Panel confirms first female officer for warfighting command

FILE - In this Sept. 18, 2012 file photo, female soldiers training on a firing range while wearing new body armor in Fort Campbell, Ky. Members of the U.S. special operations forces say that allowing women to serve in Navy SEAL, Army Delta or other commando units could hurt their effectiveness, lower the standards and drive men away from the jobs. The troops told a Rand Corp. survey that they believe women don't have the physical strength or mental toughness to do the grueling jobs. And their message to political leaders is that when they are fighting in the shadows or bleeding on the battlefield, women have no place on their teams. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey, File)
FILE - In this Sept. 18, 2012 file photo, female soldiers training on a firing range while wearing new body armor in Fort Campbell, Ky. Members of the U.S. special operations forces say that allowing women to serve in Navy SEAL, Army Delta or other commando units could hurt their effectiveness, lower the standards and drive men away from the jobs. The troops told a Rand Corp. survey that they believe women don't have the physical strength or mental toughness to do the grueling jobs. And their message to political leaders is that when they are fighting in the shadows or bleeding on the battlefield, women have no place on their teams. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate Armed Services Committee has approved the nomination of the first female officer to lead one of the military’s warfighting commands.

Members of the panel on Tuesday confirmed Air Force Gen. Lori Robinson to be commander of U.S. Northern Command. The panel acted on a voice vote. The command is responsible for preventing attacks against the United States.

Robinson joined the Air Force in 1982 after graduating from the University of New Hampshire. She’s currently serving as commander of Pacific Air Forces in Hawaii.

The committee also confirmed Army Gen. Curtis Scaparrotti to be the top American commander in Europe and Army Gen. Vincent Brooks to lead U.S. forces in Korea.

Their nominations now go to the full Senate for approval.

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