Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Response to Marine Wife and Mom

Thank you, Carrie (Dec. 9 0940) for your family's service to our country. Thank you also for your comments. We're actually in almost complete agreement. Please see also my response to Mikey (0853).

But on the subject of chickenhawks in general, I mean using that phrase in an argument against supporting the war on terror deserves some comment.

I've never used that phrase to argue against "supporting the war on terror," but only to argue that, if the war on terror is indeed worthy of support, why is it only worthy of support from a distance, rather than personally. Others have used it as described, and I don't agree with them.

We have an all volunteer force. It works as well as it does because there is no draft or any other forcible means of obtaining recruits. People re serving because they wat to . . . not because they have to. That's the way it should stay.

Our all volunteer force has worked as well as it has in the past precisely because people have served because they wanted to. [We're talking past tense here.] With stop-loss and all sorts of involuntary call-ups even after conclusion of one's military service obligations, that is no longer the case. Furthermore, the excellent quality of the current all-volunteer force reflects the recruiting environment in previous years. The current recruiting environment will be reflected in the quality of the force in future years. If you're not worried about current recruiting problems, well, you should be.

By the way, Karl, even though the Army recruiting goals were missed, the re-enlistment numbers are huge. I wonder what, in that fevered little brain of yours, you would make of that. It conveniently gets left out of most anti-victory arguments.

I've commented on re-enlistment below. As you undoubtedly know, military personnel, especially at junior levels, "flow through" the system. We don't have the same kind of quality people entering the military now that we have had in the past. The Army's authorized quota of Category IV recruits was recently doubled from 2% to 4%, but the October figures (which are seasonally adjusted down) show 12% of October recruits in this category. The Army refuses to disclose the comparable figure for November. This is not good. Is there a future Lynndie England in that cohort?

I fail to see how encouraging well qualified patriots to consider volunteering for military service is "anti-victory." Do you think that Jenna's beau Henry Hager should stay where he is? If so, please say so explicitly. I welcome your comments.

For the record, I am not "pro war." As a Marine wife of 20 years and a Marine reservist mom of one year, it would be insane for me to be "pro war."

I'm not "pro war" nor "anti war." But if we're going to go to war, let's do it right. And if we cannot do it right, for whatever reason, then we should have considered carefully whether to do it at all. Whether we like it or not, we're stuck in Iraq. How will our national leadership achieve success?

My husband served as a battalion commander in Iraq in 2004. My friends and husbands of friends are serving there now.

Thank you all for your service.

We are all not "pro war." We are Pro Victory. We are Pro Success. We are Pro Iraqi Democracy.

So are we.

We are Anti Defeatist.

So are we.

Anyway, Carrie, if you really want to characterize Operation Yellow Elephant as "defeatist" or something, and have read our OYE 101 posting to confirm what Operation Yellow Elephant is all about, please just let me know why the current and future leaders of our governing party should somehow be exempt - in your mind and opinion - from even considering personally serving in our military for this noble cause when they are clearly needed. Think about it.


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