Marines Moving Women Toward the Front Lines

04/25/2012 11:19 am ET

The Marine Corps, the most male of the armed services, is taking its first steps toward integrating women into war-fighting units, starting with its infantry officer school at Quantico, Va., and ground combat battalions that had once been closed to women.

The moves -- announced by Gen. James F. Amos, the Marine Corps commandant, in a message sent to all Marines on Monday night -- are intended largely to study how women perform in formerly male-only units, and reflect new Pentagon rules released in February allowing women to serve closer to the front line.

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