[Grovenet] Fw: Too Few, Yet Too Many
Ron D'Eau Claire
ron at cobi.biz
Wed Jun 1 10:14:31 PDT 2005
It's an excellent analysis, Geri! Thank you.
One point he doesn't touch upon is the effect on a free country of having a
"professional" (he says "all volunteer") Army.
Is it a good idea?
Let's consider what a professional Army is.
It is a career for many people. The top echelons of those career people make
very good money, and the money they make is greatly increased by the amount
of combat they see. No high-level military officer expects to see promotions
unless we're at war.
They hold the keys to our arsenal. That's what scares a lot of people who
keep guns. We live in freedom only with the consent of a professional,
well-armed army. And our freedom lasts only as long as that professional
army decides we can keep it. That's why revolutions and military juntas are
so common in countries who maintain large professional armies.
America's defense against such a military was the "citizen soldier". The
idea was that all American citizens (men at least) were also soldiers in
time of need. We would hold only a small skeleton army in times of peace and
recruit from the ranks of the civilian population in times of crisis.
When it became apparent in the early days of WWII that it took far too long
to train a civilian population to soldier, it was decided to created a large
ready reserve and maintain a draft that mandated a minimum military duty
time that would train every able-bodied American male for military service.
That way, civilians would all have the basic understanding and much of the
essential instruction needed to move quickly back into military activities
in time of need.
Since the bulk of the military were the very citizens the military are there
to protect, the idea of a junta was extremely unlikely.
Now we've reversed that. We're trying to hire some professionals to take
care of the dirty work. We throw 'em the keys to our arsenals, even our
nuclear arsenals, and tell them to keep us 'safe' but don't bother us asking
for help such as a draft or other sacrifices.
I wonder if we're as safe as we think we are?
Ron D'Eau Claire
From: grovenet-bounces at rdrop.com [mailto:grovenet-bounces at rdrop.com] On
Behalf Of Geri
Sent: Wednesday, June 01, 2005 9:49 AM
Subject: [Grovenet] Fw: Too Few, Yet Too Many
The New York Times
May 30, 2005
by Paul Krugman
"One of the more bizarre aspects of the Iraq war has been President Bush's
repeated insistence that his generals tell him they have enough troops. Even
more bizarrely, it may be true - I mean, that his generals tell him that
they have enough troops, not that they actually have enough. An article in
yesterday's Baltimore Sun explains why."
The rest of the item is here:
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