Skip to comments.McChrystal: Time to bring back the draft
Posted on 07/05/2012 11:51:33 AM PDT by Timber Rattler
Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the former top commander of international forces in Afghanistan, said this week that the United States should bring back the draft if it ever goes to war again.
"I think we ought to have a draft. I think if a nation goes to war, it shouldn't be solely be represented by a professional force, because it gets to be unrepresentative of the population," McChrystal said at a late-night event June 29 at the 2012 Aspen Ideas Festival. "I think if a nation goes to war, every town, every city needs to be at risk. You make that decision and everybody has skin in the game."
He argued that the burdens of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan haven't been properly shared across the U.S. population, and emphasized that the U.S. military could train draftees so that there wouldn't be a loss of effectiveness in the war effort.
"I've enjoyed the benefits of a professional service, but I think we'd be better if we actually went to a draft these days," he said. "There would some loss of professionalism, but for the nation it would be a better course."
(Excerpt) Read more at thecable.foreignpolicy.com ...
Very rare I rebut my own statement... but on second thought... that may just be the medicine needed to focus civilian minds onto the fallacies of the notion the military has been "improved" with the repeal of DADT.
...or is someone planning to get us into a conflict demanding large numbers of conscripts?
Further, universal service would either require the expansion of the military far beyond the size necessary to do it's mission, or a dramatic shortening of enlistments. The latter would be terrible in terms of troops quality, training, etc..
And finally, I don't think the state has the right to take a couple year of your life absent a true national emergency. The idea that we all inherently owe something to the government is very distateful to me.
I served in the Marine Corps, and am extremely happy that the Marines I commanded were all volunteers.
Exactly... Charlie proposes legislation for a military draft... then promptly votes against it. Must be his meds kicking in.
I’d hazard to guess, ‘white boys’ throughout American Military History, are the ones who have been dispropotionately dying.
I once ran across a PDF of a typewritten report done at the end of WWII that detailed with some specificity the exact casualties, deaths, MIAs, etc. of ALL of our military. My recollection is that whites were far and above the major affected group. I have since searched for this report, but cannot find it where I once did. I suspect Clinton had it erased.
If you’re going to do this, then no exceptions or waivers. No college exceptions, no religious exceptions - you can be a chaplain or a medic - and absolutely NO exceptions for the sons and daughters of politicians or corporate captains. - in fact, they get issued the low draft numbers.
I think a universal draft is a great idea.
The fact that most people no longer serve is one of the main reasons we have a red state/blue state, elites vs. everyone else mentality in this country.
If every entitled darling spent three years as a soldier before Harvard, it would do a lot to end the pernicious classism that has infected our country in recent years.
Women should serve, too, doing the kind of administrative work the WACs and WAVs used to do.
exactly. our willingness to go to war without a total commitment to victory is a gaping hole in our suit of armor and our enemies are becoming increasingly aware of that vulnerability as well as our others.
spelling — “classicism”
That has never worked out as we have seen and you just pointed out.
The only time boots on the ground doesn't work is when you are going to drop a nuke.
Exactamundo. As a Nam Vet I also witnessed the problems associated witht the draft during the 60's and 70's though I was a volunteer.
Gen McCrystal (though no doubt under orders) was responsible for enforcing the INANE and INSANE, ROE's in Afghan.
And for those who tout Gen Patreus as a VP Candidate, he actually made them worst when he took command.
BOTH a pair of clueless, idiots who were enamored with "Hearts and Minds" and "Nation Building" thru a so called "Counterinsurgency" policy which has caused numerous, casualties of our Brave Warriors.
And I thought the ROE's during Nam were bad and crazy; they pale in comparison to what our Military is forced to operate under in Afghan.
SEE: Thomas D. Segel
Rules of Engagement & Other Stupid Decisions September 14, 2009
By now you have heard the story. Taliban insurgents ambushed a 13-man team of U.S. Marine and Army advisors assigned to the Afghan National Army as they approached a small hamlet. Repeatedly the Marines called for artillery support that was denied by their commanders and helicopter gunship support that took more than one hour to arrive. The refused support and slow air response caused the unit to suffer eight Afghan soldiers, one interpreter and four Marines to be killed in action.
The uproar across the military community has been deafening and the NATO commanded forces are now investigating why commanding officers rejected repeated calls for artillery fire. They are also looking into the reason why close air support that was supposed to be no more than five minutes away took more than one hour to reach the scene of the battle.
Far be it for me to claim I am some kind of Warfighting Strategist. However, it doesnt take the military intellect of a Patton to understand dumb decisions or political pontification. That being said, I have no reason to believe the current Rules of Engagement (ROE) in Afghanistan originated with those commanders on the ground who are actually engaged in the fighting.
