Women in combat

By MSN News Getty Images: Paula Bronstein
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Patrolling Afghanistan

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta announced Thursday the Pentagon was rescinding the longstanding ban on women serving in combat positions. See gallery

Sgt. Sheena Adams, 25, U.S. Marine with the Female Engagement Team 1st Battalion 8th Marines, Regimental Combat team II stands guard while on patrol in the bazaar on November 18, 2010 in Musa Qala, Afghanistan. There are 48 women presently working along the volatile front lines of the war in Afghanistan deployed as the second Female Engagement Team (FET) participating in a more active role, gaining access where men can't. The women, many of whom volunteer for the 6.5-month deployment, take a 10-week course at Camp Pendleton in California where they are trained for any possible situation, including learning Afghan customs and basic Pashtun language. 

Graphic:  Changes for military women

AP Photo: Kristin M. Hall
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Airborne Division

Captain Sara Rodriguez, 26, of the 101st Airborne Division, carries a litter of sandbags during the Expert Field Medical Badge training at Fort Campbell, Ky. The Pentagon is lifting its ban on women serving in combat, opening hundreds of thousands of front-line positions and potentially elite commando jobs after generations of limits on their service, defense officials said Wednesday.

Graphic:  Changes for military women

 

Getty Images: Paula Bronstein
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Female Engagement Team

Sgt. Sheena Adams, 25, Lance Corporal Kristi Baker, 21, and Hospital Corpsman Shannon Crowley, 22, U.S. Marines with the FET (Female Engagement Team) 1st Battalion 8th Marines, Regimental Combat team II pose at their forward operating base on Nov. 17, 2010 in Musa Qala, Afghanistan. They are among the 48 women presently working along the volatile front lines of the war in Afghanistan deployed as the second Female Engagement Team participating in a more active role, gaining access where men can't.

Graphic:  Changes for military women

AP Photo: Mark Humphrey
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Airborne Division training

Female soldiers from the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division train on a firing range while testing new body armor in Fort Campbell, Ky. in preparation for their deployment to Afghanistan. Body armor designed for the female form was announced by the U.S. Army in July and is expected to be worn by combat teams beginning this summer.

Graphic:  Changes for military women

Getty Images: Paula Bronstein
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Down time

Hospital Corpsman Shannon Crowley, 22, U.S. Marine with the FET 1st Battalion 8th Marines, Regimental Combat team II cleans her teeth after dinner in her barracks on Nov. 12, 2010 in Musa Qala, Afghanistan.

Graphic:  Changes for military women

 

 

Reuters: David Hernandez
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Greetings on patrol

U.S. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Sienna De Santis and U.S. Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Heidi Dean, both with Female Engagement Team, India Company, 3rd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, Regimental Combat Team 2, greet children during a patrol in Sangin Valley, Afghanistan, in this Oct. 29, 2010 DOD handout photo. Marines conducted security patrols to decrease insurgent activity and gain the trust of the Afghan civilians. The battalion was one of the combat elements of Regimental Combat Team 2, whose mission was to conduct counterinsurgency operations with the International Security Assistance Force.

Graphic:  Changes for military women

Getty Images: Paula Bronstein
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Female Marines

Sgt. Crystal Groves, U.S. Marine with the Female Engagement Team 1st Battalion 8th Marines, Regimental Combat team II stands in formation during a ceremony for the 235th anniversary of the Marines on Nov. 10, 2010 at Camp Delaram in Helmand province, Afghanistan.

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