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2022-06-29 03:40:26

    Every branch of the U.S. military is struggling to meet its fiscal year 2022 recruiting goals, say multiple U.S. military and defense officials, and numbers obtained by NBC News show both a record low percentage of young Americans eligible to serve and an even tinier fraction willing to consider it.

    The officials said the Pentagon’s top leaders are now scrambling for ways to find new recruits to fill out the ranks of the all-volunteer force. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen Hicks consider the shortfall a serious issue, said the officials, and have been meeting on it frequently with other leaders.

    “This is the start of a long drought for military recruiting,” said Ret. Lt. Gen. Thomas Spoehr of the Heritage Foundation, a think tank. He said the military has not had such a hard time signing recruits since 1973, the year the U.S. left Vietnam and the draft officially ended. Spoehr said he does not believe a revival of the draft is imminent, but “2022 is the year we question the sustainability of the all-volunteer force.”

    The pool of those eligible to join the military continues to shrink, with more young men and women than ever disqualified for obesity, drug use or criminal records. Last month, Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville testified before Congress that only 23% of Americans ages 17-24 are qualified to serve without a waiver to join, down from 29% in recent years.

    An internal Defense Department survey obtained by NBC News found that only 9% of those young Americans eligible to serve in the military had any inclination to do so, the lowest number since 2007.

    The survey sheds light on how both Americans’ view of the military and the growing civilian-military divide may also be factors in slumping recruitment, and how public attitudes could cause recruiting struggles for years to come.

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    “2022 is the year we question the sustainability of the all volunteer force” is a deeply chilling statement though. They’re not thinking about maybe shrinking military activity or pulled ng out of more war. They WILL try to force people before that.

    I’m sick of having to argue that “trans women lose their “““biological advantage””” when they start E” as a way to try and overturn the bans in trans women in sport, as if testosterone magically makes you a world-class athlete and estrogen takes it all away. Fuck that. We need to go back to demanding thar sports stop being segregated by gender completely.