 confirmed target hits. About 400,000 Soviet women served in front-line duty units,[15] chiefly as medics and nurses.

All the major participating nations in World War II used women in uniform. The majority of the tasks that women performed included nursing and clerical or support roles. Over 500,000 women had combat roles in anti-aircraft units in Britain and Germany, as well as front-line units in the Soviet Union.


In 1938, the British took the lead worldwide in establishing uniformed services for women, in addition to the small units of nurses that had long been in operation. In late 1941, Britain began conscripting women, sending most into factory work and some into the military, especially the Auxiliary Territorial Service (ATS) attached to the army. The ATS began as a women's auxiliary to the military in 1938. In 1941, the ATS was granted military status, although women received only 2/3 of the pay compared to men. Women had a well-publicized role in handling anti-aircraft guns against German planes and V-1 missiles. The daughter of Prime Minister Winston Churchill was there, and he gushed that any general who saved him 40,000 fighting men had gained the equivalent of a victory. By August 1941, women were operating the fire-control instruments; although they were never allowed to pull the trigger, since killing the enemy was considered to be too masculine.[16] By 1943, 56,000 women were in Anti-Aircraft Command, most in units close to London where there was a risk of getting killed, but no risk of getting captured by the enemy.[15][17] The first "kill" came in April 1942.[18]


The Third Reich, contrary to popular belief, had similar roles for women. The SS-Helferinnen were regarded as part of the SS if they had undergone training at a Reichsschule SS but all other female workers were regarded as being contracted to the SS and chosen largely from concentration camps. Women also served in auxiliary units in the navy (Kriegshelferinnen), air force (Luftnachrichtenhelferinnen) and army (Nachrichtenhelferin).[19][20]

Second woman to win the Iron Cross, nurse Elfriede Wnuk

In 1944-45 roughly 500,000 women were volunteer uniformed auxiliaries in the German armed forces (Wehrmacht). About the same number served in civil aerial defense, 400,000 volunteered as nurses, and many more replaced drafted men in the wartime economy.[20] In the Luftwaffe they served in combat roles helping to operate the anti-aircraft systems to shoot down Allied bombers. By 1945, German women were holding 85% of the billets as clericals, accountants, interpreters, laboratory workers, and administrative workers, together with half of the clerical and junior administrative posts in high-level field headquarters.[21]

Germany had a very large and well-organized nursing service, with four main organizations, one for Catholics, one for Protestants, the secular DRK (Red Cross) and the "Brown Nurses," for committed Nazi women. Military nursing was primarily handled by the DRK, which came under partial Nazi control. Frontline medical services were provided by male medics and doctors. Red Cross nurses served widely within the military medical services, staffing the hospitals that perforce were close to the front lines and at risk of bombing attacks. Two dozen were awarded the Iron Cross for heroism under fire.[19] The brief historiography focuses on the dilemmas of Brown Nurses forced to look the other way while their incapacitated patients were murdered.[22]

Hundreds of women auxiliaries (Aufseherin) served in the SS in the camps, the majority of which were at Ravensbrück. In Germany women also worked, and were told by Hitler to produce more pure Aryan children to fight in future wars.[23]

Yugoslav Partisans[edit]

The Yugoslav National Liberation Movement had 6,000,000 civilian supporters; its two million women formed the Antifascist Front of Women (AFŽ), in which the revolutionary coexisted with the traditional. The AFŽ managed schools, hospitals and even local governments. About 100,000 women served with 600,000 men in Tito's Yugoslav National Liberation Army. It stressed its dedication to women's rights and gender equality and used the imagery of traditional folklore heroines to attract and legitimize the partizanka.[24] After the war, although women were relegated to traditional gender roles, Yugoslavia's historians continued to place a large importance on women's roles in the resistance. After Yugoslavia broke up in the 1990s, women's contributions to the resistance were forgotten.[25][26]

After the world wars[edit]

Vietnam War[edit]

During the Vietnam War (1955-1975), about 11,000 American military women were deployed to Vietnam, with 90% serving as nurses. Eight women were killed in combat. Commander Elizabeth Barrett became the first woman to hold a command in a combat zone.[27]

Democratic Republic of the Congo[edit]

A Congolese female para-commando during jump training at capital Leopoldville in 1967

The Democratic Republic of the Congo began training an initial 150 women as para-commandos for the Armée Nationale Congolaise in 1967. Many more were trained subsequently, over a period of several years at least. The women received complete jump training as well as weapons training although it is unclear to what extent they were actually integrated into the combat units of the Congo.


In 1999, the BBC reported that about a quarter of the Eritrean soldiers in the Eritrean–Ethiopian War were women.[28]


Israel is currently the only country in the world with a mandatory military service requirement for women.[29][30][31] Mandatory conscription for single and married women without children began in 1948.[32]

Initially, all women conscripts served in the Women's Army Corps, serving as clerks, drivers, welfare workers, nurses, radio operators, flight controllers, ordnance personnel, and course instructors.[33] Roles for women beyond technical and secretarial support began opening up in the late 1970s and early 1980s.[30]

In 2000, the Equality amendment to the Military Service law granted equal opportunities in the military to women found physically and personally suitable for a job. Women started to enter combat support and light combat roles in a few areas, including the Artillery Corps, infantry units and armored divisions. A few platoons named Carakal were formed for men and women to serve together in light infantry. Many women would also join the Border Police.[30]

Despite these changes, the IDF concedes that fewer than 4 percent of women are in combat positions such as infantry, crew of tanks or other armored vehicles, artillery guns service, fighter pilots, etc. Rather, they are concentrated in "combat-support".[34]

Current situation[edit]

The proportion of female military personnel varies internationally; for example, it is approximately 3% in India, 10% in the UK,[35] 15% in France,[36] 13% in Sweden,[37] 16% in the US,[38], 15.3% in Canada[39], and 27% in South Africa.[40]

Many state armed forces that recruit women continue to bar them from ground close combat roles (roles that would require them to kill at close quarters).[41]

Compared with male personnel and female civilians, female personnel face substantially higher risks of sexual harassment and sexual violence, according to British, Canadian, and US research.[42][43][44]

Women in combat[edit]

Marie Marvingt was the first female pilot to fly during a wartime; she was never in combat (1912)

Some nations allow female soldiers to serve in certain combat arms positions. Others exclude them for various reasons including physical demands and privacy policies.

