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View Full Version : U.S. Soldiers Re-Enlist in Strong Numbers


FishForLunch
04-23-2004, 06:13 PM
But some democrats want to restart the draft. Sometimes I wish this election season will end now and we can get on with crushing terrorism.
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Apr 23, 2:24 PM (ET)

By KIMBERLY HEFLING


FORT CAMPBELL, Ky. (AP) - Despite the shrapnel wounds Staff Sgt. William Pinkley suffered during his tour in Iraq, the 26-year-old is joining other soldiers who are re-enlisting at rates that exceed the retention goals set by the Pentagon.

As of March 31 - halfway through the Army's fiscal year - 28,406 soldiers had signed on for another tour of duty, topping the six-month goal of 28,377. The Army's goal is to re-enlist 56,100 soldiers by the end of September.

Pinkley re-enlisted for three more years, citing the camaraderie and the challenge of a new assignment.

"To come out and work with you guys every day, it's a good feeling," Pinkley, 26, told his 101st Airborne Division buddies during the ceremony earlier this month. His wife, Kimberly, watched with a smile, their toddler in her arms.

"It's a very positive retention picture at this point," said Lt. Col. Franklin Childress, an Army public affairs officer. The Army had nearly a half-million active-duty soldiers.

However, Childress cautioned that factors such as an improved economy and the Pentagon's decision to keep about 20,000 troops in Iraq for longer than a year to help quell the violence could change the picture.

Some contend a poor job market and re-enlistment bonuses worth thousands of dollars are keeping soldiers in the Army. Col. Joseph Anderson, commander of the 101st's 2nd Brigade, said it is more about camaraderie, patriotism and duty.

"They've had a personally rewarding and professionally developing experience," Anderson said. "I think they've formed some bonds that are going to last a lifetime. It tends to make them want to stay."

The only Army division to not meet its goal in the six-month period was the 82nd Airborne Division, whose members have been sent to fight in Afghanistan and Iraq since the Sept. 11 attacks. The division wanted to re-enlist 1,221 soldiers, but got only 1,136.

At Fort Campbell, soldiers from the 101st spent seven months in Afghanistan after the Sept. 11 attacks. The entire division of about 20,000 soldiers was sent to Iraq last year for major combat, and the last planeload returned home in March. A grueling year in Iraq claimed the lives of 61 Fort Campbell soldiers, and hundreds more were wounded.

In the six-month period ending March 31, the 101st topped its goal of re-enlisting 1,591. It got 1,737 to sign up for another tour of duty.

Fort Campbell leaders said their numbers debunk the theory that yearlong combat-zone assignments - not typically used since Vietnam - and the casualties in Iraq would discourage soldiers from re-enlisting.

Shelley MacDermid, co-director of the Military Family Research Institute at Purdue University, said it is too early to know what effect the war in Iraq will have long-term on recruitment and retention.

"If the war were to end tomorrow, the impact on re-enlistments likely would be very different than three years from now," MacDermid said.

Some soldiers, of course, are getting out, for themselves or for their families. ("There's a saying in the Army - 'You enlist a soldier, but you re-enlist a family' - and that's true," said Command Sgt. Maj. James Plemons, who oversees retention for the 101st.)

Staff Sgt. Bobby Miller, 31, has spent more than 10 years in the Army said he is getting out when his term ends in less than a year. The 101st soldier has served in Kosovo, Afghanistan and Iraq and said he has barely seen his wife and two children in the past few years.

"It's not that we don't want to deploy; I'd like a little more stabilization," Miller said.

Pinkley was riding in a Humvee the day after Thanksgiving when it was rocked by a bomb. He suffered internal injuries and is still healing from the shrapnel wounds. He said he and his wife discussed for more than a year whether he should re-enlist.

In the end, despite his pain and his wife's fear for his life, they decided it was best for both of them, she said. His next position will be as a drill sergeant at Fort Benning, Ga.