The Rules of Engagement now in effect in that war zone are designed to appease the faint hearted rather than win a war. Are they wrong headed? Yes! Are they tailored in such a way they will harm our troops in the field? We have the bodies of four gallant young Marines along with eight national army dead to prove just how wrong the ROE is for Americans and its allies.
According to military spokesmen, the ROE has been tailored to soften the possibility of civilian casualties. General Stanley McChrystal issued the new ROE restrictions on the use of military force to reduce the risk of further alienating the population, they say.
Colonel Wayne Morris, USMC (Ret) served in the very volatile areas of Kandahar and Helmand through half of 2006 and all of 2008 as an advisor to the Afghan National Army. He says, "With the current ROE in effect, I seriously doubt we will ever get the stabilized level wherein we can turn the tables on the Taliban. He feels we need to eliminate enough insurgents nor at least neutralize their ability to influence action across a wide area, for any stabilized condition to develop.
Regardless of the war we were fighting, instead of allowing our military experts to determine how we engage in combat, political decision makers, almost from the time the first shots were fired in anger, have restricted those who wear the uniform of our country. In just about every case, politicians created those horrible unintended consequences that resulted in loss of the battle, the loss of victory, and sadly, the loss of American lives. The most heartbreaking example of that political decision-making is the disastrous finale to Vietnam, triggered by our capitulation and withdrawal.
As an infantry Corporal in Korea, I screamed at anyone who would listen as we repeatedly fought our way to strategic high ground, only to withdraw and be forced to take the same real estate over and over again. One of the basic rules of battle is to seize the high ground...and hold it.
On another tour of duty, in Saigon everyone wore helmets and carried weapons to and from their various duty assignments. Military personnel were also allowed to wander the streets of that city freely during off duty hours but it was a court marshal offense to carry a weapon. Try to figure the logic of that rule.
As an advisor during the early days of Vietnam we were not even allowed to wear our uniforms or fly the American Flag. At night, on perimeter duty the Marines were not allowed to have ammunition in their weapons. It was locked up in an ammo bunker and one officer had the key. If we were fired upon, the ROE called for him to then open the bunker and issue us ammunition. Those rules seem silly in print, but were very serious to those of us who guarded the compound in the dark of night. Our uniform thought was...What happens if that first incoming round gets the ammo officer or hits the bunker? This would have been another example of unintended consequences all military personnel face because of wrong-headed ROE. (It is also true that we ignored those ROE and kept a hidden supply of ammunition on our persons.)
Returning to the words of Colonel Morris, "Tying our Warfighters hands behind their backs is past unsatisfactory...its criminal! I am not saying we should allow our Coalition Forces to move about freely killing everything in their path, but they must be allowed the leeway to take appropriate, decisive offensive or defensive actions when dealing with insurgents. Not only that, there are a lot of good Afghans who see our approach in dealing with the Taliban as being weak. That makes many people over there think the Talibs are stronger...not in all cases, but as you well know, perceptions are damning.
He claims the Rules of Engagement have favored the enemy since our involvement after 9-11. He feels we would have captured or killed Osama Bin Laden if our special operators had been allowed to take him down. He claims the ROE is even more restrictive now than it was early in the war.
The colonel feels the lack of supporting arms have been a major problem from the very start of operations. "With the exception of USMC and some Army forces now operating in Afghanistan, the other Coalition Force partner nations simply dont have adequate supporting arms available to them. He tells of times in Helmand Province when only two armed helicopters (and on a good day four) were available for the entire province.
So, as it has always been, the politicians and the political military leaders continue to make decisions and Rules of Engagement that must be followed by Warfighters on the ground. And, as it always has been, those same military men and women continue to fight two enemies. Today it is the Taliban, but forever it has been the politicians who though complete ignorance cost us victory after victory...and far too many American lives.
The military is not about “diversity”, it’s about breaking things and delivering ordnance on target. I’ve been a military officer, and I didn’t want unwilling draftees serving under me. I wanted and still want a professional all-volunteer force. I don’t know why McChrystal would say something this stupid, but I hope sensible people and our Congresscritters will ignore him completely.
I agree with you that in past conflicts the white casualty rate is significantly higher. However, the cause du jour for the race baiters is to complain about blacks and hispanics being over-represented in the armed forces compared to whites.
yeah, and when the US goes to war the goal to win it should be part of the equation.
Before Dece,ber 2010, I would have agreed with your statement. Now, noway not with all the sodomites
Maybe if we had a Constitutional government it’d be easier to get volunteers to protect it?
The draft would be fine if all able bodied men (and now women) were to serve with NO exceptions. During Nam college boys, married guys and guys with connections avoided service.
Those clowns would’ve made good cannon fodder in WWI.
Why would they, if you draft every able body male person out of high school, would you even need women?
I agree with both statements. The second is a major problem. We used to call 2nd LTs "90 day wonders", and they had no clue what leadership involves, other than being a dog. You keep kicking a dog, and it will eventually get tired and go fetch the stick.