The United States military has most of their positions open to women.[45] There are some restrictions because of physical demands that women have not yet met, such as special forces positions.

Women have been involved in the U.S. military since 1775, but more in the civilian fields of nursing, laundering, mending clothing and cooking. Several hundred women enlisted and fought in the US Civil War, nearly all of them disguised as men, many discovered on the battlefield and in hospitals after becoming wounded.[46] Deborah Sampson was one of the first women known to have disguised as a man to serve. She was unhappy with her limited role in the American Revolution, so she pretended to be a man in order to serve in a light infantry unit. She fought in many battles, but eventually suffered injuries to her head and leg which led to the discovery of her true gender. Her commanding officer, General John Paterson, honorably discharged her and thanked her for her service.[5] In 1917 Loretta Walsh became the first woman to enlist. But it was not until 1948 that a law was finally passed that made women a permanent part of the military services. In 1976, the first group of women were admitted into a U.S. military academy.[47] Currently, approximately 16% of the graduating West Point class consists of women.[48]

In the years 1990 and 1991, some 40,000 American military women were deployed during the Gulf War operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm; however, no women were allowed to take on any form of combat. A policy enacted in 1994 prohibited women from being assigned to ground combat units below the brigade level.[49]

According to statistics from 2013, 15.6 percent of the U.S. Army's 1.1 million soldiers, including National Guard And Reserve, were female. That year, women served in 95 percent of all army occupations.[50]

Policy changes[edit]

Prior to the 1993 Department of Defense assignment rule, 67 percent of the positions in the Army were open to women. Today, 78 percent of the positions in the Army are open to women, and women serve in 95 percent of all Army occupations (active duty and the reserve components), as of 2014.[51] In the U.S. Air Force, 99% of career fields are open to women, the only ones prohibited to women are Special Tactics Officer, Combat Control, Special Operations Weather Technician, Combat Rescue Officer, Pararescue and Tactical Air Control Party.[52]

In January 2013, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta issued an order to end the policy of "no women in units that are tasked with direct combat", though it still has yet to be determined if and when women may join the US Army's Special Forces.[53]

In 2013 female U.S Army soldiers are being asked to take part in a new training course designed by Combined Joint Task Force Paladin, which is specifically designed for Female Engagement Team members. The course will help female soldiers train for tasks such as unexploded ordnance awareness, biometrics, forensics, evidence collection, tactical questioning, vehicle and personnel searches, instructions on how homemade explosive devices are made and how to recognize if a device is homemade.[54] This change will open up hundreds of thousands of front-line positions for women. The goal is for all assessments to be complete and have women fully integrated into all roles in the army by 2016.[55]

By May 2015, all nineteen women vying to become the first female Army Rangers had failed their training at Ranger School. Eleven of the nineteen dropped out in the first four days of training. Of the remaining eight who failed in the next step, three were given the option to enroll in the course again.[56] Two of the original 19 women graduated in August 2015.[57] A third graduated in October 2015.[58]

In April 2015 after two-and-a-half year period in which the tough Marine Corps' Infantry Officer Course became gender-integrated for research ended without a single female graduate.[59] The final two participants in the Marines' experiment with training women for ground combat started and failed the IOC on April 2. Both were dropped that same day during the grueling initial Combat Endurance Test.[60]

In December 2015, Defense Secretary Ash Carter stated that starting in 2016 all combat jobs would open to women, however Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Joseph Dunford of the Marine Corps, wanted to keep certain direct combat positions such as infantry and machine gunner closed to women.[61]

The decision to officially permit women to assume combat roles was due to the fact that women had served in combat roles from the beginning of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Women have been injured, killed, and awarded some of the highest honors. Two women have received the Silver Star, Sgt. Leigh Ann Hester in 2005, and Army Specialist Monica Lin Brown in 2007 for their actions in combat. Over 10,000 combat action badges have been awarded to women who served in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan.[62] Secretary of Defense Ash Carter stated "It was a reality, because women had seen combat throughout the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan — serving, fighting and in some cases making the ultimate sacrifice alongside their fellow comrades in arms."[63]

Physical, social and cultural issues[edit]

Two members of a US Marine Corps Female Engagement Team patrolling a town in Afghanistan during 2010
Russian military's women contingent in their formal wear during a parade, 2013

Marine Corps study released in September 2015[64][65] found that women in unit created to assess how female service members perform in combat were significantly injured twice as often as men, less accurate with infantry weapons and not as good at removing wounded troops from the battlefield, according to the results of study produced by the service.[64]

The research was carried out by the service in a nine-month long experiment at both Camp Lejeune, N.C., and Twentynine Palms, Calif. About 400 Marines, including 100 women, volunteered to join the Ground Combat Element Integrated Task Force, the unit the Marine Corps created to compare how men and women do in a combat environment.[66]

“This is unprecedented research across the services,” said Marine Col. Anne Weinberg, the deputy director of the Marine Corps Force Innovation Office. “What we tried to get to is what is that individual’s contribution to the collective unit. We all fight as units… We’re more interested in how the Marine Corps fights as units and how that combat effectiveness is either advanced or degraded.” The Marine Corps research found that all-male squads, teams and crews demonstrated better performance on 93 of 134 tasks evaluated (69 percent) than units with women in them. Units comprising all men also were faster than units with women while completing tactical movements in combat situations, especially in units with large “crew-served” weapons like heavy machine guns and mortars, the study found. Infantry squads comprising men only also had better accuracy than squads with women in them, with “a notable difference between genders for every individual weapons system” used by infantry rifleman units. They include the M4 carbine, the M27 infantry automatic rifle and the M203, a single-shot grenade launcher mounted to rifles.[66]

