I have referred to this before concerning recruitment levels for our military being at all-time lows. A recent CNN Article touches on this as well.
Going back to 1995, the last time the U.S. Marine Corps missed one of it’s monthly recruiting goal, the Marines have always had enough recruits. Hell, my own recruiter consistently “made mission”. The remarkable thing was, he was probably the only Marine recruiter to do so while undergoing Level 3 Alcohol Rehab and a nasty divorce in which his wife had been cheating on him (If the Marines wanted you to be married, they would have ISSUED you a wife!). That, in and of itself, is amazing.
As the title of this post states, I wonder, as does the author of the CNN Article, just how close we are to the breaking point where something other than stop-loss orders and extended deployments will be needed to keep our military troop levels where they need to be to fight this God-awful mess in Iraq. As regular readers know, my brother fell victim to a stop-loss order as well last August. He had given 20 years of good and faithful service to this country only to be told “Sorry soldier, drop your cocks and grab your socks. You’re going to Iraq.” Our National Guard and Reserve units are strecthed thinner than a dime-store condom and, with as little training as some units receive, probably do about as good a job at protecting from “bad things that might happen”.
Republicans tend to scold the Left every time someone mentions the impending Draft of ‘05. But the truth of the matter is, we may be much closer to a draft than most are willing to admit. If recruiting efforts remain on the downhill slide, and support for Bush’s Playdate in the Big Sandbox™ continues to diminish, the United States may be without an alternative. My buddy Scroff over at Any Which Way has mentioned a possible solution to this conundrum numerous times: we need to get the Chickenhawks to enlist, suit up, and ship out. At least then, we would have people fighting that honestly support the War (or so they say).
Now, with the situation in Iran heating up, the pressure we’re putting on Syria, and the North Korea debacle, where will we get the military forces needed if anyone of these countries decides to stick out their tongue and go “PFFFBBBBLLLTT!!! You can’t make us! Nah, nah, nah, nah, naaahhh, nah!”? I’m sorry to say, but our interventionist policies need to end. We can’t simply keep telling other sovereign countries to do things our way, or else. The way we, as a nation, approach other countries concerning the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Act and their actions in the War on Terror™ borders on stupidity. If we’re going to talk the talk, don’t you think we should be walking the walk? Or are we the only ones good enough to possess these types of weapons?
I’ll be honest, I don’t know how to resolve our military recruitment issues. But I do know this, if something isn’t done soon to rectify this situation, the American people as a whole are going to have such a wicked taste in their mouth that recruitment will never get back to the levels they were. If anyone else has some suggestions, by all means, let your elected representatives know.