Female Soldiers Not Sure Mixing Sexes Is Good Idea

"Guys in the infantry, for example, a lot of them have pre-conceived ideas that women can't keep their legs closed and it's a temptation for the guys that takes away from mission focus," said Sanchez. She added that she feels there should be a "division of the sexes."

"If there's a woman [in the unit] it is different. With mixed units - teenagers, mixed privates, officers, sergeants – they can't control themselves. It's a problem that all-male units don't have to deal with," she said.

Women MPs on Men in the Military

It's a sentiment echoed by some men in the field.

"When a woman is in the room, it's like Wild Kingdom. You know, with the lions roaring trying to get the lioness' attention," said one infantry soldier who did not want his name used. "The female soldier may not give anything, but every one of those males in the platoon thinks they are the one for her and will try to get to the front of the line."

Sgt. Erica Smith, 23, from New Hartford, N.Y., became an MP because she wanted excitement.

"I worked at a bank every day behind a desk. That was boring to me. I figured I needed something more in my life – and here came the Army," Smith said.

She said she joined the military after 9/11 and knew she would deploy. She wasn't afraid.

"I wanted that experience. I really couldn't wait. I wanted to experience it," she said. "I trained and trained and trained and you want to put that training to the test. Yes, I've been deployed. I know what it's like to deploy. It sucks. You go home and you appreciate things so much more once you go home."

In Iraq, she said, they were "blown up every day or mortared" or took RPG's or small arms. But she was quick to add that her role as an MP was vastly different from infantry.

"I would never want to shoot someone but if the threat was there, to save my life or my comrade's life, I would," she said. Like Sanchez, she said that women should have different roles.

"It's a totally different fight for MPs and infantry," she said. "They're front line, they're the first ones…it's a different world and I don't think females belong in that world."

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