FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

The Call to Empire Act

As Rummy and the guys over at the Pentagon know, reinstituting the draft is a bad idea. Last time young people were forced into the military meat grinder (during the Vietnam War) many responded by fragging (either shooting or throwing grenades at) officers. Morale was dismal, as should have been expected considering the depravity and organized mass murder soldiers were forced to partake in. Not long ago Rumsfeld admitted the Pentagon is not interested in drafting kids from the traditional pool — the working class and poor of urban and rural America — when he said Vietnam era draftees added “no value, no advantage” to the military. No doubt, as well, the current crop of officers don’t relish the prospect of a return to fragging.

Enter the so-called “Call to Service Act,” billed as “the most important change in America’s military recruitment policy since the end of the draft.” It is designed to allow “patriotic” young Americans to join the military for 18 months of “active service” instead of the standard four years. “This would make enlisting in the military a decision upper middle-class youth could identify with,” opined Charles Moskos, a Northwestern University military sociologist who developed the scheme. “Today, they don’t even know anyone in the military.”

Well, Chuck, that’s because the average upper middle-class youth usually doesn’t hobnob with the working class and poor who comprise Rumsfeld’s and Dubya’s grunts.

It didn’t take John McCain, R-Ariz., and Evan Bayh, D- Ind., long to gush over this harebrained scheme to populate the sagging military as it gears up for endless wars of conquest in the name of transnational corporations and rich folks with a stake in Lockheed Martin and other death merchants. “No national endeavor requires as much unshakable resolve as war,” McCain said. “Before we enter one, we should know that most Americans share the commitment and are prepared to make the personal sacrifices it entails.” Translation: it’s probably a good idea to do a more effective job at brainwashing the middle class so they will donate (i.e., “sacrifice”) their kids to Bush’s envisioned future of perpetual war.

As for the required propaganda barrage required to sell what should be entitled the Call to Empire Act, consider the following:

“Disparities in military service can undermine the civic ethic of equal sacrifice, undercut public support for military campaigns, and weaken the effectiveness of civilian oversight,” a report issued by the Progressive Policy Institute, a think tank for “centrist” Democrats concludes.

Naturally, donating your children to wars devised by chicken hawks who never saw fit to join the military (like Cheney, they had “other priorities”) should be viewed by the public as a “civic ethic of equal sacrifice” instead of what it really is: a con game perpetuated by the ruling elite on those they view as expendable pawns. How many senators do you think will be urging their loved ones to join up for 18 months of “equal sacrifice?” None, nada, zip. As for “civilian oversight” of the military, one has to wonder what planet the “centrist” Democrats at the Progressive Policy Institute came from. There’s no such thing.

Hopefully, not many people will be fooled by this nonsense. Military recruiters already have unprecedented access to America’s youth as they attempt to coerce them into becoming cannon fodder for Bush’s New World Order of Shock and Awe Mass Murder on a global scale. If they have any doubt about what happens to far too many veterans, they may want to have a chat with the homeless Vietnam vet down on the corner or one of the hundreds of thousands of veterans suffering from Gulf War Syndrome.

Bush can’t run his all-war, all-the-time scheme if people refuse to join the military. As the Call to Empire Act demonstrates, the military is desperate to replenish its ranks with fresh meat. Rumsfeld likes to brag America can run multiple wars simultaneously, but if young people refuse to join up the war machine will eventually sputter and grind to a halt. The only alternative will be a return to the draft, which the Pentagon fears almost as much as it fears budget cuts and thumbs down to frivolous weapon systems.

If the draft returns, fragging may also return — and in a big way.

