Posted on Jul 20, 2023
SSG Carlos Madden
43.5K
1.29K
806
52
52
0
The recruiting struggles continue across all branches. (https://www.wsj.com/story/the-us-army-expects-to-end-up-15000-recruits-short-this-year-b5e9de86). What is causing it and how should it be addressed?
Avatar feed
Responses: 357
SGM Bill Frazer
147
147
0
1. 75% of males/kids are overweight and too fat/out of shape to join. 2. Thanks to Millennials- kids who were too active for their parents were put on drugs or sent to shrinks which require recruiting waivers. 3. A kid ( USAF Brat) posted that his culture as provided by his schools/peers has damaged/destroyed his Patriotism, that they have been taught "When you think of Pride, its the Rainbow Coalition, not America!" Modern parents and teachers have taught that if your feelings are hurt, go and hide in a safe place. Hell, Mass U is offering mental help because the Supreme Court vetoed Biden's Student Loan Payoff. All this makes it damn hard to find folks to recruit! Answer get our Country to start growing balls again and raise Adults, not "Snowflakes"!
(147)
Comment
(0)
SGM Bill Frazer
SGM Bill Frazer
2 mo
1SG (Join to see) - Your opinion
(1)
Reply
(0)
MAJ John Birch
MAJ John Birch
1 mo
1SG (Join to see) - The French Foreign Legion seems to work. You have a deployable force composed not of Americans youth, but immigrants trained under rather harsh conditions, capable of harsh missions. A force that can take casualties without upsetting citizens nearly as much as casualties of our home grown treasured youth. Complete your US Foreign Legion tour, raise your right hand and citizenship is yours. The legion might well serve as an example to our current generation of soft bodies of the service needs of a nation. Maybe even shame some of them as they see others doing their duty for them. Immigrants can be a good source of linguists with knowledge of the customs and geography of areas of interest. Sort of like terrain maps with AI. The immigrant issue is huge, but before wholesale dismissal of the lot, I believe there is cream to be taken off the top ripe for moral exploitation. Having them in their own encampments and not inoculated into the regular force would take care of most OPSEC concerns. Regular forces deployed can be assigned a slice of a foreign legion unit providing linguistic and area knowledge.

The military gets the numbers it needs at grunt level enabling recruiting to offer support and admin positions that I suspect are a lot easier to recruit for and for potential recruits to qualify for. At least a portion of the flood of immigrants is turned into an asset instead of a group dependent on government services.

Recruiting cannot stay the course. Open borders has given us a huge burden as a nation, so why not use this as an opportunity to use one problem to solve another? I am sure someone will point out how my proposal cannot work, and I submit there are far better minds than mine working to solve recruiting shortfall numbers. My suggestion then is just to look around and make an accounting of what we do have, salvage what one can from the debris of current recruit age citizens, and propose to those that run our schools to turn back the clock. When I was in high school we were all subject to the draft and near all boys were 1A. Knowing the draft was a real thing encouraged boys to make better choices. My draft number was 36 out of 365.
(2)
Reply
(0)
LTC Thomas (Tom) Jones
LTC Thomas (Tom) Jones
23 d
WOW. Talk about cutting to the heart of the matter. Request permission to send this to my elected officials--straight up or paraphrased/credited on non-credited.
(1)
Reply
(0)
A1C Medrick "Rick" DeVaney
A1C Medrick "Rick" DeVaney
22 d
LTC Thomas (Tom) Jones -
DO IT.!! ~~ The VA Damned Near Killed Me ~!~ THEN They Pissed Me Off Too...
SO I Wrote To EVERYONE, By E.Mail; ~~ From The Presidents Office, And Even To Our Local Mayor. Carolyn Goodman...... SO, Get Off Uranus And DO It.!
(0)
Reply
(0)
Avatar small
SFC Casey O'Mally
101
101
0
Edited 9 mo ago
There are a lot of partisan / political talking points that can be made. But almost all of those are doomed to failure for that very reason. So, attempting to avoid those areas, here are a few things I think may make a difference.

1) I would go back to the ad campaigns of the 80s and early 90s. Or something similar. Quit trying to be so generic we don't offend anybody, or so specific we are only talking to a few.

Marines fighting lava monsters with a sword and Soldiers rapelling out of helicopters were just cool. There is an argument that they are "elitist" and may give kids the impression that they aren't good enough to sign up. But I think the more accurate argument is that kids KNOW they aren't that good - but those commercials encouraged them to sign up so they could BECOME that good.

2) I would also tighten up uniform rules and go back to class B being the "standard" duty uniform. Military members just look BETTER in service uniform, as compared to fatigues. And even just walking down the aisle of the grocery store or pumping gas at the gas station, those service uniforms are an advertisement all on their own.

3) Get recruiters back in to schools. All of them. HS and college. If the school gets even a dime from the federal government in ANY way, even subsidized lunches, wedge in there and get the recruiters talking to kids.