"I'm excited about it," his wife said. "It's something he wanted to do. We told him we'd be supportive of him whatever he wanted." As for the possibility of her husband being sent off to a combat zone again, she said: "We would definitely do it again if we had to."

dude1394
05-13-2004, 07:16 PM
MORE ON MILITARY RECRUITING, from Jim Dunnigan:

The U.S. Army, which is taking the bulk of the casualties in Iraq, is still getting more volunteers than it needs. Standards have remained high, but the numbers needed have gone up as well. . . .

There may yet be a decline in volunteers, and the army is paying close attention to recruiting efforts in order to detect any problems early, so they can try and counter them. One thing the army has noted is the increasing number of volunteers who are joining up not for the educational benefits or the money. Now a major incentive is patriotism. Many young Americans believe that Islamic radicals are a real threat to the United States and want to do something about it. But in past wars, this sort of enthusiasm diminished as the war went on. Historically, after three years, the number of volunteers declined dramatically. But in those past wars, mainly the Civil War and World War II, the casualties were high. This is not the case in Iraq, a war with historically very low casualties.

I'm glad to hear that people are watching this closely. Dunnigan notes that we haven't fought a major war with a volunteer army in over 150 years, so this is very much uncharted territory.

Thank the lord for the red states and dubya....

dude1394
05-13-2004, 07:43 PM
Hooo-Rahh..

http://www.kdhnews.com/update/photo2.jpg

reeds
05-13-2004, 09:04 PM
GOOD- at least they will volunteer to die instead of being forced to...so far anyway..

Correct- i Didnt say volunteer to die for our country..thats not the case in Iraq

Murphy3
05-13-2004, 09:07 PM
Is it possible to just send people on the far left to Iraq?

LRB
05-13-2004, 09:09 PM
A thin green line is all that allows you to keep having your freedom to say the things you do. Seems to be you should get down on your knees and kiss the @$$ of every soldier, sailor, marine, and airman who puts their life on the line to insure your comfy and safe life and your right to write about how you're glad they're volunteering to die. That's downright sick and pathetic.

Thank God for the young men and women of our armed forces. May He watch over them and their famlies.

dude1394
05-13-2004, 09:23 PM
Reeds is just lucky that this board doesn't treat folks the same was as those wunnerful liberals do at du. He would have been gone a long time ago.

Maybe you could volunteer for something to help your country too reeds, oh I don't know play in traffic or something like that.

ItalianMobbstah187
05-14-2004, 02:24 PM
Murphy, I've seen a picture of you, you'd turn from your normal shade of red to purple if you spent a day in Iraq buddy. I come from a military family, it's no joke man, and I don't appreciate your comment.

Send just the far left? Hell no, they won't do sh%t for our country....I want the people over there who are willing to fight for our country, and that's what we got right now, keep it that way.

u2sarajevo
05-14-2004, 04:52 PM
Originally posted by: ItalianMobbstah187
Murphy, I've seen a picture of you, you'd turn from your normal shade of red to purple if you spent a day in Iraq buddy. I come from a military family, it's no joke man, and I don't appreciate your comment.

Send just the far left? Hell no, they won't do sh%t for our country....I want the people over there who are willing to fight for our country, and that's what we got right now, keep it that way.I think you missed some serious sarcasm.

reeds
05-14-2004, 05:59 PM
"A thin green line is all that allows you to keep having your freedom to say the things you do. Seems to be you should get down on your knees and kiss the @$$ of every soldier, sailor, marine, and airman who puts their life on the line to insure your comfy and safe life and your right to write about how you're glad they're volunteering to die. That's downright sick and pathetic. "

I will get down on my knees when the soldiers are fighting for our FREEDOM- this war, that is not the case..beleive what you will, i will beleive what I will..

