WASHINGTO (WKOW) -- President Barack Obama supports the Pentagon's decision to lift the ban on women serving in combat, according to White House officials.
Press Secretary Jay Carney said Thursday Obama believes the country should continue to remove "unnecessary gender-biased barriers to service" and expand opportunities for women to serve in the armed forces.
Defense Secretary Leon Panetta is expected to announce his decision Thursday to open more than 230,000 battlefront posts and potentially elite commando jobs to women. Military chiefs will be able to recommend whether women should be excluded from any more demanding or deadly positions, such as Navy SEALS or the Army's Delta Force.
The historic change, which was recommended by the Joint Chiefs of Staff, comes after generations of limits on women's military service, and it will not happen overnight.