How did a group of female support soldiers-mechanics, supply clerks and engineers-end up fighting alongside the Marines in some of the bloodiest counterinsurgency battles of the Iraq war? Find out in Lioness, a film about female combat veterans.

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Lioness Blog

Pentagon lifts ban on women in combat

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta is lifting the military's ban on women in combat which will open up many additional jobs to them. The decision overturns a longstanding military policy that prohibits women from serving in infantry and artillery units, despite the fact that women have found themselves in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan since 2003.

Much work remains to be done in implementing the policy across the services and applying lessons learned from the women who have already experienced direct ground combat as part of Lioness and Female Engagement Teams.

Rebecca Nava Interviewed by CBS on Hearing Loss

Lioness Rebecca Nava was interviewed for a CBS News "Health Watch" piece by local WCCO-TV in Minnesota during which she talked about her struggles with hearing loss resulting from her service in Iraq. Click on the link to watch the entire piece:

Lioness veteran does PSA for Hearing Health Foundation

Rebecca Martinez, one of the subjects of LIONESS, has made a public service announcement about veterans and hearing loss for the Hearing Health Foundation. Martinez, former specialist in the U.S. Army, experienced hearing loss as a result of her service in Iraq in 2003-04.

Marines plan to train women as infantry officers

The Marines Corps announced that it plans to train women this summer in its infantry officer school at Quantico, VA. The Corps will study how the women perform in the combat course and results will be used to determine what additional combat-related jobs could be available for women in the Corps. More broadly it will shape future recommendations made by the Department of Defense to Congress about the combat exclusion policy that currently governs the jobs open to women in the armed forces.

Pentagon shifts rules but fails to eliminate ban on women in combat

Today the Pentagon unveiled plans to allow women to serve in jobs that would put them closer to the front lines but still not in all-male infantry, armor, and special operations units. Report to Congress.pdf

To see our Video Op-Ed in the New York Times about the need to eliminate the combat exclusion policy, see

Women in Combat report for Congress

The Congressional Research Service recently published a report on women in combat and issues regarding the Department of Defense's combat exclusion policy.

The nonpartisan report is intended to aid Congress in its consideration of a forthcoming review by DOD of the roles military women should have in the future.

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Lioness tells stories that would otherwise have been lost to history.

Jesse Ellison, NEWSWEEK


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