Army study evaluates women in combat

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U.S. Army Corp. Jacqueline Beachum lifts a 65-pound dummy T.O.W. missile into the launcher of a Bradley Fighting Vehicle during a physical demands study, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2014, in Ft. Stewart, Ga. The Army is conducting a study that will determine how all soldiers, including women, for the first time, will be deemed fit to join its fighting units from infantry platoons to tank crews. (AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)
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U.S. Army Pfc. Amy Alexanders lifts a 65-pound T.O.W. missile through a hatch into the launcher of a Bradley Fighting Vehicle during a physical demands study, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2014, in Ft. Stewart, Ga. The Army is conducting a study that will determine how all soldiers, including women, for the first time, will be deemed fit to join its fighting units from infantry platoons to tank crews. (AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)
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U.S. Army Pfc. Amy Alexanders dresses in her Marne Standard battle gear before taking part in a physical demands study, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2014, in Ft. Stewart, Ga. The Army is conducting a study that will determine how all soldiers, including women, for the first time, will be deemed fit to join its fighting units from infantry platoons to tank crews. (AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)
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U.S. Army Pfc. Amy Alexanders carries a 103-pound barrel to a Bradley Fighting Vehicle during a physical demands study, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2014, in Ft. Stewart, Ga. The Army is conducting a study that will determine how all soldiers, including women, for the first time, will be deemed fit to join its fighting units from infantry platoons to tank crews. (AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)
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A group of three female soldiers along with male soldiers watch a male soldier lift a 44-pound section of a 50 caliber machine gun onto a M1A2 Abrams tank during a physical demands study, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2014, in Ft. Stewart, Ga. The Army is conducting a study that will determine how all soldiers, including women, for the first time, will be deemed fit to join its fighting units from infantry platoons to tank crews. (AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)
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Spc. Karen Arvizu, center, puts on her body army in preparation for her role as a volunteer in a physical demands study, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2014, in Ft. Stewart, Ga. The Army is conducting a study that will determine how all soldiers _ including women, for the first time _ will be deemed fit to join its fighting units from infantry platoons to tank crews. (AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)
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U.S. Army Corp. Jacqueline Beachum carries a 65-pound T.O.W. missile several yards before loading the dummy missile to the launcher of a Bradley Fighting Vehicle during a physical demands study, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2014, in Ft. Stewart, Ga. The Army is conducting a study that will determine how all soldiers, including women, for the first time, will be deemed fit to join its fighting units from infantry platoons to tank crews. (AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)
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U.S. Army PFC Amy Alexanders lifts a 65-pound T.O.W. missile through a hatch into the launcher of a Bradley Fighting Vehicle during a physical demands study, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2014, in Ft. Stewart, Ga. The Army is conducting a study that will determine how all soldiers, including women, for the first time, will be deemed fit to join its fighting units from infantry platoons to tank crews. (AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)
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U.S. Army SPC Sheena Mature hoists a 44-pound section of a 50 caliber machine gun onto a M1 A2 Abrams tank during a physical demands study, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2014, in Ft. Stewart, Ga. The Army is conducting a study that will determine how all soldiers _ including women, for the first time _ will be deemed fit to join its fighting units from infantry platoons to tank crews. (AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)
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HFM TDA STW U.S. Army PFC Amy Alexanders carries a 103-pound barrel to a Bradley Fighting Vehicle during a physical demands study, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2014, in Ft. Stewart, Ga. The Army is studying the physical demands to determine an appropriate standard for further training. (AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)
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Spc. Karen Arvizu, left, puts on her hydration pack in preparation for her role as a volunteer in a physical demands study, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2014, in Ft. Stewart, Ga. The Army is conducting a study that will determine how all soldiers, including women, for the first time, will be deemed fit to join its fighting units from infantry platoons to tank crews. (AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)
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FILE - In this Jan. 27, 2012 file photo, Army Chief of Staff Gen. Raymond Odierno speaks at the Pentagon. Only a small fraction of Army women say they’d like to move into one of the newly opening combat jobs, but those few who do, say they want a job that takes them right into the heart of battle, according to preliminary results from a survey of the service’s nearly 170,000 women. The issue is going to be the propensity of women who want to do some of these things,” Odierno said in an interview with The AP. “I don’t think it’s going to be as great as people think.” (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)
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FILE - This Sept. 18, 2012 file photo shows female soldiers training on a firing range while wearing new body armor in Fort Campbell, Ky. Only a small fraction of Army women say they’d like to move into one of the newly opening combat jobs, but those few who do, say they want a job that takes them right into the heart of battle, according to preliminary results from a survey of the service’s nearly 170,000 women. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey, File)

Description

The Pentagon ordered last year that women must have the same opportunities to serve in combat jobs as men, with thousands of positions slated to open to both genders in 2016. And while an Army survey shows only a small fraction of women say they want to move into combat jobs, it also revealed soldiers from both genders are nervous about the change.

With roughly one in five Army positions considered combat-related, commanders are turning to science to find a unisex standard to judge which soldiers physically have the right stuff to fight wars.

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