Friday, September 18, 2009

Bring Back the Draft

With the current conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as potential conflicts horizon as well as to deal with problems here at home, the Falconist Party propose a program of Universal Military Training and Mandatory National Service. Our UMT and MNS program consists of the following.

  1. All Americans 26 years old and above will serve one year of military service for basic military, skill and citizenship training followed by part-time service as citizen-soldiers in the National Gaurd, Reserve, or state militias.
  2. All Americans 18-26 will serve at least two years of MNS with a minimum of a year being military service for basic military, skill, and citizenship training. The remainder of their stint may be spent in the military or service in urban law enforcement, firefighting, rescue work, the Green Corps, the Health Corps, the Peace Corps, Ghetto Corps, Teacher's Corps, Freedom Corps, any form of service that takes someone out of their "comfort zone" and puts them in unfamiliar surroundings, may involve hardship, and possible exposure to danger.
  3. All immigrants will serve a year of military service for basic military, skill, and citizenship training followed by part-time service in the National Guard, Reserve, and state militias. Those that serve three years in the military or serve a year on the front-lines will be fast-tracked to American citizenship.
  4. The draft will be "air-tight", no deferments or safe duty for the privileged. Regardless if you are "Joe Blow" or Paris Hilton, you will serve two years of MNS and serve in the military.
  5. Our UMT and MNS will be flexible enough so that those pursuing a skill that is badly needed such as health care, engineering, natural sciences, information technology, may perform their MNS in those roles. Those High School graduates who are in the top 10% of all those turning 18 may recieve ROTC scholarship and attend college first followed by serving in the military for four years folllowed by part-time service in the National Guard, Reserve, and State Militias. In addition to ROTC, those that recieve an appointment to a federal service academy or a military college will forfill their military service obligation after the completion of their college education.
  6. Illegal aliens, Convicts, and Ex-Convicts may opt for service in the U.S. Foriegn Legion which will be operate under the U.S. Army but with service just as strict and rigorously enforced as the French Foriegn Legion. All bases of the legion will be based outside the CONUS and after four years of service, legionares will have their criminal records erased and their citizenship rights restored (or in the case of illegals granted)
  7. Several new service-corps will be created. The Green Corps will be engaged in maintaining our national parks and forests, cleaning up our brownfields, fighting forest fires, planting new forests and engaged in other conservation projects, and rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure. The Health Corps will assign MNS participants to staff inner-city hospitals, community aid stations, and rest homes for the elderly. The Ghetto Corps will be involved in helping to rebuild our urban centers and provide social services to the families of the inner city. The Peace Corps will be expanded twenty-fold and will be engaged in nation-building as well as its current mission. The Freedom Corps will continue in its current mission with many more people provided by MNS.

Now alot of people are opposed to the draft for various reasons. Some people claim that the draft is a form of involuntary servitude and is against the Constitution. Some people claim that the draft is an insult to those who chose to enlist voluntarly. Sope people claim that an all-volunteer military is superior to a conscript force and a draft will reduce the overall quality of our military. Some people say we don't need a large military and the trend is toward smaller forces with more high tech weaponry best used by volunteers. Here are our arguments for our program of UMT and MNS.