The research also found that male Marines who have not received infantry training were still more accurate using firearms than women who have. And in removing wounded troops from the battlefield, there “were notable differences in execution times between all-male and gender-integrated groups,” with the exception being when a single person—”most often a male Marine” — carried someone away, the study found.[66]

There may be some social explanations for why unit cohesion is lower in mixed gender groups. As noted by many female soldiers, the way that they are viewed by male soldiers is often detrimental to their participation in the unit. For instance, the female soldiers are often labelled as “either standoffish or a slut”.[67] In order to avoid being labelled as either of these, a female soldier has to spend time with fellow soldiers strategically. This means that she is careful to not spend too much time with any one male soldier, and this often has an isolating effect.[67] In several instances, women will also be considered less skilled than the male soldiers, so will not be given the opportunities to complete tasks that they are qualified to do and will continuously have to prove themselves as capable.[67] Therefore, lack of cohesion with units could be because of female soldier’s perceived incapability to be a soldier.

There are worries about romantic or sexual relationships developing, potentially inappropriate fraternization, or that a woman might get pregnant.[citation needed] Some people are not willing to accept the risk of women being captured and tortured and possibly sexually assaulted, which happened to then-Major Rhonda Cornum.[68] Some argue that there is a shortage of male combat soldiers and that women should not be treated as second-class citizens in the military.[69]

According to Lt. Col. Dave Grossman, author of On Killing: The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society, Israeli soldiers reacted with uncontrollable protectiveness and aggression after seeing a woman wounded. Grossman also notes that Islamic militants rarely, if ever, surrender to female soldiers, lessening the IDF's ability to interrogate prisoners. On the other hand, Iraqi and Afghan civilians are often not intimidated by female soldiers. However, in such environments, having female soldiers serving in a combat unit does have the advantage of allowing for searches on female civilians. Children and women are more likely to talk to female soldiers than to male soldiers.[70]

Sexual harassment and assault[edit]

Female soldiers have developed several techniques for avoiding sexual assault “including: (1) relying on support networks [buddy systems], (2) capitalizing on their status (associated with rank, age, time spent in military, or prior deployment experience); and, (3) masking femininity through clothing to minimize violence exposure and to keep themselves and others safe during military service”.[71] While these techniques are useful, they are also problematic in several ways. Firstly, these strategies demonstrate that it becomes the responsibility of the women to keep themselves safe instead of challenging the rape culture within the military.[71] Secondly, because of the ratio between men and women, women will often have to “buddy up” with male unit members. The male unit member then becomes a “protector” of the female soldier. This situation re-creates the female body as vulnerable and weak in relation to the strong, male body.[72]

Some reports show that women in the military are three times more likely to be raped than women in the general public;[73] furthermore, women in Iraq are more likely to be attacked by one of their own than by an insurgent.[74] In 1988, the first sexual harassment survey was created military-wide which found that 64% of military women have been subjected to some form of sexual harassment. Those found to be affected the greatest were Native-American women, followed by Hispanic and African-American women.[75] There is currently a lawsuit in the US military in which the plaintiffs claim to have been subjected to sexual assaults in the military.[76]

A documentary called The Invisible War has been made on this lawsuit and topic.[77] Sexual assault is often one of the most physically and mentally detrimental strains women in the military face, and often leads to the development of PTSD.[78] Research shows that sleep deprivation and chronic pain are often found in women who experience sexual trauma.[79][80] Sexual assault has been seen to affect several parts of military women’s lives. Military women who are sexual assault victims more often fail to complete college, and generally earn annual incomes less than $25,000.[81] Because this is a work environment for military women, it involves very frequent interactions with their perpetrator, and triggers a loss of trust from a personal and military perspective. Because the perpetrator is typically in a position of higher command or is one whose job is to protect the woman, this causes an increase in traumatization.[82]

Reports also demonstrate that women in the military are challenging the idea of their responsibility in cases of rape and sexual assault: “recent changes in the military’s sexual assault prevention training have the potential to challenge women’s responsibility for preventing rape.”[72] This training now has a stronger focus on bystander interventions and the nature of consent in sexual activity, each working to emphasize the importance of the responsibility of male soldiers.[72] With such training becoming more widespread, militaries are working to empower women through their participation, allowing women to take on the classically male role of “protector”. Not only does this work to change women’s “responsibility for preventing rape”,[72] but also requires that male soldiers acknowledge their responsibilities when it comes to engage with female soldiers in both sexual and non-sexual activities.

Women on submarines[edit]

A female Royal Australian Navy submariner aboard HMAS Waller in 2013
U.S. Navy's women submariners meet President Obama, 2012

In 1985 the Royal Norwegian Navy became the first[83] navy in the world to permit female personnel to serve in submarines, exemplified by the appointment of the first female submarine commanding officer, Captain Solveig Krey aboard the first Kobben class submarine on 11 September, 1995. [84] The Danish Navy allowed women on submarines in 1988, the Swedish Navy in 1989,[83] followed by the Royal Australian Navy in 1998, Canada in 2000, and Spain;[85] all operators of conventional submarines.

Women serving alongside men on submarines creates the need to segregate accommodation and facilities, the U.S. Navy estimating that modifying its submarines to accommodate women would cost $300,000 per bunk versus $4,000 per bunk to allow women to serve on aircraft carriers.[86]

Recent U.S. Navy policy allowed three exceptions for women being on board military submarines: (1) female civilian technicians for a few days at most, (2) women midshipmen on an overnight during summer training for both Navy ROTC and Naval Academy, and (3) family members for one-day dependent cruises.[87]

In October 2009, the U.S. secretary of the Navy, Ray Mabus, announced that he and the chief of naval operations were moving aggressively to change the policy.[88] Reasons included the fact that larger SSGN and SSBN submarines now in the fleet had more available space and could accommodate female officers with little or no modification. Also, the availability of qualified female candidates with the desire to serve in this capacity was cited. It was noted that women now represented 15 percent of the active duty Navy [88] and that women today earn about half of all science and engineering bachelor's degrees. A policy change was deemed to serve the aspirations of women, the mission of the Navy, and the strength of its submarine force.[88][89]

