Thursday, April 17, 2008

YOU HAVE BEEN CHOSEN--Comments on the military draft

It's hopeless to think that there's some way to persuade, wrangle, or force the implementation of the draft to help relieve our Bush-ed all volunteer but now "Stop Loss-ed" military; that's been spread out over 80 countries and fighting 2 wars simultaneously for years with no end in sight. I'm afraid that it's just not attainable by any conventional political means either. In fact, history shows that the draft is instituted only as a last resort and ONLY AFTER we or one of our allies is attacked and suffer grievous enough losses. Then the public outrage leads to the patriotic response of enlisting and the justification for the draft.

Apparently, 9/11 with nearly 3,000 innocent American men, women and children killed on our very own homeland soil and now over 4,000 U.S. Soldiers also killed and 30,000injured in Iraq, still no longer meets the definition of enough grievous losses and suffering. Not to mention the nearly 100,000 VA claims for PTSD and 12,000 deserters and AWOL soldiers who refused to do 3, 4, or 5 combat tours.

Why has our level of tolerance been extended to such an extreme level of cautiousness? Is it just political correctness in order to win the next party elections? Is it our society's desensitization to violence since we've become so accustomed to seeing so much media reporting that focuses on nothing but all the daily ongoing negatives in our country? What will it take to happen for us to act to re-institute the draft?

I say it won't happen until our homeland is once again attacked and not just suffering some losses but very huge losses. To me this is so tragic that it makes me sick to even think of it happening all over again before the military draft is finally implemented. Also, I even have a teenage son and I still think that the draft should have been implemented a long time ago.

Enlisted Sgt. G. P., Class of '67-'69 Vietnam Tet, 101st Airborne Paratrooper

George, a terrific piece of writing. I agree with you: to be perfectly honest, I don't know where we are heading. The lack of realism about Iraq is simply overwhelming to me. I watch lots of news and it is like scores of people are living in parallel universes. Gen Petraeus and Crocker spoke like they simply were delivering prerecorded comments. I thought Petraeus was fairly realistic but simply the "what ifs" were very negating. And, as you know, it is one thing for the generals to talk strategy from a high and lofty perch but another for grunts to have to live it out on the ground. For instance, we had five GIs killed one of the days that Petraeus was speaking. The constant theme of his talk and Crockers and the Congressman who agreed with him was that violence is down. Yes, according to who? Not the five dead GIs or the hundreds of innocent Iraqis killed. I am amazed. I feel like those of us who are trying to face reality are like the apostle Paul, we are kicking against the "pricks."

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