And I mean true engagement. Have the recruiter stop by in Freshman PE. Not even to recruit, but to help out. Maybe an official timer for a 1 mile run. Maybe a grader for some other PE event, or a referee for basketball. Maybe a different recruiter shows up in Civics/government class to talk about the Constitution. Get the recruiters in there being a part of their world. They don't even have to pitch their service, just help out the school and then have time to be available after class/during lunch/after school for anyone who wants to talk.

4) Re-look / re-assess admission standards. Especially regarding health history and mental health history. If an otherwise acceptable candidate is being disqualified for a mental health history, but that concern has been "cured" either through treatment or simply growing up (Yes, you can "age out" of ADHD), let the waivers flow. Same for medications that are no longer being taken, or even medications that are "routine" and can be easily stocked /supplied. (Not things like refrigerated insulin, or highly black marketable Adderall, but things like Welbutrin or guanfacine that are stocked in pretty much every pharmacy, are relatively resilient regarding temperatures, and pose little threat for re-sale if we have to send a Soldier out with a 180 day supply. This would obviously need a lot of medical scrutiny, but I think in today's logistical world, SOME of these meds should be waiverable.) Sure we may still need a waiver, and make the recruit (and recruiter) show that the previous concern is no longer an issue. But loosen the standard on the waivers and let them flow freely.

5a) re-look / re-assess what is a military job and what is not. Back in the early 2000s, we went through and eliminated a lot of "excess military manpower" tasks (mowing lawns, cleaning windows, etc.) to free up Soldiers to train, train, and train some more.

We still have things like post police and road guard, and I don't think these are going away. But do 90% of the military intelligence jobs at Fort Belvoir and Fort Meade need to be done by uniformed service members? What about logistics? Cooks on those "non-depoyable" bases?

I think we are unlikely to radically recover from the current shortages. Short of conscription, we should accept a lower end strength. If that is the case, what are the most critical needs, and let's build our units, MTOE, and TDA that way. Very little, if any, change to ECB. But at EAC I can see room for a lot of conversion.

5b) Those folks who want to join the military, but are unable to due to physical ability or prescriptions or family requirements may be able to move into those previously military roles. We can give them the same basic pay and benefits package, or close to it, but maybe without VA eligibility, as they are not actually military and do not face the same hazards, particularly combat hazards. (Yes, I know a small percentage of the military deploys to a combat zone - and an even smaller percentage actually engages in honest to goodness combat. And that percentage is dropping as we have closed out Iraq and Afghanistan, and the GWOT is down to a simmer. But all military members sign up for a POSSIBILITY of going to combat - and train for it.)

5 options and a corollary. All of them will take work and changes to policy. Most will require legislative action. But they are out there.


Ok.... there's my thoughts.... go ahead and rip 'em to shreds, peanut gallery.
(101)
Comment
(0)
SFC Tom Hardges
SFC Tom Hardges
2 mo
100% on the uniforms, todays fatigues are all so baggy and unkept looked
(1)
Reply
(0)
SPC Edward Abney
SPC Edward Abney
2 mo
All good stuff, SFC O'Mally. My two cents, bring back the Specialist ranks for tech and support MOS's. Not everyone wants to be a NCO, and deal with all the extras that it entails.
(1)
Reply
(0)
MAJ John Birch
MAJ John Birch
1 mo
Your proposals make my proposals worthy of a pre-schooler. And your writing skill makes everything you propose clarified. Most writing is a bucket of mud one must reach into to extract one or two nuggets. You have an experienced and rational writing voice and therefore I sincerely hope someone with an ounce of influence passes your thoughts forward. Reduce recruiting goals, accept a reduced force, and declare victory.
(0)
Reply
(0)
LT Christopher Miller
LT Christopher Miller
7 d
This might not be popular, but what about sending recruiters to the immigrant detention centers down in Texas and the like and scope out potential recruits?
(0)
Reply
(0)
Avatar small
CSM Andrew Perrault
71
71
0
Get the woke stuff out, along with the politics. Get back to basics of warfighting
(71)
Comment
(0)
SP5 Larry (Lawrence) Pitman
SP5 Larry (Lawrence) Pitman
4 mo
For every one soldier who saddles up and heads into a "hot zone", there are 10 non-combatant positions in support. Clerks, motor pool, cooks, communication specialists, weapons, armoror, supply, transportation, and the list goes on. As long as the ammo keeps flowing, no one gives a hoot who delivered it.
(1)
Reply
(0)
1SG Robert Baggett
1SG Robert Baggett
3 mo
SP5 Larry (Lawrence) Pitman - That's not how I define "woke," though I agree it isn't meant to be a compliment.
(1)
Reply
(0)
Col Worthey Brisco
Col Worthey Brisco
23 d
Bingo!
(0)
Reply
(0)
Col Worthey Brisco
Col Worthey Brisco
23 d
[~820184:CSM Andrew Sargeant Major...the captain was being facetious.
(0)
Reply
(0)
Avatar small

Join nearly 2 million former and current members of the US military, just like you.

close