Dana Milbank beclowns himself in the never-ending leftie quest to call for a draft. While some in government cling to the lie that military pay will “destroy the DoD”. Milbank, Tom Ricks, disgraced former general Stanley McChrystal. All trying to make good and “help” America.
Well, if they though that the right and those of us in the military would join them they were wrong. In fact many have begun to dogpile on this forward into the past approach to the so called “civil-military divide”.
Outsidethebeltway.com’s James Joyner has some choice words for them:
That few in Congress have served in the military is lamentable for many reasons, the most obvious of which is that it not only makes them less intimately familiar with the demands of combat but also tends to undermine civil-military relations by making our civilian leaders afraid to challenge our military brass. But the notion that having worn a military uniform somehow makes one immune from partisanship and foolishness is absurd.
Milbank provides no evidence for this assertion, by the way, other than the fact that Congress seems to be more dysfunctional that it used to be.
Jonn Lilyea pulls no punches in calling a draft a horrible idea. How will we get a spoiled rotten generation through boot camp? Can we punish the “gold sticker participation trophy” kids?
No. We’ll just end up with a repeat of McNamara’s 100,000. An ill fated attempt to “educate” the young (mostly men unless the left wants to re-write the law). And given that their time in service would be two years, not much will be gotten from draftees with no sense of commitment or pride in country. And as Lilyea points out, an education, sense of civic pride are the jobs of the public education system. If that doesn’t work boot camp won’t save the little darlings. In today’s military Forest Gump is roadkill.
But I’m equally positive that prior service not only doesn’t need to be a requirement, but that it shouldn’t be. We keep the leadership of the civilian and military worlds separate for a reason, and we keep a very close eye on the one place where they overlap. (That being the dual nature of the President of the United States also being the Commander in Chief of the armed forces.)
Some in the left are horrified that voluntary military service is a tradition. GASP! they say. Hogwash. Either we have a first class military and honor our promise to those in uniform or we surrender the US to being a 3rd world country.
I also think there are prices too high to pay to save the United States. Conscription is one of them. Conscription is slavery, and I don’t think that any people or nation has a right to save itself at the price of slavery for anyone, no matter what name it is called. We have had the draft for twenty years now; I think this is shameful. If a country can’t save itself through the volunteer service of its own free people, then I say : Let the damned thing go down the drain!
– Robert A. Heinlein Guest of Honor Speech at the 29th World Science Fiction Convention, Seattle, Washington (1961