In February 2010, the Secretary of Defense approved the proposed policy and signed letters formally notifying Congress of the intended change. After receiving no objection, the Department of the Navy officially announced on April 29, 2010, that it had authorized women to serve aboard submarines.[90]

The first group of U.S. female submariners completed nuclear power school and officially reported on board two ballistic and two guided missile submarines in November 2011.[91]

In 2012, it was announced that 2013 will be the first year women will serve on U.S. attack submarines.[92] On June 22, 2012, a sailor assigned to USS Ohio (SSGN 726) became the first female supply officer to qualify in U.S. submarines.[93] In 2015 the U.S. Submarine Force will begin accepting applications for the Enlisted Women in Submarines (EWIS) Initiative. This is a detailed process that will systematically place enlisted female Sailors on OHIO Class submarines. Female Sailors from all communities and ratings will be afforded the opportunity to be among the first to join the U.S. Naval Submarine Service.[94]

In May 2014, it was announced that three women had become the Royal Navy's first female submariners.[95]

On November 15, 2017, the first Argentinian female submarine officer Eliana Krawczyk, disappeared in the Atlantic Ocean after the Argentinean Navy lost contact with ARA San Juan submarine after a reported failure in the electric system.[96] As one of the 44 crew members lost at sea, Krawczyk was honoured by the country's Jewish community as "La Reina De Los Mares" on International Women's Day in 2018.[97]

In 2014, the French Minister of Defense announced the first experiment of women on submarines. [98] On July 4th, 2017, after two years of training, four female officers boarded an SSBN for a seventy days patrol.[99] Such experiments are being continued and it can be expected that women will become more numerous on submarines in the years to come. In fact, the next generation of French Submarines, which are expected to be delivered in 2020[100], are designed to welcome women.[101]

Women in The Bible[edit]

In the Book of Judges, the prophet Deborah accompanies the general Barak into battle against Jabin, the king of Canaan. The general of Jabin's army, Sisera, is later killed by another woman, Jael, who uses a hammer to drive a tent peg into his skull.[102] Also described in Judges is the woman of Thebez, who repelled Abimelech as he laid siege to her city by dropping a millstone onto his head. As he lay dying from the wound inflicted by the unnamed woman, Abimelech asked one of his men to run him through with a sword so that no one would be able to say that a woman had killed him.[103]

Academic studies[edit]

Russian female cadets.

A 2008 study by Jennifer M. Silva, a sociologist of culture and inequality (her goal is to investigate the relationship between systems of inequality), found that the female cadets saw military training as an "opportunity to be strong, assertive and skillful" and saw such training "as an escape from some of the negative aspects of traditional femininity". The female cadets also believed that the ROTC program was "gender-blind" and "gender-neutral". The study claims that female cadets "were hyper-vigilant about their status as women performing tasks traditionally seen as men's work and often felt that they had to constantly prove they were capable."

Silva's study found gender playing a role in how cadets perceive leadership, quoting one female cadet: "in the Navy the joke is that a woman in the Navy is either a bitch, a slut or a lesbian, and none of them are good categories to fall into, and if you are stern with your people then you are a bitch, but if you're a guy and stern people are like, wow, I respect him for being a good leader."

Of the female cadets Silva interviewed, 84 percent said they did not want a military career as it would interfere with being able to get married and have children.[104]

