Does the Jessica Lynch story
    mean that women shouldn’t serve in combat?

The wag-the-dog mythicization of Jessica Lynch’s capture and release forms a sad chapter in the history of American journalism. Journalists and media outlets were clearly primed to provide war propaganda, and they could hardly have imagined that the victim/heroine would blow the gaff so dramatically.

An unintended (and largely unnoticed) consequence of the affair was to make it seem normal that women should serve in combat roles. But now comes one Elaine Donnelly, who runs something called the Center for Military Readiness. Writing in the National Review, Donnelly argues that Lynch’s post-capture ordeal, which included sexual assault, means that women should be kept out of combat roles. Naturally, it all turns out to be Bill Clinton’s fault.

Phil Carter, who actually knows something about the question, isn’t impressed.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: