Welcome to America’s all volunteer Army. Well, it used to be that way. Even though it wasn’t made up mostly of American citizens. It became a fast track for illegal aliens to gain citizenship for themselves and their immediate families. But even then, there is only so far you can beat a mule and still get it to move forward.
In 2007 with the war in Afganistan and Iraq dragging on and the casualties rising as the American public who believe we should still be there falls. The recruitment numbers started to fall, and those who were serving were being forced into longer deployments and stiff penalties for not re-enlisting. They are even denying non-commissioned officers retirement if they leave or even saying you can’t leave at all under “stop-loss” conditions. The saying started to become, “The only way out of the all volunteer services, is in a body bag.” Where there was once a requirement for a high school diploma or equivalent, there is none now. They have extended the age limit for how old someone cam be to enlist to forty as well as the age someone can be and still serve. They are even taking people with criminal records and mental problems.
When the American president and Rumsfield weren’t just throwing away the lives of our sons and daughters for no visible reason, the all-volunteer forces were the finest troops this nation had ever fielded on many levels. To make things even worse, the vetrans who returned alive were subjected to sub-standard medical treament. That is no way to treat the fine women and men who have answered the call to serve our country.
You may not be old enough to remember, but this isn’t the first all-volunteer force. After World War One, the United States went to an all volunteer military. When World War II started, so did conscription. Also the use of the reserves and national guard were as they were designed to be. They were the first pool of already trained personnel. It wasn’t until the Vietnam that the reserves and the guards became a place to go to avoid active duty. Now the swing has gone so far the other way, that the reserves are fighting far beyond the scope of what they were designed for.
When a government goes from being a defensive force to taking unilateral actions around the world, you go from needing a volunteer armed forces to a standing army.