In light of the bill before Congress that will attempt to make sure -- once and for all -- that women will not be engaging in combat [the definition of which is still ambiguous -- not women, but COMBAT], I recommend this excellent article written by an Air Force officer regarding the absurdity of combat restrictions on female pilots.
It's worth noting that female heroics during firefights on the ground in Iraq may have called attention to the Catch-22 dilemma of this decades old restriction intended to keep women out of frontline positions. [Bet you thought they were over there to set the tables and make the beds.]
Whatever its intended purpose, the rule is becoming almost indefensible in the desert. Particularly in light of a war where no one knows where the frontline is.
Enforcing this sexist, and rapidly obsolete restriction now serves only to keep a person from doing a job she volunteered for and is trained to perform. Not to mention the effect it will have on military preparedness.
On the other hand, I do think there should be a rule that keeps married couples with children from serving in a combat zone at the same time. One of them should always be allowed to stay home. Children should not have to suffer the destructive separation anxiety caused by the threat of losing not one, but two parents.
Women in combat and gays serving openly in the military. We're this close.
People who think it won't happen have their heads up their butts.