female soldiers

National Security
10:13 am
Thu March 19, 2015

As Women Try Out For Armor Units, 'If You Can Hack It, You Can Hack It'

Lance Cpl. Brittany Dunklee talks with her fellow Marines.
David Gilkey NPR

Originally published on Wed March 25, 2015 4:03 pm

It's a recent morning out in California's Mojave Desert, and Marine Lance Cpls. Paula Pineda and Julia Carroll are struggling to pick up and maneuver Carl. He's a 220-pound dummy, and a stand-in for a wounded Marine.

Carroll's knees buckle for a moment, but as a dusty wind picks up, the two women pull Carl off their light armored vehicle. They carry him to safety, careful not to let his head drag on the rocky ground.

Both women are out of breath.

Pineda is 5 foot 2. On the back of her helmet is a piece of masking tape with the words "Mad Max."

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Military
9:00 am
Sun September 23, 2012

Fort Campbell Soldiers Suit Up in New Female Body Armor

Members of the Fort Campbel Female Engagement Team (FET) practice shooting their rifles while wearing new body armor designed specifically for women
Angela Hatton / WKMS

In the early 70s, only 2.5 percent of the United States Armed Forces were women. But these days women are a common part of the military. For the last couple decades, women have made up close to one-sixth of soldiers. Until recently, they’ve served in support roles, and haven’t been on many front lines. With changing roles, more female soldiers are training for situations that put them in harm’s way. But military bases recognized a problem: body armor was designed to fit men, not women. Equipment designers began work to change that in 2009 with a new generation of female body armor.

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