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June 03, 2005
The 12,000, and More

12,000 dead. That's what I heard on NPR this morning.

12,000 Iraqis have died from "insurgent attacks" since the "new government" was elected in Iraq. (That's the figure the Iraqi government released, not from us counting those unimportant dead brown people.)

Hostility toward military recruiters is an old story now, but reading how activist parents are one of the biggest blocks recruiters face warms my heart. That old spirit of protest isn't dead...just dormant.

"They don't realize that they have a role in helping make the all-volunteer force successful," said Colonel Slotwinski, who retired in 2004. "If you don't, you're faced with the alternative, and the alternative is what they were opposed to the most, mandatory service."

Shorter: "Give us your children voluntarily or we'll come and take them.

Sheesh.

I sympathize with the military. Really I do. In ordinary circumstances, the "regular" military people have little or no influence over who they're sent to fight and recruiters shouldn't be made the targets of personal attacks.

On the other hand, the military needs to understand that one thing the all-volunteer army does is reflect the nation's willingness, or otherwise, to fight any particular war. After the disaster of the last election cycle, people are beginning to show their opposition to this war.

I understand that the military's desperation for bodies (and money) is forcing them to some unwanted cutbacks.

On the other hand, the truth about how we're behaving in Iraq doesn't make the military look any more attractive.

(You know...if I spent my "down time" at the office, that time I spend sitting on hold or whatever, working instead of blogging....)

Posted by AnneZook at 11:03 AM


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