When it comes to women serving on the front-lines of conflicts, rules vary. In Israel, women are conscripted and serve along side men in combat roles.
In the Canadian armed forces women, too, serve on the front-lines and have risen the ranks to become officers in combat units.
But this is relatively rare. Most countries include women in their military, but their roles are largely confined to medical and supporting roles.
Last year, the Indian government ruled out the possibility of deploying women officers to fly fighter jets, board warships, or engage the enemy in fire.
And in the United States, women are still prohibited from joining combat units. A CBS News/New York Times poll found a slim majority of Americans disagree with the policy.
The issue prompted this Iraq veteran to question it.
Catherine Ross writes:
“I don’t really know why the United States Army would keep women out of the combat arms. What are the powers-that-be afraid would happen?”
The blogger Joshua Sowin points to the physical differences between men and women and risks to morale when women are placed in the company of men at the heart of a military conflict.
So, what do you think? Should women be allowed to serve in combat roles?