Backdoor Draft

From USA Today:

A veteran of the first Persian Gulf War is suing the Army after it ordered him to report for duty 13 years after he was honorably discharged from active duty and eight years after he left the reserves.

Kauai resident David Miyasato received word of his reactivation in September, but says he believes he completed his eight-year obligation to the Army long ago.

“I was shocked,” Miyasato said Friday. “I never expected to see something like that after being out of the service for 13 years.”

Make no doubt about it – these involuntary recalls are exactly a backdoor draft. These men and women affected have already served their time defending this country, many of them putting themselves in harm’s way. And now they’re being told “it isn’t enough.” Oh puh-lease.

But the question becomes, what will we do in the future? Look, as a liberal American, I hoped for years before September 11th that we’d deliver a good ole’ ass kickin’ to the fundamentalist Taliban in Afghanistan, and I remember turning on CNN that night to pictures of the Northern Alliance shelling Kabul. Make no mistake – I have many complaints about our Commander-in-Chief, but to my estimation, the invasion of Afghanistan wasn’t one of them.

The invasion of Iraq, however, was, and with every dead American, and with every report of lootings going unhindered, of arms dumps raided, of politics trumping common sense, of abuses, of the lack of responsibility from those in command, with all of this, is it any surprise that those who make up the bulk of our armed forces are noticing?

According to General Peter Pace, Vice Chairman of the JCS, recruitment was down 23%, including in the National Guard. Folks – let’s face it, the US military is undermanned. If we’re going to keep our troop levels in Afghanistan and Iraq where we need them, we’re either going to have to completely abandon any secondary missions elsewhere throughout the world, but we’re also going to have to come to grips with the dreadful realization that all we can do with Iran or North Korea is glare at them.

Maybe throw a rock or two.

So, looking at this situation (yes, you can probably accuse me of being ‘grim’), the question becomes, what do we do? We could always leave Iraq. Well, no, we can’t. When we invaded Iraq, we became responsible for Iraq’s security. Iraq isn’t secure, and withdrawing will leave the country in a worse state than we found it, not to mention reinforcing the notion to Osama and his goonies that the United States, indeed, is a paper tiger.

Or we could have a draft. Unpleasant? No more unpleasant than dragging veterans kicking and screaming back into combat zones. Here’s something fun to chew on – if there is a draft in these next few years, don’t think it’ll only be your son or your brother or nephew being called up. There are many positions in the military that can be filled by a woman – it’ll be your son & your daughter our government will put in harm’s way, to defend this nation.

There’s nothing shameful with defending this nation. What is shameful is lying to us to drag us into a war that didn’t need to be fought.

And I’m not talking about the war on terrorism, here.