Liberals and feminists claim it is necessary for several reasons. First to provide for career advancement possibilities in today's military, in which combat experience, or at least leadership in a combat unit, is a a definite career positive. To prove that women are as good as men, and can do anything men can do, and probably better. They would have us believe that the aggressive instincts in primarily men in the military are cultural and can be overcome by training. To claims that the physical tests required for male front line combat troops would eliminate all but a small fraction of women from eligibility, they say the tests are bullshit, and that women can operate in combat just fine, given an appropriate weight pile of gear.
Conservatives and us misogynists would tell you that while women may be as good as men, they are not equal, that women's lesser strength on average (the highest women score near the average strength for men on military entrance tests), and would not be able to carry the gear needed, and perhaps to pull a comrade (especially a 250 lb male comrade, not counting gear). That women have a different brain construction and chemistry, and they are more nurturing and less violent. That men would ignore their military goals to protect women in the ranks, even if
Why discuss things theoretically when you can do a test?
Get some of the women officers who feel constrained by the no combat rule, and put them in charge of an all female battalion. Give them permission to recruit/shanghai anybody and anyone in the service they want for the battalion as long as they are female, and allow them to set their own standards for strength and physical fitness. Allow them to design their own set of gear, such that it doesn't overly stress smaller and on average weaker bodies of the women.
And send them into battle. Give them the same air support that front line troops get now. But make them do the same job with the same equipment and support.
Can they do the job as well as a similar group of men? If so, the idea is worth pursuing. If not, why go through the effort?