Thursday, March 24, 2005

Mexican solution to Army recruitment problems

The Army expects to fall short of its targeted number of recruits, Army Secretary Francis J. Harvey told reporters yesterday, confirming the likely continuation of a trend that began in February when the active-duty Army missed its monthly goal for the first time since 2000. Last week, Lt. Gen. Franklin L. Hagenbeck, the Army's personnel chief, said in congressional testimony that "monthly recruiting figures from March and April will be difficult to achieve."

The Iraq war, coupled with lower unemployment, creates one of the toughest recruiting environments in years, Army leaders are struggling to come up with innovative ways to reverse the trend of insufficient enlistees.

To increase the recruitment amount the Army has raised its recruitment age from 34 to 39. They are also going out to the “heart land” and pushing patriotism by saying that joining the army is the “noble” thing to do. They are trying some strategies with raising the age, but there are other options to them NOT INCLUDING THE DRAFT!

Coinciding with this decrease in military recruitment is an increase in Illegal aliens. A recent report showed that the number of illegal immigrants is growing by roughly 485,000 people a year. Furthermore, an analysis of government data by the Pew Hispanic Center, a private research group in Washington, showed an estimated 10.3 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States last year, an increase of about 23 percent from 8.4 million in 2000

Harry Pachon of the Tomas Rivera Policy Institute in Los Angeles said the growth in illegal immigrants has risen with the US economy, with American businesses such as Wal-Mart looking to contractors who rely on undocumented workers "to fill jobs no one else will fill."
Bush already has a goal to create a "guest worker" visa program. Which, surprisingly, I think is a great idea. However, I think there is a connection to be made from these two recent news stories.

Mexicans by far remain the largest group of undocumented immigrants at 5.9 million, or about 57 percent of the March 2004 estimate. Many of these people have fought hard conditions to get into the United States, and now many of them are working in less than minimum wage conditions.

I think that if an illegal alien wants a no-complications way to become a U.S. resident, they should be able to join the army. I think that if someone wants to be a U.S. resident enough, they should have the option to join the military. This would create Mexicans that are “Proud to be Americans.” With joining the military the Mexicans would be able to learn English, support their family from abroad, and become a legal member of a somewhat functioning society.
I think there should be army recruiters giving the option of citizenship with military service at the border. This OPTION would increase the amount of traceable, legal, people in our country, give the Mexicans a legal lifestyle, and increase our military.

I realize that this would require some assimilation, which I am against. But in a crazy world that is controlled by Bush, where everyone that is not with you is against you (Canada, Axis of Evil, Syria) it would decrease the likelihood of a draft, which I AM VEHEMENTLY AGAINST!

For more information on the rise of illegal immigrants go here
For more information on the decrease of military recruits go here


A. Morelli said...

I see your point, and as I said on my blog, the army does naturalize it's members. The Army, however, would have to make sure that they do not take these immigrants for granted, and that they actually offer them the same opportunities that they offer everyone else. Also it will have to be made sure that these immigrants do not go undocumented as they do for Wal-Mart and other large corporations when they enlist in the military because benefits and other forms of healtchare will be impossible to get. Remember that the Army wants to train people to kill; it matters little to them if afterwards you are a productive member of society.

Nathan said...

I see your point too. I think the general American and America in general needs more engagement however in their actions around the world, not less.

Thanks for your comments on my blog.

Jennifer and Eric said...

A. Morelli,
I see your point too! And I am not an advocate for the abuse of human rights, and I think that ALL people should be treated with dignity and respect.

Also, you have a good point about the fact that the military does not care who it turns out, as long as they were trained to kill.

I just think that the military should stop looking in the wrong places (34 to 39-year-olds), and maybe make a larger campaign to help naturalize illegal aliens.

However, we would not need anymore soldiers or recruitment if we were not “at war” with Iraq. More people would probably join in a peaceful time, and the necessity of manpower would be smaller.

I do not understand anything you said, but thanks for leaving a comment anyway.

Bob said...

I would worry that the more our military is made up of illegal immigrants the easier it would be for people to send them of to die in war. It seems like we would be hiring other people to do fighting that we aren't willing to do ourselves.

I think the solution to the problem of not having enough military recruits is not fighting unnecessary wars that lack public support. Reducing the need for troops is a better solution than telling foreign citizens fight for us if you want to become American.

Nathan said...

Sorry I was not more clear with my entry. Bob's comments capture my thoughts exactly.

Arvin Hill said...

Right on. Let's find new and innovative ways of preying on Mexican nationals. If we do it just right, our Killing Machine can continue on its murderous rampage for decades on end without feeding on drafted Americans.

It's bad enough that many young people often join the military because they have precious few choices when it comes to making a living or getting a decent education.

Perhaps instead of designing a yummy diet for The Beast, we should be thinking of new and innovative ways of starving it to death.

Which is the long way of saying "Yeah, what Bob said."

Magnus said...

An interesting idea, but for some reason I keep hearing Metallica's "Disposable Heroes" in my head. Perhaps some other form of National Service would be a better plan? What exactly that would be is the question, but something non-military. Doesn't defeat the problem of a draft, though.