There is a BIG misconception that a Ranger is a Ranger. “I have a Ranger Tab, I’m a Ranger!” Negative! You are Ranger-qualified. Not saying that those who graduate Ranger School shouldn’t be proud of their accomplishment, it’s a tough school. That being said, it is just a school.
Ranger School is a 62-day leadership school broken up into three phases: Darby, Mountain, and Swamp. The Army, Navy SEALs, Marines, etc., are all allowed to participate in Ranger School. The SEALs who attend are not Navy SEAL Rangers, they are SEALs.
Ranger Battalion is an entirely different entity and is in no way “like Ranger School.” Ranger Battalion is a Special Operations, all-male unit, and has been deployed in support of the GWOT since October 2011, continuously, 4778 days.
The 75th Ranger Regiment has also killed/captured more HVT/enemy than any other Special Operations unit or regular unit in the US military. The 75th may deploy for only 90-120 days at a time, but the operational tempo is extremely high. During my deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan, we would average 100+ special operation missions over the course of 90 days.
Here’s a better look at the op tempo: 1st Ranger Battalion conducted more than 900 missions in Afghanistan in one deployment. The battalion successfully captured nearly 1,700 enemy combatants (and 386 high-value targets) and killed more than 400. This is the exact opposite of Ranger School.
The only way to join the ranks of 75th Ranger Regiment is to attend the RASP selection. From there, you are granted the right to wear the Ranger scroll. Your selection doesn’t end at this point, though, as at any given time you may be released from the Battalion for failing to meet Ranger standards. During your time in Ranger Battalion, it is your duty to attend Ranger School, as well, and earn the ranger tab.
I’m sure you’ve seen the articles pertaining to females in Ranger School. I’ve been asked what I think about it and if I knew anything as to how they were doing. I’ve always stated that, if they can perform at the same EXACT standard as the men beside them, I’m all for it, just don’t lower the standard! With that, here are some facts that may interest you.
I received multiple emails this morning from the guys who have the facts on how well the women held up in ROPAT (Ranger orientation preparation assessment and training).
- 88 women signed up for the class.
- 35/36 showed up to the class (PT test)
- Out of all the women who showed up, only one successfully passed the entire course at minimum standard (70%).
The information that I’ve been getting from multiple sources who are involved with the program is that they just don’t have it. From the PT test to Patrols, the amount of “red marks” are almost hard to believe.
Multiple females decided to quit/LOM (Lack of Motivation). I personally thought that more would have been able to pass the minimum standard, but at the end of the day, numbers don’t lie. Ranger School is hard, one of the toughest schools I’ve attended, and I have a lot of respect for those who complete it. As for the women who decided to attend, much respect! To even have the courage to volunteer to put yourself through the pain is an accomplishment in its own.
I’m not sure how this will work out in the long run, but the military as a whole should rethink the purpose of trying to integrate genders with all-male units (specifically, Special Operations). Having one female amongst hundreds of type A, testosterone-filled men for months on end, in conditions that only a select few can operate in, doesn’t seem like a situation I would want to put myself in.
I’ll have solid numbers here shortly and will continue to pass them along in regards to the females who are currently in ROPAT.
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