Army recruiting junior enlisted women for about 20,000 jobs

About 20,000 jobs in the battalion and company headquarters of brigade combat teams and special operations aviation units are now open to women.

The jobs are in eight Regular Army and nine Army National Guard brigade combat teams, plus the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment.

The Army has announced more details about the military occupational specialties that will open to women and the timeline for assignment decisions for a range of combat jobs.

The new military occupation specialties list includes requirements for junior enlisted soldiers in some specialties at skill levels 1 and 2.

During the initial phases of the drive to open more brigade combat team positions to women, the emphasis was on officers and noncommissioned officers.

For a list of the 17 brigades now recruiting junior enlisted women pick up a copy of the Sept. 30 issue of Army Times, on sale now.

Rifle gives soldiers deadly accuracy

First it was the XM-25 Punisher that changed the battlefield.

Now it is the XactSystem precision-guided firearm — a fire control system built by TrackingPoint that turns an average shooter into a competent sniper with the push of a button.

We’re not talking about picking off concealed targets at 350 meters. We’re talking about first-round hit probability in excess of 80 percent at distances of 1,200 meters.

An overstatement, you say? Army Times put that claim to the test.

Three 18-inch targets were placed at 850, 1,050 and 1,100 meters. Winds were a manageable 3 to 5 mph, but a canyon between the perch and the targets caused significant updraft.

We were given three .300 Win Mag rounds. The result?

Find out how our inexperienced shooter fared in this week’s issue of the Army Times.

Swenson’s medal comes two years after Marine’s for same battle

The White House announced Sept. 16 that former Army Capt. Will Swenson will receive the Medal of Honor, more than four years after he led a small contingent of U.S. military advisers through the teeth of a deadly ambush in eastern Afghanistan.

Swenson was an embedded trainer working with an Afghan Border Police mentor team on Sept. 8, 2009, when his unit was ambushed in Kunar province’s Sarkani district.

The controversial battle sparked national outcry when it was learned U.S. forces on the ground were repeatedly denied air and artillery support they had requested.

Marine Sgt. Dakota Meyer received the Medal of Honor in September 2011 for heroism in the same battle.

Find out more on the long road to Swenson’s Medal of Honor in this week’s Army Times.

Outside the Wire

A 1970s Army video teaches female soldiers to let men order their dinner and other important tips on how to be a proper soldier. See the retro video: Army Times Outside the Wire blog at

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