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American Forces Press Service

Marine Commandant: Focus Remains on Combat Readiness

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Jan. 25, 2013 – The Marine Corps will continue to focus on combat readiness and generating combat-ready units in validating occupational standards, the service’s top officer said yesterday.

Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta and Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, yesterday announced the end of the Defense Department policy that had barred women from serving in direct ground-combat positions.

In a statement released after the announcement, Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James F. Amos said maintaining the highest levels of combat readiness and capitalizing upon every opportunity to enhance warfighting capabilities and the contributions of every Marine is “simply the right thing to do.”

“Our ongoing deliberate, measured and responsible approach to validate occupational performance standards for all Marines is consistent with [the defense secretary’s] decision to rescind the direct combat exclusion rule for women,” the general said. “As our Corps moves forward with this process, our focus will remain on combat readiness and generating combat-ready units while simultaneously ensuring maximum success for every Marine.”

The talent pool from which officials select the Marine Corps’ finest warfighters will consist of all qualified individuals, regardless of gender, Amos added.

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