Culture, Economy & Business, Politics

Heartland Americans Say “Sayonara” to the Military

As reported in late June by NBC, all branches of the military are falling short of their 2022 recruiting goals.

The Army, for instance, has met only 40 percent of its enlisted recruitment target for the fiscal year, which for the military services ends on September 30. Those in the Pentagon tasked with attracting candidates have listed reasons they are struggling to meet their mission: lack of eligibility, Covid restrictions putting a damper on outreach, competition from a robust civilian employment market, and a lack of a desire to serve.

Despite unprecedented bonuses of up to $50,000 for enlistment and retention, the writing is on the wall. The youth aren’t lining up for Uncle Sam like they used to. And while all the above-mentioned reasons carry some weight, it’s the issue of desire that ought to be most alarming to the services…

According to Army Chief of Staff General James McConville, only 23 percent of Americans ages 17 to 24 are eligible to serve without a waiver. This is due to obesity, drug use, or criminal records. Several years ago, that number stood at 29 percent. Even more troubling, an internal Defense Department survey obtained by NBC showed that of those eligible, only 9 percent had an interest in serving. In the same survey, half of respondents thought they would suffer physical problems if they joined, and 57 percent thought they would suffer emotional or psychological problems. It’s almost like the last 20 years of failed wars and thousands of wounded warriors has made potential recruits reconsider their life choices. Read more…

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