US Military Recruitment May 2006.

I do feel that overall Military recruiting is a reflection on the National Employment situation.
I always said that you should only join the military if you had and always had a desire to be a 'Soldier'.
Joining just for employment usually led to a poorly motivated man.
The Military life is not an easy one at the best of times, few other ways of life can legally order you to go get yourself killed or maimed for life, let alone the mental scars which stay.
I think you also have to factor in the fact that a) they moved their recruitment targets down last year and b) have felt compelled to "stop-loss" 50,000 personnel who have served their time.
Of course that's what's going on T6. The Pentagon's version of Pravda never lies.

Of course, the nice big re-enlistment bonuses are attractive- especially when you're told you can re-up and get $30k and stay with a unit that is not likely to be redeployed soon, or you can be stop-lossed, get no additional cash and get shipped right back to Iraq:

Congresswoman Seeks Re-Enlistment Probe
The Associated Press

Monday 27 September 2004

Washington - A Colorado congresswoman is seeking a congressional investigation into allegations that Iraqi war veterans near the end of their enlistments were given a choice between re-enlisting or being sent back to Iraq.

Democratic Rep. Diana Degette, in a letter to House Armed Services Committee Chairman Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., asked him Monday to look into whether the "White House or civilian Pentagon officials are pressuring the military to use coercive tactics to get soldier to re-enlist in order to maintain the force levels necessary to fight the war in Iraq and war on terror."

Degette, at a news conference in Denver earlier Monday, cited reports in two Denver newspapers and calls she has received from several soldiers at Fort Carson, near Colorado Springs.

According to reports in the Rocky Mountain News and The Denver Post, soldiers from the 3rd Brigade Combat Team were told they faced reassignment to units expected to be deployed to Iraq or Korea if they did not either re-enlist by the end of the month or extend their duty until the end of 2007. Those who re-enlisted or extended would stay with the 3rd Brigade, which already was deployed a year in Iraq.

Pentagon officials deferred comment to Fort Carson, which denied any effort to coerce soldiers into re-enlisting.

Fort Carson spokesman Lt. Justin Journeay said soldiers recently were given a form with three options; the third - neither extending nor re-enlisting - came with the understanding they could be reassigned.

Fort Carson officials said soldiers are being asked to record their choices so the Army can determine the strength of the force. The Army's goal is to have units that stick together for several years with little turnover, Journeay said. He said Fort Carson was exceeding re-enlistment goals.

The adequacy of military manpower has become a volatile political issue. Democrats say the Bush administration, to satisfy personnel needs in Iraq and Afghanistan, is delaying troop rotations unwisely and making extensive use of Reserve and National Guard troops.

Democratic presidential challenger John Kerry recently said President Bush has a secret plan to call up more National Guard and Reserve troops immediately after the election. The president's campaign called that allegation "false and ridiculous."

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