No Exceptions: The Decision to Open All Military Positions to Women

Authored by: Ash Carter

Categories: Human Rights, Peace Support Operations, Violent Conflict
Sub-Categories: Democratization and Political Participation, National Security Forces and Armed Groups
Country: United States of America
Region: North America
Year: 2018
Citation: Carter, Ash. "No Exceptions: The Decision to Open All Military Positions to Women." Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. December 2018.

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Executive Summary

This story illustrates the fact that effective implementation is essential to success—not a secondary consideration. For many issues, including our women in service decision, the devil often lies in the implementation. We had to create a thorough plan that could withstand any operational pressures—a rigorous process that required identifying all the potential consequences of our decision and devising reasonable solutions. Without it, we would have failed, regardless of how well-reasoned our decision was or how carefully we communicated it.

Together, these three components formed one deliberate, methodical, evidence-based, and iterative process to increase combat effectiveness and protect the welfare of the force.