"Our force of the future must continue to benefit from the best people America has to offer," Carter said.
"In the 21st century, that requires drawing strength from
the broadest possible pool of talent. This includes women .
. . We have to take full advantage of every individual who
can meet our standards."
President Barack Obama's administration in 2013 asked for
all combat positions to be open to women by 2016, including
the infantry, artillery, armor and Special Forces.
But Obama gave the Pentagon the opportunity to request
exceptions, provided these were justified by operational
The changes will be implemented in 30 days' time, Carter