16. My impression: The official party line is ambivalent, especially after the draft became history.
On one hand, DoD has to rely on women to keep the manning rosters reasonably filled. They're guaranteed to sign up. Except for that short period during WWII when that faux scandal was news, there has always been more women volunteers than slots available.
On the other, there's the "girls in our tree house" mentality and women warriors, even quasi, take away an ancient justification for men to be warriors - protection.
No doubt much more to it than that, but those are the ones in one form or another I kept hearing during my long march.