Iraq was NOT a threat to our freedom what so ever..period..so our men fighting over there are fighting for other reasons..a US stake in the middle east, oil, whatever it is..but is sure as hell isnt fighting for our freedom

reeds
05-14-2004, 06:01 PM
"Is it possible to just send people on the far left to Iraq? "


No- not possible..the people on the left dont beleive in Bush's oil wars..or whatever the real reason is we are over there

dude1394
05-14-2004, 06:10 PM
Maybe reeds is right. We should have just pulled out from enforcing the the no-fly zones, halted the sanctions so the oil for palaces plan wouldn't have corrupted poor Kofi, pull out of south korea, pull out of kosovo and tell israel tough, but the leftists in the country would rather the palestinians kill all of you. Hey maybe reeds is actually Pat Buchanan. Is that you pat???

dude1394
05-14-2004, 06:11 PM
Originally posted by: reeds
"Is it possible to just send people on the far left to Iraq? "


No- not possible..the people on the left dont beleive in Bush's oil wars..or whatever the real reason is we are over there


True the far left hate this country so much that they wouldn't lift a finger to defend it.

LRB
05-14-2004, 06:12 PM
Originally posted by: dude1394

Originally posted by: reeds
"Is it possible to just send people on the far left to Iraq? "


No- not possible..the people on the left dont beleive in Bush's oil wars..or whatever the real reason is we are over there


True the far left hate this country so much that they wouldn't lift a finger to defend it.

Oh they'd lift a finger all right. But only one finger. Any guesses as to which one that would be.

reeds
05-14-2004, 06:18 PM
"True the far left hate this country so much that they wouldn't lift a finger to defend it. "

Get off your ASS and enlist!!! Whats stopping all of you? Its such an almight cause- just DO IT!!! Tillman left milliions to do it, so I dont want to hear any excuses- do it..You are NO better than anyone else if all you do is talk that game but dont walk the game...Exactally what I thought..save the excuses..you are NO better than the left...just bash what we say, but cant back up your bullshit

dude1394
05-14-2004, 07:03 PM
Look I have family who has been in iraq protecting your sorry rear. I can't help it that it's too hot in the kitchen or that the point hits too close to home for you. Let's see who are the heroes of the left.

Ted Kennedy. Good Grief. About the only democrat who had integrity was Joe Liberman and your ridiculous party rejected him out of hand. Howard Dean who swore to run like a scared puppy at the first sign or trouble.

Hell even when asked to name a secretary of defense kerry named two republicans. Then of course there is the irresponsibility of not voting to provide money for the troops. Face it, the democratic party would like nothing more than the US to be defeated if it would get Kerry elected (AND THEY DON'T EVEN LIKE THE GUY). Traitors to this country.

reeds
05-14-2004, 09:47 PM
Dude- just enlist..your family is not YOU..You have to go protect your country..hurry up

dude1394
05-14-2004, 10:10 PM
Sorry reeds, i've already tried, they didn't want me when I was young and they don't want a 47 year old now. But we all do our part, there are enemies here as well, as stalin well knew.

reeds
05-14-2004, 10:16 PM
am i being called Hitler now? that hurts

dude1394
05-14-2004, 10:21 PM
No you are not being called hitler. Haven't you heard the term "useful idiots" before??? I was mistaken by the way, it was Lenin not stalin who coined the phrase.

http://www.jewishworldreview.com -- LENIN is supposed to have referred to blind defenders and apologists for the Soviet Union in the Western democracies as "useful idiots." Yet even Lenin might have been surprised at how far these useful idiots would carry their partisanship in later years -- including our own times.

sowell (http://www.jewishworldreview.com/cols/sowell090100.asp)

reeds
05-14-2004, 10:53 PM
O- Ok..thought u were talking about Stalin- who I beleive is credited with taking down Hitler...lol..sorry

LRB
05-15-2004, 01:21 AM
Get off your ASS and enlist!!! Whats stopping all of you?

Sorry Reeds unfortunately even at 38 the military won't have me. But if they'd take me I'd damn sure signup. I've asked and been turned down. Of course some of us try and support the ones who do serve in anyway we can.

reeds
05-15-2004, 09:27 AM
Dude and LRB, I will give you credit..if it is true you would sign up if possible- that is an admirable thing...at least you would back up your talk...but the rest of u- lets hear your excuses!!!!?????

dude1394
05-15-2004, 09:36 AM
Can it reeds.. It's a silly argument. Number one the military doesn't need a bunch more folks. Two the only reason you are making this argument (ala kerry griping about people "questioning" his patriotism) is to change the subject of how the left in this country are the weak-link of any conflict. It has been ever since Kerry's glory days.