KURT NIMMO is a photographer and multimedia developer in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Visit his excellent online gallery. He can be reached at: nimmo@zianet.com

We highly recommend regular visits to Nimmo’s website, Another Day in the Empire

 

More articles by:

KURT NIMMO is a photographer and multimedia developer in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Visit his excellent no holds barred blog at www.kurtnimmo.com/ . Nimmo is a contributor to Cockburn and St. Clair’s, The Politics of Anti-Semitism. A collection of his essays for CounterPunch, Another Day in the Empire, is now available from Dandelion Books. He can be reached at: nimmo@zianet.com

Weekend Edition
February 22, 2019
Friday - Sunday
Timothy M. Gill
Why is the Venezuelan Government Rejecting U.S. Food Supplies?
John Pilger
The War on Venezuela is Built on Lies
Andrew Levine
Ilhan Omar Owes No Apologies, Apologies Are Owed Her
Jeffrey St. Clair
That Magic Feeling: the Strange Mystique of Bernie Sanders
David Rosen
Will Venezuela Crisis Split Democrats?
Nick Pemberton
Donald Trump’s National Emergency Is The Exact Same As Barack Obama’s National Emergency
Paul Street
Buried Alive: The Story of Chicago Police State Racism
Rob Seimetz
Imagined Communities and Omitting Carbon Emissions: Shifting the Discussion On Climate Change
Ramzy Baroud
Russian Mediation: The Critical Messages of the Hamas-Fatah Talks in Moscow
Michael Welton
Dreaming Their Sweet Dreams: a Peace to End Peace
Robert Hunziker
Global Warming’s Monster Awakens
Huma Yasin
Chris Christie Spins a Story, Once Again
Ron Jacobs
Twenty-First Century Indian Wars
Robert Fantina
The U.S. and Venezuela: a Long History of Hostility
Lance Olsen
Climate and Money: a Tale of Two Accounts
Louis Proyect
El Chapo and the Path Taken
Fred Gardner
“She’s Willie Brown’s Protogé!” The Rise of Kamala Harris
Kollibri terre Sonnenblume
Biomass is Not “Green”: an Interview With Josh Schlossberg
John Feffer
Answering Attacks on the Green New Deal
W. T. Whitney
US Racism and Imperialism Fuel Turbulence in Haiti
Kim Ives
How Trump’s Attacks on Venezuela Sparked a Revolution in Haiti
Mike Ferner
What War Films Never Show You
Lawrence Wittner
Should the U.S. Government Abide by the International Law It Has Created and Claims to Uphold?
James Graham
A Slow Motion Striptease in France
Dave Lindorff
Could Sanders 2.0 Win It All, Getting the Democratic Nomination and Defeating Trump?
Jill Richardson
Take It From Me, Addiction Doesn’t Start at the Border
Yves Engler
Canada and the Venezuela Coup Attempt
Tracey L. Rogers
We Need a New Standard for When Politicians Should Step Down
Gary Leupp
The Sounds of Silence
Dan Bacher
Appeals Court Rejects Big Oil’s Lawsuit Against L.A. Youth Groups, City of Los Angeles
Robert Koehler
Are You White, Black or Human?
Ralph Nader
What are Torts? They’re Everywhere!
Cesar Chelala
The Blue Angel and JFK: One Night in Camelot
Sarah Schulz
Immigrants Aren’t the Emergency, Naked Capitalism Is
James Campbell
In the Arctic Refuge, a Life Force Hangs in the Balance
Matthew Stevenson
Pacific Odyssey: Corregidor’s Iconography of Empire
Jonah Raskin
The Muckraking Novelist Dashiell Hammett: A Red Literary Harvest
Kim C. Domenico
Revolutionary Art and the Redemption of the Local
Paul Buhle
Life and Crime in Blue Collar Rhode Island
Eugene Schulman
J’Accuse!
Nicky Reid
Zionists are the Most Precious Snowflakes
Jim Goodman
The Green New Deal Outlines the Change Society Needs
Thomas Knapp
Judicial Secrecy: Where Justice Goes to Die
February 21, 2019
Nick Pemberton
Israel, Venezuela and Nationalism In The Neoliberal Era
Chris Orlet
The Bill and Melinda Gates’ Fair Taxation Scaremongering Tour
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail