Toxic Masculinity and Gender Equity in the Australian Defence Force

Toxic Masculinity and Gender Equity in the Australian Defence Force, by Luke Graham.

All three services are now working toward a target of female representation by 2023. The Navy and Air Force are working toward 25 percent, and the Army is working toward 15 percent. …

As of this writing, the Defence Force Recruitment website advertises female-only incentives including the choice of where to work, when to enlist, shorter initial minimum periods of service, as well as preparation courses. …

Various Defence Force Recruitment employees have reported receiving directives to prioritise female candidates over males, as well as closing off some jobs entirely for male candidates. …

Fitness standards for service personnel also differ according to gender, as well as service and age. This means equally-aged men and women in each service are expected to attain different standards of fitness. …

[THis] resembles a game of political chess, in which young Australian recruits and cadets are exploited to serve the interests and reputations of senior military officers, who go on to post-military careers in public service, politics, and gender-diversity advisory which has even led to the occasional bestowal of awards like ‘Australian of the Year.’ …

This control of information is reinforced by a policy that forbids members of the Australian Defence Force from making political statements, which was brought to light by the sacking of controversial Army Reserves Major, Bernard Gaynor. The resistance to contrarian viewpoints within ADF ranks was affirmed by multiple senior officers including General David Morrison who posted a video on the official Australian Army YouTube account with the following warning: “I will be ruthless in ridding the Army of people who cannot live up to its values.”

In the Indonesian and Chinese militaries, this photo led to outbreaks of sniggering

In 2015, the United States Marine Corps released a year-long study on the capability of a mixed-gender battalion. It was found that all-male units performed resoundingly better than mixed-gender units and highlighted a 1992 study which emphasised the importance and moral necessity of prioritising operational capabilities over accommodating the interests or desires of individuals and groups.