Women Soldiers Finally Get the Attention They Deserve?

 

By Helen Benedict
Huffington Post
August 19, 2009

Nearly six and a half years into the Iraq War, women soldiers are finally getting some attention in the mainstream press.

Last Sunday and Monday, August 16 and 17, the New York Times ran two front page articles on the subject: “G.I. Jane Breaks the Combat Barrier as War Evolves,” by Lizette Alvarez, and “Living and Fighting Alongside Men, and Fitting In” by Steven Lee Myers.

In fact, women have been fighting in combat in Iraq since the very first days of the war in 2003, and doing so in unprecedented numbers. By 2006, more female troops had been wounded or killed in the Iraq War alone than in all American wars put together since World War II.

Back in November 2006, I began several years of interviewing some 40 women in the Army, Marines, Air Force and Navy for my book, The Lonely Soldier: The Private War of Women Serving in Iraq. What these women told me was shocking. Not only were they breaking the Pentagon’s ban against women in ground combat by serving as gunners, engaging in firefights, raiding houses, working checkpoints and fighting alongside the infantry under the guise of “combat support,” they were being sexually persecuted and abused at terrifying rates — by their fellow soldiers.

To read Helen Benedict’s full piece at the Huffington Post, click here.

Links to the New York Times articles can be found in the News Articles section on our United States page.

Helen Benedict: Women Soldiers Finally Get the Attention They Deserve?

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MARCH 5 TO 22
THEATER FOR THE NEW CITY – NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK
“THE LONELY SOLDIER MONOLOGUES (WOMEN AT WAR IN IRAQ)”

COMPLETE INFO AVAILABLE AT http://www.lonelysoldierplay.com

William Electric Black will direct “The Lonely Soldier Monologues (Women at War In Iraq)” by Helen Benedict, author of “The Lonely Soldier: The Private War of Women Serving in Iraq” (Beacon Press, April 2009). It contains monologues of seven soldiers which were gathered through interviews and correspondence for the book.

Ms. Benedict’s book is an intimate, unflinching, and sometimes disturbing portrait of women in today’s military. Audiences will have the thrilling experience of being face-to-face with the characters, adding the immediacy of theater to what is already a rich literary experience.

The actors are Allison Troesch, Athena Colon, Cara Liander, Julia A. Grob, Kim Weston-Moran, Macah Coates and Verna Hampton. Set and lighting design are by Federico Restrepo. Costume design is by Tilly Grimes. Production Coordinator/Manager is Chriz Zaborowski. Sound Design/Drums are by Jim Mussen. Choreography is by Jeremy Lardieri.