A study conducted by Matthews et al. 2009 to examine the attitudes of West Point cadets, Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) cadets, and non-military-affiliated students from civilian colleges toward a variety of roles that women may serve in the military. The results showed that military cadets were less approving of women being assigned to certain military jobs than non-military students.[105]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Carreiras, Helena (2006). Gender and the military: women in the armed forces of western democracies. New York: Routledge. p. 1. ISBN 0-415-38358-7. 
  2. ^ "Women in the military — international". www.cbc.ca. 30 May 2006. Retrieved 17 Nov 2017. 
  3. ^ "Norway becomes first NATO country to draft women into military". Reuters. Reuters Staff. 14 June 2013. Retrieved 17 Nov 2017. 
  4. ^ Haring, Ellen. "Women in Combat: Adaptation and Change in the US Military" (PDF). 
  5. ^ a b "How Roles Have Changed for Women in the Military | Norwich Online Graduate Degrees". graduate.norwich.edu. Retrieved 2018-04-20. 
  6. ^ Susan R. Sowers, Women Combatants in World War I: A Russian Case Study" (Strategy Research Project, U.S. Army War College, 2003) PDF
  7. ^ Reese, Roger R. (2000). The Soviet military experience: a history of the Soviet Army, 1917–1991. Routledge. p. 17. 
  8. ^ "SAVED 8,000 SERBS, BUT DIED IN EFFORT: Heroic Work Of Dr. Elsie Ingles Told by Woman Just Here from the Front". New York Times. February 11, 1918. 
  9. ^ "SERBIAN ARMY LED BY WOMAN: DRAMATIC RETREAT THROUGH RUSSIA". South China Morning Post. April 30, 1918. 
  10. ^ "Milunka Savić the most awarded female combatant in the history of warfare". www.serbia.com. Retrieved 2018-08-16. 
  11. ^ ОШИЋ МАЛЕШЕВИЋ, Никола (2016). "Review of: Милунка Савић – витез Карађорђеве звезде и Легије части". Tokovi istorije. 1: 223–267 – via CEEOL. 
  12. ^ Lintunen, Tiina (2014). "Women at War". The Finnish Civil War 1918: History, Memory, Legacy. Leiden: Brill Publishers. pp. 201–229. ISBN 978-900-42436-6-8. 
  13. ^ Lines, Lisa (May 2009). "Female combatants in the Spanish civil war: Milicianas on the front lines and in the rearguard" (PDF). Journal of International Women’s Studies. 10 (4): 168–187. Retrieved 20 March 2018. 
  14. ^ Lines, Lisa (2011). Milicianas: Women in Combat in the Spanish Civil War (1936–1939). Plymouth, UK: Lexington Press. ISBN 978-0-7391-6492-1. 
  15. ^ a b Campbell, D'Ann (1993). "Women in Combat: The World War Two Experience in the United States, Great Britain, Germany, and the Soviet Union". Journal of Military History. 57: 301–323. doi:10.2307/2944060. 
  16. ^ DeGroot, G. J. (1997). "Whose Finger on the Trigger? Mixed Anti-Aircraft Batteries and the Female Combat Taboo". War in History. 4 (4): 434–453. doi:10.1177/096834459700400404. 
  17. ^ Schwarzkopf, 2009
  18. ^ Sir Frederick Arthur Pile (bart.) (1949). Ack-ack: Britain's defence against air attack during the Second World War. Harrap. p. 193. 
  19. ^ a b Gordon Williamson, World War II German Women's Auxiliary Services (2003).
  20. ^ a b Hagemann, Karen (2011). "Mobilizing Women for War: The History, Historiography, and Memory of German Women's War Service in the Two World Wars". Journal of Military History. 75 (4): 1055–1094. 
  21. ^ Campbell, D'Ann (April 1993). "Women in Combat: The World War Two Experience in the United States, Great Britain, Germany, and the Soviet Union". Journal of Military History. 57 (2): 301–323. doi:10.2307/2944060. 
  22. ^ Bronwyn Rebekah McFarland-Icke, Nurses in Nazi Germany (1999)
  23. ^ Leila J. Rupp, Mobilizing Women For War: German and American Propaganda, 1939-1945 (1979)
  24. ^ Jancar, Barbara (1981). "Women in the Yugoslav National Liberation Movement: An Overview". Studies in Comparative Communism. 14 (2): 143–164. 
  25. ^ Drapac, Vesna (2009). "Resistance and the Politics of Daily Life in Hitler's Europe: The Case of Yugoslavia in a Comparative Perspective". Aspasia. 3: 55–78. doi:10.3167/asp.2009.030104. 
  26. ^ Barbara Jancar-Webster, Women and Revolution in Yugoslavia 1941–1945 (1990)
  27. ^ Purpose, Task & (2017-03-08). "TIMELINE: A History Of Women In The US Military". Task & Purpose. Retrieved 2018-04-20. 
  28. ^ "Eritrea's women fighters". news.bbc.co.uk. Retrieved 17 November 2017. 
  29. ^ "Statistics: Women's Service in the IDF for 2010, 25 Aug 2010". Israel Defense Forces. 25 August 2010. Retrieved 22 March 2011. 
  30. ^ a b c Lauren Gelfond Feldinger (21 September 2008). "Skirting history". The Jerusalem Post. Retrieved 22 March 2011. 
  31. ^ "Integration of women in the IDF". Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs. 8 March 2009. Retrieved 23 March 2011. 
  32. ^ "The Beginning, Women in the Early IDF". IDF Spokesperson. 7 March 2011. Retrieved 14 August 2011. 
  33. ^ "Israel". Lcweb2.loc.gov. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 
  34. ^ Gaza: It's a Man's War The Atlantic, 7 Aug 2014
  35. ^ "UK armed forces biannual diversity statistics: 2017". www.gov.uk. 2017. Retrieved 2017-12-12. 
  36. ^ "Rapport d'information du Sénat N°373 : Des femmes engagées au service de la défense de notre pays" (PDF). www.senat.fr (in French). March 26, 2015. 
  37. ^ Försvarsmakten. "Historik". Försvarsmakten (in Swedish). Retrieved 2017-12-12. 
  38. ^ US Army (2013). "Support Army Recruiting". www.usarec.army.mil. Retrieved 2017-12-12. 
  39. ^ Defence, Government of Canada, National. "National Defence | Canadian Armed Forces | Backgrounder | Women in the Canadian Armed Forces". www.forces.gc.ca. Retrieved 2018-08-16. 
  40. ^ Engelbrecht, Leon. "Fact file: SANDF regular force levels by race & gender: April 30, 2011 | defenceWeb". www.defenceweb.co.za. Retrieved 2017-12-12. 
  41. ^ Fisher, Max (2013-01-25). "Map: Which countries allow women in front-line combat roles?". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2017-12-12. 
  42. ^ UK, Ministry of Defence (2015). "British Army: Sexual Harassment Report" (PDF). Retrieved 2017-12-11. 
  43. ^ Canada, Statcan [official statistics agency] (2016). "Sexual Misconduct in the Canadian Armed Forces, 2016". www.statcan.gc.ca. Retrieved 2017-12-11. 
  44. ^ Marshall, A; Panuzio, J; Taft, C (2005). "Intimate partner violence among military veterans and active duty servicemen". Clinical Psychology Review. 25 (7): 862–876. doi:10.1016/j.cpr.2005.05.009. 
  45. ^ "Army Jobs For Women: Different Positions For Women In The Military - Militaro". militaro.com. Archived from the original on 29 March 2015. Retrieved 7 November 2017. 
  46. ^ Smith, Sam. "Female soldiers in the Civil War on the front line". www.civilwar.org. Retrieved 17 November 2017. 
  47. ^ "Women in the military". Norfolk Daily News. 8 June 2013. Retrieved 2013-10-24. 
  48. ^ Abramson, Larry (22 October 2013). "West Point Women: A Natural Pattern Or A Camouflage Ceiling?". NPR.org. Retrieved 17 November 2017. 
  49. ^ Fischel, Justin (24 January 2013). "Military leaders lift ban on women in combat roles". Fox. Retrieved 24 October 2013. 
  50. ^ "Sisters in Arms: Breaking down barriers and rising to the challenge". Retrieved 24 October 2013. 
  51. ^ "Women in the U.S. Army". www.army.mil. Retrieved 17 November 2017. 
  52. ^ McGowan, Bailey (7 August 2017). "Air Force testing gender-neutral standards in San Antonio". Air Force Times. Retrieved 17 November 2017. 
  53. ^ C. Todd Lopez (27 January 2014). "Army to open 33,000 positions to female Soldiers in April". Army News Service. Retrieved 30 January 2013. 
  54. ^ Drohan, Ed. "CJTF Paladin offers training for female engagement team members". Retrieved 24 October 2013. 
  55. ^ Lawrence, Chris. "Military to open combat 23 January 2013". 
  56. ^ Michaels, Jim (30 May 2015). "Women in Ranger School fail to finish grueling course". USA Today. Retrieved 31 May 2015. 
  57. ^ Jordan, Mary; Lamothe, Dan (19 August 2015). "How did these two women become the first to complete Army Ranger School?". Washington Post. Retrieved 19 October 2015. 
  58. ^ Lamothe, Dan (12 October 2015). "Army Ranger School has a groundbreaking new graduate: Lisa Jaster, 37, engineer and mother". Washington Post. Retrieved 19 August 2015. 
