Army Meets Recruiting Goals By Lowering Standards

By Justin Gardner | Related entries in Military

And that’s the good news.

From Boston Globe:

In each fiscal year since the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003, statistics show, the army has accepted a growing percentage of recruits who do not meet its own minimum fitness standards. The October statistics show that at least 1 of every 5 recruits required a waiver to join the service, leading military analysts to conclude that the army is lowering standards more than it has in decades.

“The across-the-board lowering of the standards is buying problems in the future,” said John Hutson, a retired rear admiral, dean of the Franklin Pierce Law Center in New Hampshire, and a former judge advocate general of the navy. “You are going to have more people getting in trouble, more people washing out” before finishing their tour of duty. [...]

Of the 6,434 enlistees who signed up last month, 792, or 12.3 percent, required waivers for past criminal activity that would have disqualified them, including misdemeanor and felony convictions, according to army data.

By comparison, 11.2 percent of army recruits were granted criminal waivers in all of fiscal year 2007, which ended Sept. 30. The 2007 figure was the largest percentage of recruits admitted on waivers since the Iraq war began.

This trend really speaks for itself. We simply are not recruiting the best and brightest for our all-volunteer force. These people could very well cause more problems than they fix when put under a tremendous amount of pressure. We’ve already seen the fallout from a few bad apples in Iraq. Our credibility can’t bear the burden of thousands more. And I’m all for an all-volunteer force, but it’s clear that as we continue this trend of nation building, our military is suffering as a result.

So what’s more important…spreading democracy or maintaining a balanced, well-trained fighting force? Because I think we’re seeing that it’s either one or the other.


This entry was posted on Tuesday, November 27th, 2007 and is filed under Military. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

4 Responses to “Army Meets Recruiting Goals By Lowering Standards”

  1. Jeremy Says:

    This is what happens when you engage in ethically questionable wars. Since it is indeed ethically questionable, it should come as no surprise that we are facing significant resistance and therefore significantly higher casualties due to the perceived unjustness of this war.

    Our all-volunteer forces weren’t designed for this type of conflict, i.e. policing.
    Not only was it ill-prepared for the role it was going to play but it was beset with wishfully thinking all the way to the very top of our government. Thousands of Americans had to die before Bush or Rumsfeld would admit there was even a problem.

    Our “best and brightest” are all used up. The ones that refuse to leave and un-enlist are seeing their fourth and fifth tours already. In order to maintain a viable force there is no option but to court and woo high school drop-outs, miscreants and mentally-ill people in order to full the ranks. The cats out of the bag, Iraq ain’t no picnic and most intelligent Americans aren’t going to be willing to “sign-up” and put their life on the line for some BS war. It would be different if it were a justified war, but this is entirely a war of choice. It’s an absolute crime that our men and women were even sent into this sh.it without the best intelligence, best weapons and the backing of all American. But that didn’t happen, and I’m not going to turn a blind eye and pretend it did. This war needs to end, and it needs to happen now.

  2. Jeremy Says:

    This is what happens when you engage in ethically questionable wars. Since it is indeed ethically questionable, it should come as no surprise that we are facing significant resistance and therefore significantly higher casualties due to the perceived unjustness of this war.

    Our all-volunteer forces weren’t designed for this type of conflict, i.e. policing.
    Not only was it ill-prepared for the role it was going to play but it was beset with wishful thinking all the way to the very top of our government. Thousands of Americans had to die before Bush or Rumsfeld would admit there was even a problem.

    Our “best and brightest” are all used up. The ones that refuse to leave and un-enlist are seeing their fourth and fifth tours already. In order to maintain a viable force there is no option but to court and woo high school drop-outs, miscreants and mentally-ill people in order to full the ranks. The cats out of the bag, Iraq ain’t no picnic and most intelligent Americans aren’t going to be willing to “sign-up” and put their life on the line for some BS war. It would be different if it were a justified war, but this is entirely a war of choice. It’s an absolute crime that our men and women were even sent into this sh.it without the best intelligence, best weapons and the backing of all American. But that didn’t happen, and I’m not going to turn a blind eye and pretend it did. This war needs to end, and it needs to happen now.

  3. Joshua Says:

    Jeremy: This war needs to end, and it needs to happen now.

    It may not happen now, but it just might happen a lot sooner than I ever expected:

    With the eyes of the world focused on the Middle East peace talks in Annapolis, Md., President Bush’s war tsar, Lieutenant General Douglas Lute, quietly announced that the American and Iraqi governments will start talks early next year to bring about an end to the allied occupation by the close of Mr. Bush’s presidency.

    Now, this may not bring much relief for the Army or its soldiers. One of the commentators on the post I linked thinks President Bush might not actually bring the troops home, but just shift them to Afghanistan. Still, I wonder to what degree this strain on the Army forced Bush’s hand here.

  4. Jim S Says:

    Joshua,

    On the other hand, maybe not.

Leave a Reply


NOTE TO COMMENTERS:


You must ALWAYS fill in the two word CAPTCHA below to submit a comment. And if this is your first time commenting on Donklephant, it will be held in a moderation queue for approval. Please don't resubmit the same comment a couple times. We'll get around to moderating it soon enough.


Also, sometimes even if you've commented before, it may still get placed in a moderation queue and/or sent to the spam folder. If it's just in moderation queue, it'll be published, but it may be deleted if it lands in the spam folder. My apologies if this happens but there are some keywords that push it into the spam folder.


One last note, we will not tolerate comments that disparage people based on age, sex, handicap, race, color, sexual orientation, national origin or ancestry. We reserve the right to delete these comments and ban the people who make them from ever commenting here again.


Thanks for understanding and have a pleasurable commenting experience.


Related Posts: