Why doesnt -------- enlist his son?

#1
Point of ten raised here. Obviously the US Army has the same questions raised. The quote is from a US soldier but the point made is universal. Think of it next time someone comes up with that question.
Why Doesn't ______ Make His Child Enlist?
See this a lot, too. Variation on a theme, but generally like this, "If you're so for the war, why don't you make your son/daughter enlist and go to Iraq?"

1) It's a volunteer military. NO ONE makes anyone join. When I signed the paper, no one made me do it. I could have walked away. When I raised my hand (twice) to take the Oath of Enlistment, I could have walked away. At no time in the processing center did I see a parent dragging their grown child in, with the child screaming, "No, Daddy, I don't wanna play Army..."

It's a choice. Some make it, some do not. I've spoken with Drill Sergeants, and they've said that they've seen all kinds. Former doctors, lawyers, etc... walk away from it and enlist (no, not be officers... enlist.) Rich kids, poor kids, people from other countries who aren't even citizens of America (like a good buddy of mine) have all enlisted.

2) You can't just "go to Iraq". Sorry, the military doesn't work that way. You join, and then you become a commodity for the service. "Needs of the Army" as we say. If they need you in Korea, you go to Korea. Africa... Europe... Afghanistan, wherever. Yes, you can increase your odds of going - choose certain jobs, try to go to certain units, but... still go guarantee on going... or not going. Plenty of letters get written to "Stars and Stripes" and "Army Times" from Soldiers who want to go but are assigned elsewhere. It's just not so simple.

Part of what's not being taught as much in school anymore is why the American system works. Let's look at the military. Mr. Snuffy does not join the Army to support President Smith. First of all, would be foolish because of the 8 year committment, so odds are, at some point, PVT Snuffy would take orders from President Jones, not President Smith.

The military is managed by civilians. We follow orders from them. We go where they tell us to, and not go where they say not to go. If President Kerry had come and on 21 January 2005 told the Pentagon to begin an immediate withdrawal, then that's what would have happened.

The oath taken is that we'll support and defend the Constitution. No one man, his policies, or otherwise.

You don't have to agree with the orders that come down, or the policies behind them. But the Constitution says we follow those orders, and that's what we do.
 
#2
And that's also the reason that going where sent does not constitute an illegal order - despite what some American soldiers are saying.

Illegal orders are the ones that contravene National laws or International agreements that your country has signed up to.

An order that goes against your own moral code of ethics? Then don't join the military.
 
#4
Mr_Relaxed said:
And that's also the reason that going where sent does not constitute an illegal order - despite what some American soldiers are saying.
Haven't you had a couple of them on your side of the pond? I seem to recall an RAF Colonel being told he has a 'Greatly inflated sense of his own importance' by a presiding court-martial judge.

The argument goes back at least as far as Michal Moore's (Spit, spit) Fahrenheit 9/11 days, where he goes around to get Congresscritters to get their kids to enlist.

NTM
 
#5
I cant stand the idea that people think it would be perfectly acceptable for a politician (or anyone else) to force their child into joining the Military.

The oh so common calls of 'Why doesn’t Blair get his lad to join up' are the epitome of stupidity, perhaps because Blair jnr has rights and individual freedoms. The problem is most politicians themselves haven’t served, and completely lack an understanding of the military, and very often ignore their military advisers, forcing their children to join up wouldn’t solve that.
 
#6
although when el tone came out with "i'm prepared to pay the blood price" my first thoughts were is euan going to join up then? :twisted:
 
#7
California_Tanker said:
Mr_Relaxed said:
And that's also the reason that going where sent does not constitute an illegal order - despite what some American soldiers are saying.
Haven't you had a couple of them on your side of the pond? I seem to recall an RAF Colonel being told he has a 'Greatly inflated sense of his own importance' by a presiding court-martial judge.

The argument goes back at least as far as Michal Moore's (Spit, spit) Fahrenheit 9/11 days, where he goes around to get Congresscritters to get their kids to enlist.

NTM
A friend had a post in his Blog about Lt Ehren Watada - a google search later and I was speechless.

Yes, we've had some British troops object as well - the RAF man you're referring to is a Doctor - not quite what part of the Hippocratic Oath he was invoking as a reason not to go.
 
#8
Yes, we're keeping a close eye on the soon-to-be-ex LT Watada. The Japanese-American veteran's organisations are extremely displeased to say the least.

www.thankyoult.org for those who are ignorant.

NTM
 
#9
Good post and throws another side to the 'Death-Murder-Kill' coin.

I think it goes along with the question, for me, of the morality of politicians sending troops to face death, when they've never been through the same. Up until Mrs Thatcher I think all PMs had been in the military. Not saying there weren't cock ups (Aden, Suez; by the politicians not soldiers).

It's all too easy to commit to violence when you're fighting by proxy, with no real comprehension of the consequences, be it by cruise missile or by putting people through experiences of which you have no concept.

Anyway, that's my thought for the day, gotta go and beat the wife now.
 
#10
California_Tanker said:
Yes, we're keeping a close eye on the soon-to-be-ex LT Watada. The Japanese-American veteran's organisations are extremely displeased to say the least.

www.thankyoult.org for those who are ignorant.

NTM
Yes, that was the link I was reading!

I wonder what the same people who support this officer would say if another officer who disapproved of President Clinton's actions had declined to obey any of his orders?
 
#11
How very sad.

What would happen if he won. Could any soldier then in the middle of a firefight just decline his involvment because he now felt that it was illegal?

Hamptons the lot of them.
 
#12

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