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The Student News Site of Coral Glades High School

The Prowl

The Student News Site of Coral Glades High School

The Prowl

The Student News Site of Coral Glades High School

The Prowl

Do Citizens Want to Join the U.S. Military?

Photo Credits: Taken From BBC News. Photo from the article: US Army ‘to cut 40,000 troops by the end of 2017’.

Over the course of 200 years, the United States Military has been in a large amount of conflicts, some more brutal than others, some more successful than others. Now in 2023, the US Military is currently suffering a recruiting crisis, so the question remains, do people want to join the US Military?

Firstly, why is there a recruiting crisis in the first place. Now it is easy to understand problems like companies offering more enticing benefits than the military. 

Yet there are more complex problems as reported by the Pentagon as of 2022. 77% of youth 16 to 24 years old aren’t qualified for military service without waivers. Also, 44% of youth can’t join at all, due to obesity. 

It was also mentioned by the Pentagon that 52% of Gen Z haven’t even considered the military as an employment option. This shows one of the biggest problems in the US Military, that being the long term effects after going into the military. 

In 2022 as well, according to the Veterans Affairs Department’s National Center for PTSD, 11% to 20% of Veterans who fought in Iraq and in Afghanistan have PTSD. The veterans may be home. Yet some continue to fight even so. Lets not forget homeless veterans. 

According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, there are 33,129 veterans currently homeless, most not having a place suitable for human habitation. 

Besides all that, there’s also recent history, take a look at Afghanistan. If you don’t know, we invaded Afghanistan to crush the members of Al Qaeda who were taking refuge there thanks to the Taliban. We occupied the country and replaced the Taliban with a western stylized government. 

Over the years of the Bush, Obama, and Trump Presidencies, they have seen varying levels of commitment to Afghanistan and the fighting of the insurgents. Bush had taken a land war approach, committing thousands of men and equipment to the job. 

Obama went and used drone strikes to deal with high level targets while decreasing the number of men in Afghanistan. Yet it would be Trump who began to pull out of Afghanistan and began negotiations with the Taliban for peace. 

Since he only had one term, he didn’t finish and Biden finally got a peace deal between the Taliban and the Afghani government, yet he made one fatal move, which is trusting the Taliban and the will of the Afghani government. 

You see, right after signing the deal, Biden began a pullout of US troops in Afghanistan, but they left way too quickly leaving behind a lot of valuable equipment, so the Taliban, spotting opportunity, took these bases filled with equipment. 

Then the very corrupt government and its army had fallen apart almost immediately. The President evacuated and the Taliban were closing in on Kabul, forcing the US to make a massive airlift, one of the largest airlifts in history. 

Even so, they left behind a lot of people who had worked with the Afghani government or were liberal in any sort of way against the Taliban. They were either imprisoned or executed. 

Even Brown University states that over 20 years of the War on Terror has led to 8 trillion dollars spent on it and 900,000 deaths in 80 countries. Apparently 2.3 trillion dollars was spent on Afghanistan and Pakistan with Iraq and Syria having racked up 2.1 trillion dollars. 

Then there’s the input from people here at Coral Glades. When I had asked people if they would join the US Military, why or why not, they had responded with varying answers, but all really the same. 

Brayden Weiler said “No I only fight for christ” and Andres Prado said “No, because as soon as I get out of that camp I’m getting shot in the face.” Both guys are in the 9th grade. 

Luke Pfeiffer in the 12th grade “No, because as a human being I wouldnt think I would be suited enough to battle because I wouldn’t have the toughness that certain people have and the commitment and also I wouldn’t be able to survive in the harsh living conditions that warriors have to survive in.” 

Finally, I got the response “Not in particular since the military officers there are below IQ average so I don’t really want to join in that case.” From Juan Llovet in the 10th grade 

You see, Americans have no appetite for war, not after the countless failures of the government. Poor benefits, PTSD, homelessness, and losing wars aren’t going to drive people to sign up for Uncle Sam. Now the government is at a crossroads, they can either change and live or stay the same and fall into oblivion, hopefully the former.

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About the Contributor
  • Name: Robert Iannacone
  • Grade: 10
  • School Club/Sports involvement: Debate and Journalism
  • Fun Fact: I like politics

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