Of course we are generalizing and I'm sure there are many lefties who are willing to fight for this country. The democratic party used to be full of such americans. But the current democratic party that has been re-invented by clinton, mccaullife is a disgrace. Our country will be much better off when it is completely discredited and no longer viable.

Then we will hopefully get a left-leaning more responsible party, right now they are being run like a bunch of teenagers are in control.

dude1394
05-15-2004, 10:12 AM
Another paragon of virture on the democratic party. THIS is the guy that kerry thinks would make a good secretary of defense.


Such scrutiny was on vivid display as Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) hurled an accusatory question at Pentagon intelligence Undersecretary Stephen Cambone at Tuesday's hearing: "Secretary Cambone, were you personally aware that permissible interrogation techniques in the Iraqi theater included sleep management, sensory deprivation, isolation longer than 30 days and dogs?"

Oh the horror, those poor, poor terrorists. The democratic party doesn't have the guts to protect this country anymore, the party of scoop jackson is GONE.. The country is certainly weaker for it.

dude1394
05-15-2004, 10:23 AM
And another consequence of the traitorouse democrats and msm.


But, a few miles away, in the swirling dust and heat of a checkpoint he was monitoring , those images fade in the face of constant deadly threat. Every few days, Haggart's platoon is fired on by hidden enemies.

"We're out here working our rears off every day, and most people embrace us," said Haggart, a pale 21-year-old from Vancouver, Wash. But, he said, the uproar over prisoner abuse "has tarnished that."

reeds
05-15-2004, 05:16 PM
"Such scrutiny was on vivid display as Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) hurled an accusatory question at Pentagon intelligence Undersecretary Stephen Cambone at Tuesday's hearing: "Secretary Cambone, were you personally aware that permissible interrogation techniques in the Iraqi theater included sleep management, sensory deprivation, isolation longer than 30 days and dogs?"
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Oh the horror, those poor, poor terrorists. The democratic party doesn't have the guts to protect this country anymore, the party of scoop jackson is GONE.. The country is certainly weaker for it. "

I beleive the Geneva convention rules should apply- if they are terroists or not...just my thoughts

dude1394
05-15-2004, 06:13 PM
I also believe the geneva convention should apply IF they are legal combatants and not hiding in mosques, behind women and children and not wearing uniforms. If they are doing any of that they are terrorists and are not covered by anything. We have only our own morality then, and as far as I'm concerned anything that gets information from those scum is fair game.

Seeing as how they will probably rape (as they have) cut of the heads (as they have) desecrate the bodies (as they have) of any prisoners they get, I just don't feel too damn sorry for them. Legal prisoners are another story, they should be treated as well as should be expected, but terrorists with information, tough.

reeds
05-15-2004, 09:12 PM
"Seeing as how they will probably rape (as they have) "...yes...they have...So have we from what I am hearing and reading...

Geneva convention applies to all wars- all situations JMHO

dude1394
05-15-2004, 09:56 PM
Originally posted by: reeds
"Seeing as how they will probably rape (as they have) "...yes...they have...So have we from what I am hearing and reading...

Geneva convention applies to all wars- all situations JMHO

You win Reeds, you win. America is just as horrible as sadaam was, we have a standing policy to rape, behead, kill, torture, pour acid on and kill the families of all prisoners. Better now??

However Geneva convention does NOT applie to all prisoners no matter what YHO is, it's wrong.

reeds
05-15-2004, 10:07 PM
"America is just as horrible as sadaam was, we have a standing policy to rape, behead, kill, torture, pour acid on and kill the families of all prisoners. Better now?? " AGAIN, people putting words in my mouth...im use to it though...