  59. ^ "Marines' combat test period ends without female grad". www.usatoday.com. Retrieved 6 January 2016. 
  60. ^ "Last IOC in Marine infantry experiment drops female officers". www.marinecorpstimes.com. Retrieved 6 January 2016. 
  61. ^ Baldor, Lolita C. (7 August 2017). "Officials: Marine commandant recommends women be banned from some combat jobs". Marine Corps Times. Retrieved 17 November 2017. 
  62. ^ Lemmon, Gayle Tzemach. "Women in combat? They've already been serving on the front lines, with heroism". latimes.com. Retrieved 2018-03-11. 
  63. ^ Lemmon, Gayle Tzemach. "Women in combat? They've already been serving on the front lines, with heroism". latimes.com. Retrieved 2018-03-11. 
  64. ^ a b Lamothe, Dan (10 September 2015). "Marine experiment finds women get injured more frequently, shoot less accurately than men". Washington Post. Retrieved 16 December 2015. 
  65. ^ Adamczyk, Ed (10 September 2015). "U.S. Marines study: Women in combat injured more often than men". UPI. Retrieved 8 September 2016. 
  66. ^ a b c Lamothe, Dan (10 September 2015). "Marine experiment finds women get injured more frequently, shoot less accurately than men". Washington Post. Retrieved 12 December 2015. 
  67. ^ a b c Doan, Alesha E.; Portillo, Shannon (2017). "Not a Woman, but a Soldier: Exploring Identity Through Translocational Positionality". Sex Roles. 76 (3-4): 236–249. doi:10.1007/s11199-016-0661-7. 
  68. ^ Kristof, Nicholas D. (NY Times) (25 April 2003). "A Woman's Place". 
  69. ^ "Congresswoman Louise M. Slaughter: Remarks on Women in Combat". www.votelouise.com. 
  70. ^ "Coalition for Iraq & Afghanistan Veterans » Blog Archive » Female soldiers say they're up for battle". Coalitionforveterans.org. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 
  71. ^ a b Cheney, Ann M.; Reisinger, Heather Schact; Booth, Brenda M.; Mengeling, Michelle A.; Torner, James C.; Sadler, Anne G. (March 2015). "Servicewomen's Strategies to Staying Safe During Military Service". Gender Issues. 32 (1): 1–18. doi:10.1007/s12147-014-9128-8. 
  72. ^ a b c d Weitz, Rose (September 2015). "Vulnerable Warriors: Military Women, Military Culture, and Fear of Rape". Gender Issues. 32 (3): 164–183. doi:10.1007/s12147-015-9137-2. 
  73. ^ "Americas | Women at war face sexual violence". BBC News. 17 April 2009. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 
  74. ^ "Rep. Jane Harman: Finally, Some Progress in Combating Rape and Assault in the Military". Huffingtonpost.com. 10 September 2008. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 
  75. ^ Encyclopedia of Women and Gender Volume Two. Academic Press. 2001. pp. 775–776. ISBN 0-12-227247-1. 
  76. ^ Lucy Broadbent (9 December 2011). "Rape in the US military: America's dirty little secret | Society". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 
  77. ^ "The Invisible War: Home". Invisiblewarmovie.com. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 
  78. ^ Yaeger, Deborah; Himmelfarb, Naomi; Carmack, Alison (2006). "Diagnosed Posttraumatic Stress Disorder in Women Veterans with Sexual Trauma". Journal of General Internal Medicine. 21: S65–S69. doi:10.1111/j.1525-1497.2006.00377.x. PMC 1513167Freely accessible. 
  79. ^ Kimerling, Rachel; Street, Amy E.; Pavao, Joanne; Smith, Mark W.; Cronkite, Ruth C.; Holmes, Tyson H.; Frayne, Susan M. (2010). "Military-Related Sexual Trauma Among Veterans Health Administration Patients Returning From Afghanistan and Iraq". American Journal of Public Health. 100 (8): 1409–1412. doi:10.2105/ajph.2009.171793. PMC 2901286Freely accessible. PMID 20558808. 
  80. ^ Suris, A; Lind, L; Kashner, T.M.; Borman, P.D. (2007). "Mental Health, Quality of Life, and Health Functioning in Women Veterans: Differential Outcomes Associated with Military and Civilian Sexual Assault". Journal of Interpersonal Violence. 22 (2): 179–197. doi:10.1177/0886260506295347. 
  81. ^ Sadler, Anne; Booth, Brenda M.; Nielson, Deanna; Dobbeling, Bradley N. (2000). "Health Related Consequences of Physical and Sexual Violence". Obstetrics and Gynecology. 96 (3): 473–480. doi:10.1016/s0029-7844(00)00919-4. 
  82. ^ Kip, KE; Hernandez, DF; Shuman, A; Witt, A; Diamond, DM; Davis, S; Kip, R; Abbayakumar, A; Wittenburg, T; Girling, SA; Witt, S; Rosenzweig, L (2015). "Comparison Of Accelerated Resolution Therapy (ART) For Treatment Of Symptoms Of PTSD And Sexual Trauma Between Civilian And Military Adults". Military Medicine. 180 (9): 964–971. doi:10.7205/milmed-d-14-00307. 
  83. ^ a b "Women, Leadership and the US Military: A Tale of Two Eras". 11 Aug 2010. Retrieved 25 April 2011. 
  84. ^ "U-34 submarine, Eckernforde, 02.05.07 ; Freeze Frame - The Independent (London, England) | HighBeam Research". The Independent. 3 May 2007. Archived from the originalPaid subscription required on 15 May 2013. Retrieved 17 November 2017. 
  85. ^ "Women in the military - international". Indepth. CBS News. 30 May 2006. Archived from the original on 14 October 2011. Retrieved 21 December 2011. 
  86. ^ New Debate on Submarine Duty for Women Archived 2007-09-27 at the Wayback Machine. Armed Forces Careers retrieved 11 August 2007
  87. ^ Can women go on submarines? Archived 2013-08-02 at the Wayback Machine. United States Navy retrieved 27 March 2008
  88. ^ a b c Navy Office of Information, "Women on Submarines", Rhumblines, 5 October 2009.
  89. ^ Commander, Submarine Forces Public Affairs. "Navy Policy Will Allow Women To Serve Aboard Submarines". Navy.mil. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 
  90. ^ Commander, Submarine Group 10 Public Affairs. "Navy Welcomes Women To Serve In Submarines". Navy.mil. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 
  91. ^ Ensign Amber Lynn Daniel, Diversity and Inclusion Public Affairs. "Navy Celebrates Women's History Month". Navy.mil. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 
  92. ^ "Women to serve on attack submarines in 2013". WTKR.com. 4 September 2012. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 
  93. ^ Commander, Submarine Group 9 Public Affairs. "First Qualified Female Submarine Supply Officer Receives Supply Dolphins". Navy.mil. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 
  94. ^ "Enlisted Women in Submarines". www.public.navy.mil. Retrieved 17 November 2017. 
  95. ^ "Royal Navy gets first female submariners". BBC. 5 May 2014. Retrieved 5 May 2014. 
  96. ^ "Argentina Jews honor female submarine officer lost at sea". Retrieved 2018-08-16. 
  97. ^ "Día de la Mujer: recordaron con un sentido homenaje a Eliana Krawczyk, la submarinista desaparecida en el ARA San Juan - MisionesOnline". MisionesOnline (in Spanish). 2018-03-08. Retrieved 2018-08-16. 
  98. ^ Guibert, Nathalie (15 April 2014). "Armée française : les femmes autorisées à bord des sous-marins". Le Monde.fr (in French). ISSN 1950-6244. Retrieved 10 August 2017. 
  99. ^ Ministère des Armées https://www.defense.gouv.fr/marine/actu-marine/premiere-patrouille-de-snle-avec-quatre-femmes-a-bord. Retrieved 16/08/2018.  Check date values in: |accessdate= (help); Missing or empty |title= (help)
  100. ^ Cabirol, Michel (5/11/2017). La Tribune https://www.latribune.fr/entreprises-finance/industrie/aeronautique-defense/trois-ans-de-retard-pour-le-sous-marin-nucleaire-d-attaque-barracuda-756792.html.  Check date values in: |date= (help); Missing or empty |title= (help)
  101. ^ Groizeleau, Vincent (19/07/2018). [www.meretmarine.com/fr/content/les-premieres-femmes-de-la-sous-marinade-francaise "Les Premières Femmes de la Sous-marinade Française"] Check |url= value (help). Mer et Marine. Retrieved 16/08/2018.  Check date values in: |accessdate=, |date= (help)
  102. ^ "Judges 4, New International Version (NIV)". Bible.com. 12 July 2018. 
  103. ^ "Judges 9:52-54 NIV". Bible.com. 12 July 2018. 
  104. ^ Jennifer M. Silva (2008). "A New Generation of Women? How Female ROTC Cadets Negotiate the Tension between Masculine Military Culture and Traditional Femininity". Social Forces. 87 (2): 937–960. doi:10.1353/sof.0.0138. JSTOR 20430897. 
  105. ^ Matthews, M.D; Ender, Morten G.; Laurence, J.H.; Rohall, D.E. (2009). "Role of group affiliation and gender attitudes toward women in the military". Military Psychology. 21 (2): 241–251. doi:10.1080/08995600902768750. 