  1. UMT and MNS will expose everyone from all walks of life, rich and poor, black and white, North and South, Red State and Blue State, urban and rural, to the military and to each other. They will all get hardened together and recieve the stuff they aren't getting at home, school or church such as discipline, patriotism, and a foot-locker full of values.
  2. Benjamin Franklin once said "we shall all hang together or we will all hang separately. Nothing says "we are in this together" more than UMT and MNS. All too often, the burden of defending our society falls on 1/2 of one percent of our society with the remaining 99.5% reaping the benefits. Governor Mike Huckabee saw that in many churches, it is 10% of any congregation that serves while 90% reap the benefits of those who serve and saw the same for our society today. Everyone should step up to the plate and serve. Everyone should share in the sacrifice. It is unfair that 0.5% of the population is bearing the sacrifice of defending this great country. When a country goes to war, the whole country should go to war.
  3. We need a large military period. We should have a million troops in Iraq and a million troops in Afghanistan. In addition, we have to be prepared for future conflicts with Sudan, Somalia, Haiti, Venezuela, Mexico, Cuba, North Korea, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Libya, Burma, and maybe even with China and Russia. We also need to secure our borders. This requires a much larger army than we have now.
  4. While an all-volunteer force is superior to a conscript one and the conscript one is not the ideal, an all-volunteer force that is undermanned, overstretched, underequipped, underappreciated, and undersupplied is not the ideal either. An all-volunteer force that can't fill its ranks in a time of war is not superior to a conscript force.
  5. Decorated Vietnam War veteran Colonel David Hackworth commanded both conscripts and volunteers in Vietnam and said the conscripts fought just as hard if not more so than the volunteers. While the military has its fair-share of people who favor an all-volunteer military, there are those who also call for a return to the draft. To say that conscripts are not as good as soldiers as volunteers is an insult to those that were drafted into the military and fought honorably when they didn't want to.
  6. A conscript force doesn't mean we will have low morale or a low quality force. We should continue to pursue every technological advantage as well as maintain the high morale of our military. The Israeli Defense Force today and the West German military in the 1980s both have a program of UMT and their forces are probably just as powerful as ours on a man-per-man basis. The German Whermacht of the 1940s was a conscription-based military with a high morale, equipped with the latest technologies of its day, and held its own for five years. It took a conscript-based American military and its allies who used conscription to defeat it. True, many Americans immediately enlisted after Pearl Harbor, but after Pearl Harbor, the volunteer rates went down the military soon became a draft military. Ironically, the military that "lost" the Vietnam War (which it didn't really lose) was a military that was made up alot more of volunteers than draftees (however, many people enlisted in the military to avoid going into the infantry).
  7. While high-tech forces may devastate any army that opposes us today, you still need regular infantrymen and alot of them to hold the ground. Our military is awesome at waging the wars but has not done as well as a job as maintaining the peace. We defeated the Iraqi army in three weeks but it took us five years to pacify Iraq. Had we went in with a million troops, there would have been no insurgency and the rebuilding of Iraq would be well underway. The same goes for Afghanistan only that we would have destroyed the Taliban and have captured Osama Bin Ladden had we had a million troops in Afghanistan.
  8. In addition to our military, we have other manpower needs as well. Our urban police departments don't have enough cops, our rest homes lack people to staff them, our hopsitals lack health care workers, our schools lack teachers, this could be remedied by a program of MNS. Granted we also need to pay our police officers, firefighters, rescue workers, health care workers alot more, we also need a program of MNS to direct people into these career fields who would otherwise not consider them.
  9. There is a growing culture gap between our military and civilian sectors of society. UMT and MNS will narrow or eliminate that culture gap. In the 1940s and 1950s, employers knew what an XO or a company was when they interviewed veterans because they were veterans themselves. Now veterans have to explain what an XO or a company is to employers. There is also a growing difference in values between the military and civilian sectors of our society. We need UMT to harmonize those values. On top of that, when the military becomes more and more alien to the society it is taksed to defend, the civilan sector of society will begin to perceive the military as more and more as a threat.
  10. Libertarians and Constitutionalists argue that UMT and MNS is slavery and is illegal under our Constitution. First of all, I don't think the authors of the 13th amendment had in mind the abolition of the draft when they wrote the 13th amendment. Second of all, George Washington authored the National Defense Act of 1797 which required all Americans 18 and above to serve in the state militias. The late William F. Buckley who harbored many Libertarian tendencies argued for the reinstatment of the draft in his book "Gratitude". Bill Buckley argued that without a system of UMT and MNS, our nation would merely become a huge trading bazzar and that was not what the Founding Fathers had in mind.

So in conclusion, we need a program of UMT and MNS to rebuild our great military. However, in addition, we need UMT and MNS to make America a better nation and a better people. We need to remind ourselves that our freedom is not free but requires all of us to pay a price of sacrifice and eternal vigilance to maintain our way of life. We need UMT and MNS to remind us that with our way of life comes the duty to preserve it and defend it. An all-volunteer force may produce a better military. But UMT and MNS will produce better Americans and a America that will continue to be worth defending.

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