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The "back door draft"

Discussion in 'Legal' started by FW, Oct 3, 2004.

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  1. FW

    FW Member

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    Did anyone else catch Kerry mentioning the "back door draft" during the first debate? It certainly wasn't discussed hardly at all. This is nothing new, Kerry and others have made the accusation before. It's just unfortunate Bush didn't say anything about it.

    Apparently, extending enlistments, activating the IRR, or even using the reserves and national guard for any significant period of time is now a "back door draft".

    How is this in any way a "back door draft"? These people voluntarily signed contracts. Activating reserves, extentions, etc., are terms of the contract.

    What do these people think the purpose of the military is?
     
  2. Grey54956

    Grey54956 Member

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    I have no sympathy for anyone on IRR, in the Nat'l Guard, or reserves.

    You are correct, they voluntarily signed those contracts in exchange for numerous benefits, good pensions, and college tuition. I had a boss who was inactive reserve. He got a nice healthy pension, so he didn't really need to work anymore, but did so for extra cash and to get out of the house. He always boasted that the pension and benefits are great.

    Anyone who signs up for military service should expect that at some time in the future, they may be sent to war, period. I dislike it when folks say, "well, I never really though we would go to war, I signed up so I could afford school." Send that man to the front, dammit. And "conscientious objectors" should be discharged and forced to pay back any and all benefits.
     
  3. reagansquad

    reagansquad Member

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    I think he was talking about stop loss, not calling up the guard.
     
  4. Hawkmoon

    Hawkmoon Member

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    Stop loss is a back door draft. It has been a good many years since I enlisted, and of course the terms of the "contract" may have changed. On the other hand, maybe during Vietnam we were potentially subject to stop loss but didn't know it, since it was never used.

    Personally, if I had signed up for a hitch (or more than one, in many cases), had done my time, and was due to get OUT and go back to being a person, I would be plenty upset if they decided I couldn't leave when my term of enlistment ended.

    I suppose that's in the fine print, somewhere, but I'll bet the recruiters never mention it, and I doubt most of the people who enlisted knew about it ... until it whacked them upside the head.

    So why is it a back door draft? A draft calls on people to serve in the military who don't really want to be there. The same is true with troops whose enlistments have ended, and who chose NOT to reenlist because they wanted to become civilians. How is forcing them to stay in when they want to be out any different from a draft?
     
  5. DMF

    DMF Member

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    Stop loss is in affect a back door draft. When someone enlists or gets commissioned onto active duty, and signs a contract that says they can only be retained on active duty during time of war, yet stop loss keeps them there when Congress hasn't declared war, then it is no longer voluntary service.

    We've debated this before, and I think Bush was smart to leave it alone because this is one area where Kerry actually is correct.
     
  6. FW

    FW Member

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    Moral of the story: Read what you sign, don't sign if you don't understand, and don't beleive everything recruiters say.
     
  7. Uncle Ethan

    Uncle Ethan Member

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    Kerry was right?:what:
     
  8. benewton

    benewton Member

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    Hawkmoon:

    Did my time at the end of the Viet deal: draft lottery number wasn't close to reasonable.... On the other hand, did my time in Germany, which I though then, and still do, should be used as a strategic nuclear weapons test site...

    (By the way, has ANY ballistic missle been launched and tested with a real nuke?)

    Anyway, I knew then of a couple who were "held over".

    To say I would have been p*ssed would have been a very large understatement.

    I'd also have ensured, short of the usual judicial and non judical punishments, that the time I was forced to spend with them accomplished nothing for "their" side.


    When I returned to the world, I found out that I was lucky enough to be "available" for an involuntary trip with the Army reserve to Alaska. Can you spell motor pool guard in January in Alaska???

    Ended up doing a few years in the NG, which was a joke compared to the real fun and games, at least at that point.

    No, they don't highlight their little details during the "enlistment" process, and, while I didn't for the old girlfriends either, I'm afraid that I believe that once you've served the time you signed for, active, that should be it.


    FWIW:

    Way back in the 80's, just after I started my first professional employment, the rumor came around, for what reason I've forgotten, that the feds had decided to draft veterans, for whatever the cause of the day was. There were not then, and are not now, all that many engineers who are vets, and somebody asked about it...

    I said I doubt that they'd try it, since the vets not only knew what they'd be getting into, but they already knew how to use a rifle, and, in my time, most probably had one.
     
  9. JohnBT

    JohnBT Member

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    I thought he voted to fund the war. He's in the Senate, right? Now he says they didn't vote? What did he think he was voting for? What a clown.

    John
     
  10. goon

    goon Member

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    Didn't Kerry say something during the debate about adding two more divisions?
    Where is he going to get those soldiers? Do they go on trees?
    I don't know if I heard that wrong or not, but that is how I took it.

    I will say that it is a lousy deal to sign on for 4 years and then end up not being able to go home. I know what it was like to be a soldier, and eventhough I was never in combat, I really did value the day I got to go home. It is wrong to just strip that away.
     
  11. Lone_Gunman

    Lone_Gunman Member

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    We can't expand the empire without troops.
     
  12. Destructo6

    Destructo6 Member

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    I was fully aware and generally prepared to be called up, if needs be, during my IRR time. It sucks for them, but they did sign the contract.
     
  13. tulsamal

    tulsamal Member

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    The military is facing two very different issues here.

    1) People with special skills. Whether they are doctors, lawyers, engineers, pilots, whatever. Those are the people that the military tries to retain in any way possible. Of course these people could make a much better living in the civilian world and without being shot at so it can get difficult.

    2) Just recruiting basic soldiers. This isn't a problem. But of course these soldiers are usually straight out of high school and need a lot of training before they are any use to anybody. But these are the masses you have to have in a fighting force. I was just watching a news show last month that said the OK Marines had set a recruitment record for the month. And it was the 44th record month in a row.