Further reading[edit]



  • Cook, Bernard, ed, (2006). Women and War: Historical Encyclopedia from Antiquity to the Present.
  • Elshtain, Jean Bethke. Women and War (1995)
  • Elshtain Jean, and Sheila Tobias, eds., Women, Militarism, and War (1990),
  • Goldman, Nancy Loring ed. (1982). Female Soldiers--Combatants or Noncombatants? Historical and Contemporary Perspectives.
  • Goldstein, Joshua S. . War and Gender: How Gender Shapes the War System and Vice Versa (2003), psychology perspective
  • Hacker, Barton C. and Margaret Vining, eds. A Companion to Women's Military History (2012) 625pp; articles by scholars covering a very wide range of topics
  • Hall, Richard H. Women on the Civil War battlefront (University Press of Kansas 2006).
  • Lines, Lisa (2011). Milicianas: Women in Combat in the Spanish Civil War (1936–1939). Plymouth, UK: Lexington Press. ISBN 978-0-7391-6492-1. 
  • Jones, David. Women Warriors: A History, Brassey's, 1997
  • Pennington, Reina, (2003). Amazons to Fighter Pilots: A Biographical Dictionary of Military Women.
  • Salmonson, Jessica Amanda (1991). The Encyclopedia of Amazons: Women Warriors from Antiquity to the Modern Era. Paragon House. ISBN 1-55778-420-5. 

