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The Stage is Set for Reinstating the Military Draft


By Staff Writer: Rick Townsend


December 22, 2006

This week President Bush announced his plans to increase military manpower. Three weeks ago Congressman Charles Rangel dropped the ‘D-word’ in his announcement to present a Bill in Congress to reinstate the Draft. Today the Selective Service System announced their plans to conduct a test of the system. All three of these public announcements have a great deal in common and were obviously designed to prepare the American people for the end to the all volunteer military. 

The veterans of this country are watching this ‘political play’ unfold with great interest and concern. Over the past 10 years recruiting numbers have been ‘adequate’ at best. In some cases, service branches have fallen short of meeting their enlistment goals altogether. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize the only way to increase the number of active military personnel is to reenact the Draft.

Many Americans think the Draft would be a good idea, while many others feel an all volunteer military is the answer.

The thought of forcing an American to serve does seem to contradict with our basic Constitutional rights to freedom of choice. The definition of the word ‘slavery’ states; forced to serve, or enslaved for service.

During the Vietnam War our country was torn apart by the Draft issue. In fact, it was the anti-draft movement that fed to the anti-war movement. Many protesters saw our involvement in Vietnam as secondary to their objections to the Selective Service Draft. They didn’t want to be forced to serve anywhere under any conditions.

Now we have come full circle and the stage is set to revisit the issue. However, there is one very important element missing in this equation. The Department of Veterans Affairs is mysteriously excluded from the dialogue. There is no talk of increasing funding to care for the increased number of veterans. One might assume that our politicians would think this subject through and understand that by forcing Americans to serve without considering the medical services and earned benefits that these veterans will require after discharge is nothing less than very shortsighted and somewhat underhanded. Whether we have a Draft or not, it is imperative that we care for our veterans. In the words of President George Washington; "The willingness with which our young people are likely to serve in any war, no matter how justified, shall be directly proportional to how they perceived veterans of earlier wars were treated and appreciated by our nation."   

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