All i did was point out the fact that our soldiers did their share of rape over there..its on film for christ sake..

dude1394
05-15-2004, 10:38 PM
You are entitled, if you think there is moral equivalence in the sadaam government proscribed torture and a few rogue soldiers makes us the same ( as you stated) then stand up and say so, but don't try to slide it by with a snide comment.

dude1394
05-16-2004, 11:12 AM
From Mark Steyn...more steyn (http://www.suntimes.com/output/steyn/cst-edt-steyn16.html)


Goh Chok Tong, the prime minister of Singapore, was in Washington the other day and summed it up very well: ''The key issue is no longer WMD or even the role of the U.N. The central issue is America's credibility and will to prevail.'' In Britain, they used to say that the Battle of Waterloo was won on the playing fields of Eton -- i.e., it was thanks to the fierce resolve inculcated by an English education. The war on terror will be lost in the talking shops of Washington -- i.e., it will be thanks to the lack of resolve inculcated by excessive exposure to blow-dried pundits and Senate hearings. The war now has two fronts. In Iraq, the glass is half-full. In Washington, it's half-empty, and draining fast.

And an interesting comment about Steyn's perspective from Hugh Hewitt..

From Hugh Hewitt. (http://www.hughhewitt.com/)


Steyn isn't a pessimist, though, because he understands that the vast majority of Americans understand. The only good thing about the past month-and-a-half has been the effect it will have on American politics --the great sorting-out of the people with clear vision from the partisan hacks. November's choice cannot now be understood as other than a referendum on how America is going to conduct itself over the next two decades. The Bush path is clear, and means aggressive confrontation of the enemy up to and including invasion if necessary, versus the Kerry approach of talk to the Security Council and get some subpoenas issued. The Bush approach is hard and costly, both in lives lost among the military and huge appropriations. The Kerry approach is suicidal.

dude1394
05-16-2004, 11:42 AM
Originally posted by: reeds
"America is just as horrible as sadaam was, we have a standing policy to rape, behead, kill, torture, pour acid on and kill the families of all prisoners. Better now?? " AGAIN, people putting words in my mouth...im use to it though...

All i did was point out the fact that our soldiers did their share of rape over there..its on film for christ sake..

Thought I'd let the weekly standard answer you reeds. "It's america's war (http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/004/095tzpqo.asp)

"The shaming of America. George Bush's boast of shutting down Saddam Hussein's torture chambers in Iraq rings hollow now." The hell it does. Anyone who equates Saddam's bloody decades of torture and mass murder to the crimes at Abu Ghraib is the same kind of fool who once preached the moral equivalence of America and Soviet Russia, or of America in Vietnam and Hitlerism. Imbecility is eternal, perpetually reincarnated.

When Abu Ghraib broke, America was in trouble again. Once again she needed all her government officials to do their duty, all public persons to stand up and defend her. But last week was no 9/11. The Democrats did not rise. They sunk. No one blamed them for condemning the criminals and demanding investigations. But we needed to hear more, and we didn't. Senator Tom Daschle said, "I think that is inexcusable. It's an outrage. It's wrong." And Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi said, "We must have a full investigation to get to the bottom of this outrage." And Senator Carl Levin said, "The actions of these individuals have jeopardized members of the Armed Services in the conduct of their mission, and have jeopardized the security of this country." Which was all true. But it was not enough. And there was worse. Ted Kennedy, echoing America Hatred at its ugliest, said that "Saddam's torture chambers have reopened under new management, U.S. management." The world noticed; the nation was quietly heartbroken.


dude: And the republican party deserves to be chastised as well

Republican smugness is not in order. It is a moment for Republicans to ask themselves: Have we ever, at any moment in recent decades, let the nation down like this?

I don't think so. But if somebody knows differently, tell me. (No crackpots, please.) This is not a time for party preening. It is one of the sadder moments in American history.

But as Anthony Eden reminds us: "Some day the war will be won."

THE PRESSURE on Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld is fierce, because Abu Ghraib hit at a moment when many people were certain that the Iraq war had bogged down. And it had bogged down. It is in the nature of wars that they bog down occasionally. But that is no reason to sack the man who has run this stupendously complex, difficult operation with (on the whole) amazing success and integrity. Perhaps Rumsfeld and other Bush officials did not make quite clear enough beforehand that war is no picnic. But many Americans had already heard rumors to that effect. And the record will show that the secretary has in fact admitted (possibly under oath) that he is not perfect. Republicans who hint around that the defense secretary may indeed have to be cut up and thrown to the dogs are doing the nation no service.