World War II[edit]

  • Biddiscombe, Perry, (2011). "Into the Maelstrom: German Women in Combat, 1944-45," War & Society (2011), 30#1 pp 61–89
  • Bidwell, Shelford. The Women's Royal Army Corps (London, 1977) on Britain
  • Campbell, D'Ann. Women at War with America: Private Lives in a Patriotic Era (Harvard University Press, 1984). on WW2
  • Campbell, D'Ann. "Servicewomen of World War II", Armed Forces and Society (Win 1990) 16: 251-270. statistical study based on interviews
  • Campbell, D'Ann. "Women in Combat: The World War Two Experience in the United States, Great Britain, Germany, and the Soviet Union" Journal of Military History (April 1993), 57:301-323. online edition in JSTOR
  • Cottam, K. Jean Soviet Airwomen in Combat in World War II (Manhattan, KS: Military Affairs/Aerospace Historian Publishing, 1983)
  • DeGroot G.J. "Whose Finger on the Trigger? Mixed Anti-Aircraft Batteries and the Female Combat Taboo," War in History, Volume 4, Number 4, December 1997, pp. 434–453
  • Dombrowski, Nicole Ann. Women and War in the Twentieth Century: Enlisted With or Without Consent (1999)
  • Dominé, Jean-François, (2008). Les femmes au combat ; l'arme féminine de la France pendant la Seconde Guerre Mondiale
  • Hagemann, Karen (2011). "Mobilizing Women for War: The History, Historiography, and Memory of German Women's War Service in the Two World Wars". Journal of Military History. 75 (3): 1055–1093. 
  • Harfield, Alan (2005). "The Women's Auxiliary Corps (India)". Journal of the Society for Army Historical Research. 83 (335): 243–254. 
  • Krylova, Anna, (2010). Soviet Women in Combat: A History of Violence on the Eastern Front.
  • Morton, Alison. Military or civilians? The curious anomaly of the German Women's Auxiliary Services during the Second World War. 2012. ASIN B007JUR408
  • Markwick, Roger D. (2008). "A Sacred Duty": Red Army Women Veterans Remembering the Great Fatherland War, 1941-1945," Australian Journal of Politics & History, (2008), 54#3 pp. 403-420.
  • Maubach, Franka; Satjukow, Silke. (2009). "Zwischen Emanzipation und Trauma: Soldatinnen im Zweiten Weltkrieg (Deutschland, Sowjetunion, USA)" Historische Zeitschrift, (April 2009), Vol. 288 Issue 2, pp 347–384
  • Merry, Lois K, (2010). Women Military Pilots of World War II: A History with Biographies of American, British, Russian and German Aviators.
  • Pennington, Reina, (2007). Wings, Women & War: Soviet Airwomen in World War II Combat
  • Pennington, Reina, (2010). "Offensive Women: Women in Combat in the Red Army in the Second World War" Journal of Military History, July 2010, Vol. 74 Issue 3, p775-820
  • Pierson, Ruth Roach. (1986). They're Still Women After All: The Second World War and Canadian Womanhood.
  • McBryde, Brenda. (1985). Quiet Heroines: Story of the Nurses of the Second World War, on British
  • Sarnecky, Mary T. (1999). A History of the U.S. Army Nurse Corps
  • Schwarzkopf, Jutta (2009). "Combatant or Non-Combatant? The Ambiguous Status of Women in British Anti-Aircraft Batteries during the Second World War". War & Society. 28 (2): 105–131. doi:10.1179/072924709793054642. 
  • Toman, Cynthia, (2007). An Officer and a Lady: Canadian Military Nursing and the Second World War.
  • Treadwell, Mattie E. (1954). United States Army in World War II: Special Studies: The Women's Army Corps. the standard history; part of the Army "Green series" online free
  • Williamson, Gordon, (2003). World War II German Women's Auxiliary Services


  • Campbell, D'Ann. (2012) "Almost Integrated? American Servicewomen and Their International Sisters Since World War II" in A Companion to Women's Military History ed by Barton C. Hacker and Margaret Vining pp 291–330
  • Carreiras, Helena. Gender and the military: women in the armed forces of Western democracies (New York: Routledge, 2006)
  • Carreiras, Helena and Gerhard Kammel (eds.) Women in the Military and in Armed Conflict (2008) excerpt and text search
  • Dandeker, Christopher, and Mady Wechsler Segal. "Gender integration in armed forces: recent policy developments in the United Kingdom" Armed Forces & Society 23#1 (Fall 1996): 29-47.
  • Eulriet, Irène. Women and the military in Europe: comparing public cultures (New York: Palgrave Macmillan. 2009)
  • Frampton, James Scott The Influence of Attitudes and Morale on the Performance of Active-Duty United States Marine Corps Female Security Guards (2011)
  • Frank, Nathaniel et al. eds. Gays in foreign militaries 2010: A global primer (Santa Barbara, CA: Palm Center, 2010)
  • Garcia, Sarah (1999). "Military women in the NATO armed forces". Minerva: Quarterly Report on Women and the Military. 17 (2): 33–82. 
  • Gill, Ritu; Febbraro, Angela R. (2013). "Experiences and perceptions of sexual harassment in the Canadian Forces Combat Arms". Violence against women. 19 (2): 269–287. doi:10.1177/1077801213478140. 
  • Goldman, Nancy. "The Changing Role of Women in the Armed Forces." American Journal of Sociology 1973 78(4): 892-911. ISSN 0002-9602 online in Jstor
  • Herbert, Melissa S. Camouflage Isn't Only for Combat: Gender, Sexuality, and Women in the Military (New York U. Press, 1998)
  • Holm, Jeanne M. (1993). Women in the Military: An Unfinished Revolution. ; women from the United States
  • Lemmon, Gayle Tzemach. Ashley's War: The Untold Story of a Team of Women Soldiers on the Special Ops Battlefield (HarperCollins, 2015) American women
  • Skaine, Rosemarie. Women at War: Gender Issues of Americans in Combat. McFarland, 1999.
  • United States Presidential Commission on the Assignment of Women. (1993) 'Report on the Presidential Commission on the Assignment of Women

Middle East[edit]

Social science studies[edit]


Green Berets
Joan of Arc
Women Veterans

External links[edit]