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All military jobs will soon be opened to women, Defense Secretary Ash Carter announced Thursday in a historic change, going against the Marine Corps' recommendations that some jobs remain men-only.

"To succeed in our mission of national defense, we cannot afford to cut ourselves off from half the country's talent and skills," he told reporters. "Today I'm announcing my decision not to make continued exceptions, that is to proceed to opening all of the remaining occupations and positions to women. There will be no exceptions.

"They'll be allowed to drive tanks, fire mortars and lead infantry soldiers into combat," he said. "They'll be able to serve as Army Rangers, Navy SEALs, Marine Corps infantry, Air Force parajumpers and everything else that previously were open only to men."

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