Tag Archives: Navy Seals

The Few, The Proud, The Women!!!

The Few, The Proud, The Women!!!

GI Jane

Today marked an historic day in the history of Women Warriors!

Secretary of Defense, Leon Panetta announced that women will no longer be excluded from combat roles in the Armed Forces of the United States. Women will be allowed to serve in combat units as well as assume command roles. Effectively this means that we can indeed look forward to the opportunity of seeing a woman Chair of the Joint Chiefs in the not so distant future.

Practically, each of the four branches of the service, the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines, has been charged with assessing how best to integrate women into combat specialities.  They will also develop time tables for phasing in women to these roles including such elite units as the Navy SEALS and Special Forces. In order to ensure that women have the same opportunities as their male counterparts, the assessment will include reviews of the physical requirements to assess how best to make those standards gender neutral.

Women have routinely served in front lines roles in Afghanistan and Iraq, albeit in “support” roles. Those positions have, however, not stopped these women from participating in fierce fire fights.  As of this writing 152 women have died in those wars and nearly 1,000 have been wounded.

Don’t be fooled though, women have been fighting wars for millenia!

Here are a smattering of those heroines:

Artemisia of Halicarnassus, British Museum

Artemesia of Halicarnassus (modern day Bodrum, Turkey) was an ally of the Persian King Xeres in 480 BCE. She commanded five ships and fought bravely in battle. Her exploits were recounted by Herodotus.

Joan of Arc

Joan of Arc fought along King Charles of France in his war against the British. She was eventually burned at the stake for heresy, including the crime of dressing as man. Exonerated some years later by the Roman Catholic Church, she was canonized in 1909.

Hannah Snell

Hannah Snell was a British woman who fought as a British Marine named James Gray from 1747-1750.  She participated in battles in India and was wounded a total of 11 times without ever revealing her gender.


Loreta Janeta Velasquez disguised herself and acted as a Confederate Scout named Lt. Harry T. Buford during the American Civil War.  Hundreds of women in both the Union and Confederate Armies had distinguished careers as “male” soldiers.

What condition my conditioning is in

What condition my conditioning is in.

Given my conditioning, I’m beginning to think that the best thing to do is to get a Navy Seals video and start getting in some beach time!

I mean, wow!  Four rounds with Lennox Blackmore this morning just about blew out my lungs!

We’re talking “panting” city — meanwhile, we had a LOAD of fun, and when I wasn’t gasping for air, I actually managed a few moves.  The great thing about the experience was Len’s patience in showing me ways to GET OUT OF THE WAY — as in when to slip and when to block to set up my next flurry of punches.  It reminds me of what a great counter-puncher he is, and like the great game of chess, everything in boxing is about setting things up for what you plan to do several moves ahead.

Having not been in the ring for a while, I found myself stymied by some of what Len was doing. The good part was I have actually been learning a thing or two and so I had crisper more accurate punches that actually followed form — when I wasn’t abjectly staying out-of-the-way to catch my breath!

Oh well — it just means I’ve got to get on the CARDIO train and step it up several notches if I hope to have a prayer in the ring.

Meanwhile, I did manage a couple of rounds of shadow boxing, three on the double-ended bag, four on the speed bag and four rounds of slow sit-ups on the funky old Gleason’s sit-up chair before heading on up the Washington Street hill for home.

It made for a great morning and the kind of day when I all I could do was smile!