    Lots of young people are perfectly ready to join. We cut six divisions out of the Army during the Clinton Administration. (With the GOP controlling Congress so they had a hand in it.) That's the real problem. Our military isn't large enough in sheer numbers to do all the things the leaders want to do. We need to expand the manpower numbers. Whether that means two divisions or more, I leave that to the military brass to figure out.

    Gregg
     
  14. MarkDido

    MarkDido Member

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    There are several ways to expand the military without resorting to a draft.

    The first would be to increase end strength. Clinton cut more military personnel during his reign than most countries have in their military.
    Train and retain top performers

    The second way would be to increase the number of years personnel could remain in the military.

    I retired as a Chief Petty Officer (E-7) in 1995 after 23 years of service in the Navy. Was I ready for a hearing aid or social security? Hell no. I retired at the ripe old age of 39. The military matures young men and women much faster than the civilian sector.

    A 21 year old in the military can conceivably have more responsibility and authority than most 40 year old civilians. It doesn't make sense to put them out to pasture when they're at the top of their game.

    While your typical 19 year old civilian is deciding on what body part to get pierced next, his Navy counterpart is responsible for a multi-million dollar tactical aircraft, weapons or computer system..

    Lastly, stop treating the military as a gigantic social experiment for every cockamamie theory or program that someone with PhD behind their name dreams up and uses the military as a giant petri dish.

    Just my 2 cents.
     
  15. Hawkmoon

    Hawkmoon Member

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    You must have been in when I was in. After I was released from active duty, I spent an additional two years assigned to the Individual Ready Reserves, and then two years beyond that assigned to the Inactive Reserves, before I finally received my discharge ending my military service obligation.

    I don't know how it works under the new all-volunteer army. I don't think they have 2-year enlistments. In my day, draftees had 2-year hitches and enlistees had 3-year hitches. The total commitment was 6 years for both (active duty and reserves combined).

    In my simple mind, it's one thing to spend your agreed-upon hitch on active duty and then be assigned to the IRR knowing you can be activated but only in time of national emergency (or war). That's a different animal from doing your hitch and being told at the end of the agreed-upon time "Oh, sorry, you don't get to go home." I would really like to see the documents people sign when they enlist these days to find out if this little ploy is hidden in the fine print, or if it being unilaterally (and illegally) imposed on our guys over in the sand box.
     
  16. MeekandMild

    MeekandMild Member

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    Interesting thread. I'll bet Mr. Kerry never mentioned the long list of reservists who resigned under the Clinton regime. I for one would have stayed in forever and have been proud to spend more time on active duty, if it hadn't been for the sad fact that in 1993 I lost all confidence in the top link of the chain of command. today I talked to a guy who resigned his commision in 1999. Same song, different verse.
     
  17. Destructo6

    Destructo6 Member

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    I did a 4X4 (4 active, 4 IRR) enlistment from 1991-1999, including IRR. I probably would have stayed, too, had Clinton not been in office. Promotion from E4 to E5 in the Hospital Corps was but a pipe dream for most. 150% manned overall, but only about 50% manned in the FMF.
     
  18. RevDisk

    RevDisk Member

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    Compare the number of divisions Bush Senior cut, and how many Clinton cut. (It wasn't six.) You might be in for a bit of a surprise.



    The Stop loss program is iffy. I read my entire contract front to back. Call ups during the IRR are legal, and spelled out in detail in every contract. Stop loss is technically not supported in one's contract, except for certain circumstances. State of Emergency, during a deployment, etc.

    Technically, there is no declared war and there is no state of emergency. So... technically... the current batches of Stop Loss orders are without valid legal backings. Try to fight it, and you best have a damn good lawyer.

    Morally, I dislike Stop Loss orders when there is no declared war or state of national emergency. It is a violation of the contract signed during enlistment.
     
  19. jojosdad

    jojosdad Member

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    RevDisc -
    What exactly were the respective numbers of troops cut during the terms of George H and Clinton.
    What are your sources?
     
  20. RevDisk

    RevDisk Member

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    jojosdad, my coworkers. Clinton cut down the Army from 12 divisions to 10 by 1999. Cheney (Yes, same guy) cut the Army from 18 to 12 active divisions by 1996. The exact dates are a bit hard to track down as it takes a while to gut the strongest military in the world. Bush Sr gutted the military after the Gulf War.

    He annoyed the gunnies and the military voters, which probably is what caused him to lose to Clinton. To be fair, the killing of all EIGHT of those divisions took a long time and stretched out under both regimes. One could argue that Clinton didn't stop the process or reverse it, so he should be blamed for the actions of a Republican President.
     
  21. Jim March

    Jim March Member

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    They're actually LOOKING for gays now?

    :confused:
     
  22. DMF

    DMF Member

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    The problem is some folks have been or are being retained past both their active duty and IRR commitments. ie, beyond what they agreed to in the contract.
     
  23. R.H. Lee

    R.H. Lee Member

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    The 'prosecution' of this war is the problem. The administration shows contempt for our military men and women every time they accede to a 'ceasefire' or neglect to flatten a building containing the enemy, simply because it is a so-called 'holy place'. Peace will come only through victory, and victory is delayed and denied and frustrated daily by equivocating decisions designed to be viewed as politically correct. :barf:
     
  24. moa

    moa Member

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    I briefly heard some story on the morning on TV ABC network news that the military is threatening troops with being sent to Iraq if they do not re-enlist.

    Anybody know anything about that? I do not trust anything ABC says.
     
  25. ProGlock

    ProGlock Member

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    That in and of itself is the problem. Our government can declare a national emergency, they just don't have to tell anyone about it.
     
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